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Front Window Spotlight: Carol Ross

Our front window currently features the work of Carol Ross. Carol is an experienced artist who has worked in several mediums. In this profile, we talk with Carol about her journey as a painter. Her work is in the window until August 20th, and we also carry a body of her work in the gallery.

How did you get started as a painter?

My aunt was a professional painter and when I would visit her as a child I would watch her paint. Her studio was always such a magical place and the smell of linseed oil and turpentine seduced me at an early age. ‘Paint by Number’ kits were some of my favorite Christmas gifts.

You have shifted from traditional realism into more abstract work. How has that challenged you as an artist?

I have always moved back and forth between pure abstract and traditional landscape painting. Recently I have begun to merge the two forms which has been quite exciting for me.

Where do you look for inspiration?

I find inspiration all around me. I am now unable to look at any landscape without seeing it as a painting in my head.  I crop, shift, and move until I see the developed composition I want to paint. Sometimes it involves stopping the car on the side of the road. Sometimes it involves asking friends to send me the snapshot they may have posted on Facebook from their vacation. My niece was traveling through Montana and took a photo of the small town where she went to high school. It is now the subject of a new painting.

What do you most often admire in another artist’s work?

When I see a painting I love, I have a very visceral reaction. I get a gut feeling when I see a painting that has it all: composition, intrigue, and most of all an urgent need for me to keep looking at it. My first reaction is to want to know how they painted it. Then I move back and look at how they put it all together and eventually I am standing there in awe of every small decision they had to make to create a piece of art that in its final form moves me in some way.

What do you dream about painting?

I would love to try painting still life. There is some advance manipulation that a still life artist does when she determines the subject of her painting that is not as available when painting landscapes. It would be fun to see what choices I would make. What would my subject be? What narrative could I create with a few bottles and drapes?

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Permanent link to this article: http://arteast.org/2017/08/front-window-carol-ross/