Oil painting of a dilapidated old building
Barb Walker, “Route 30 Diner,” 8 x 10 in., oil, 2021 — This painting has been accepted into the 22nd Annual American Impressionist Society National Juried Exhibition.
Woman painting sailboats outdoors at a marina
Barb Walker painting at a local marina with friends who have a plein air group that paints locally once a week.

How did you get started and then develop your career?

Barb Walker: Like so many, I was that little girl who was always drawing then painting. I did not have the benefit — some would say disadvantage — of formal art school. About ten years ago after raising my family, I just decided to go for it to see what I could do! Workshops, videos, painting with other painters, and countless hours looking at paintings in galleries and museums have been my never-ending education.

How do you describe success?

Knowing someone connects with a painting is really rewarding. I am always trying to push my work to another level, and when I have done that whether even just by one brushstroke, color, or subject, I feel like I have accomplished something.

How do you find inspiration?

I am deeply inspired by looking at other artist’s paintings. Regular trips to the coast of Maine inspire much of what I love to paint. Between the ocean, the coast, the villages, and the galleries — it has a deep hold on me. I think I am hard-wired to being in the moment and simply observing what is around me. Sometimes the sunlight streaming through a window stops me in my tracks while walking into a room. It’s in those moments that something stirs in me that just may spark the next painting.

What is the best thing about being an artist?

When I paint I can do whatever I want! Loose work, lost edges, and pushing color are things that excite me. I love knowing that there will always be something to learn, someone’s work to swoon over, and some new moment to try to capture.

Who do you collect?

I think my first painting was one of Aline Ordman’s figures in the landscape oils. I have a couple of Anne Blair Brown’s paintings. The first time I stood in front of Anne’s paintings at a gallery in Maine I was truly moved… Was also fortunate enough to pick up a small Charles Movalli. On my last trip to Maine I visited Roberta Goschke’s gallery and studio — a delightful day — so I have a couple of those around as well. Some we hang around our home, but others I need to keep in the studio for inspiration!

Oil painting of a family on a beach, the little one wearing a pink hat
Barb Walker, “Pink Hat Day,” 8 x 10 in., oil, 2021
Oil painting of ocean waves crashing over rocks
Barb Walker, “Downeast Waves,” 8 x 10 in., oil, 2021
Oil painting of a rocky outcrop with trees next to the ocean
Barb Walker, “My Sweet Acadia,” 16 x 16 in., oil, 2021
Oil painting of houses at the curve of a road
Barb Walker, “Round the Corner to the Sea,” 12 x 12 in., oil, 2021 — This painting has been accepted into Oil Painters of America 2021 Eastern Regional Juried Exhibition of Traditional Oils.

To see more of Barb’s work, visit: www.barbwalkerpaintings.com



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