Pamela Stilp - Why I Paint

Like many artists, I am entranced by light. I am captivated by its ability to utterly transform ordinary moments in time; a ray of sunlight dappling across a forest floor, the translucent glow of backlit leaves or sunshine beaming through a window alighting upon common objects. This is what inspires me to paint.

I feel a kinship to simple places and everyday items, to things often overlooked, to moments in time passing through a day, or landscapes that enter our consciousness but are increasingly endangered and so are slipping from our view. I think it is important to record these moments and to bear witness to these precious places and humble objects.

Such scenes compel me to paint in an attempt to capture and convey, on canvas or in my pastel drawings, the visual beauty and the truth of these fleeting images as I see them.

As a plein aire, portrait and still life painter, dramatic lighting is a signature of much of my work. That eternal play of shadow and light is so often present, I believe, when time and place slip past each other.

It is always my hope and intent to communicate my feelings about the visual phenomena where, more often than not, I am the sole witness. As an artist I try to capture the energy and emotions that belong to a place or the essence that, in a portrait, characterizes for me, a particular person.

I work in oil paint, pastel and occasionally charcoal in plein aire and the studio from life or from photographs I have taken.

I enjoy the never-ending challenge of trying new ways of expressing my artistic voice, of painting in ways that excite and stimulate me as well as the viewers of my work.

I truly enjoy this creative journey.