Paula Dearringer - Watercolor

Painting is not how I earn my living, it's how I live.  Most of my adult life has been dedicated to teaching middle school art, and I believe I'm accomplished in this role.  In 2002 I took a break from teaching and decided to develop my own voice as a professional artist using the medium of watercolor.  I've taken workshops with a number of accomplished artists such as J. Anna Roberts, Jerry Smith, Henry Bell, Sandy Maudlin, Carla O'Connor, and Joseph Fettingis.  These experiences have not only improved my painting skills but have also provided inspiration for new projects I've done with my students.  

Since returning back to the classroom in 2005, I have managed to complete a few paintings here and there and even been accepted into several prestigious juried art shows including the Hoosier Salon and Midwest National Abstract Show.  In 2009, much to my surprise, I was awarded the Wilbur Meese Award (best of show) for the Watercolor Society of Indiana's annual juried exhibition.  That was a great day, indeed, but winning awards is not why I paint.

I paint because I've found a subject that just needs to be painted.  I paint because it brings me joy.  If someone else likes one of my paintings, even more joy!  As an amateur photographer I take photos of anything that might provide the inspiration for a future painting.  Often I look for unexpected images and am especially attracted to cast shadows, bright colors, and interesting patterns.  My work could be considered eclectic in terms of style and approach to painting.  The work I exhibit at Art IN Hand Gallery reflects my interest in watercolor batik which is a modern take on the ancient Javanese art of fabric decoration using wax and dyes. 
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