Members’ Gallery: September 2021

Lasting Allure of Paint, Part II

Terry Maple

English Country Village, watercolor by Terry Maple (MG: September 2021)

Artist Statement—It was five years ago, when we lived in Rancho Mirage, California, where the summer temperatures top 120˚+. My wife suggested I needed a new hobby to pursue when it was too hot to go outside so I opted for watercolor painting. Although I’ve only been actively painting five years, I always enjoyed looking at art, and visiting art galleries was a must during my years of travel throughout Europe. How wonderful it must be to create something from nothing, I thought. I’m British by birth and until 6 years ago England was my home.

Although England is filled with wonderful art galleries, travel to Europe is so easy and then one becomes spoiled for choice with so many art galleries to visit.

For over thirty years Paris, with the Louvre and Musee d’Orsay, the Centre Pompidou, Le Marche de la Creation de Paris Montparnasse, Musée Jacquemart-André, Musée Marmottan-Monet, was my summer holiday and the works of Monet, Renoir, C̕ezanne, Sisley, Pissarro, Manet truly inspired me.

I think most of all what encouraged me to take up painting was that unlike a photographic record, a painting is a record of how the artists sees something and interprets it, and this is how I’ve approached my paintings.

Currently I’m experimenting with different styles of painting and seeing how using different brands of paper and watercolors can bring about a dramatic change in the finished picture. I’ve a long road still to travel but it’s one that brings great peace and joy with each picture I create.

Peace at the Lake, watercolor by Terry Maple (MG: September 2021)

Ellyn Wenzler

Flower Child, work by Ellyn Wenzler (MG: September 2021)

Ellyn Wenzler is a self-taught abstract expressionist artist living in Spotsylvania, Virginia with her husband and two teenage sons. Creativity and art have always been a part of her life, though haven’t moved to the forefront until recent years when she decided that it was time to finally pursue her dream of creating colorful abstract art. She spends much of her time covered in paint and listening to music or audiobooks in her home studio. Her most treasured tools include the easel that she uses daily and her set of palette knives, all of which belonged to her grandfather, were later used by her mother, and that were eventually passed down to Ellyn. A look inside her home reveals art-covered walls, much of it her own creation.

Inspired by other color-loving modern-day artists such as Claire Dejardins and Poppy Dodge, Ellyn views her own art and art process as cathartic, freeing, and purely joyful. Usually only starting with a color palette in mind, she paints allowing the composition to emerge organically.

Pieces of Me, work by Ellyn Wenzler (MG: September 2021)

Artist Statement—Creativity is absolutely an integral part of who I am. For as long as I can remember, it has been a constant in my life in one form or another and gives me a great sense of fulfillment. Creativity drives me and is such an honest way to share myself and connect with others. I truly feel that my joy for and love of painting is conveyed through each and every one of my art pieces.

My art ranges from interpretive loose works to those with tighter hard lines, but the unifying force across all works is vivid, saturated color. I draw my palette inspiration from nature, fashion, home décor, and my own imagination and emotions.
It all comes down to color and how we perceive it, how it makes us feel. Color is powerful and invokes numerous emotions and responses. I’m fascinated by the way colors interact – how the addition or subtraction of just one particular color can change the entire mood or direction of a painting. Are blues and greens calming? What if they are paired with a rousing tomatoey red? Does that create discord? Balance or imbalance? I am thrilled that the interpretation of my abstract expression is open and completely subjective to the viewer. What I see in my finished work may be entirely different than what others see, and I feel that that is exactly how it should be. It’s fantastic!

Working with acrylics provides me with the freedom to use unlimited combinations of vibrant palettes and luscious textures.