Capture the eye... Engage the mind... and Stir the heart.
Denise has always been an observer of nature and followed her heart to explore and capture the beauty that surrounds us. She has traversed the globe, always entranced by the colors of the Pacific tropics, the lush, mystical wilds of the Pacific Northwest rainforest, the grandeur of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, the stark beauty of the Great Basin, the weathered coast of Cornwall, and the classical beauty of the Mediterranean.
She expresses her impressions of the natural world by using light, motion, color and texture; creating a visual conversation with the viewer and letting them also explore natures spectrum of color, and the myriad varieties of form and texture sculpted by the elements.
My life so far...
I was born in London, England and came to the United States as a young child. My father had a love for the outdoors and from an early age he would take me on explorations into the natural world. Trees were not just an object. They were life that was full of flowing shapes and color. These early observations shaped my world and would influence me all these years later.
Through my years as an archaeologist, I spent more hours outside than in. All the time recording the world around me.
As a designer I continued my love of art and traveled to many parts of the world meeting people and seeking the road less traveled. My paintings are the expression of my adventures, past and present, and my passion for the world that surrounds us.
I love to capture the world with snapshots and watercolor sketches. These I later translate through a number of techniques to express a composition. Some of my favorite techniques are:
Wet-on-wet is a technique where the pigment is applied to wet paper. At times I let the pigment flow freely through the water and weave a path through the grain of the rough paper.
Mark-making with found objects. It is fun to experiment with using found objects to paint and create strokes and “marks.” I have used sticks from a forest path, pine needles, pine cones, a leaf or fern or even dog fur made into a brush.
Cling wrap placed on drying watercolor areas creates very interesting shape and textures. The plastic can be shaped into forms with the areas not touching the paper become a key to the organic, flowing shapes that result.
Soap bubbles placed on the paper, with carefully added pigment to the base of the bubbles results in unique round circles result!
Salt water from the ocean reacts with the pigment in very unusual ways and you always end up with some beach sand in the mix!
Line & Form explorations are a mixed media approach. This concept explores the relationship between line, form, light, color and texture. This led me to develop a technique where I first create a line drawing to find the simple form and lines that express the composition. It is developed and carved into linoleum. Using acrylics I color the linoleum and then imprint a sheet of watercolor paper. The resulting impression is then covered with hot wax and I am free to loosely apply watercolor, gouache, and acrylic. At times handmade papers may also be collaged. After I have capture the light, color, and texture I want, I remove the wax and proceed with the finishing details.