I spent Sunday visiting two of the Studio Artists to see what they were working on and talk about what we will be showing for the opening. The first stop I made was to the south end of Long Beach to see a lovely young woman named MaryBeth. MaryBeth lives in one of the cutest, vintage, single bedroom apartments I’ve ever seen along with her adopted cat, Mr. Kitty. Her home has all the old colored tiles I remember from the 40’s in the bathroom and kitchen and she is blessed with wonderful natural light filtering throughout…just perfect for painting. As and added bonus, because her apartment sits on the end, it gets a very pleasant, crisp ocean breeze.
MaryBeth works full time for one of the Deans at USC and finds time to paint, draw and be creative in between. Right now she’s working on a series of trees from photos she took on a recent visit to her home town in Humbolt, California. One particular painting she’s currently working on really caught my attention because of its likeness to a photographic negative. It’s colorful, graphic and visually quite stunning.
She also works on very small, intricate illustrations produced on vintage paper from Europe. My lack of a proper lens does not even begin to do these illustrations justice and I will attempt in the future to get a better likeness… enabling you to see the detail and time that goes into them. She said she liked working on them because she could take them virtually anywhere and draw when she felt inspired with a limited amount of space to work in. I love that idea.
I met MaryBeth at a small show in Long Beach a few months back after a tip off from my Family and I was not disapointed. She had one painting of hers on display amongst a group of other Artists. It was from her “Under Water” series…work based on moving away from things familiar to her and feeling overwhelmed. That explanation got my attention…and stuck with me. We chatted about her life and the evolution of her work, I met Mr. Kitty, took some shots and then headed on my way to the second Artist. I found MaryBeth to be a sincere woman with a warm smile and gracious charm. I am so happy to see her excitement and very proud to have her aboard. Meet the talented MaryBeth…oh…and her side kick…Mr. Kitty 😉