As a watercolor artist, naturalist, historian and conservator of both the art and environment, I paint to express my passion and concern for my surroundings. When I paint, I am forced to carefully observe, understand, and interpret the natural and cultural environment. In so doing, I come to appreciate and desire preservation the subjects I choose: beaches, coastal forests, fields and bogs, quiet village streets, historic architecture, and local animals and plants. Exhibiting my art allows me to connect with others and influence their thinking about their experiences and impact.
Transparent watercolor is a demanding medium. I enjoy the challenge.
When painting with pigment and water, everyday weather may affect the outcome by making the paint flow differently or paper dry at a different speed, the ability to adapt is essential. The medium employs many techniques to get given effects. It takes practiced timing to get them to work together. Using both sketches and my photos as resources, I find pre-thinking my composition, direction, palette, and message is important. I use many kinds of brushes, rags, salt, sand, masking fluid, palette knife, and sponges to create both washes and dry brush details. I work on artist grade paper and use artist grade transparent pigments that allow me to layer and create rich hues. “
Laurel received studio and art history training at Mount Holyoke College and in graduate study at Oberlin College. She has worked for the Smithsonian’s National Collection as a curator/art conservator and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. She taught art history at Alfred University. She exhibits with the Cape Cod Art Association and Chatham’s Creative Art Center as well as at group shows and in galleries both on and off Cape. She is an associate member of both the New England Watercolor Society and the American Watercolor Society.
Currently she shows at Eastwind Gallery in Orleans and will be at the Artist Cottages in July and the Chatham Festival of Arts in August.