“The most exciting aspect of the painting experience is the creative process itself: that spontaneous flow of energy working through the artist, condensed into form. Each one of my paintings is a momentary pause in the ongoing expression of who I am…”
Karen is an award-winning artist whose colorful images reflect an inner dialogue with the spirit of nature. Her portfolio covers a range of subjects, including the remote land masses of the Florida Everglades; lowland waterways of the coastal South; seasonal landscapes of northern New England; still-life “portraits” of fruits and vegetables; favorite florals; and the prolific Poppy Series.
Before pursuing a career in art, she worked as a journalist and tabloid editor in northern New England, where she later owned and operated a fine art gallery in southern Vermont. Art studies included ongoing instruction with Master Pastelist Herman Margulies PSA, and further study with noted pastelists Stanley Maltzman, Christina DeBarry, Elizabeth Apgar-Smith, Wolf Kahn, Albert Handell, and Larry Moore.
She works both in acrylics and watercolors but considers her primary medium to be soft pastel which she loves for its vivid colors, direct application, and calligraphy of line. Dramatic skies and a sense of depth in the picture plane are hallmarks of Karen’s artwork. She often develops a theme into an extended series which enables her to go beyond the subject’s surface reality and into the realm of imagination, where most of her images are conceived. To date, the Poppy Series alone has produced over 160 paintings—becoming her signature image and symbolic self-portrait.
She paints both in the studio and outdoors en plein aire, and was invited to compete in the Paint the Town Plein Aire Event 2010 in St. Petersburg, where her entry received a Merit Award. Her artwork was also featured in Tampa Bay Magazine, May-June 2011 issue.
Recent awards and honors include: 1st Place, TESA Annual Members Exhibit, 2011 & 2013; Honorable Mention, Landscape Category – Pastel Journal 14th Annual International Competition, 2013; Merit Award, Pastel Society of Tampa Bay Annual Members Exhibit, 2011 & 2013; Best of Show, TESA Annual Members Exhibit 2009 & 2012; 2nd Place in Pastel Category in ArtBuzz-The Book, which showcased her work in its 2008 & 2012 International publications; Finalist entry award in the Landscape/Interiors category from The Artist's Magazine Annual Art Competitions, 2004 & 2010.
In addition to producing and exhibiting her own artwork, Karen offers art instruction in Florida at Dunedin Fine Art Center, the Morean Arts Center, and in her Studio 9 location at Stirling Commons, and also conducts seasonal workshops out of state in New England and abroad.
An active member of the arts community, she serves on the Safety Harbor Public Art Committee, is an art director member of TESA (the Exhibiting Society of Artists), a member of Vermont Pastel Society, and a signature member of Connecticut Pastel Society, Pastel Society of America, and Pastel Society of Tampa Bay.