I am a local Arlingtonian, relatively new to painting, and I have found inspiration and love in oil paints over the last few years. I minored in Visual Arts in college, but my focus then was photography. After college I moved back home and worked for a few years while I built a van into a camper. The plan was to traverse the Pan-American Highway, Alaska to Argentina, in two years, stopping in both Central and South America for several months to work with local non-profits. After a wonderful but somewhat traumatic long-term travel experience, I came back to Arlington to start over again, and as part of my “re-find me” plan, I signed up for an oil painting class through Arlington’s Adult Education program. I’ve been signing up every semester for four and a half years now for Jane McElvany Coonce’s painting class, and feel that I have grown immensely from her tutelage and from observing the other students in our class. Most of my first paintings were transformations of photographs that I had taken over the years in college and on my travels.
Today, I focus on light and vibrancy, attempting to draw my viewers in with color and composition, often making you feel that you are a part of the painting. My style would most likely be called realism, but with a flare of effervescence that captivates more than a photograph ever could.
I have done many commissions, portraits of people and pets, but my favorite compositions are still landscapes. I look forward to showing throughout Northern Virginia and elsewhere in the coming years as I gain publicity and opportunity through the Arlington Artists Alliance and Gallery Underground. Since joining the Alliance last summer, I have shown at the Arlington Free Clinic, Luna Grill, SAIC, the Holiday Inn in Ballston (which I now help co-curate), and Gallery Underground, where I am honored to have been chosen as the new Gallery Co-Director.
I think paintings make gorgeous gifts. I love transforming my (and anyone else who is interested in having a Painting by Jessica) favorite pictures or images into timeless treasures. Please feel free to contact me at email@example.com with any questions, comments, or ideas.