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Madeleine Finley: Colorful Chaos

May 12, 2016 1:35:08 PM

Madeleine Finley - Oil Painting

Madeleine Finley is a painter from the Washington, DC area. She creates colorful abstract oil paintings, each containing a beautiful chaos of letters, lines and fragmented figures. Sometimes emerging artists will incorporate words into their work and the integration seems trite, but Madeleine’s use of lettering is abstract and intriguing. Along with her acute awareness of color and unusual compositions, her paintings are fun to explore.

Madeleine had her first solo show in Puerto Rico, as a part of the Trailer Park Proyects. Trailer Park Proyects is a traveling gallery in the trailer of a box truck. TPP gives both emerging and established artists the opportunity to show work in various locations across the city of San Juan. The project also sets a maximum price of $500 on all exhibiting works to make the artwork more accessible for younger and modest art collectors.

In the following interview, Madeleine illustrates the importance of exploring different opportunities and venues for practicing your craft as an artist.  One opportunity that Madeleine has particularly enjoyed in the DC area is being a member of DC Arts Studios. DCAS, an organization located in Takoma Park, Maryland, is a...

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Comments | Posted in: Artist Spotlight By K. McDermott

Kate Plourde - Pool - 2016

Being an artist means being open to discovery; being an abstract artist also means being constantly open to uncertainty. How do you paint a feeling rather than an object? How do you guide your mediums when you can’t see what you’re painting in front of you?

Kate Plourde is an abstract artist living in Washington, DC. She creates ethereal large-scale abstract paintings on paper; exploring memory, experiences and emotions in her delicate, smoky forms and landscape-like contours. “I’m always looking for ways to play with what the medium wants to do and what I want the medium to do,” says Kate.

Though she typically creates her paintings using mediums like Liquitex and Golden acrylics on high quality Rives BFK or Stonehenge paper, Kate does not limit herself to one mode of creating. She occasionally practices the esoteric art of bookbinding, as well as creating ultra-modern digital art. For part of her thesis at the Corcoran, she used Adobe After Effects and Photoshop to create the digital animation installation, “Tidal” (2015), which is pictured further below.

It is always interesting to see how abstract artists title their pieces and what role the title plays in the viewer’s perception o...

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Comments | Posted in: Artist Spotlight By K. McDermott

Don Brewer with his artwork

All images used with permission from Instagram @donniebeat. Clockwise from bottom left: Don Brewer, an urban plein air oil painting in process, "The Fortune Tellers" paper sculpture at a Plastic Club art show, and "Oneida Woods" oil on canvas.

Don Brewer decided to leap into the art world after a career in marketing. He attended college at the age of 45 to study art multimedia and web design at time when multimedia degrees were unheard of and logging onto the Internet meant dialing up through a telephone line. When I spoke with him on the phone for this interview, I could hear a relentless excitement beneath his calm and thoughtful demeanor. He explained a recent prize-wining photograph of his and how it represents not only an unusual visual perspective, but also what it means to live in a rapidly changing neighborhood. The photo is posted below, along with an explanation that is well worth the read. 

In speaking and corresponding with him, Don emphasized that, “It’s never too late to go to art school.” Don told me that attending school as an older student was one of the best experiences of his life, and he still keeps in contact with folks from his program. You can always make a cha...

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Comments | Posted in: Artist Resources By K. McDermott
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