Local resident paints and pens her unique visions of beauty and simplicity

William Casteel

Newcomerstown News

Local resident Violet J. Myers said she has "always loved beautiful things.

"I see something or envision an idea, then I either put it on canvas, or I write a short story or poem about it," Myers said.

She sees beauty in many things, that others may not. She said she can sometimes even see beauty in something as simple as a tomato from the garden. Myers is a self-taught artist, and started painting and writing poetry later in her life. She said she prefers folk art painting. Many of Myers' paintings feature bright, cheery sunflowers or one of her favorite subjects -- chickens. Actually, Myers just recently finished a painting of a white rooster and its mate, and framed it in an authentic, weathered wood frame.

Myers' talents and interest are very vast and unlimited, even at age 86. Myers was born in Plainfield, the daughter of Bradner and Ethel Belle (Snedeker) Williams.

She recalls living in Plainfield until she was ten years old, then the family moved to Coshocton. Myers' first memory of interest in art was when she was in the first grade at the old, one room Plainfield schoolhouse.

She recalls that her teacher, Miss Audrey Roarhig would give her pages from a coloring book that she would hold against the window and trace, then color with crayons.

Myers remembers living in Coshocton during the Great Depression. She recalls also attending the trial of the first woman in Coshocton County to be executed. The woman, Amelia Waldrop was tried for poisoning her husband and several others.

Myers later met, then married her late husband, Gene Myers in 1950. She said Gene used to tease her about her folk art painting style, as he was a more serious and reserved artist. He was also an accomplished wood carver and clock maker in later years.

In 1982, Myers published some of her works in a book titled, "Violet's Verita of Verse." The word verita means garden of truth. Even though Myers' book is long out of print, it is still available to view at the Newcomerstown Public Library. The book contains many of Myers' original poems which were all created specifically from her own inner artistic vision. One of Myers' favorite poems in the book is titled, "The Attic."

Myers has many interests and has a small story for almost everything she has experienced throughout her life. Myers vividly recalls dog sitting for famous actress, Joanne Woodward. She said Woodward had visited an antique shop in Roscoe Village in the early 1980s and had her pet dog with her that day. She recalls Woodward and a friend were in the area and wanted to dine at the Roscoe Warehouse but could not take the dog in with them. Myers said she offered to "dog sit" for Woodward, who gratefully accepted. Myers said Woodward later returned, gave her an autograph, then purchased several pieces of Depression glassware. The shop was called the Carriage House and was co-owned/operated by Myers and a friend, Betty Schlarb. Myers was a part of the shop for about a year when she resigned from the antiques business to travel with her husband.

"I had a lot of fun at that shop and meeting so many interesting people from all over the world that were visiting Roscoe Village," Myers said.

These days, Myers still enjoys painting and writing poetry which she mainly shares with her family and many special friends. One of Myers' friends is well-known, local artist, Esther Marie Versch.

Myers also quilted a couple quilts this past spring, one which was intended for her great grandchild. Myers has two children, four grandchildren and one great-granddaughter, Lilliana Star. Myers' daughter, Jeannie Star Moberg is an interior designer in Nashville, Tenn., and son, Gary Myers is a banker in Missouri.

"God is divine in my life and I wouldn't get by without all the angels (friends) he has sent my way," she said.

Myers credits God for her talent but says she doesn't really consider herself an artist.

"I like to create. I just have fun with it and enjoy my life," she said.