This week’s featured artist: Mary Ellen Geissenhainer, member since 2005:
ME: I grew up in Washington, D.C. My husband and I moved to Anne Arundel County about 10 years ago to be near the water. I have taught elementary art in private schools in Fairfax, Montgomery, and Anne Arundel Counties. I happily work in a studio that looks out over a creek that leads to the Chesapeake Bay. I often kayak locally to scout for new painting subjects. In DC, I attended lots of craft classes at our local Community Center. Having no art classes in elementary or high school, I took my first formal art class in college and fell in love! I received my MFA from Virginia Commonwealth University. My focus in then and beyond was fiber arts, and I participated in Sugarloaf Mountain and many other juried crafts fairs with my hand-woven rugs, textiles, and wall-hangings. I was a member of the Potomac Craftsmen Guild and the Torpedo Factory Arts Center gallery in Alexandria, VA.
MY ART: My primary media for the last few years has been colored pencil. I often used them to sketch my hand-woven projects and ideas, and I began to experiment with colored pencils as a medium, taking many workshops and classes from different colored pencil artists. Quite a variety of professional quality colored pencils are available in today’s market, both wood encased and stick form: watercolor, oil, and wax based. I use lots of different papers (smooth, pastel, sand, rice, handmade) to achieve texture in my finished work. I have used it on wood, Mylar, and canvas (primed and unprimed). I love to “paint” with colored pencil by releasing the pigment from its binder (whether wax or oil) using either heat and/or solvent. My work includes scenes of life on the water and portraits. I am now working on a colored pencil series depicting antique tins from my collection. Visit my website: www.maryellengeissenhainer.com
MFA & ME: I visited The Circle Gallery and spoke with members of the MFA soon after we moved to the area. My fellow artists and the gallery staff have always been warm and welcoming. I have enjoyed participating in many member exhibits, as well as a few National Shows. The annual fundraiser, Collector’s Choice, is a ”DO NOT MISS” event’’…full of fast, fun, art action and delicious food!
Spread the word about…YOU: Every week, we feature an MFA member for “Me & My Art Monday.” If you would like to be featured, please submit a photo and three paragraphs: one each about YOU, YOUR ART, and MFA & YOU totaling approximately 350 words, to firstname.lastname@example.org.