Ann Taylor Carpenter (born February 3, 1934)
Ann Taylor Carpenter demonstrated a talent for drawing and art at an early age, so her parents encouraged that by providing private lessons. When she was only nine years old, a family friend, Hamilton Luske, took Ann to the Disney Studios in Burbank. Luske, a pioneer of film production, introduced her not only to animators and artists, but also to Walt Disney himself.
Ann’s senior year at Coronado High School coincided with the untimely death of her favorite teacher, Esther Painter Hagstrom, in January 1951. “It was a terrible shock for all of her students and the student body in general,” Anne recalled. "She (Mrs. Hagstrom) gave us such wonderful ideas and also the inspiration to interpret them.”
Ann served as an art editor for the 1951 yearbook, which was dedicated to Mrs. Hagstrom. A photograph of the Art Club, which Mrs. Hagstrom started in 1947, shows the teacher with several dozen students, including Ann.
At San Diego State University, where she earned a bachelor’s of fine arts in 1955, Ann studied painting under Everett Jackson,sculpture under John Dirks, design under Jean Swiggett, printmaking under Lowell Hauser and art history under Julia Andrews.
Ann Taylor Carpenter
with renderings for stage sets
Coronado High School, class of 1951
On the recommendation of her SDSU French teacher, Ann began working on her master’s degree in fine arts at Mills College in Oakland, where she earned a two-year fellowship.
Her studies at Mills ended abruptly in 1956, when she married U.S. Navy Lt. Dan M. “Pat” Carpenter, Coronado High School class of 1944. However, his transfer to Taipei, Taiwan, led Ann to take Chinese watercolor classes from King Chin-Po at the University of Taiwan.
Throughout her life Ann has pursued art wherever she has lived. This began with childhood lessons at the esteemed Corcoran Gallery in Washington D.C. During her husband’s assignment in Bremerton, Washington, Ann studied under Mel Wallace at Olympic College. In San Diego and Coronado, she learned religious icon painting from Teresa Harrison.
Ann developed her own system of painting on a grand scale during the 1980s, when she made stage sets for the Kitsap Peninsula Dance Theatre in Bremerton. The dance company still uses Ann’s stage sets for its annual holiday performance of the Nutcracker Ballet. This self-taught specialty in large format painting enabled Ann to help CoSA (the Coronado School of the Arts) with set production. “Art is my passion.”
Below is a photograph in Coronado High School's 1951 yearbook, which was published after Mrs. Hagstrom's death in January. Eerily Mrs. Hagstrom appears on the very left in the back row. The photo was probably taken in the fall of 1950. Ann Taylor, class of 1951, stands in the back row, the fifth student from the right.
(Please click on the "thumbnails" below to view Ann Taylor Carpenter's art.)