Editor’s note: Nancy Cox is the founder of Research Story Consulting and former CPG corporate researcher. Her work and play include words, sketch pads, cooking (not baking) and the occasional sock puppet

I’m a true mixed-media artist. I’ve studied, made and taught all types of art. I studied photography at a magnet high school and began my college career as a photography major. Over the years, I’ve experimented with illustration, jewelry making, painting – acrylic, gouache and my favorite, watercolors. My mom taught me to sew when I was young and as an adult, I expanded my fiber and textile skills: weaving, crochet, knitting, needle felting and embroidery. I love exploring new mediums.

I do art for the joy and pleasure of doing it. While I have studied and achieved some technical mastery in art, recognition is not the goal. Throughout my life, art has been a fun and therapeutic outlet to calm my busy brain.

My mom was a professional artist and oil painter when I was young. When she needed a break from my natural-born researcher’s endless questions – all beginning with “why?” – she gave me art projects as a distraction. She kept a big roll of newsprint handy to wrangle me for those occasions. One of my earliest memories is watching my chubby little hand clutch a crayon as I carefully traced my body on a giant piece of newsprint attempting to mirror my silhouette.

Lately, I’ve been working a lot with air dry clay. I have degenerative brain disease that causes tremors and had to take an art break from my beloved watercolor – too many fine brush strokes and wobbly hands. A little over a year ago, I had brain surgery to calm the tremors. I’m still working on getting my fine motor skills back to where they once were. I really missed doing art and knew I needed a creative outlet. I knew working with air dry clay would help with my fine motor skills with the added novelty of a new medium. I make silly...