Leeann Mills

"I was born in Erie, Pennsylvania to parents who shared with me their love of art and nature. In my senior year at St. Benedict Academy in Erie, my mentor, Sr. Anthony, OSB, was instrumental in helping prepare my portfolio for admission to The Cleveland Institute of Art where I had planned to study. But financial circumstances beyond my control derailed those plans.

"As I got on with my life, I eventually got my BS in Respiratory Therapy while working as a supervisor and instructor at Hamot Medical Center.

"However, art and design have always been my true passion and have stayed with me, especially involving plants and nature. Three years of living in coastal Puerto Rico gave me a love for sea life and the beloved seashell. Then back in Erie, my interest turned to garden design. I have an extensive collection of cacti and succulents and a wide variety of perennials. While my husband and I continue to spend winters on the Gulf of Mexico in Florida, that inspirational time brought me back to my love of seashells which in turn started on a path to my designs with shells.

"My life is divided into thirds: One-third is spent in Erie, one-third at our cabin in the Allegheny Mountains, and one-third on the coastal beaches of Florida. All three areas never cease to give me pause over the incredible wonders of our beautiful natural world.

"My biggest inspiration continues to be Mother Nature in all her glory."

-Leeann Mills

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