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Painting, for Kawartha artist Annabelle Jane Murray, is meditation – it's a peaceful place where she taps into the magic of the natural world.
- Interviewed by Lesley Wilkins
Q. WHEN DID YOU FIRST START PAINTING?
Q. TELL US ABOUT THE FIRST PIECE THAT YOU WERE REALLY HAPPY WITH.
I was at the Haliburton School of the Arts to take a painting class for fun one summer. I had never taken an art class before. I was quite intimidated by the other students who all showed up with their art supplies, easels, and canvases, while all I showed up with was my lunch! In the end I just went for it, and by the last day I had created a painting of a single leaf using pastels, paint, and ink that I was happy with. The style of that leaf ended up informing many of my future paintings and became a kind of signature for me.
Q. WHAT MEDIUM DO YOU WORK IN PRIMARILY?
I tend to work with canvases under 24 inches. I would like to try larger canvases, but I think I would need to work on several at the same time, as much of my work is very detailed and I think I would get restless working on a single large one.
Q. DO YOU HAVE FORMAL TRAINING?
Nope! Although since 2009, I have taken a few art workshops with painters I admire. Painting is still very much experiential for me.
Q. WHAT DOES THE PROCESS OF MAKING ART DO FOR YOU? OR HOW DOES IT MAKE YOU FEEL?
Painting is my meditation - my peaceful place where I am able to turn off my language brain and sink into the tranquility of colour and form.
Q. ARE THERE ANY RECURRING THEMES IN YOUR WORK?
The natural world is magical. I am particularly drawn to the detail of a rock, a leaf, a wavelet, even within a larger landscape. Most of my paintings have thousands of dots embellishing the primary painting - my meditation in patience. If I couldnât paint dots, Iâm not sure I would be as fascinated and rewarded with the process.
Q. HOW DO YOU GET INSPIRED TO START A NEW PIECE?
It is totally visceral – I see something in the outdoors that touches me and decide to pursue it in a painting.
Q. WHERE HAS YOUR WORK BEEN SHOWN?
Most of my finished pieces of work can be seen on my website - www.annabellejanemurray.com. In recent years, I have participated in numerous studio tours where I have been lucky enough to show my work with many talented artists. I had my first solo show last year, which has inspired me to take some time off to work on a new collection of paintings for my next one!
Q. WHERE CAN WE SEE YOUR WORK?
I'm working towards a second solo exhibition now...details to be announced.