Monday, January 24, 2011

Winter Inspiration

 Watercolor painting by Joel Optholt

Finding inspiration in the depth of winter can sometimes be a challenge.  Here in the Chicagoland Midwest, it sometimes feels like we're hibernating in between going about our daily lives of working.   There are the challenges of bundling up every time we step outdoors and moving slower everywhere we go because of the snow.  I think of this time of year as "filling the well".  Here are a few of the things that inspire me.  The above painting was done by my talented brother.  His watercolors are done in a style uniquely his.  I often think of "stealing" some more of his watercolors when I go to his house.

 Evening Pines by Deborah Paris

I feel so lucky to own this original oil painting by Deborah Paris.  I've taken online classes from her and continue to learn from this very talented artist.  Her work has certainly inspired by own painting and      is a constant source of inspiration. This painting hangs in my dining room and I sometimes take it off the wall to examine this painting up close.   

 Landscape Study #28l by Tracy Helgeson

This small landscape study by Tracy Helgeson inspires me on a daily basis.  Tracy is not afraid to use vivid color in her landscapes.  She is a prolific artist and is completely original with her designs.  Here you can see the layers she uses in her painting.  I'm in awe. 

 This is a good time to dust off some old titles in the library.  Reading certainly inspires the soul.

My latest addition to the library is A History of American Tonalism:  1880-1920.  My goal is to read it from cover to cover.  It explains the mentality and philosophy of the American artists in historical terms.  But that's a subject for another post.

Where are all of you gather inspiration from at this time of year?