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About the Artist:
Barbara Schmid~Egr, artist and semi-retired elementary substitute teacher, earned a commercial art degree and operated her own art agency for several years. Barbara enjoys painting with watercolors and oils. She is a member of the Omaha Artists, Inc. She has studied plein air watercolor in the Rocky Mountain National Park with Karen Ramsey. She currently lives in Bellevue, Nebraska with her husband, and their cocker spaniel mix pooch, Joe...Cocker.
About the Artwork - The 100 Drawing Project:
In 2002, the artist held a one-woman show at a local lawn and garden shop. There, she displayed thirteen paintings - all geraniums. A friend asked her to read a book, Everyday Sacred: A Woman's Journey Home, by Sue Bender. One of the book's essays described an art teacher who presented her students with The 100 Drawing Project. This assignment challenged art students to choose an ordinary subject to draw, sculpt, photograph, or paint. The chosen item could not be a family heirloom, religious, or sentimental in nature. The purpose of making 100 pieces of art, all the same subject, was to allow the emergence of the artists' styles.
After reading of this assignment, Barbara realized she was painting an ordinary subject, geraniums, and she was curious to learn what was her style! She intuitively used the subject of geranuims as metaphors. The first thirteen focused on family and a Higher Power, or God. Next, she painted empty pots after her daughters moved away from home the same year. The "Empty Pot Series" signified the empty nest syndrome. It was during this series that Barbara participated in the Omaha Laurtizen Garden's botanical show, Art in Bloom. The show was cathartic as she explained the significance of the art to curious customers, and she adjusted to living alone.
The next series of geranium paintings generated from her daughter's miscarriage. These paintings were called the "Beauty of Life." The artist believes life is precious and fragile. She strived to make these paintings as beautiful, and colorful, as possible.
In 2007, her first grandson was born propelling the "Little Bud Series." In these paintings there was much white negative space symbolizing the purity of children. Also, many of the paintings were tiny. Some measued as small as 1"x1"!
Sadly, the same year, a favorite aunt passed away. The "Aunt Velma Series" shouted of vivacious color choices. Aunt Velma embraced and enjoyed life to the max. This aunt rode the merry-go-round at age 70. When Velma was 80, she rode her first elephant. As she planned her 90th birthday party, she hoped 90 people would come. 85 attended! Her company was charming and delightful.
In 2008, this artist was one of 65 teachers chosen to attend a workshop at the Kennedy Space Center! While she was in Florida, she traveled south to Key West. The next paintings, the "Island Time Series", focused on the gorgeous ocean and sand colors. She even painted a geranium on a coconut! Interestingly, the geraniums in this series were silhouettes baring a striking resemblence to palm trees.
At the end of the 100 Paintings Project, the artist painted 71 paintings. From this body of work, she found "her style" to be that of color! She LOVES color. However, she was tired of painting geraniums and so the series was finished.
These days, Barbara paints with oils and watercolors. Her artwork contains subjects which she finds fascinating. Please browse the gallery pages and enjoy!