Home » Artists » Debra Nadelhoffer

Bio: I have loved color and creating since I was a child. Rainy days spent inside coloring or painting were my favorite activities. Not much has changed, a rainy day remains an invitation to turn on some beautiful music and create at the easel. Growing up, my father’s job transferred our family several times, so home was where we were at the time. I majored in art in college, but married early and had to continue my art education independently mostly through books and the occasional workshop. While raising my family, I worked full time and painted in the evenings and on weekends. I first painted in watercolor for many years, but never really felt a strong connection to the medium. There was always a need to connect, more hands on, with the medium. Pastels were a natural step in that direction. I was president of Southeastern Pastel Society for 7 years and came into contact with some wonderful and talented painters. Painting plein air offered an opportunity to paint in oils outside, reserving my pastels for studio work. This has been an ongoing journey causing me to put aside my pastels while learning to work in oils. I found that each medium has its own special qualities and have been able to use all three to enhance my work. I never do a painting in watercolor now, but my understanding of watercolor techniques has given me tools to use in my other two mediums. I continue to paint in oils and pastels and have found my passion painting the landscape, particularly anything coastal or with water. There is a spiritual connection to the land as I paint, intuitively reacting to what I see and feel, hoping to carry home more than a technically correct painting. Through the use of field studies and photos, I easily recall the light, sounds and smells of the day which helps to create a sense of place in larger paintings. There never seems to be an end to my education, weekly life drawing and painting on location continue to challenge me. Most recently, I was honored my painting “Grasses and Lily Pads” was accepted into the American Impressionist Society 15th National Exhibition in Denver, CO. I was an exhibiting artist at Southeastern Wildlife Expo in Charleston, SC in 2014 and will be again in 2015. I think we all have a bucket list and one of the things on my list was to be an Artist in Residence (AIR) in Acadia National Park. I was awarded the AIR in 2012 and painted in the park for 2 weeks in the fall. I am currently a member of American Impressionist Society, Oil Painters of America, American Society of Marine Artists, American Women Artists, a signature member of Women Painters of the Southeast, signature member of Southeastern Pastel Society. I teach weekly classes at Chastain Art Center and conduct my own workshops a few times a year locally and along the coast.

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