Painting
Kanawha County
B.S. Art (Mississippi University for Women)
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Painting, Textile Design & Artistry

Betty McMullen

I am a painter,weaver, textile designer, surface designer. I produce oil paintings in several different styles, as I am still exploring the medium and honing my technique. However, my use of color and choice of subject matter and composition make my work recognizable.  I am inspired by the variety of shapes formed by light and shadow, though color is my major emphasis. Landscapes and street scenes are my favorite subjects. I paint familiar buildings from my hometown that give me a sense of nostalgia. I also enjoy painting scenes from my travels. My landscapes, often painted on site (en plein air,) are interpretations of nature rather than photographic representations.  I look deeply into my subjects to discover underlying color, and apply it to the painting. I am inspired by the Russian Impressionists who use thick wild color.  My abstract work in acrylics is non-objective. My goal is to create an arrangement of color, shape and value that expresses a feeling or emotion. These works rely on strong graphics and color. They are personal expressions that consist of mark making and explosions of color, using a variety of materials.

Biography

I am a painter,weaver and surface designer. At present I am painting realistic scenes in oils and exploring abstract painting in acrylics and mixed media. I often attend workshops in both these disciplines. I’ve studied with Henry Isaacs, Don Sahli, Steven Aimone, Fran Skiles, Nancy Crow, Jane Dunnewold, Suszanne Gernandt, Katherine Aimone & Nancy Hillis, Bob Burridge, Richard Robinson, Carol Soderland, and several others.  I am compelled to create.  I observe, plan and think about art all the time. I am conscious of design and color wherever I am.  I prefer bright expressive color, yet also am inspired by black &white, and other neutrals. I really enjoy experimenting with many media and techniques. I enjoy learning new things. I only recently took up oil painting, and began studying with Arthur Evans 3 years ago. Having painted only abstracts in my college years, I suddenly had the urge to learn to paint in a realist style.  Having learned weaving in college, I focused on that during my child-rearing years, making table linens, rugs, scarves and clothing. I sold these items at Sunrise Museum Shop and Tamarack. During my son’s teen years, I began morphing my rag rugs into art for the wall. Using the rag rug as a canvas, I applied various surface design techniques to the wall hangings. I sold many of these, got several commissions, and won awards in state juried shows, including Best in Show in the 2004 Art and Craft Guild Juried Exhibition.  However, the painting ‘bug’ hit when I took an oil painting workshop from Henry Isaacs.  I was immediately hooked!