Wray Clifford

I am going to make everything around me beautifulthat will be my life – Elsie De Wolfe

 All my life, I wanted to be an artist.

As a child, I would hold art class for my stuffed animals, and in elementary school, art class was quite simply my favorite. When I became a high schooler, I took as many classes in art as permitted, ultimately convincing my mother to let me take my first life drawing class as a sophomore in high school at the Cincinnati Academy of Art.  This early training helped me gain admittance to the rigorous medical illustration program at the Ohio State University.

In 1995, I graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science in the Allied Medical Professions with a degree in Medical Illustration.

Upon traveling to Europe for the first time, I discovered the great master works of painting. Experiencing such beauty made me realize that painting was a passion of mine, one I was determined to pursue all my life.

I was fortunate to build a great career in advertising and design, as well as a great life with my husband Dan and our two children. But to be honest, along the way I felt like I had lost a piece of myself—like I was far away from the thing that always brought me joy: my art.

Luckily, an amazing opportunity brought art back into my world: the chance to teach at a local children’s art studio, and then to ultimately to purchase the business. I jumped at it, running Purple Dog Art Studio in New Albany, OH for 5 years. I was completely in heaven to be creating again and doing what I truly felt I was meant to do.

Of course, life had a different plan. In July of 2016, my husband took a job in Boston, and I sold Purple Dog, knowing we would move our family to join him within the year. With a new chance to grow my dreams even further on the horizon, it felt like the perfect time to add to the studio I’ve kept in Columbus for the last 8 years, and so I plan to expand my work to the Boston area, opening a studio in July 2017.

Change is, of course, what you make of it, and for me, I saw this new path opening up as an amazing opportunity to pursue my dream of being an artist full time.

And now that's what I do, that's who I am. I am an artist!