Towards Daufuski 29 x 12
A Long View, Sea Pines 30 x 11
Moorings, Smith Mountain Lake 17.5 x 6.5
Fall, Blue Ridge Parkway 19 x 7
Palmetto Bay Evening 29 x 12
Sea Kayakers 11 x 9
Palmetto Bay towards Harbor Town 14 x 8
The underlying form, harmony and atmosphere of the natural world have always captured my imagination. Thus, landscapes and seascapes are a primary source of inspiration for my paintings. I am also drawn to quiet places where nature meets human artifacts and creates an enduring sense of place. The confluence of sky, sea and boats never fails to excite me and remind me of how deeply embedded we, as humans, are in the natural world.
Paining in a representational and impressionistic manner, I strive for simplicity, directness of brushstrokes and to honor the integrity of the subject. I prefer to work “alla prima” and while not always successful, I am generally most satisfied with paintings that capture the subject with one sitting – while the emotional connection to the subject is breathing life into the painting.
In order to honor the integrity and harmony of a subject, capturing the atmospheric quality and color – referred to as the “envelop of light” by the Impressionists – is important to me. This aesthetic is not only key for me as a painter, but I believe it speaks to many viewers. Increasingly I am using some variation of a limited palette in my painting to achieve this harmony.
Although the list of watercolor masters that inspire me is long, there are a few that I constantly return to for inspirational and reflection. From the past, these include John Singer Sargent and Edward Seago. Form those still amongst us, I particular admire the work of Joseph Zbucvic, Trevor Chamberlain and Dusan Djukaric.
Gayle Havens Cooley