GAAL SHEPHERD grew up in Florida and went to high school in Atlanta where she was told she graduated with more art credits than the school offered. She moved, at 17, to New York City and studied with full scholarship for several years with the legendary Stella Adler. She moved to Washington, DC, to help create “The Slightly Raucous Caucus”– a political satire comedy group, where she acted, wrote music and jokes, sang and became known around town as a spot-on Rosalyn Carter. All the while she was learning graphic design and illustration, so when the theatre closed several years later, she took off art directing a number of magazines—primarily non-profit or government publications. She was art director of “Books & Arts”, a spinoff of “The Chronicle of Higher Education”, until leaving to study at the Corcoran School of Art & Design where she studied with 4 diverse and excellent painting teachers–including William Christenberry and William Willis.
She and her husband fled the urban life in DC for the pristine hills of Vermont in 1988. Since that time she has either been cloistered away in studios with breathtakingly beautiful surroundings or has taken working excursions to the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson to study with the most inspiring of artists (Joel Fisher, Wolf Kahn, Rosemarie Beck, Ed Smith and Joan Snyder.) Her work has been shown in some 90 shows, 24 of them solo shows and has had venues from Santa Fe, NM to North Carolina, but has primarily shown in Maine, NH, VT and NY, her adopted and well-loved New England. Her book, “Tranquil Vermont” published in 2001, was voted a Top Book of the Year by the VT Association of Book Professionals and has made her begin to think about a similar one dealing with her paintings in Ireland, where she has — and continues to — spend a lot of time. Her work work is owned by people all over the country — including: the late Franz Bader, Bill and Nancy Osgood, Jacqueline and Don Olson, Pia and Simon Pearce, Jens and Margrit Jacobs, Fletcher Allen Hospital, Mt. Ascutney Hospital, Monsanto Corporation and the Merchant’s Bank of Rutland