Paula Pearl —

Sandy HookI have always been interested in art.  My mother is a collector—there were always interesting things around the house—tree bark, driftwood, shells, stones, railroad slag.  She worked with pottery, macrame, beading, and collage and I had a grandmother who was a painter and a great-aunt who was a painter, a sculptor and a clothing designer.  My mother told me I have always been fascinated with colors and she was amazed that when I was still very young I was able to differentiate between the subtle differences of crayon colors.  They have all been an inspiration to me and have helped me to realize that you can accomplish just about anything if you put your heart into it.

I focused on photography in high school and college.  It allowed me to capture what I saw around me—those brief moments of life that were exciting or beautiful or sometimes even sad.  I spent a semester of college in London, and enjoyed traveling to many places to see how other people lived their lives.

River Rocks 2After graduating from college, I worked for several photographers in NYC before changing my career to book editing.  I still took photos for enjoyment when I had the chance.  After having children about 15 years ago, I became interested in quilting and fiber arts—it offered an outlet for my creativity.  I tried many  techniques including discharge dyeing, painting on fabric, manipulating Tyvek and used silk ribbons, beads, semi-precious stones and many different kinds of fabrics to create one of a kind art quilts.

I never really thought about painting until a friend of mine looked at one of my quilts and asked me if I’d ever considered painting, because my quilt looked like a painting.  I started taking watercolor painting classes about 5 years ago at the duCret School of Art with Bill Senior.  He helped me to see skies, trees, lakes and mountains with fresh eyes.  I enjoyed painting with watercolors, but wished I could have a little more control.

River Rocks 1And then I discovered pastels, and have studied with Rhoda Yanow, Julie Friedman, and Dannielle Mick.  I enjoy the layering of colors that is possible with pastel and although it has become my medium of choice, I sometimes look at a scene and think it would work better as a watercolor painting.  I do some painting on location though I prefer to finish pieces in a studio setting.  I am drawn to moody, stormy skies and water and of course nature.  I feel more comfortable with subdued, earthy colors though I have been trying to enlarge my color palette.

I believe that your path through life makes you who you are.  And if you had followed a different path, you would have become a different person.  I am still becoming who I am—ever growing and changing, and am content that now I can say I am an artist.


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