Moving to Ft. Myers, Florida in 2000 was the first step I made to leaving my past behind and starting a new journey in an unfamiliar place. After meeting the very few young artists, attending a few open studio painting classes, and having the privilege of apprenticing at two stained glass companies; I was quickly finding an artist passion inside of me. Before I knew it, I had a very successful solo art showing at an established gallery on the beach. Little did I know, or my art history at the time, Robert Rauschenberg attended my opening. He was impressed by energy and focus enough to invite me to visit his studio. It was then I learned from him the steps to make it as a successful artist. I even had several opportunities that allowed me show some of my own art with his at a few art benefit auctions. All and all never knowing his accomplishments he made in the art world, until a few years later reading about him in art history classes.