Nomi Wagner Portrait Artist

A New Year’s Gift of Giggles

by Nomi Wagner

Wishing you a VERY HAPPY 2015 with cartoons from my famous and talented cousin, Benita Epstein. Enjoy!

You can laugh at lots more on Benita’s website: http://www.benitaepstein.com

It’s interesting to me that both Benita and I studied and worked in science before falling into our careers in art. Benita was a scientific researcher for 20 years with a B.S. and M.S. in Entomology, while I earned a B.S. in Dental Hygiene and practiced for 18 years. Neither of us had any idea these life changes would be occurring, but as Benita says, “You never know unless you have the drive and take the risk!”

As kids, we had each done some drawing. Benita had made cartoon books and I was always taking photos of people, but we never considered art for our careers. We were good at science and made practical career choices.

As adults however, our shared passions surfaced. When Benita took a University of California weekend cartooning workshop, she knew immediately that was the thing she wanted to do and sold her first cartoon within two weeks. When one of my patients, a world-renowned interior designer, told me that she never could find enough good photographers and that I should go for it … that’s all it took. Within a year, I was a professional portrait photographer, a career that ultimately evolved into portrait painting.

Of course, I’m making it all sound easy. As Benita says, “I don't think the general public realizes how much diligent hard work and continued effort is involved in the creative arts.” Fortunately we both have the drive, love what we do and are having the most fun ever. We consider ourselves two very lucky cousins!

Here’s a link to a great article about Benita:

Pismo Beach Woman Trades Bugs for Art

I wish you a year full of passion, discoveries, and FUN!