An eye for dramatic color
Portland artist Jackie McCartin always takes her camera with her, whether she’s driving on the road or wandering around the vineyards of Oregon. “The color here is spectacular, especially when the sun pops out,” she said.
McCartin is the presenting artist, with her donated painting “Harvest Jewels,” for the 21st annual Oregon Wine & Art Auction.
The event is slated for 5 p.m. Saturday, July 20, at Hyland Estates, 20980 N.E. Niederberger Road in Dundee. It’s a fundraiser for the Willamette Valley Cancer Foundation, the Yamhill Community Action Partnership’s Regional Food Bank and the Rotary Club of McMinnville Foundation.
McCartin’s parents were from the Midwest. She described her dad as a Renaissance man, who raised horses and enjoyed art despite the fact he was a doctor with nine children. His encouragement led to her career as an artist.
The family moved to Arizona when she was still young.
“Coming from Nebraska, it was a shock,” said McCartin. “The color in the desert is unbelievable.”
Those colors continue to influence McCartin’s impressionistic style.
After majoring in art at the University of Arizona, McCartin and her husband moved around as he worked in the hotel business. However, they settled in the Pacific Northwest 25 years ago, and raised four children.
Not knowing anything about Oregon, McCartin envisioned days filled with the colors of gray and green. She quickly learned that was not the case.
“It’s a cross between Italy and Arizona. Out of nowhere, you get splashes of color,” McCartin said. She feels that’s especially true in wine country.
McCartin specializes in landscapes, and vineyards are among of her favorites. “They just speak to me,” she said .
She also enjoys lavender fields and beach scenes. She is one of The Allison Inn & Spa’s featured artists, and also has work on display at the Art Elements Gallery in Newberg.
In her basement studio, McCartin has a vast collection of paintings in progress.
She may start with a burnt sienna background, sketch in shadows and then remember the light coming off the road, or the myriad hues in the sunset, and add details from that vision. She may paint from a photograph or be outside in a plein air style, but she also adds to her work with her own memory of what she has seen reflected in a bright, vivid colors.
Her goal is to bring the viewer right into the moment she witnessed. If there’s motion, such as grape leaves blowing in the breeze, she tries to incorporate that.
“If it’s a warm, sunny day, I want you to feel that, too,” McCartin said.