provided to Santiva Chronicle
Local artists and Sanibel Captiva Art League members Michele Buelow and Susan Anderson are exhibiting their art throughout November at the Sanibel Community House, 2173 Periwinkle Way. The Community House is currently open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday to Friday. The exhibit is also available as a virtual show on the website 24 hours a day at www.sanibelcommunityhouse.net.
Michele Buelow works in pastel, oil, acrylic, pen & ink and collage. She finds joy and inspiration in plein air painting. Her pieces are complex and interesting, and nature is often reflected in the finished piece by shapes, colors and mood.
“I have found that mixed media, non-representational work draws me more and more,” explains Buelow. “I use mostly acrylic paint and textures, sometimes collage, oil pastel, ink…whatever. I like the process of layering on the paint and moving and changing it as it develops. The piece tells me where to go next. This type of work is not easy, as some think, as there is no road map as in a plein air piece. To bring it to a finish it often difficult and time consuming.”
Buelow says she loves varied mediums for different reasons. “Pen & ink is precise and sometimes I want to be that. Pastel is a tactile medium and lends itself to a more impressionistic style and of course many hues. This is wonderful for landscapes. And pastels are fairly portable with only the sticks and paper the essential items. I am very messy with pastels and my hands are covered in color…but then that is what I love, to get my hands dirty. I also use oil to paint landscapes and have done just that this summer.”
Buelow regularly shows and sells work at the Fort Myers Beach Art Association gallery, BIG ARTS and other selected sites. The award-winning artist obtained B.S. degrees from Michigan State University and Eastern Michigan University and practiced interior design in Michigan National Bank’s facilities department for many years. Buelow resides in Portage, Mich., and Fort Myers, Fla.
Susan Anderson enjoys painting any subject that has a pattern of light and shadow. “When choosing a subject, I look for color, light and shadow, and shape,” she said.
Her subjects include architecture, landscape, still life, and ﬁgures. “There is knowledge gained from direct observation, and the skills derived from painting en plein air can be seen in my works. My goal is to take the observer’s eye and lead them through each piece,” she said.
Painting in a representational style, Anderson has worked with pen and ink, charcoal, and acrylics but loves the flexibility and textures of oils.
Anderson began her career as a freelance graphic designer while raising three children. “My ability to understand the image and messaging desired by my clients provided invaluable experience in seeing a subject, relating to the ultimate viewer, and being able to tell a story with the composition and use of color,” she said.
She also spent four years as the lettering artist for the syndicated Dick Tracy comic strip and taught illustration at a local community college. While living in the suburbs of Chicago, Anderson studied at The Palette and Chisel Academy of Fine Arts which further enhanced her oil painting skills. She continues to participate in numerous workshops by artists from around the country and abroad. It was her trip to Provence, France, that ignited a passion for plein air.
Anderson resides in Fort Myers, Fla., and spends summers in northern Wisconsin. These varied environments provide her with an incredible variety of everchanging subject matter and inspiration. She paints with plein air groups and participates in national and international juried exhibits and competitions.