While Annie LaPoint has not traveled far from her Atherton roots — her current residence is next door to one Moreing family home and behind another — her artistic journey has been a bit more circuitous.
“When I was a little girl, I knew I was going to grow up to be a painter,” she recalls. “At M-A, art and PE were the only classes I did well in. When I was at Foothill, I actually made an appointment with a counselor and took in my little portfolio.
“It was a quick meeting. He looked at my artwork and said I didn’t have enough talent to be an artist. He said I was wasting my time and that I should pursue something else.”
Such a pronouncement might have proved a deterrent to many, but Annie kept art in the back of her mind after marrying Ken LaPoint im 1980 and starting a family. When her third child was still a baby, she started taking watercolor classes at the Pacific Art League. She took the same class four times.
“Almost immediately, the art inside me exploded,” she says. “Because I’m a gardener and love flowers, that’s what I started painting. I had all my art supplies set up in the family room, and the kids would run around me while I painted.”
Annie’s big break came in 1998 when Penny Lane Fine Art and Licensing became her representative. Today her artwork — prints, paper goods, ceramics, garden flags, and holiday decor — are licensed through 40 companies, proving her Foothill counselor very wrong. (The poster featuring the Menlo Park train station was commissioned for the 1994 Connoisseurs’ Marketplace.)
“The most important part of my artwork is that I see it more as a ministry than a job,” she says. ”From the beginning, I’ve hidden a scripture passage in every painting. I love the Lord, and he’s the most important person in my life. I want to honor him for the gift he’s given me.”
Going forward, Annie says she will continue to create art and hopes to expand a more recent pursuit, healing ministry. “I’m part of a healing prayer group at church [MPPC],” she says. “I believe I have a heart to bring healing to people, to pray for the sick, and to pray for people who are hurting. It’s another way to share Jesus.”
A variety of Annie’s artwork is available through her website.
Photos by Scott R. Kline