Karen has been painting and drawing for as long as she could first hold something with which to make art. Growing up in Prince Edward Island, Canada, she spent much of her childhood in the woods and by the ocean, creating collages from found objects. The first paintings she made were watercolors, giving expression to what she felt but could not speak.
Karen’s work is influenced by her study of nature,spirituality, healing , indigenous cultures,and especially those of African ,Latin American and the Caribbean . Her studies led to a three-year project where she collaborated with a textile collector and anthropologist who commissioned her to illustrate 16th to 20th century ceremonial garments from the Aymara Indians who live in Bolivia.