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Visual artist gets inspiration from nature

Visual artist gets inspiration from nature

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Christy Jerrett enjoys being outside in nature and incorporates the outside world in her paintings.

“I love the colors and sunsets and flowers,” Jerrett said. “I’m pretty much a nature lover. I always have been. I am an outdoors girl. ... I like going on hikes and seeing waterfalls and lakes. Just a lot of nature stuff is what inspires me.”

She started painting about five years before she retired in 2013 from her job as a school counselor for the Stokes County school system.

She would take painting classes in the summer and paint in the evenings and on the weekends.

“I have always loved and appreciated art,” Jerrett said.

Although she has played around with a lot of different subjects, she tends to return to landscapes and nature.

She is really into trees. So much so, that she started wondering why.

She ultimately did research on trees and likes to get the message out about their importance to the environment.

“When I go out hiking or in a forest, it just nurtures me to be out with trees,” Jerrett said. “They just are lovely. Then I’ll see them blooming and then a big old tree that’s been around for a long time.”

Jerrett, who is a member of the Carolina Painters’ Guild and Art For Art’s Sake, paints in her home studio in Tobaccoville. She has taken art classes at Salem College, Forsyth Technical School and Sawtooth Center for Visual Art, Art of the Carolina workshops and other workshops with area artists.

She has exhibited in juried shows, including Red Dog Gallery, the Yadkin Cultural Arts Center, and Stokes County’s Apple Gallery. Her paintings are currently on display at the Red Dog Gallery and in Art-o-mat machines nationwide.

In July and August, Art for Art’s Sake is presenting “Nature’s Tempo,” an exhibition by Jarrett, Carolina Corona and Kevin Owen, in Red Dog Gallery on Liberty Street in Winston-Salem.

The show is inspired by observations of nature from dusk to dawn, from forests to flower meadows, and beyond.

Corona is an art entrepreneur who exhibits in galleries statewide and participates in seasonal art shows and festivals. She teaches private art lessons and has done pro-bono work for environmental and mental-health organizations.

Owen is a multi-media artist. His biography on the AFAS website describes him as a “professional architect, lifelong musician and old artist from a family of artists. ...”

Jerrett has 37 paintings in the exhibition. Her oil paintings include “Freshly Picked,” “A Room With a View” and “Salem Lake Trail.” Some of her acrylic paintings are “My Sunset View,” “Hiking Trail” and “Evening Light.”

Q: How would you describe your art?

Answer: My art is colorful and inspired by nature. My goal is to paint loosely with texture, light and movement. I like to leave something for the imagination and not paint every detail.

Q: How have you evolved as an artist?

Answer: I have always enjoyed being creative, so I started taking painting classes at nearby colleges and with artists that offer classes. I have also researched art, listened to podcasts and watched videos online. Painting with other artists and having an art community has helped me grow as an artist.

Q: Who has influenced your art?

Answer: My influences have been art teachers that I have taken classes from. I like the impressionism style of artwork, so these artists artwork have influenced me as well. My friends that are artists have encouraged me and are important to me as an artist. For me, having an art community is helpful in many ways.

Q: What is your biggest challenge?

Answer: Getting my work out there so I can share it with others. The marketing online aspect of being an artist challenges me also.

Q: What does art do for you?

Answer: Art helps me focus on the beauty around us. It encourages me to be creative and keep learning new things. It also helps me meet new people and socialize when painting with friends.

Q: Any advice for other artists?

Answer: It is important to keep in mind that art has the power to educate, inspire and motivate others. Experiment and have fun!

Fran Daniel writes about artists — visual, musical, literary and more — weekly in relish. Send your story ideas to fdaniel@wsjournal.com or call 336-727-7366.

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