Painter Laura Radwell Crafts Dreamy Abstract Landscape Art | Connecting Point | Feb. 14, 2019

Painter Laura Radwell Crafts Dreamy Abstract Landscape Art | Connecting Point | Feb. 14, 2019


>>FROM AN EARLY AGE, LAURA RADWELL DREAMED
OF BEING AN ARTIST. WHEN SHE BEGAN TO WIND DOWN HER
BUSINESS, SHE DECIDED TO GO BACK TO HER DREAM OF BEING A PAINTER. TODAY SHE WORKS OUT OF HER
STUDIO AT COTTAGE STREET IN EAT HAMPDEN CREATING LARGE-SCALE
PAINTINGS THAT FOCUS ON ATMOSPHERE AND HER INNER
IMPRESSIONS OF THE LANDSCAPE. DAVE FRAZIER VISITED HER SCHOOL
RECENTLY AND SHARES HER STORY. ♪
>>I DON’T NECESSARILY HAVE A PLAN IN MIND. SOMETIMES I HAVE A COLOR, A
FEELING IN MIND, AND I JUST LET SOMETHING EMERGE. RAT
AT ONE POINT IN MY WORKING LIFE I NOTICED EVERYTHING WAS GRAPH
AT A — GRAVITATING TOWARDS THE
VISUAL AND THAT WAS TRYING TO SATISFY MY DREAM. AND IN THE BACK OF MY MIND I
KNEW I REALLY WANTED TO PAINT, WHICH I HAD DONE FOR THREE OR
FOUR YEARS IN THE 1980s, ENCOURAGED BY A MENTOR WHO WAS A
LOCAL ARTIST, AND HE GAVE ME AN OLD PAINT BOX AND SOME TUBES OF
PAINT AND BRUSHES. AND SAID, YOU SHOULD BE
PAINTING. AND THAT REALLY TRIPPED A WIRE,
AND YET I COULDN’T DO IT FULL TIME AT THAT POINT. IT WAS THE 1980s, AND THAT’S
WHEN I STARTED MY BUSINESS TO EARN A LIVING AND TAKE CARE OF
MY KIDS. AND I RAN THAT BUSINESS FOR THE
BETTER PART OF 30 YEARS UNTIL ABOUT FOUR YEARS AGO AT WHICH
POINT I SAID, OKAY, THIS IS IT. THIS IS TIME. THIS IS MY TIME, AND I HAVE TO
FULFILL THIS DREAM.>>SOMETIMES I WAKE UP IN THE
MORNING WITH COLORS ON MY MIND. THEY MAY HAVE COME TO ME IN
DREAMS. THEY MAY HAVE COME TO ME FROM
SOMETHING I SAW THE EVENING BEFORE. OR THE DRIVE INTO THE STUDIO IN
THE MORNING. BETWEEN NORTH HAMPDEN AND EAST
HAMPDEN WHERE MY STUDIO IS AT COTTAGE STREET IS ONLY 12
MINUTES BUT THERE ARE SOME BEAUTIFUL FIELDS AND WILD THINGS
THAT I SOMETIMES SEE, AND THE CHANGE OF THE SEASONS, I’M VERY
IN TUNE TO THE COLORS AND TONES OF THE ATMOSPHERE REALLY THAT
CAN AFFECT WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I OPEN THE DOOR TO THE STUDIO. I OPEN THE PAINTS, AND I
TYPICALLY WILL MIX A PALETTE. I THINK IN TRADITIONAL WORKING
STYLES YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO LAY IT OUT IN A PARTICULAR ORDER. YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO HAVE YOUR
WHOLE ARRAY SO YOU CAN MIX ANYTHING. I DON’T DO THAT. I THINK THAT I’M JUST UNSCHOOLED
AND I’M A BIT REBELLIOUS, SO I MIX THE COLORS THAT I LIKE, THAT
I WANT TO WORK WITH ON THAT PARTICULAR DAY AND I’LL PUT THE
CANVASS ON THEEESLE AND I’LL JUST —
CANVAS ON THE BOARD AND LET IT RIP.>>I SLOWLY CAME TO REALIZE THAT
A SMALL SPACE DOESN’T WORK. THE SIZES OF THE PAINTINGS HAVE
GROWN. NOW I LIKE PAINTING 24 BY 24, 36
BY 36, 40 BY 40. 40 BY 50. IT’S GETTING LARGER, AND I DON’T
KNOW WHERE TO GO FROM HERE. I AM THINKING ABOUT A RENOVATION
TO MY STUDIO THAT WOULD ALLOW ME TO PIN VERY LARGE CANVASS ON A
VERTICAL WALL BUT I HAVEN’T QUITE GOT THERE YET. I WAS HANDED SOME, WHAT WE CALL
CHIPPY BRUSHES. YOU BUY THEM AT HARDWARE STORES
AND THEY COST UNDER $2 FOR A VARIETY OF SIZES, I CAME TO
REALLY APPRECIATE THEM BECAUSE THEY ARE ROUGH AND THEY SHOW THE
BRUSH STROKE, AND, TO ME THAT EQUATES WITH SOME KIND OF
EMOTION AND SOME KIND OF SPONTANEITY, AND I LIKE USING
THEM. PLUS I CAN THROW THEM AWAY. I CAN WASH THEM ONCE OR TWICE
AND THEN I CAN THROW THEM AWAY WITHOUT FEELING ANY GUILT.>>I THINK THERE IS A CERTAIN
KIND OF A MYSTERY IN THE PAINTINGS, GIVEN THAT THEY DON’T
REPRESENT ACTUAL PLACES, AND OFTEN I’M ASKED WHERE IS THAT
PLACE? AND I WILL SAY, IT IS NOT A
PLACE. IT’S A PLACE THAT YOU CAN
DEFINE. IT’S A PLACE THAT YOU CAN GO TO,
IF YOU SO WISH. I COULD SAY THAT I’M HAVING THE
TIME OF MY LIFE. I’M VERY GRATEFUL. I’M VERY EXCITED. I FEEL HOPEFUL THAT I’LL HAVE A
LOT OF TIME LEFT, BECAUSE I HAVE SO MANY IDEAS AND SO MANY THINGS
I WOULD LIKE TO EXPLORE. THIS IS A DREAM COME TRUE.

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