If you’re interested in a commission, here’s a little bit about how the process works.

Instead of paying me, you can pay the full price as a donation to the International Rescue Committee (be sure to include me as the gift recipient, so I know the donation went through–see step 7!)

1. First, go to the IRC website. 

2. Click on the menu and select “How to Help.”

3. Click on “Rescue Gifts.”

4. Under Rescue Gifts, you can select one or more gifts, adding up to the full commission price. Add gifts to your cart.

5. Go to Checkout.

6. Enter Billing Information.

7. Fill out a card (you don’t need to write anything), and *be sure to include my email address as the recipient!!*

8. Submit donation.

That’s it 🙂 I’m happy to get started on a commission before receiving a donation card, as long as it comes before I send it off. 

Prices are:

$150 for a 8×11 oil painting (1 figure)

$60 for a full page pencil or charcoal drawing (1 figure)

$30 for a quarter page drawing (1 figure)

Plus shipping.

If you want a different size or more than one figure, feel free to reach out!

Art vs. realism in drawing

Recently, a friend commissioned a few portraits from me, and after I had finished them, I went over to her house to drop them off. While there, I told her how for so long, I felt like I wasn’t really an artist, because mostly I just really love to draw faces, and I like to draw them as realistically as possible. 

I think she could tell that I still harbor a little bit of self consciousness about that, and she said that she understood where I was coming from—that the art community doesn’t always have a high opinion of realism—but that she thought the only reason for that was because of photography. She felt like, if photography didn’t exist, realism would be considered just as valid a form of art. 

I really appreciated her saying that, and just the appreciation she has for what I do. It also got me thinking, why do photographs make realistic art less valuable? The simplest answer, I think, is that someone can produce the same result (or something similar) with less effort. But this got me thinking, couldn’t you say the same thing about abstract or impressionistic forms of art? There are so many digital shortcuts that you can really make any kind of art, and you can probably do it in less steps using a computer. 

Basically, I feel like, the value of art doesn’t need to depend so much on “well technology can make that easier/better/more quickly.” I would be hard pressed to list all of the reasons why art matters, but ultimately, if a given style of art (even realism!) is meaningful to me to create, and meaningful or pleasing or just fun for someone else to see and appreciate, then I think that’s good enough.

Mostly I’m still just giving myself a pep talk and unlearning all the dismissive stuff I’ve heard or thought to myself and internalized. Because I just really, really like drawing faces 🙂

It’s been a minute…

Mostly, I haven’t posted for so long because my computer won’t update to the latest version of chrome—I actually had to post this on a different computer. Haha. 

But also, a lot has happened in the last few months, so a lot has slipped my mind. 

“Love and Dirt” in Guernica Magazine. Illustration by Anne le Guern.

In terms of writing, I am beyond excited to share that my essay, Love and Dirt, was published in Guernica magazine! This essay might be my favorite I’ve ever written. And I love Guernica—I’ve read so many essays from there that changed my life and inspired me to write. To have an essay published there is such an honor.

I also had a poem, Acre Lot with Furnished Lodgings, published in the ever delightful and idiosyncratic Drunk Monkeys, and before that, I was able to contribute (alongside so many other wonderful authors) to Utah’s 125th anniversary anthology with a short (125 word) essay, Let Me Tell You About The Evergreens.

Healthwise, things have been a little hectic—I had some gastritis (and possibly an ulcer) which lead to some nausea and vomiting for a couple weeks, then I had Covid and Strep within a few weeks, plus the bouquet of colds and bugs the kids bring home from daycare. Then a couple weeks ago, I was bedbound for a couple days with bad vertigo that has pretty much all subsided (I took prednisone and did some exercises for BPV, and between them something helped!). 

Which is to say, this body is a little worn out and haggard. However, I have taken up drawing again more recently, and that has been a real source of happiness. I’m grateful that I’ve been up to that (drawing has mostly not been an option for the last few years, due to CFS and hand pain) and that I’ve been able to do it with some consistency. Lately I’ve felt that drawing is one of the most enjoyable and peaceful things I do. Everything else melts away and years of practice and familiarity take over. 

Hopefully I will get around to posting some portraits soon!

That’s all for now—

much love,


Don’t Call the Cops on People for Parenting While Disabled — published on The Mighty

Michael’s had people call the police on him while going out with our son in public twice (yes, seriously), just because he has a visible disability… most likely because they thought that he wasn’t our sons dad or thought that he wasn’t a capable parent.

This article is about that. You can read it here.

Story Date: Honeymoon Blues and Tabernacle Road

We’ve uploaded a couple Story Dates after our first one, but so far this is my very favorite that we have ever made. I do think I’m primarily a writer at heart, but there are some great things about just recording a story and telling it verbally and visually, and I enjoy being a little bit of a jack of all trades (even if not the best, haha).

Part of why I like this one is because we got to incorporate it into our trip to St. George (many years after our honeymoon) and take some fun shots, but also I just think it’s good to normalize things like that honeymoons aren’t going to be 100% perfect and that it’s easy to set up unrealistic expectations.

Feeling a little blue for a day probably doesn’t really count as “Honeymoon Blues,” but I still think it’s worth acknowledging that it can happen at any number of different levels and is probably more common than we think. This is a great Washington Post article about general honeymoon or post-wedding blues.

That said, I hope you enjoy this story of how a blue day ended up a little brighter 🙂

“Waiting for a Safety and Emissions Inspection at Jiffy Lube” published in Tar River Poetry

I’m so grateful to Luke Whisnant for publishing “Waiting for a Safety and Emissions Inspection at Jiffy Lube” in Tar River Poetry. It’s such a beautiful journal that I’ve loved for years, and it’s so exciting to appear in it.

I’ll admit that sometimes I get discouraged about the submitting process. It can be tough to get multiple rejections in a week or day, and it can be hard to go months or even years without getting an acceptance (though it certainly helps to submit more often). But I’m so grateful to those who keep encouraging me to submit, and some weeks, like when I am published on Brevity’s blog and in Tar River Poetry in the same week, I feel heard and heartened.

I realized last night, too, that both pieces published this week were written after finishing my MFA program. Honestly that means a lot to me–my MFA program was absolutely incredible and I loved it, but it can be so hard to feel like I can do this writing thing without the structure and workshops and feedback and creative atmosphere that were so abundant while I was there. So it’s nice to have a poem and an essay published from this era of writinghood.

Write on.

“Don’t Let Him Rob You Twice” published on Brevity Blog

I’ll warn you up front that this piece is about grooming behavior and sexual abuse, which I don’t talk about very often. But I do sometimes, and I’m so grateful to Brevity for publishing Don’t Let Him Rob You Twice on their blog.



Last week, I did some commissioned portraits 🙂 it was so fun, and the person I worked with was so nice. She gave me permission to share them and said that she loved them, which made my day!

It’s been a while since I’ve made a habit of portrait art, but I’ve been getting back in the swing and remembering just how much I love it. 🙂

Introducing Story Dates :)

Last year, a month or two into the pandemic when we weren’t doing much socially, Michael and I recorded a few videos of us telling stories from our childhood or our marriage. They were some of the funnest dates I’ve had, and I’d like to keep making them every few months (they’re a lot of work, haha).

We had thought about making a private YouTube channel to share them with our friends a while back, but we decided to go ahead and make them public to anyone who wanted to watch, and uploaded the first one today. 🙂

Hope you enjoy!