For most of Dana’s childhood, the beach was her life. Some of her fondest memories were hanging out at the beach, and spending time with family and friends. Fishing, swimming and BBQ’s were the order of the day. Living in Hawaii as a child she also discovered a passion for Polynesian dancing which she pursued throughout her young adult life. Her dancing career started at Disneyland and various hotels such as the Marriott and Kanapali Shores Hotel in Maui.
Dana was heavily influenced by her families creative background. Her great-grandmother worked for a couture design house. Her mother is a successful interior designer. Her sister was head designer at FILA sportswear and wardrobe stylist at Warner Brothers Studios. During a family retreat one summer in Italy, she decided to stay on and attend College in Florence. She studied language, the art of painting and drawing at the prestigious University of Lorenzo De Medici.
Living among some of the greatest works of art in the world, including Michelangelo’s most famous masterpieces, inspired her to visit the various museums and emulate these paintings, which inspired her to paint murals on her own.
“I always wondered how those Tahitian girls shook those grass skirts so fast and I was always amazed at how Michelangelo painted those massive murals, so I learned how to do both!”
After more than a year of school in Europe, she continued her education at The Art Institute in Laguna Beach, California. While in California she searched for her own painting style and soon developed a sought-after talent for mural painting, oil painting and interior design.
The professors would always say, “paint your passion, paint what you know.” So, naturally she painted the Tropics. This love of tropical destinations soon led to a vacation in Tahiti. Little did she know this would turn into a more lasting adventure.
Dana wound up getting married and remained in French Polynesia over a 5 year period. During this time she lived in Moorea near Cook’s Bay, in the former house of fellow Hawaiian style artist Edgar Leeteg from Honolulu.
After Dana returned to Newport Beach she started a thriving business painting murals and canvases while also excelling at interior design projects. Her list of clients was filled by private collectors and celebrities as well as large corporations including Pepsi, Coke, Hyatt hotels and high-end storefronts at the Beverly Center shopping mall. One of her biggest clients was a men’s designer clothing store at the Fashion Island shopping center in Newport Beach called Gary’s & Co. For Gary’s she formed friendships and business relationships that would help her be one of the most successful artists in Newport Beach.
Dana continued working and traveling around Mexico, Southern California and the Hawaiian Islands, where she took advantage of opportunities such as working with Hawaiian based clothing manufacturers Tori Richards, Kahala men’s wear and Hawaiian Island Creations. Very soon she had a foot-hold in 13 different galleries throughout the nation. The icing on the cake was an International Publishing deal for a set of her ‘Hawaiiana’ paintings in Europe.
While enjoying good fortune in the art world, Newport Beach, Ca. became her home base. She opened galleries in Corona Del Mar, Laguna Beach, and Newport.
Dana captures her true love for the tropics in rich, brightly colored canvas. Not only do the colors inspire and excite, but the stories and locations are real. Dana was first attracted to the challenge of putting her emotions to canvas, which developed into a love of color and the process of painting. Thank you for visiting.