A passion for art and design has defined Michele Carter's entire life. As soon as she could hold a crayon, she started drawing and never stopped. Her considerable artistic talent and creativity got her accepted at Massachusetts College of Art, where she took 4 years of painting and drawing, but majored in Graphic Design and Advertising. For many years she painted for a hobby - mostly pictures of flowers done in Gouache. In the early 1980's she decided to become more serious about painting, and she was juried into the Copley Society (a group of watercolor and oil painters in the Boston area, named for John Singleton Copley, a famous 18th century Boston painter). At that time, she was also juried into a cooperative gallery in Sudbury, MA, where she exhibited and sold her paintings. In 1986 she had a two-person show in Weston, MA, with a good friend who is an excellent watercolorist. She continues to paint, but now in miniature – mostly pictures of floral arrangements and garden scenes.
For over 25 years Michele moved up the career ladder, using her talents to create award-winning advertising and brochures for various corporations, eventually becoming a marketing communications executive. When the economy turned sour in Silicon Valley in early 2001, Michele was given an "opportunity" to find something more fun to do. Having been an active miniature hobbyist for years, she looked for a way to turn this hobby that she loves into a home-based business.
Inspiration and a solution to her dilemma came from her love of gardening. Having been an avid gardener for years, she realized that her knowledge of flowers and plants could possibly translate into making miniatures. With the help of a friend who was a miniaturist, Michele started experimenting with making miniature flowers. She was immediately hooked, and quickly decided to make it her new career.
Michele's interest in miniatures surfaced as a young child. Her post-war tin stamped dollhouse with plastic furniture inspired many fantasies. One fantasy was shared with her family EVERY Sunday as they sat around the dining room table. Michele would confidently explain to her parents that she was going to shrink herself and live in her dollhouse. Maybe she thought if she repeated this often enough it would actually happen. What did happen was she developed a life-long interest in miniatures that, combined with her professional art training, has blossomed into a new career creating high quality 1/12th scale floral arrangements, plants, paintings, and accessories.
Dan Worsham was first influenced artistically by his artisan grandfather. As a young boy, Dan frequently visited his cabinet shop as the old Italian immigrant crafted masterpieces in wood for William Randolf Hearst, Herbert Hoover, and other renowned patrons.
Following in his grandfather's footsteps, Dan developed a passion for the decorative arts. He attended Foothill College in California, studying art and design, and immersed himself in a curriculum of drawing and painting. After college he became fascinated with the medium of stained and leaded art glass. He studied the masterworks of Louis Comfort Tiffany and decided to try his hand making leaded windows and lamps.
He entered into the trade by working as an apprentice artisan for Alexander Art Glass in Felton, California. But his work soon became so popular that he struck out on his own and opened Worsham Art Glass in Los Gatos, California, in 1976. His beautifully crafted art glass earned him the Award of Excellence (Best of Show) from Berkeley Art Guild, and another Award of Excellence from the Mill Valley Art Association in 1978. Dan enjoyed a successful stained glass art business for over 15 years until the Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989 rearranged his life, as well as all of his earthly possessions.
Dan has exhibited his work at the Stones Gallery on Kauai, Bank of the West in Los Gatos, and participated in a group art exhibit at Herbst International Exhibition Hall in the Presidio, San Francisco.
Dan Worsham is married to Michele Carter and shares her love of both miniatures and painting. Dan has drawn and painted as a hobby since childhood. Most of his early oil paintings were of lush Hawaiian and Californian landscapes. However, since moving to New Hampshire in 2009, he has taken to doing full-sized “plein air” painting. The beautiful Monadnock region of New Hampshire supplies a bountiful selection of scenic subjects to paint – maybe some will end up as miniature paintings as well.
Dan's interest in miniatures started as a young boy when he discovered scale model car kits, a hobby that has continued into his adult life. After helping Michele build her first dollhouse from a kit, he discovered he had an interest in creating 1/12th scale buildings from his own imagination. Dan has built several buildings from scratch, including Vincent Van Gogh's "Yellow House" in Arles, France, a replica of his grandfather's garage as he remembers it as a child, an historically correct Hawaiian hut, and a wooden-shoe sailboat.
Joining his wife, Michele Carter, as a creative partner in PepperWood Miniatures, Dan is now creating one-inch scale oil paintings, and Art Nouveau style lamps and windows, using classic Tiffany patterns as well as his own designs. He saw an opportunity to take his vast knowledge of oil painting and art glass and applying it to miniatures.