" I find that, living in Maine, I am supplied with endless possibilities for paintings. I see intriguing studies every time I take a drive, whether down the street or up the coast. I love having my camera ready to record the many compositions and ideas I see around me."
She has attended workshops with local and nationally recognized artists and enters regional juried art shows. Her blog displays her current paintings at maryannecary.blogspot .com
Mary Anne, starting at the beginning, when did you begin to be interested in Art?
I was interested in art as a child and in high school, which prompted me to go to art school. I feel that when I was in college, it was just an introduction to art in some ways. I was young and not sure what direction to go in. Graphic art is very different than fine arts where I took more photography and calligraphy type courses. A lot of my fine art is self taught. Now, as an adult I would love to be in art school again full time! I would appreciate every minute, I was not serious enough when I was "younger!"
Do you have a favourite artist?
I don't think I could choose a particular, favorite artist. I am definitely more interested in contemporary art,
and I am strongly attracted to artists who paint with strong colors and bold, looser styles. I love paintings
where you can see paint strokes. I tend to study their work and try to learn from these working artists, the internet has become a great teacher.
The internet is full of 'daily painters' - do you manage to paint regularly?
I don't know why I am so busy, I am not painting nearly as regularly as I would like. Recently, I have been
painting intensely for a couple of days, I stock up for some postings and then I return to my busy life. That is not a healthy way to progress and grow, but sometimes we grab what we can. I would like to get back to a point where I am painting almost daily.
I am a 'fast and furious' painter, where my pastel paintings are concerned, and looking at your paintings, I suspect you work in a similar way?
Yes, I paint fast and furiously! I make a mess. I really need a large studio and I know I could fill it in a couple of days. I am never that meticulous, I do need to consciously slow down. I work well with messiness and then I start the cleanup process and do it all over again. (I probably would not make a good studio mate!)
It was your pastel paintings that first made me sit up and take notice, but do you have a favourite medium?
I go back and forth between pastels and oils. I really like pastels, but I feel I get more response from my oils, even though I personally feel my pastels are fresher.
Is there any particular subject matter that draws you to paint it?
I am moved by the coast here in Maine, it has endless possibilities and diversities along with such different light throughout the year. I am painting mostly from photos, with a little memory and plein air added in.
Some artists are reluctant to part with their originals - how do you feel about it?
I will sell almost any pieces of my work, I feel I can always paint another. There are one or two I will not part with.
Finally, do you have any particular future projects or plans in mind? Where do you see your artistic journey taking you?
I always have painting plans going on in my head. Right now I would like to start painting larger and begin to put together a more cohesive body of work. I feel so inspired by other successful artists, but I still feel I don't have a true direction. I believe that takes a commitment of time and serious planning, something I am
still struggling to work out. It is a commitment I look forward to making.
Thank you, Mary Anne, for sharing your thoughts and experiences with us, as well as some of your wonderful paintings! There has been many a time that, seeing your work, you've tempted me to put aside my greeting cards and get out my soft pastels again. Seeing how you use them, what you 'get out of them', is truly inspiring!
You can see more of Mary Anne's pastel and oil paintings and contact her about purchasing details, over at her blog, maryannecary.blogspot .com
Alternatively, go straight to her Etsy shop or, to feast your eyes on even more of Mary Anne's fabulous work, visit her website.