HELLO! I am so glad you stopped by.
My name is Fran Mason and I grew up in a rural community in southeastern Michigan (USA) and it was there that I happily spent my days climbing trees, riding bikes, running through the sprinklers, playing with stray dogs and barn cats, and hunting for salamanders. We were forever digging holes looking for buried treasure and perhaps even the way to China!
This was a magical time for me. No adults were present. We were left to our own devices to imagine and create. We discovered abandoned shacks, meandering creeks, nature in every form: leaves, flowers, rocks, and small animals. It was enchanting! This time is where my creativity was born and nurtured.
I received my B.A. in Art Education and Sculpture from Colorado State University. I taught elementary, junior high, and high school for 8 years before leaving to pursue an advanced degree. I earned an M.A. in Art Education and Painting-Printmaking from Rhode Island School of Design. I have created art, including illustrations, paintings, and prints, and have taught the Visual Arts, for the past 23 years.
In school, I was indoctrinated into the patriarchal, Western artistic canon. I was urged time and time again to follow the lead of this model. It took me years to shake that mindset and create my own oddball, authentic work.
My work is the blend of childhood inspirations, COLOR•COLOR•COLOR, and a sort of off-kilter, oddball perspective on life.
I am particularly inspired by the work of fine artists Jean-Michel Basquiat, Jean DuBuffet, and Alice Neel as well as illustrators Quentin Blake, Henrik Dresser, Oliver Jeffers, and Melissa Sweet. I am also very much influenced by children’s art, anything funny, oddball stuff (think: sideshows and "carnies"), and Primitive/Outsider art.