Artist Statment - Kellene Champlin

My Work in Watercolor

The content of my paintings is rooted in a very personal response to what and how I choose to see. I try to interpret glimpses of light and beauty and seek to capture slices of life. A continual challenge is to translate my impressions into a personally satisfying representation that utilizes the qualities of watercolor that I find so enticing: reflection, sparkle, clarity, light, and (of course) transparency. It is the optical reality of Impressionism to which I aspire in my watercolors. The diversity of Impressionist style and technique has always influenced my art making regardless of medium. The luminosity of John Constable�s landscapes moves me, but it is Impressionist painting that truly inspires me � shape and form as reflection of color and light, structural suggestion, and atmospheric qualities of elusive depth � especially in the landscapes of Cezanne, Pissarro, and Sisley. In contemporary watercolor I study Winslow Homer, Nita Engle, Jeanne Dobie, Edgar Whitney and some of his �disciples� � Frank Webb, Betty Lou Schlemm, and Don Andrews.


My education & career were thoroughly entwined. With a Bachelor of Science degree in Art Education from the State University of New York (SUNY) College at Buffalo I taught elementary art for ten years, two in Pittsford NY and eight in Atlanta GA, followed by twenty years as the art education administrator with the Fulton County Board of Education in Atlanta. In the 1970s while working on a Master of Visual Arts degree at Georgia State University in the evenings, I was creating two- and three-dimensionally with fabrics and fibers. Over 20 fabric constructions, soft sculptures and wall hangings reside in collections in eight states. During the 1980s I completed a PhD in curriculum & instruction which found me writing, publishing, and creating with ideas, but not with art materials. With the turn of the millennium, I brought to a close a wonderful career. So, after 30 years in Atlanta GA, my husband and I moved back to the Rochester NY area; certainly not for snow, rather, for a large family. We designed and built our home overlooking the creek in Honeoye Falls, and included a studio with a wall of windows. Deer, fox, blue heron, and all kinds of wildlife consider the creek and backyard their personal playground and continue to inspire me daily. My major goal in retirement was to regain and nurture the art-making part of me. For some years I have worked in watercolor with regionally known painter, Dick Kane, in a studio setting at the Rochester Memorial Art Gallery where I experience demos, individual instruction, and most importantly, critiques. I value my occasional studio workshops with Frank Webb and other painters as I continue to cultivate my own personal style.