An Impressionist Landscape Oil Painting of Plein air Artists Painting at Cannon Beach, Oregon
This original oil painting symbolizes everything I love about painting en plen air. It pictures a perfect day spent with some of my favorite artists. At the last minute we decided to beat the summer heat coming our way and drive out from Portland to Cannon Beach Oregon. The long drive gave me plenty of time to catch up with Karen Whitworth, an artist foundational in my own painting journey. We met up with Don Bishop who’s chill vibe made for great company—his incredible zen paintings are a constant source of artistic inspiration. We brought a cooler filled with Oregon Riesling wine, local cherries, and an assortment of delicious cheeses and cold cuts.
Painting on that oddly empty beach with the water lapping at our feet, and the gentle wind at our face was pure joy. As usual there was very little interaction as we each concentrated on our paintings. Just being next to each other was food for our souls. Don, who usually finishes his paintings first, decided to venture out and try out a new lens for his camera. I’m not even sure Karen or I were aware he had wondered off.
When we were all sitting together to enjoy our little picnic we chatted about art, and each of our goals moving forward. I can still taste the sweet cherries mixed with the salty air, hearing the waves slowly moving toward us as the tide came in. It’s the last time we have painted together, each of us driven by life in different directions. But that day! None of us will forget that perfect day on some beach, far from life’s pressures and toils. Each of our paintings of the day have probably long been sold to a happy new homes.
Don was able to sneak in a photograph and Karen and me completely immersed in our work. He graciously let me use the beautiful image as a reference for this painting at time when I was just getting my feet wet for art school. The new academic rigor isolated me from all my previous art friends and painting this scene again nourished my soul as I remembered that day.
Painting process, and technique
This artwork was painted thickly and expressively using a palette knife in order to mimic the tactile sensation I experienced at the beach. I painted it in several layers using differing hues on top of each other in order to create the illusion of sand and water in movement. I deliberately made the emerging image blurry and imprecise imbuing the painting with the sense of windy often obscure atmosphere inherent on the Pacific Northwest coast.
Many of Tali's portrait sitters have expressed how the intimate process of being painted was profoundly therapeutic. The portrait session is usually relaxing and self-affirming. Tali is uniquely committed to making commissioned portraits affordable and accessible. Her roll as a portraitist takes in many forms depending on the needs of her sitters. Indeed she’s inspired by concepts embedded within the study of sociology, anthropology, and psychology: “As I listen to these extraordinary women and men tell their life stories, I play many roles. I am a mirror that reflects back their pain, their fears, and their victories. I am also the inquirer who asks the sometimes difficult questions, who searches for evidence and patterns. I am the companion on the journey, bringing my own story to the encounter, making possible an interpretive collaboration. I am the audience who listens, laughs, weeps, and applauds. I am the spider woman spinning their tales. Occasionally, I am the therapist who offers catharsis, support, and challenge, and who keeps track of emotional minefields. Most absorbing to me is the role of the human archaeologist who uncovers the layers of mask and inhibition in search of a more authentic representation of life experience!” ~Sarah Lawrence-Lightfoot
Formally a graphic designer and illustrator, visual artist Talya Johnson (Tali) is a fine art modern impressionist oil painterliving in the Pacific Northwest. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) from Oregon College of Art and Craft (OCAC) and Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA located in the Pearl District of Portland). Tali's original contemporary art is largely figurative (though she also offers abstract art or abstract painting) and stylistically influenced by both Modern Impressionism and traditional Academic Realism. Ever vibrant, her colorful works of art are poignant and painterly accounts of her unique contemporary perspective. Whether creating an oil portrait, modern still life, or abstract landscape with a palette knife or sculpture, Tali believes in recording only what she herself has experienced first-hand. Painting and drawing from life whenever possible she imbues her original artworks with a liminal dream-like quality that dances between realism and idealism.
Tali offers her original artworks for sale at reasonable prices, believing that original work should always be accessible to any art lover. Her passionate commitment to provide affordable art is unique amongst art gallery and independent artistsalike instilling a sense of authenticity to all her artwork. Filled with color and light, Tali's original artwork, commissioned portraits, fine art prints, wall art, and unique home decor designs are cherished around the world by numerous artcollector. Believing that every artist should have access to creative expression, she enjoys mentoring beginning artists in traditional art techniques, teaching fine art classes, as well as digital photo-editing and self-marketing skills necessary for today's art world.
Talya is a member of several long-standing art organizations including Oregon Society of Artists, American impressionist Society, and Portrait Society of America.
Simply put, Talya Johnson makes art that will withstand the test of time. The enduring nature of pastel and original oil painting long interested this fine artist who is conceptually driven by idea of heirlooms and artifacts as an integral component to humanity's cultural evolution. A true artisan, her passion for her contemporary craft includes all the essential elements associated with commitment to quality: education from the best sources and artists (both formal and self-guided), attention to detail, years of honing her craft through trial and error, and a tenacious dedication to both the form, function and longevity of her works. In 2019 Tali had the privilege of studying Art Conservation in Florence Italy as part of her fine arts degree and to ensure her oil painting technique is modeled after time-honored traditional methods. While in art school Tali enjoyed experimenting with materials, and unconventional multi-media techniques, she only uses archival components for her fine art paintings original artwork for sale.
Tali's fine artist ground substrates include linen, cotton canvas, hardboard, and 100% cotton rag papers. She uses adhesives that are always reversible. Known for her almost obsessive regard for color, Tali researches her pigments carefully to make sure she only uses lightfast oil paint that will remain saturated and vivid for decades to come.
While primarily creating paintings alla prima (a wet into wet approach) Talya practices "fat over lean" when her works call for layering. This gives the painting surface needed flexibility that can withstand normal temperature and humidity variations. Her original oil paintings are finished with a synthetic varnish that does not yellow over time, and can be easily removed by conservators. Any art buyer can rest assured that when you purchase an original oil painting or commissioned portrait from Talya Johnson, you are acquiring an a lovingly crafted work of art that will be treasured for many generations to come, inscribing your own footprint into the annals of history.