Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Mark Bailey in "The Artist's Magazine"

We are proud to announce that Mark Bailey placed 3rd in the Portrait/Figure category in this year's "The Artist's Magazine" competition (The December issue is currently on newsstands).  There were 6745 total enteries with 1975 of those in the Portrait/Figure category.  The judge, Robert Liberace, is a very well known and respected figure artist, and he had this to say about Bailey's work:

 "With his flashes of color, flawless drawing and dynamic design Mark has created a picture with a spirited immediacy that puts us right in the chaos of the moment.  The fantastic slashing strokes excite the imagination and show how great painting can open our eyes to the beauty of the world in the most unlikely places."

Congratulations Mark!
To view Mark Bailey's current works at our gallery, please visit our website.

December 2011
Third Place
Mark Andrew Bailey
Vancouver, Washington

The title, In the Weeds, is a term restaurant workers use when the kitchen goes crazy trying to keep up with orders. Such scenes, rife with tension and energy, are what Mark Bailey most likes to paint. He prefers painting from life, but with this scene, there was no way. The setting is the kitchen of Basil Thai Restaurant in Charleston, South Carolina. “My objective was to capture the light, color and energy of a fleeting moment,” says Bailey. “For paintings like this, I take as many photos as I can in order to really get an idea of the place and have several images to pull from. Sometimes I jot down color and lighting notes of things that might get lost in photographs.” Bailey, in his 20s, places himself at the beginning of his career, still developing his process. He works in transparent layers, first blocking in major shapes and then breaking them down. “I remind myself that nothing’s sacred—that I shouldn’t be afraid to mess something up,” he says. “Sometimes I’ll take a broad brush and paint over a ‘finished’ area or scrape if off entirely. As scary as that is at the moment, that area usually ends up being far more interesting.”

                                           In The Weeds (or 'Basil'), Mark Bailey

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Birds in Motion {recent commission by Russell Gordon}

Russell Gordon recently finished two custom paintings for a client that will be displayed together, so they had to be painted in unison. Here are the finished paintings and a very cool time lapse video Russell Gordon created to see the process behind the work! Enjoy.

"Flash of Blue"
"Perching Rainbow"

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Khom Loi by Mark Bailey and Floating Lantern Festival of Thailand

It is very interesting how a painting can come to be created, and also how it can lead us to stumble upon other inspiration. Recently Mark Bailey finished up the painting Khom Loi, depicting a Charleston Locale with these unique lanterns above the tables. Khom Loi is a term for fire lanterns... which led us to this wonderful video of the "Floating Lantern Festival" in Thailand. What a wonderful tradition!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Earl B. Lewis {Broken Flowers . Blues . Books}

We recently caught up with Earl B. Lewis to ask him a few questions during his hectic schedule. He kindly obliged via telephone while still painting in his studio. Earl has many projects demanding his complete concentration. 

The most recent watercolor to arrive at the Wells Gallery features three girls playing Ring Around the Rosy. This striking painting is from a 6 book series titled "A Magnificent Park in the City". It tells the story about a families migration from East to West, starting out in a shanty town in New York that would be later be the location of Central Park. Many poverty stricken families and children were forced to move March 3 1855, and this book series tells the story of one of those families.

"Broken Flowers"                                  

Earl has been working on a series focused on the Crosstown of Charleston and the gentrification happening there. This series will be featured in an anthropological book by The College of Charleston, and his paintings will feature portraits of children that have been affected by this event. "Broken Flowers" (featured above) will be the cover of this book which should be released in a couple of years. Portraits from his current Lotto Icon series will also be featured in this publication.

While focusing on an upcoming show with The Wells Gallery, he is also traveling to various countries to meet with authors of books he will be illustrating. He will be heading to Israel to meet with award-winning author Jacqueline Woodson to begin work on the book "Sparrow" about the western wall in Jerusalem. This trip will also  provide research for portraits to be featured in "Lotto Icons" {A Global Perspective}" opening Friday October 7th at The Wells Gallery. He is also currently working on the book "Under the Baobob Tree"  which features students from the local Jane Edward School in Edisto reenacting the story for Earl's illustrations. This project was also featured in the Post and Courier recently, check it out here.

While working is his studio on his various projects, Earl feels Blues, Jazz and even some Folk music helps him immerse himself in the paintings. "Music is my muse, it helps place me in the mood of the painting", says Lewis. Recently, "Strange Fruit" by Billie Holiday created an emotion so profound to Lewis, he created a painting for his upcoming show in October solely dedicated to that very song. If you would like to know what Earl is up to, you can now visit his Facebook page under Earl B. Lewis or follow him on Twitter and YouTube.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Laurie Meyer "The Magic of Transitions" featured in Charleston Style & Design

The Magic of Transitions

Laurie Meyer captures light’s soft, gentle edges
Just start Laurie Meyer talking about painting, that’s all it takes. As she wraps words like luscious and sensual around the subject, you realize that her enthusiasm isn’t puppy love—it’s passion.
Ask her how she creates such a soft and lovely look in her paintings and she speaks of the way that light, changing its warmth and color throughout the day, plays on her emotions like music. “I’m moved emotionally by the warm late-day colors,” she says. “It’s such a journey to capture it well.”
Her own journey to becoming a successful artist carried her across several careers outside the arts. But art was always there, in the margins.
“When I moved to Charleston in 1983, I was drawn to the group of watercolorists who were here in town at that time,” she says. “Most of these artists are now at the top of their careers.”
She was a teacher then, one who weaved lessons about the beauty of art into English class. “I was always incorporating drawing or some sort of artistic endeavor along with literature and writing lessons.”
Outside the classroom, she immersed herself in the works of Lowcountry watercolorists like Rhett Thurman. She learned much about the art of the painting in those days, but she still had a few more corners to round in the path of her life before becoming a full-time artist.
“After Hugo, I was no longer a teacher and no longer married. I did have a young child and I felt it was going to be difficult to make ends meet on a teacher’s salary, so I moved into a pharmaceutical career.”
“I found that art, in a strange but true way, entered into pharmaceutical sales. During that time, I was working with neurologists and became very involved with the Alzheimer’s Association.”
In 1994, she collaborated with several others to launch The Art of Alzheimer’s, using art as therapy in nursing homes.
“I was fortunate that I started with watercolor because it taught me about soft edges,” she says. “Edges are where you find the soul of a painting. The mind of the painting would be the very technical aspects: correct drawing technique, perspective, values. The heart is in the color and light.”
Those feelings flowered within her as she transitioned from watercolorist to oil painter. Her life as a whole was transformed as well. She re-married, raised three daughters, and achieved her dream of becoming a full-time artist. In addition to creating her own works of art, she teaches classes and workshops both locally and abroad. In May, she’ll teach “Painting Color under the Tuscan Sun” in Cortona, Italy.
She has a special love for painting landscapes, streetscapes, architecture and white hydrangeas in the warm afternoon light. “Soft suggestions in a painting allow the viewer to draw his own conclusion as to what the artist is trying to say.”
Her path has taken her many places and includes numerous highlights and accolades. She earned a blue ribbon at Piccolo-Spoleto, and served as Program Director and Director of Artistic Growth for the Charleston Artist Guild. She’s also a member of the Oil Painters of America, American Impressionist Society, the South Carolina Watercolor Association and the Portrait Society of America.
She is represented by the Wells Gallery in Charleston and The Wells at The Sanctuary on Kiawah Island, as well as galleries in Beaufort and Greenville, North Carolina.
Her representation by these galleries is among the milestones of which she is most proud as an artist. From the earliest years of her professional career, she told her children that someday her work would be shown in such venues.
Her many years of determination paid off. Today, what was once just a dream is now reality.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

About the Artist - {Sally Tharp}

How would you define your style of painting? 
I would describe my style as realism,  but not photorealism.  I want to convey my feelings about what I am painting versus duplicating an image.

How long have you been painting?
I have been paining full time for 2 1/2 years.  

What do you hope to express through your work?
I hope to show a warmth, softness and beauty of things in which most people wouldn't expect to find it.  And by magnifying things and painting them on a larger scale, I am giving them an importance that comes with that size.

How many hours a day are spent in your studio/ What would a typical viewer see if they observed you in your studio? 
I am in the studio every day.  On most days, I am there all day and other days as much as I can sneak away!  My studio is an out building at our house, so I can be available to kids but still working.  My studio is full of my "treasures"!  (That isn't what my husband calls them :) )  I am so blessed to have a creative environment with so much inspiration!  I usually have many canvases sitting around in various stages of completion and still life fodder and bottles and jars everywhere.  I have all my window sills lined with rocks and bottles and I have a huge old bar back that is perfect for storing everything else.  

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Common Question - How to collect artwork

We often have people come in and ask us how to collect artwork. Our first response is to collect the works that you love, and the paintings that move you. If you are going to be enjoying these works for years, then they should continue to make you react in some positive way on a daily basis. When asked for more in depth about how to collect, we suggest always doing your research on the artist. Here is a great link to help you gather information and start your research. Of course our best suggestion of all is to get out of the house and visit the local art galleries, check out the new works in person. There is a lot lost in translation when looking at fine art work from an image on a computer screen. Let us know your words of wisdom on this matter, share with us your suggestions for new art collectors.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Mark Bailey {new works with a hint of Charleston}

The wonderful aspect of Mark Bailey's work is that his use of perspective and composition create a universal glance into the world. Whether it is a place you are familiar with or not, they always draw you in and let you create your own story. We are excited about the newest works that have just arrived here in Charleston, and they also feature a few locales. Do these look familiar and can you guess where they are? (hint is in the title if you know Charleston well)

"Fleet Flux"


Saturday, February 12, 2011

Update from the Studio of Russell Gordon

Ever curious to see how the works come to life, well here is a sneak peak into Russell Gordon's studio. He is working on a painting for our upcoming exhibit "Wanderlust". Here is the painting in the works, it looks to be off to an exciting start.

"Gold Rush" in progress....
Stop by The Gallery Friday March 4th to see it in its final state.

"Sometimes we need to release ourselves, uncage our wanderlust and let it fly free.
A new 'Gold Rush' where we are all our own intinerant alchemists." ~ Russell Gordon

Saturday, February 5, 2011

George Pate, OPA - Signature Member of Oil Painters of America

We are so excited to see the new works by George Pate, and get ready for the upcoming spring openings here at The Wells Gallery. We wanted to share his featured works from Kiawah Legends Magazine. To see all works, click here.

"Backcountry, Lowcountry" by George Pate 
as featured in Kiawah Legends Magazine
 from a private collection on Kiawah Island

"Sundowner" by George Pate
held in the collection of the Ocean Course Clubhouse
as photographed over the fireplace in the dining room