In the 1960s, Valda decided to return to school to get a masters of fine art. The degree program required that each degree candidate submit a portfolio of works prepared under the supervision of one of the faculty. Valda embarked on this project with enthusiasm, exploring a new direction in her art.
"Gradually I found what I was painting to greatest satisfaction was non-figurative abstract work, emphasizing color. I was now using acrylic paints, instead of oils, sponges instead of brushes, a large unsized canvas instead of canvas sized with a semi-absorbent ground."
Eventually, Valda produced nine large canvases that are largely abstract with some representational elements. The theme of the works is somewhat autobiographical, showing the artist at various stages of her life. There were nine canvases in the final group. A tenth canvas done as part of the project but not included in the final group submitted for the degree is also included here.
Art by Valda - MFA Project - page one