Alvena Vajdak Seckar, artist and author, was born of Slovak immigrant parents on March 1, 1916, in the coal-mining town of McMechen, West Virginia. Like the characters in her books, Seckar’s family moved from mining town to mining town pursuing a meager and perilous existence. From the depths of her experiences, Seckar has been able to draw up the ideas and passion that she utilizes in both her artistry and her writing.
It was in Allentown, Pennsylvania where a teacher discovered her talent and sponsored her for six years of art school. Seckar continued her studies at the University of Pennsylvania, thanks to a scholarship and to assistance from the sponsors of her earlier art school. She completed her bachelors’ degree at New York University in 1939 and her masters’ in 1949.