“I wanted to be an artist since I was a child.” This is how Judy Rutinger describes her passion as an artist. Judy once worked for twelve years as a commercial artist for W.T. Grant Company Chain Store. Apart from her two courses in visual arts she is basically a self-taught artist. She once attempted to go to art school but she could not afford it. She found a clerical job at W.T. Grant until an opportunity opened for her to create line-pen-and ink drawings for employee training books.
Her art appears to be influenced by her engagement with photo or hyper-realism, “I really wanted to be an illustrator like Norman Rockwell.” Judy’s media involve colored pencils, water colors, and pen and ink. She used to use oil paints but she found mixing colors exhausting.
Finally, around 1980 Judy fell ill and could no longer hold her job. She is now in her 17th year in St. Francis Residence III. However, it is clear that her illness was not able to take away her lifeline – art. “I find personal pleasure and a sense of achievement when I do art. I am always working.”
Her satisfaction does not end there because she continues to explore other techniques to make her art fuller and more meaningful for her and hopefully to her audience.