Painter Jackie Liddell never stops exploring art and learning about it. Although Hurricane Harvey sidelined her for months, the League City artist now paints nearly every day, primarily working in watermedia and mixed media. Transparent watercolor is her favorite medium.
Before retiring, Liddell taught at Clear Creek High School for 27 years and was honored as the district’s secondary teacher of the year. Her résumé also includes teaching at the University of Houston-Clear Lake for 11 years and at Alvin Community College for three years. “I now enjoy sharing my joy of painting by doing one-day workshops,” Liddell says. She will lead one from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 17 at the Galveston Art League, 2117A Postoffice St. in Galveston, for $40 per person; details/registration at www.GalvestonArtLeague.com and click on “Workshops” in the gold bar.
Liddell, who holds a master of fine arts degree, won first place in the 2018 Texas City Art Festival and was a finalist in the Hunting Art Prize of Texas. Many of her paintings have been chosen for magazines and art books, including two Incite art books on mixed media. She sells at the Watercolor Art Society-Houston (WAS-H) and the Galveston Art League (GAL), which has galleries in Texas City as well as Galveston. Her work is currently being shown in the HEArt (Houston Elite Artists) exhibit hosted by the Altharetta Yeargin Art Museum in Houston; WAS-H; and the GAL Gallery in downtown Galveston. She’s active in several art organizations, including GAL and WAS-H, as well as the Dickinson/Clear Lake-based National Society of Artists.
This busy painter took a break to share the following insights.
Q: How have you improved your skills over the years?
A: I try to keep current on the art scene by reading art magazines, books, and visiting art openings. Once a week I enjoy painting in a group made up of advanced seasoned artists.
Q: Where do you find inspiration for your artwork?
A: Everywhere ― animals, grandchildren, flowers and plants, bugs, landscapes, seascapes, architecture, boats, my backyard, people in costume, vacations, and fishing are some examples.
Q: Do you work outdoors or indoors and why?
A: Both. I like to sketch on location and then compose the painting in my studio.
Q: Do you use photos as part of your artistic process?
A: I only use my own photos. I take them so I can remember the experience as I work on the picture.
Q: What is your biggest artistic challenge?
A: Being able to express to the viewer of my painting what I feel about the subject in a fresh way. I lost almost a year of being able to paint due to Hurricane Harvey. It has taken 10 months to get back in the studio. Now I’m painting almost every day. My first painting was a dragon breathing lightning with rain the winds swirling around his ugly head. The title is The Eye of Hurricane Harvey.
Q: What advice can you offer to still-learning artists?
A: Design and composition are more important than the subject!
Q: Do you often enter competitions?
A: Yes, I enjoy the experience and it pushes me to keep improving.
Q: Do you have an artistic goal you’re striving for?
A: To be able to continue with being creative and learning something new every day.
Q: What’s the most rewarding aspect of creating art?
A: The awareness that happens when the painting is working, and begins painting itself.
Q: What are some of your favorite artworks?
A: Watercolorist Bev Jozwiak’s paintings and Auguste Rodin’s sculptures.
Q: If you won $5,000 to spend on art supplies or classes or something else, how would you spend it?
A: I’d take watercolor artists’ workshops in other cities.