Barbara took private drawing lessons in school as a child and continued her art education in high school and at Ricks College, where Oliver Parsons was her favorite teacher. He said that she had a talent for faces and should specialize in portraits. She graduated from BYU and continued her education by traveling to workshops and the classes in the Portrait Society of America. She has done commissioned oil portraits and paints for the joy of it.
She lives with her husband in South Jordan, Utah; they have 6 children and 19 grandchildren.