Artistic Excellence 2014 | Honorable Mention: Craig Pursley

New Hampshire

Craig Pursley, Daybreak in Warms and Cools, oil, 16 x 20.

Craig Pursley, Daybreak in Warms and Cools, oil, 16 x 20.

What inspired your winning entry? Several months ago I discovered the beautiful film scores of Mark McKenzie and found them very visual and emotionally stirring. A particular McKenzie piece from the film The Ultimate Gift had a wonderful sense of solitude, peace, and simplicity. It was exactly how I felt when I was in this setting in Vermont a couple of years ago as the first rays of the sun were cutting through the fog. While the temperature was in the teens, there was still a glowing warmth as low light illuminated the scene. Except for the gurgling of the stream, it was silent, peaceful, and almost holy. McKenzie’s music said exactly the same thing to me, and so I found the photos I’d taken that day and paired them with his music. Together they are closer to the feeling I had that day than either the painting or the music alone.

What’s the best advice you have ever received? “Marry her.”

If you weren’t an artist, what would you be? A chiropractor.

What is one thing you will never paint? A butterfly on a kitten’s nose.

What’s the most meaningful recognition you’ve received for your artwork? Being chosen to paint a former governor for the New Hampshire State House and having it permanently displayed next to an Edmund Tarbell portrait.

What galleries represent your work? American Heritage Gallery of Art, Bath, NH; Tirage Art Gallery, Pasadena, CA; Art 3 Gallery, Manchester, NH; The Banks Gallery, New London, NH; Rich Timmons Studio & Gallery, Doylestown, PA.

Featured in the December 2014 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
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