ABOUT MY ART and ME
For as long as I can remember, I have loved to draw. It’s no wonder that I turned to painting scenery and birds/animals, as they were the subjects I loved and knew best. I attended Virginia Commonwealth University, majoring in Communications Art & Design (commercial art). I learned a lot, but I hated C.A.! Designing tooth paste tubes, milk cartons, and newspaper ads just didn’t cut it for me! I really wanted to draw and paint fine art works, so in 1979, out of school for 8 years by then, I concentrated solely on painting. I was then and still am into photo-realism. I never warmed up to abstract or distorted styles, although I can really appreciate surrealism and sometimes incorporate a little of that aspect into some of my works.
I had left water colors behind in my teens and moved on to oils, then settled into pastels as my medium of choice, largely by accident and in a fit of desperation! I was entering my first art show, and felt I didn’t have enough paintings to adequately represent the consistent quality of my work. I needed at least two more pieces, and some of the oil paintings I was taking were still tacky! I certainly didn’t have enough time to paint two more oil paintings, so I dug out a box of NuPastels I’d had since college days and had largely forgotten about. I discovered I could work them very quickly; I did the two pieces in two days, didn’t have to wait for drying time, and framed them immediately. From that time forward, I forgot all about oils. Largely self-taught, I developed a pastel style uniquely mine, as all artists do. I also enjoy experimenting with different papers and new techniques. I believe this experimentation keeps my work fresh and new and my mind from getting stagnant. I thought I had died and gone to Heaven when I discovered sanded paper; it gives such richness and “painterly” effects to pastels! I don’t care for oil pastels, but prefer soft pastels. Their pigments are so pure, with virtually no binders to alter the color. Senneliers and Rembrandts are my favorites because of their saturated, vivid pigments and soft, buttery texture. I like Nupastels for their hardness when I need some fine-line detail. I also like PrismaColor pencils, and fine, soft European black graphite pencils for certain kinds of work, such as small color drawings or art for note cards.
I have a lot of art awards from my past “hard duty” in national and local wildlife art shows up and down the Atlantic coastal area from Connecticut to Florida. A few include: Best in Show – NC Waterfowl Weekend; 1st & 3rd – Mid-Atlantic Wildfowl Festival; 1st & 3rd – Ward Foundation World Championship Wildfowl Painting Competition; 3rd – NJ Wings & Water Festival; and too many others to mention from smaller, more localized shows. I exhibited for several years in the Easton Waterfowl Show in Easton, MD, and the South Eastern Wildlife Exposition in Charleston, SC., both national and international juried art shows, and for several years I maintained a membership in the Pastel Society of America.
I’ve always done all my own photographic research for everything I paint, and I actually spend more time photographing my subject matter–that’s the fun part!–than I do at my drafting table. There are times Jim and I meander through the countryside, finding new spots to highlight for some painting, poem or essay, and times I spend on a lighted stage as I photograph models for certain works, as noted below.
My art has been taking a different turn these days; I am painting people–something I have avoided since college days, although I didn’t dislike painting or drawing models. It’s a new challenge, and it’s something for the Lord, from His word–the Bible. The project is called “WOMEN’S STUDIES ~ Defining Moments”. There are many courageous women in the Bible, some well known and some virtually unknown; some are even nameless, but they all came to a moment in their lives when they knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that they had reached a pivotal point where their lives would forever be defined by the decisions they each had to make. I am painting those moments of realization. Check out the page on MY BOOK AND ITS ART. http://jeancarterkimbleart.com/about-my-art/womens-studies-defining-moments/
There is still so much left to paint, and so little time!