JEWEL SHIELD ARTS BIO/RESUME
MUSICIAN * ARTIST * TEACHER
I have loved the visual arts and music all my life. In my high school years I developed a passion for helping others and using the arts in a “therapeutic” sense because they offer a means for expression, creativity, communication and joy. I discovered how the arts could influence and effect my well being as well as those around me and used as a tool for creating harmony, good and beauty in the world.
When in High School, after taking all the possible art classes I could, I did independent studies in art as well as cadet taught ceramics and painting in my junior year. I graduated in l975 as a junior at age 16 and went on to college as an art major. I attended the University of Northern Iowa and in l980 graduated from Drake University with a BFA in Ceramics as well as my studies in Creative Arts Therapy and Psychology. It is there where I also began my life long love and passion for the study and creation of mandala arts. I taught children’s ceramics at Valley Art Association in Forest Grove for a number of years as well as served on their board of directors.
With my background in visual arts and creative arts therapy I have created an enriching holistic approach to teaching. I have taught workshops on harp and Autoharp as well as the joy of music classes with children privately as well as in groups. I also have had the joy of teaching private harp lessons to others from ages 5 to 83 for over the past two decades and continue to do so.
From l993 to the present I have participated in several exhibits with my ceramic work. I also have sold my work through galleries in Arizona as well as Lawrence Gallery, Valley Art Association, Kathleen’s of Dublin as well as private studio shows, and participation in Yamhill County Art Harvest Studio Tour.
During my college years I also discovered and fell in love with the world of folk and traditional international music through National Public Radio programs. My own desire to “find my instrument” led me to exploring the guitar, mandolin, the Autoharp (chorded zither) and the finally the folk harp, all of which I taught myself to play. In 1983 after playing Autoharp for 3 years, I won first place in the International Autoharp championship at the Walnut Valley Music Festival in Winfield, Kansas. I got on stage and closed my eyes to play in order to overcome my fear and self-consciousness of playing in front of others. This led to touring and performances as well as workshops, programs at festivals, concerts at colleges, schools, and performances on Public TV and Radio Programs. Also, I designed the “Jewel Chromaharp” which was manufactured and marketed through the educational Music Company Rhythm Band Inc.
26 years later, I still continue to play my harp for art festivals and events, as well as for private functions. For the past 15 years or so I also have been providing therapeutic healing harp music for patients and staff at Legacy Hospital in Portland. I have also performed for Retirement, Nursing Homes and Senior Citizen Centers in the region. I was the founder of Folk Harp Society NW.
Now I reside in the beauty of Yamhill County countryside with my husband, Jan and our family of cats, dog, lamas and goats. We call our place Dancing Trees Sanctuary for the arts. Nature is my continued source of inspiration and the beauty of my surroundings adds to my artistic expression.
Thank you for visiting my web site and for taking the time to read of my journey.
~ Jewel ~