Maryel Henderson

Artist Bio
Artist Resume'

Artist Statement

On our 100-acre farm I was fascinated with the living, breathing world of insects and animals that inhabited my life as a child. I found acceptance and love in each of these creatures. I was awed by the beauty of their small frames and the amusement they provided me. So, it comes as no surprise that they started appearing in my early works as a child. While my sisters were helping with cooking and gardening, I was conversing with, and drawing pictures of our Holstein bull, Bud.

As an adult, my travels have taken me to many places. In Pennsylvania the mountains were my inspiration. In Texas I fell in love with the gorgeous blues of the blue bonnets. Living in Japan, the ocean was my motivation to paint. These things in themselves were not what inspired me, as much as the living specimens beneath it all. Each and every road I traveled was filled with unique and amazing things for me to paint.

The many phases of methods and experiments I tried through the years have been exhilarating! I once did purely realism, then took some classes on impressionistic styles, and eventually went full abstract for a while. Now, taking what I love from all of these styles, I have combined them into my current technique. I start with a very wet application of inks and liquid acrylics. I have no idea, at this point, where I am headed with the final painting. My colors start out very bright and vivid. I keep adding layers until I visualize something and I know when to stop. Then I start planning the focal area as I tone down the colors and start adding texture. I finish with hours of detail in the focal area.

A question people often ask me is how I select my subject matter but I believe my subjects choose me. When I come across something that moves me so much that I can't stop thinking about it, I feel compelled to paint it.

I have always felt like I had an artistic voice. I just never knew what I wanted it to say until now. I want my paintings to be a starting point where people observe, and begin in their minds, to ask questions. To the point where it takes them to a place of new ideas and inspiration. A great compliment was given to me at one of my gallery shows. I approached a woman who stood staring at one of my paintings for a long time. She turned to me and simply shared, "I can't stop looking at it." This, coupled with the sheer joy of the painting process, is why I paint.