What was the inspiration for this piece?
I have spent my summers here in Westhampton Beach since 1964—I’ve always loved this little village! It has inspired me in so many ways, I love my paintings to tell a story—about the landscape and about the people. To quote Norman Rockwell: “I’ll never have enough time to paint all the picture’s I’d like to. Every painting is a new adventure.”
Talk about your art style.
I have always tried to capture the charm of this small town in my watercolors. I especially like to paint scenes from the farmers market on Saturday—the July 4 parade in Southampton—the radiant sunflowers in bloom—Beach Bakery—the abundant farm stands. I just love American flags and awnings. When I am not painting, I am thinking about painting. It’s always been my passion.
Tell us about your artistic process.
Plein Air has become a favorite of mine. I begin each painting on-site and visually complete it at home from photos I have taken. The light and shadows are integral in my process. It is so special to sit outdoors in this wonderful air and enjoy these beautiful scenes all around us. I must admit I do a great deal of research before I begin a new painting. I consult my art books and my workshop note before proceeding with reckless abandon—letting my heart and soul finish the painting.
If you weren’t an artist what would you be doing?
My decades-long love affair with art has never curtailed my curiosity and ability to delve into other disciplines. I integrate art into my weekly diet and balance it alongside hours spent playing bridge, golf, cooking, reading, and keeping a close eye on current events. While being an artist is fundamental pillar of my identity, I’ve always maintained a generalist approach to my life. Art is my transcendent lens in which I can appreciate this worlds’ natural beauty.
See more of Ellen Postrel’s work at Fitzgerald Gallery, 48 Main Street, Westhampton Beach and at fitzgeraldgallery.com/ellen_postrel.