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Dianne McElwain

Inside Artists' Heads

By · June 25th, 2008 · Articulations
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Local botanical artist Dianne McElwain exhibits her aesthetically pleasing and scientifically accurate paintings nationally and internationally, but right now you can see her work at Phyllis Weston-Annie Bolling Gallery through June 28. Here, she shares five things that inspire her. (Tamera Lenz Muente)Frank McElwain. My husband is my first and foremost source of inspiration. His love and support for 32 years has allowed me to achieve all of my dreams. I have known no other job than working as an artist, and Frank has made this completely satisfying life possible.Nature.

Every day I wake up to something different outside. The rain has brought out the snails, the snow has the birds all snugged up in the bush, or the flowers are fantastic. Nature sets the tone of the day and inspires what I will create.My garden. I have cultivated my garden for 30 years and have it just as I pictured. Since I paint directly from live specimens I am constantly looking for my next subject. My garden reveals what will turn up next on paper.Old botanical art. As early as the 1500s, European botanical artists documented plants found in the New World. After the Dutch created rare tulip hybrids in the 1600s, everyone wanted paintings of them. Botanical art's popularity spanned through the centuries and continues today.

People. People inspire me because they change. They switch gears when needed, they work hard or they don't, they're nice or they're not, they like art or they don't. It doesn't matter -- the idea is that anything is possible. People change and just keep going, and that's inspiring.


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