Born In 1951, Mary Jane resides in Newport NH with her husband, Mark Cross. Mary Jane's desire to make beautiful things began a serious journey to live an artist's life by age 8. In 1970-1973 studies at the Worcester Art Museum School in Worcester MA began her insatiable appetite for museums, galleries, biographies, paintings and then their storytelling in paint. Cross found the season of expressionism of the 70's to fall short of the academic skills that were desired. So, shortly after graduation, she patterned a curriculum for herself and a few students after the French Academic Painters, and the Pre Raphaelites. Studying how other artists were trained gave her the courage to find what her own voice would be.
A few workshops along the way with Daniel Green, then 15 years of mentoring in atmospheric color treatment with Fran Hoyt, a student of Vincent Dumond of the Arts Students League, she began to round out studious 'perspiration.' Gerome, Bouguereau, Lefebvre, the Pre Raphaelites, Jules Bastian LePage, Mary Cassatt, Lord Leighton left their romantic sumptuous themes, models and exquisite technical ability to story-tell in captivating ways rounded out the 'inspiration' that continues to captivate and embody her work.
Q Cross's work embraces beauty personified in primarily womanly subjects on an emotional and intimately respectful level. The models' spirits and souls are loved under her fingers. This is literal, as the artist paints with her fingers due to a severe tremor that restricts the use of brushes. The artist's career did not end but has persevered to inspire a documentary which was 18 months in the making.
Mary Jane is at her best as she spiritually entwines poetry with her comely treatment of the figure as the Pre Raphaelites did in their ability to tell stories. Her desire that three lifetimes would perhaps enable her to paint only half the paintings in her personal vision yet ahead, lead her to know her Creator's eternity as a most welcome eventuality.
Strong, prayerful women, scenes of tranquility, and a quiet stillness have perhaps come from a rest that bodily eludes her. It is evident that she has an interior tranquility that has become a comforting theme that is powerful, as a visual reprieve, in our busy culture.
It is said by Mary Jane about her work, "Always learning and never reaching, keeps me, ever the contemplative painter, longing to paint the next tender work...and then by God's grace, the next."
"James Cowman's user's guide on composition and Dynamic Symmetry, in particular, was one of the greatest milestones on my journey of becoming a better artist. Dynamicsymmetryart.com is undoubtedly the best resource on the subject out there, which I keep recommending to anyone interested in taking their compositions to a new level. It shocks me that even otherwise excellent artists today often know nothing about these old systems and rely mostly on their intuition to create their compositions. It's time that artists rediscover and revive the lost knowledge of the old masters and bring art back to its former glory. Jame's user's guide is a unique and invaluable resource in this effort." - Storm Engineer
"Jim offers something that is almost impossible to find online: a truly one-of-a-kind resource. His information about Dynamic Symmetry is meticulously researched and comes from a place of knowledge and genuine interest, not sales, as so many educational sites do. Reading his surprisingly accessible work has helped me to grow artistically in a deliberate and satisfying way. I return to Dynamic Symmetry Art regularly and always learn something new." - Rebecca Isenhart
"The information provided in The Art of Composition: A Dynamic Symmetry User's Guide for the Modern Artist has been a tremendous resource for me as an artist and photographer. My photography work has improved tremendously, and all of my clients agree! I'll continue to share this user's guide with all of my peers and other creative artists." - Zine Massey
"I just graduated from the BFA in Graphic Design at the Federal University of Pernambuco, in Brazil, and one of the chapters of my monograph was about composition. As a motion designer, the proper layout of elements is a very important phase in my creative process, so any tool that helps with making decisions on that is very valuable. What I love about your studies is that it's full of images and resources, it's a gold mine in my opinion. Thanks for providing so much information at an affordable price." - Eveline Falcão
"The Art of Composition: A Dynamic Symmetry User's Guide for the Modern Artist deserves to be a physical book in Barnes & Noble & on my coffee table!" - Elliot McGucken
"The Art of Composition: A Dynamic Symmetry User's Guide for the Modern Artist is, without a doubt, one of the most comprehensive e-books ever written on the topic of design in art. Whether you're a beginner, intermediate, or advanced art/photography student, this user's guide is indispensable. I recommend it to all of my artists and photographers and have it linked to my website The Artist Angle." - Jennifer Finley "Though I am not a newcomer to photography, I am far from being a professional. So too, it has only been in the past few months that I discovered dynamicsymmetryart.com. I was transformed from being concerned with camera equipment, f-stops, shutter speed, ISO to considering how I would apply the principles of classical art training to my photography.
As I began reading about the old world masters, including da Vinci, Degas, Rembrandt, and Renoir, I learned that Dynamic Symmetry structurally changed paintings from being passive to active and dynamic. Furthermore, I didn’t realize that a small, yet renowned, group of photographers were well known for using Dynamic Symmetry in their photographs of city life and people. My journey began by reading. The Dynamic Symmetry Art website has numerous resources that gave me a crash course in art and composition. I had to learn about the visual properties of different kinds of rectangles and how each can be divided into compositional elements. Then I began using the Dynamic Symmetry grid overlays in Lightroom to analyze and crop my photos. I have found dynamicsymmetryart.com extremely beneficial, and it has contributed immensely with my efforts to improve as a photographer. Thank you for your commitment to art and art education." - Warren Wish
"With the passing of Myron Barnstone, we lost a great resource on the application of the Rectangles of the Masters and the Golden Section in creating art. But the website dynamicsymmetryart.com is carrying on that work Myron so thoroughly believed in and taught. Dynamic Symmetry can be used in the simplest of ways as well as being infinitely complex if one desires. Great minds such as Leonardo da Vinci recognized the power that this compositional tool offers. Dynamicsymmetryart.com is an amazing reference for artists who are open to exploring the benefits of using Dynamic Symmetry in their work. It applies to all the arts and resonates at a primal level of understanding harmony and beauty. Much thanks to James Cowman for his dedication to furthering this information to the public." - Master Artist and Teacher, Dot Bunn, Red Stone Farm Studio