Maria Peitzmeier Montalvo was born in Macomb, Illinois. Early in life she discovered a love of drawing, but life and other interests led her to science. She graduated from Western Illinois University with a BS in Biology, completed chemistry and physics classes at Murray State College in Kentucky and Southern Illinois University, and earned a MS in Education at WIU. She lived and taught in Montana, Kentucky, and Southern Illinois (Herrin) before returning to Macomb with her two children. While teaching, Maria continued to draw, paint, and work with fibers taking classes and workshops when possible. She married Greg and gained three children forming a loving and busy family of seven.
After 33 years, Maria retired from teaching science and focused on her love of art. She enrolled in art classes at WIU and received valuable instruction and encouragement from her instructors. She also participated in workshops with fiber and natural dye artists from around the world, including Russia, Canada, Great Britain, Israel, and various places in the United States. She enjoys creating 2D and 3D works of art.
Maria is still exploring the world of art by experimenting and using many different mediums. She has always been attracted to texture, color, and line. Her early works were drawn and painted in detail. She now strives to produce work that is accurate but shifts the focus to color, line, and contrast. It is an ongoing endeavor.