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Colette Smith obtained her JD from Seattle University School of Law, was a civil litigator for several years, and currently works for the federal district courts. About ten years ago, Colette started to experiment with a brush and a small tube of acrylic paint. Since that time, she has exhibited her work in a solo exhibit, at charity auctions, open juried shows and at local venues. Her work is currently on exhibit at Stink Wine and Cheese in Tacoma. Colette’s work combines color with textures to create depth and light and is greatly influenced by the beauty of the Northwest. In addition to mixed media, Colette creates pieces using the techniques of encaustic, paint pouring and collage.
Colette serves as a Commissioner on the Gig Harbor Arts Commission and is President of the Peninsula Art League.
It never occurred to me that I had creative power but once I discovered it, I took to heart the words of Van Gogh, who said that the “creative power cannot be repressed, one must give vent to what one feels.” Now, when I am not working on a piece or thinking about working on a piece, I feel a void.
I am greatly influenced by nature and am lucky to live in the Great Northwest which abounds with beauty and layers upon layers of color. I find inspiration in my gardens and in long hikes in the mountains and along Washington’s beaches.
I learned early on that I am happiest when I allow my work to be uncontrived and free flowing. Abstract expressionism is where my creativity comes to life. I love to mix color with textures and mixed media to create depth and to tell a story. It was this process that drew me to paint pouring and encaustics — fun and explosive techniques where color and flow take center stage. With collage, I can create drawings from virtually any material and am learning to balance my pieces.
I am never quite sure where my creativity will take me but I enjoy every bit of the journey and I am always excited when a piece evokes more than one feeling.
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