Patricia Shares Her Story
Art is an integral part of Patricia Dennis’ life. The abstract painter and teacher heads downstairs to her basement studio immediately after breakfast with her husband in the kitchen of their Connestee Falls home in the hill country near Brevard, North Carolina, and often doesn’t emerge for hours. In the studio, she creates the award-winning collages and multi-texture acrylics that have brought her recognition as an experimental artist. She’s prolific—many times, before she’s even partway finished with one project, she has begun thinking about another painting.
She recently won a first place for a pastel abstract in a Transylvania Art Guild competition in Brevard. And in 2014, she took top honors at the Connestee Falls Art League yearly show. This level of recognition is especially meaningful in the area, known as an artists’ colony.
Dennis doesn’t paint all the time. She regularly rides a stationary bike to stay in shape and plays bocce ball once a week. She and her 80-year-old spouse play Scrabble together at least three times a week.
The pair, who spent many summers living in the South of France—where her husband worked as an electrical engineer before going to medical school—frequently cook together and go on hikes.
“I’d say improved memory has helped with cooking, too, in a way,” says Dennis. “I like to try new recipes.”
She says she was introduced to Prevagen about 18 months ago when she began painting the stage backdrop for a play being produced by a local theater group.
Both of the fellow artists, she recalls, were already taking Prevagen and said it had improved their memories. When they finished for the day, they gave her a small pamphlet on the product that had come with it.
She says her memory has improved and her zest for painting has come back, for which she is grateful.
Dennis says she knew as a high school student in Tampa, Florida, that she wanted to be an artist. Her father was artistic, staging his own windows in his furniture and clothing store.
“But my mother said I would have a hard time making a living doing that,” she recalls. So she went to school to become an ophthalmic technician, taking cataract measures and helping with surgeries. She also worked as a fashion model in her 20s, doing shoots for Borden milk and Ford trucks. She once even graced the cover of a magazine, she says proudly.
“I always wanted to be a professional artist,” she says. “But I do miss the interactions with the patients, many of whom were older. I learned a lot from them.
When she retired, she went back to school and studied design and composition at Dunedin Fine Art Center in Dunedin, Florida. Now, in addition to her own projects, she teaches “experimentation in water media and texture” workshops and gives private lessons in her home studio.
Dennis says she gets together with a group of four fellow artists each Friday and they critique each others’ work. Without being told that she had started taking Prevagen, Dennis says they commented that she seemed a little different, a little sharper. “Now one of them is taking it, too, and she’s also improved,” she says.
Dennis says her children—a daughter age 50 and a son age 47—visit her at her home in the woods. “I probably talk to my daughter every other day on the phone, and she’s remarked how good I am at coming up with words that I used to struggle to remember. There’s been a significant change that way and I’m not exaggerating.”
Now, she says, she’d like to get her husband to take Prevagen on a regular basis.