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Carmen's earliest years were spent in Brewton, Alabama where she still has family. Her immdediate family moved to Pensacola, Florida when she was only three years old, and some of her earliest memories are from the beach. She went to The University of Alabama in 1981, majoring in French and English in Secondary Education while working at Bookland of Tuscaloosa. Carmen met her husband Bruce while still in school. She was fortunate enough to do her student-teaching at the American School of Paris and spent a semester in France where she visited many museums. She came home to begin her teaching career. Four more years in high school and a wedding led her back to the Florida Panhandle. Carmen spent several years at home with twins, a boy and a girl. The family was completed with the birth of another baby boy.
Carmen eventually went back to work and spent twenty more years in the classroom, mostly in middle school, where she taught French, English and Art. After an early retirement she has devoted her days to creative endeavors, which include drawing, painting, making stained-glass mosaics and jewelry. Carmen also enjoys beach combing, reading, gardening boating and travel.
Books and reading have always held an important place in Carmen's world. She used school libraries extensively and still has a handwritten list of all the books read in fourth grade. She became an assistant manager of Bookland, working her way through college. Story time was a such a big part of her children's lives that she read the first five books in the Harry Potter series aloud because her youngest could not yet read it for himself. There are books in every room of her home today and she has a book club with a small group of friends that meets monthly. Drawing began as soon as Carmen could hold a crayon and it continues today although she's moved up to colored pencils. Her artistic influences are as varied as Vincent van Gogh and Mary Engelbreit, but they come together in her bold colors and scenes of everyday life. It's only natural that these two passions would spark the creation of a picture book. My Home Is Bigger Than A House is her first work, but there are already ideas for future endeavors.
Carmen Ellis Patterson can be contacted via Facebook or via email to [email protected]
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