My earliest memories are of country life, dairy farming, animals and the outdoors. Three sisters and a brother and I grew up around dairy cattle, chickens, dogs, and cats, so when I started drawing, it was natural to draw animals. It was also natural to start drawing as soon as I could hold a crayon.
The only formal education I can claim is a couple of years of high school art at Clare Public High School, Clare, Michigan; one semester (3 credit hours) of oil painting at Mid Michigan Community College, Harrison, Michigan; and, one semester in the Fine Arts Department at Abilene Christian University, Abilene, Texas. In all cases, formal studies seemed too unfocused. I already knew what I wanted to do – paint horses! – so studying all that other stuff only distracted me from my goal.
I am always looking for ways to better my artistic skills, so I am a permanent student in the School of Trial and Error. I’ve painted in several different styles, including the direct method (which goes straight for the color) and Classical methods (which involves under paintings, layering and glazing). Classical techniques work so well for both of my chosen mediums – oils and colored pencil – that it’s now the method of choice. My technique is based on the work of the 17th Century artist, Johannes Vermeer, though I have also customized it to suit colored pencils and my own working style.
I have exhibited paintings in many exciting places, including Lone Star Park Race Track, Grand Prairie, Texas and Remington Park Race Track, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
Since the early 90s, I’ve worked with the Michigan Harness Horseman’s Association, donating custom portraits to their annual benefit auction.
Online art courses in colored pencil, graphite, and oil painting are now offered. Courses are one-on-one and work-at-your own pace. For more information, visit the Personalized Online Art Instruction page
Portraits are also available. For more information or to schedule a free portrait consultation, visit portraits.carrie-lewis.com.