Diane Fechenbach

Painting isn’t heart surgery. It is supposed to be fun. I delight in finding interesting subjects and then trying to capture these three-dimensional subjects on a two-dimensional surface and capturing light.

More specifically: light and shadow. Better yet, really dramatic light and shadow, or complicated light and shadow. The challenge is in identifying all of the light sources, analyzing them, and trying to render them in paint. I have always looked at the world this way. From the time I was a little girl I saw the world as a series of paintings. Everywhere I looked there were wonderful compositions and delicious color. It was a great shock when I learned that most other people did not “see” this way. My observation is that every person starts as a small child with a keen eye and fearless passion for art. Preschoolers draw and paint with glorious abandon. Somehow that joy gets lost along the way and adults grow up thinking they cannot master art. Now, as an instructor, I delight in helping others rediscover this joy.
Plein Air (outdoors) painting is one of my favorite things. Sitting in the sun (occasionally in the rain), enjoying the breeze and the birds twittering (but not the bugs) opens up the senses. I make sketches in oil, pastel, or watercolor and ink. While soaking up the local color, it is a great way to meet people. When I travel, these sketches are mementos of the places visited. Back in the studio sketches provide subjects for larger paintings, where the fun begins again.

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