Mary received her Master of Education Degree from Virginia Commonwealth University, and had planned to make a career of teaching. However, after several years of teaching, the artist in her wanted to be unleashed. She originally started with craftwork; hand-painting t-shirts, and making seasonal craft baskets. During a farmers' market, on the Northern Neck of Virginia, she saw someone hand-painting "sunset" windows, and thought, "I can do that." She started not only hand-painting sunset windows, but also wineglasses, cocktail glasses, and even martini glasses, all with her "signature" blue crab design. She now has increased her artistic repertoire to include striped bass, mahi-mahi, flounder, ospreys and snowy egrets.
Mary shares this comment, "Many customers have asked me what I use (for the artwork) and I always tell them about Gallery Glass paint. They have even asked why I don't use the glass paint that you bake on. Other paints have an acrylic look--they don't have a 'stained glass' look. I would much rather sell a glass that has to be hand washed because of the beautiful stained glass effect, than switch to one that is dishwasher safe and has the flat acrylic look."