Our May show featured two acrylic painters with very different styles. Carolyn Pettitt’s layered, textured acrylic paintings of trees contrast with Martin Conley’s hard-edged geometric compositions.
Carolyn’s artistic voice speaks through her use of heavy texture in her creations. She wants the viewer to reach out and touch her art. She uses many layers of texture medium or acrylic paint to help create that feeling. Carolyn’s paintings tend to be very dimensional, sometimes using a palette knife to create layers of thick paint. Her current ongoing series is about trees; she never tires of painting them.
Carolyn doesn’t normally need photos as reference for her paintings. She has traveled extensively around the western United States. When something makes an impression on her, she consciously makes note of what she wants to remember about the place, especially color and mood. When Carolyn gets to the studio, she feels like there is a snapshot in her mind to use as reference.
Martin paints in a hard-edged style in contrast to his better known organic sculptures that have been displayed at Sequoia Gallery and other area venues for years. He is always looking for different and unique ways of transferring his visions to canvas as well as creating sculpture.
Martin began painting in high school where he interpreted things in mechanical shapes and bright colors. After 4 years of military service, he began college majoring in business, but continued with his painting. He then moved to southern California and worked in graphic design for the next several years. After a two-year break he returned to Oregon, continued painting and received a degree in fine arts from the University of Oregon.