"All of us humans have a story. We are wacky, wonderful, wounded creatures, beautiful in our imperfection, courageous in our vulnerability. Our outsides often don't reflect our journeys, our stories, our painful or ugly parts. Through my expressive portrait and distorted figurative paintings, I strive to cut through the "pretty" exterior we like to show to the world and bring the inside out. We may be whimsical and fun, might be dark and frightening, but we are always more interesting than what sits on the surface. I hope to tell these stories and by doing so, help others to celebrate their own story." – Marybeth Bradbury
Marybeth has been creating art since she could hold a crayon (in her left hand!). In the third grade, she won the national contest to design a cover for American Girl magazine. Art has always been a passionate part of her life, but like many artists, creativity had to take a back seat to the practicalities of making a living and being single-mom to her three children.
After years grinding away in the male-dominated world of software technology, Marybeth made a major change in lifestyle. This new chapter has given her a chance to explore other aspects of her artistic personality and feminine side. Recently, she's been creating women – in paintings and other mixed media. "I paint women because I am women; every one of them is, in some way, a mirror," she says. She is or has been a daughter, a mother, a wife, a bread-winner, a nurturer, a teacher, a leader, and many, many other roles that all women inhabit. Drawing from these experiences, past and present, she is currently producing works that speak about women, to women, and for women.
As an artist and a teacher, Marybeth can take you along on a creative trip, not only showing you her process but also explaining it, essentially "teaching" you how to find your own. She leads workshops and offers group experiences involving creativity in many forms. Her encouraging and inclusive style invites participants to dance in the pool of creativity with no need for formal artist training. She offers the opportunity to enjoy the process for what it is – the experience of creating.
When she's not in her third floor aerie overlooking the North Carolina coast making art or designing and constructing clothing, she can often be found cooking and creating in the kitchen (kombucha and yogurt are of her two favorites) or participating in her local arts community as co-founder of the Topsail Art Collective.