Thursday, 7 April 2011

Color is not just a “Flash in the Pan,” it adds Life!

This month's guest post is by artist and writer, Carol Anfinsen, whose colorful paintings are sure to brighten the darkest day!

You can see more of Carol's Art, Blogs, Books at
http://Blogz.Org and

People say that my paintings are bright and colorful. Of course, they're right. I guess I see the world that way.

Take people; I like to assume the best in them, even when they prove me wrong. Some people may call that gullible, others naive. I admit I've been "taken" a few times in my life and "smartened up" in the process.

The way I see it, the world has enough negative dark vibes vying for my attention. I'll let someone else deal with that. I prefer not to ignore the pessimism and the evil, but to see through it, around it, or over it. I choose to create the world I want, and to believe in the basic goodness of people.

When I look at nature, I see God's creation in all its fullness. I see colors that blow your mind, and insects and creatures that are so beautifully patterned and bright, there's no way you could create any better. I see beauty that swells my heart to the point of breaking the feeling is so intense. If that makes me a "cock-eyed optimist" so be it.

Yes, I paint with bright colors and with warmth and passion because that's how I see my world. I also like to experiment with color to find out how blending certain colors together may increase the "light" intensity. I like to layer colors, or glaze colors in such a way that the glow comes from the inside out.  And sometimes I make terrible mistakes. In the beginning, I made some nasty mud pies.

I worry that my paintings are too bright, that they "shout out" a bit too much. My orange hibiscus painting is a perfect example. Just when I thought my painting was complete, I'd think of another splash of color I wanted here or there.  The painting almost wrote its own title: "Flash dance."

What can I say?  I'm a Leo.  I love sunshine and bright colors, especially yellows and reds, and I'm crazy about sunflowers.  Come to think of it, sunflowers look like miniature lions, only instead of hair their mane is ruffled petals.

I remember the first time I saw field after field of sunflowers one summer in North Dakota.  I was traveling from Minnesota to Mount Rushmore with my family when an incredible wave of sunshine brightened our day.

From a distance, individual flowers trickled together to form a raging flood of liquid yellow rolling across the landscape like spilled paint.  Up close, sturdy stalks rooted like sentinels guarded the perimeter. Their broad green leaves seemed clustered for protection. No wonder the sunflower has become the most popular flower to paint in history.

I could have painted black-eyed Susans.  They're yellow.  They resemble a lion, except without the variation, texture and color of the sunflower's delectable center.  But there's my personal problem of perception.  Black-eyed Susan’s remind me of Mexican sombreros in miniature.

I could have painted daisies; but memories of desecrating my mother's flower patch by picking petals and reciting "he loves me, he loves me not" took all the fun out of it. And that brought me back to those sunflower fields. Hey, I'm a Leo. Hear me roar!

More of Carol’s bright and colorful paintings are displayed on her blog @ and on her online gallery @


art2cee2 said...

Two things...I love color and I absolutely love Carol's paintings. She is an awesome artist! :-)

Carol said...

You are so sweet! Thank you for your comments.

Fliss said...

I love your paintings I am also a fan of the sunflower.

Judy Adamson said...

Thank you, Fliss - I'm sure Carol will be pleased to read your comment! :)