BEING IN the moment is the heart of Sumi-e—painting black ink on paper. Developed in Ancient China then Japan. The artist emphasizes and imagines the vitality of their subject.
Mulberry, Shuan and Unryu are a few of my favorite papers—each absorbs ink in unique ways. How I touch my inky brush to the soft white surface is a balance of serendipity and skill. When the ink has dried on the paper, I may add nuances of Acrylic, Oil Bar or Foil. This is a distinctive feature of my work—suggesting textures of
nature, movement or light—creating a dynamic contrast with my gestures of ink.
What is alive, moving and growing, inspires me. Their spirit provokes my hand to recreate what I feel, but what I explore behind my eyes fascinates and provokes me toward the unexpected. Creating moments in ink that astonish and challenge me—they are my greatest reward.
KAREN'S FA for the Outdoors came from her childhood. Hiking with her father and four brothers; camping trips and fishing with hikes through the sage covered red hills of New Mexico, back roads of Japan, Hawaii, Utah, to the mossy forests of the Hoh River. But when she watched her dad compose Nature with his Leica she was shown another way to see.
Her art career began with oil and pastel in her twenties—inspired from her own photography. In her late forties she dedicated herself to a 2 year atelier program at Gage Academy to deepen her skills in landscape painting. Then realized she'd rather paint the life force of nature. Show her reverence and feelings— Sumi-e gave her that way. An Ancient Asian art form; painting black ink on rice paper. It opened her imagination—expressing more with less. Karen doesn't have to travel far—often she finds her favorite subjects in her own backyard of Bellevue.
Her whimsical birds and landscapes are seen in homes around the Seattle area, from Tacoma to La Conner and as far away as San Francisco to Washington DC. Nature keeps Karen close to the Earth and its life force is a constant reminder of seeing the "world in a grain of sand".