Maria likely needs no introduction, but if perhaps you’re not familiar with Maria, let us sing her praises. Maria is a talented artist that lives and works in beautiful Roanoke, VA. She is a landscape and abstract painter who also hones her artistic skills with some pretty fabulous collages. Secondly, she is the epitome of a cheerleader. This lady roots for other artists’ success, for women-led businesses and for entrepreneurs- she is genuine and kind and through her championing of others, it’s so easy to spot her kind and supportive heart! The world needs more Maria’s!

We had the pleasure of meeting Maria a few years back at The Southern C. and we’ve stayed in touch ever since. Lucky for us (and you!) she’s officially a part of Well + Wonder tomorrow Tuesday, October 8th and 12 pm EST! We wanted to kick off her Well + Wonder debut the only way we know how by sharing her responses to our rapid-fire Pardon Me? interview. Trust us, you can't help but fall in love with this incredibly charming and kind lady. Stay tuned for October 8th and until then, join me in welcoming Maria Driscoll!



What is currently on your nightstand? 

My kindle, a few half-empty cans of sparkling water and a catch-all full of random things.

Who is your biggest influence as an artist and why? 

I would say my parents because they always encouraged me to notice the world around which made me very aware of nature and all the beauty on it, this awareness is where most of my inspiration comes from. I am hoping to pass that on to my children, especially now that so much has been reduced to screen size. the world is so big and so full of wonder not to notice it!

Tell us about your childhood. What is the most memorable moment as a young person? 

My favorite memories are with my grandmother. She was a true entrepreneur and always had some kind of creative business going on at a beautiful, light-filled solarium in her home. She was so talented at painting, sewing, knitting and made the most intricate wedding cakes. I loved when she let me help her make the fondant flowers. We would dye the fondant, cut the flowers, and lay them to dry over hundreds of marbles that she had lined up so they would take a naturally rounded shape. I could spend hours with her working on the flowers!

If you could only have one supply in your art studio, what would it be and why? 

I don't think I could pick. I am a maximalist when it comes to supplies. I want all the colors, brushes and surfaces. It probably explains why my studio looks like the most colorful disaster zone!

What is your favorite room in your house? Describe it. 

My living room. It has my favorite comfy chair, -where I put myself in time out-, art from some of my favorite artists and my giant monstera, which is the one plant that has survived more than 3 years!

What is your biggest score online? 

I would 100% say the biggest online score has been the artist community. I have made the most wonderful artist friends who are incredibly supportive and encouraging. they have quickly become real-life friends. 

What is the benefit of buying art through a collective? What do you recommend for those that are new to buying original art? 

A collective already has a beautifully curated selection of works that are offered to you in the most unintimidating setting.

If you have the entire day to spend in an art museum, which one and why? 

I would say MOMA because is where a lot of my favorite art pieces live. I remember going years ago and seeing Van Gogh's Starry Night for the first time, truly magical!

What is your favorite hotel and what makes it special? 

I really love The Homestead Resort in Hot Springs, VA. It's a great place to go with friends, as a couple or with kids. It's a beautiful setting and it always seems time moves a bit slower there. I also love The Quirk Hotel in Richmond because there is so much pink and original art everywhere. During one stay, I was lucky enough to have a big Andras Bality painting in my room and going to sleep looking at it was the best!

If you were a lipstick color would you be red, pink, or clear and why? 

Clear! I am not much of a lipstick person.

I can never get on a plane without….

My kindle, magazines, and gum ( my ears always pop) 

How did you get into the world of art? 

I don't remember any stage of my life in which I wasn't creating or taking some kind of art lessons. During my last two years in college, I started painting murals on kids' rooms and restaurants so when I graduated I already had a small business going. I continued to do murals, decorative finishes and a few paintings for years. After having kids I got tired of carrying ladders and setting up and started to do less on-site painting and more on canvas and here I am!

What do you do to relax? 

Having young kids with lots of activities,  you always have to rush! I love the morning when we don’t have to set an alarm and I can just stay in bed reading or doing nothing while snuggling my dog. I also love long walks and lunches with friends.

When do you get the biggest surge of inspiration? 

When in nature.

Prediction for the Color of 2020? 

Now we know its navy but I was thinking it was going to be some shade of mustard yellow.

What is your idea of a date night? Dinner and a movie or dancing all night? 

I am Latin, so any chance I can dance all night, I am in!

Tell us about your favorite painting that you have created. 

I don't think I can pick one but there are a few I have not been able to let go.

One piece of advice for buying original art? 

The pieces I own, made my heart beat faster when I first saw them, so I guess my advice is to buy art that makes you feel that tug and sense of connection.