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Ginette Callaway

I am French-born to a German Mother and a French Father and I live in the United States as a US Citizen. I paint mainly in Oil and Watercolors from my Basement Studio in Georgia. I got started with painting after taking drawing lesson and my art teacher pulled me aside and told me that I had lots of talent and that I should start to paint. Which I did.

I read the book Art and Visual Perception (Rudolph Arnheim), recommended to me by friends, I bought the paperback, now it's available for free online. I gobbled up everything and anything, about the old masters, color theory, composition, went to the museums to see the original paintings, I had found my world "Art" & "Painting". I started to paint and draw every day.

I remember painting oil paintings when I was a child, even then they were impressionistic and heavy on paint. My family sometimes fought over who is going to get a certain painting. One of fighting stallions went to an aunt of mine and I wish I had that painting today. I was probably 10 when I painted it.

Back then being an artist was not considered a "real job", so my life took a different turn.
I was forced to work in sales and go to business school, it was all arranged, I had no say in the matter. It took almost lifetime before I got to do what my heart desired all along, being creative.

Today I paint every day because that is what I love to do. Nature inspires me most, because nature is the biggest wonder of all. Animals, Flowers, scenes from around the world and places I have visited. Simply from sun up till sun down my head is in a creative vice. My vision is Impressionism and have developed a modern version of it. The subject is today and the style is classic with a touch of my eccentricity.

I keep evolving and sometimes I find myself going a bit abstract. I love Picasso as well as Nicolai Fechin, Chagall, Van Gogh, Monet as many of my French country men appeal to me. I am an for lack of a better word, an artist, very much of a free spirit, I don't want to be stuck in to a drawer and have a label put on my forehead. I fight that all the time. I paint because I want to and I LOVE IT and I sell my work to earn a living, because I have to.

Sometimes I wish I was independently rich, I would just stay in my studio or gallivant around in nature, instead of spending hours taking photos of my paintings to list them online for sale. I do love the people I meet because of my art. Especially during art shows where I can really talk to them. I'm very much an eye to eye person who likes to personally interact.

Most of my Travel paintings are the result from travels while I was living in Europe.
I now live in the US and explore various states, recently traveling to Florida, South Carolina and Georgia coastal cities, as well as many natural scenes that I put down on canvas and paper. Places leave an emotional impression on me, that impression I can best express in painting. If I were a writer I would write about them, but I am not so good with written words.

If the viewer recounts a wonderful experience because of my painting, that is wonderful. If the viewer thinks about something deeply, that is a good thing. If a painting changes a viewers perception to the better, like I hope for example my snake paintings do, then I am extremely happy.

When I paint animals, I usually do it to help us see them in a natural light, let the viewer see that they are living beings adding to the colorful fabric of all that makes our world go around. When I paint places I want to show them in a glorious light, romantic, calming, soothing, exciting, mysterious or magical.

When I paint Flowers it's all about fragrance and beauty & color. I often place insects in to the scene because, I've never gone in to a meadow or garden and not seen Insects buzzing around. Dragonflies, Bees, Butterflies and Praying Mantises, they are all part of nature, it would be a sterile world without them.

When I paint People, it's about what lies behind their eyes. When I paint figures, it's about expression catching the personality or the flair of a moment. When I paint a still life it's about the objects and how they live together. I hope my art finds favor with you.

Over the years I had many accolades, accomplishments and won many awards. To the chagrin of many, I hardly keep track of them. I always feel funny about tooting my horn, and I have this odd idea that art should speak for itself. A painting doesn't suddenly become better because a ribbon was won over it. But as I said, I am odd in that way of thinking. We live in a world of commercialization, that is hard to digest for me at times when Art and Business clash. I am somewhat eccentric and a bit shy in taking about myself, especially in this virtual world of unseen faces, unheard voices. It's a problem, I know.

I am most proud of a recent article that appeared in the largest English speaking news paper "The Times of India" The Speaking Tree". It was a most beautiful article.
If you like to read it here is a link. Click on it twice to enlarge the image.
http://www.ginettefineart.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/ArticleWILDGARDENBetter.jpg

Because I have been in the art business for most of my life (Music Business and Now Visual art), I know that money can buy anything, including so-called articles written.
I have been approached many times, by people that will write favorable article for a certain fee, or listings in so-called World Artist Directories or Who is Who in Art (available to anyone who will pay the monthly or yearly fee to get listed), plaques and awards can be purchased and made to order. I refuse to buy phony credentials.
I am difficult that way. I caution collectors to always refer to references on credentials to back up so called accomplishments, see if they were earned or paid for. Accomplishments that have been bought and paid for and praise that came with a price tag is meaningless.

The article in "The Speaking Tree" was a wonderful surprise, written by Rupa Sengupta. She had contacted me and asked for permission to use my painting "Copperhead Snake" in an article she was going to write about the Snake Festival in India. I gave her permission to use the image of the painting and I though that was
the end of it. But then to my surprise the article turned out to be about my painting.
I only learned about it months afterwards, when she emailed me a link to it online and mailed me a copy of the news paper all the way from India. I was very touched.
Her writing is poetic and just wonderful. I'm not ashamed to say, it brought tears to my eyes.

I had many paintings hanging at the Georgia State Capital, a few still are hanging in the lobby including my large 60 x 40 inch Okefenokee Magic Oil Painting.

In 2000 William Bell of Stax fame commissioned me to do a CD cover for his "Collectors" edition CD "A Portrait is Forever for which I did a graphite drawing of him.
A painting I did of Rufus Thomas made it in to the Stax Academy in Memphis. It's on permanent display there. Many people do not know that I was actively involved in the Music industry as a writer of lyrics and assistant in the recording studio, I even had a few songs published in the Blues genre, hint: Joey Gilmore "Baby You're Cooking"!
Today I only do a bit of free-lance work in graphic design for a local record label. The music business is still in my blood too.

Last year a successful Singer Songwriter by the name of Laura Wetzler contacted me to ask if she could use a certain painting of mine "Grandma's Apple Tree" for her CD cover "Flying". We came to a licensing agreement and the CD has been released, looks and sounds great. You can see it here.
http://www.laurawetzler.com/recordings.html#flying

The Audubon Society of Massachusetts published and article on Apples and Terry Dunn was the writer, in it one of my paintings "Grandma's Apple Tree" again was featured in the article.

Well I could go on but I can't even remember all the accolades, I had won a few ribbons over the years, but it's just too much to list it all. I hope you enjoyed reading this, but mostly I hope my art speaks for itself. I say never buy anything because you like someone's biography. Buy the art because you like the art, that's what really matters, don't you agree?

Painterly yours ~ Ginette

My web site: http://www.ginettefineart.com

Auf Deutsch:
Ich bin in Alsace in Frankreich geboren als Tochter einer Deutschen und einem Französisch Vater. Ich lebe jetzt in den Vereinigten Staaten im warmen Staate Georgia.
Wenn die Leute fragen mich, woher ich bin, Ich will sagen:
"Ich bin von überall and gehe irgendwo hin!"
Ich male alles. Ich male die Vergangenheit, Gegenwart und Zukunft. Orte die ich gesehn habe order von denen ich Traeume. Ich male Menschen, denen ich begegnete, Menschen, die ich nie treffen werde und Menschen, die mir lieb und teuer sind. Ich male Tiere und ich liebe sie alle. Ich male die Natur, sie ist ja das größte Wunder von allen. Manchmal male ich, oder zeichne ich Dinge, die Erinnerungen halten, und Dinge die um mich herum sind und mir gefallen. Ich male meine Erfahrungen, mein Leben. Einfach von Sonneaufgang bis Sonnenuntergang mein Kopf ist in einem kreativen Wirbelwind.
Erstellen hält mich gesund und macht mich aber auch verrückt!

All works by Ginette Callaway (99 pictures)

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