|My figurative paintings are a combination of watercolor, gouache, pastel and graphite. These are done at live model sessions. The poses are short, ranging from one minute to 25 minutes. I like to work fast and the watercolor plays a dominant role in the finished work as it bleeds and blends without my control. I pay attention to the heat in the flesh and the coolness of shadows, the electric edges of form and the lines in spacial composition. I am inspired always by the beauty that I see in the human figure and that is what I try to capture in these gesture paintings.
My career in the design fields comes into play with my paintings. I have designed women’s fashions and accessories, scarves and textiles. More recently in the home décor industry I have been designing dinnerware, giftware and home décor accessories.
I am influenced by pattern and color in my Artistic process. When I was a child my parents had many Art books around the house to browse through. I looked at them like storybooks. Rousseau, Matisse, Magritte, Gauguin, Klee, Picasso, Chagall, Klimt – all my favorites. I would copy paintings and photos when I was a kid. I had a fabulous high school Art teacher, Mr. Globerman. He taught me all the basics. Taking an anatomy class in the evenings after high school would be fortuitous. I attended one year of college at the School of Visual Arts in NYC. I have been doing Art my entire life. It wasn’t until the summer of 2006, that I decided to “invest” my positive energy into making Art daily.
I post new Art on my blog almost daily: “Daily Paintings by Gretchen Kelly”. This is part of my process and practice. It helps me to see my Art by creating distance for me when I look at it on a computer screen. I paint watercolor nudes mostly at a studio session each week at the local opera house in Hudson, NY, where I live and in my own studio as well. Sometimes, I add backgrounds to my work as a second step in my process at a later time. I paint landscapes too. They are usually from the surrounding locale where I am at the time. I paint them because I am inspired by nature’s beauty and need to move paint around in other subject matter besides always painting the figure.
I have been showing my work regularly in local shows and online galleries and shops. I am currently endeavoring to broaden my horizons by searching for other gallery representation and shows on a national and international scale.