In the seventies JUDY USAVAGE took a few oil painting lessons and got hooked. She entered her paintings in the LA County Fair and won several prizes, painted horses and sold them to her riding friends, donated to various causes and had a corner in the small, country store where she sold one painting at a time. Moving with her husband and then one son, to Cape Coral, Florida, in1981 to be near her parents she was interrupted with her endeavors to raise her family which included another son. However, for the last fifteen years she has painted consistently, taken lessons, joined art leagues, entered shows, hung her own shows and won prizes. For over six years she has been a part of Lee Plein Air, a group of local artists who paint once a week all around Lee County and is also the one who has posted their paintings on Facebook. Since the virus she has focused more on indoor painting in what she calls, ‘interpretive realism”, where abstract and reality intermix to heighten the viewer’s imaginative response to each painting.
“I enjoy trying new ideas with my paintings which may hinder me somewhat if someone is looking for a certain style although I love impressionism and tend to go in the direction of Monet. I like to pick up more than one color at a time with my brush, or paint with a palette knife, or switch back and forth from oil to acrylic. e. Most recently I have been attempting to capture the atmosphere at the location my group is visiting—the lighting, the season (yes, there ARE seasons in Florida) and a few of the special specifics such as a dainty flower, towering weeds, or whatever catches my eye. I always include little surprises for the viewer to find with a special stroke or color.”
“To me art is a necessity of the soul. For the artist, it is the passion, the challenge and the hard work that results in a piece of art that is our own interpretation of what we see every day and for the viewer it is the excitement of discovering what it is the artist would like you to know and see and thus, enjoy. Art is ready for a dream, a therapy or a desire shared on canvas. It is a shared vision of the artist interpreting God’s magnificent universe.”