Interview with GSA Mary McJunkin

In this second interview, we feature Guiton St. Artist Mary McJunkin.

Guiton St. Artist Mary McJunkin

Guiton St. Artist Mary McJunkin

Q: Where or with whom have you painted or studied? 

MM: I have studied with many wonderful teachers thru formal schooling, classes and workshops. Early on I took Life Drawing from Jose Perez. At Glassell School of Art here in Houston I studied watercolor in Arthur Turner’s class and continued into oil painting and several figure classes with Patrick Palmer. I learned sculpture from Willy Wang and Ann Armstrong and in between actually took a foundry class at Glassell to better understand the 3D form and sculpture process.  I studied under Bill Kalwick in portrait/figure oil painting and then finally Sylvia Trybek on more varied subject matter (figure, still life, painting from photos) in oils. Currently, I regularly attend a weekly figure drawing lab mentored by sculptor, Willy Wang. Honing my drawing skills has helped me tremendously in all the various classes I have taken.  All the while, going outdoors to paint en plein air to satisfy my desire to paint direct and from nature.

Mary McJunkin, Pedernales Bend, oil

Mary McJunkin, Pedernales Bend, oil

Q: What are your favorite themes?

MM: Landscapes and figures.  I will paint directly outdoors or from a photo I have taken.  I did a series from Rockport that I really enjoyed.  I also really enjoy the quick sketches I do weekly in the drawing lab I go to.  To be able to convey the curve of a leg with a couple of lines is great.

Clay work by Mary McJunkin

Clay work by Mary McJunkin

Q: What is your style?

MM: I like to think I am sketching with paint. So it is a representation style, painted wet on wet or alla prima (Italian for “at first attempt”), landscape and figure.   I will work in the studio to refine the outdoor painting I did in the field, having the memory still fresh in my mind or to create painting for the photos I have taken.

Q: What mediums have you been working with in the past 10 years?

MM: Oil paints, charcoal and clay.  But recently I decided to try acrylic again.  Just for the fun of it.

Mary McJunkin, Shadows Path, oil

Mary McJunkin, Shadows Path, oil

Q: What inspires you?

MM: I would have to say the great outdoors. There is something about the sky and changing seasons that intrigues me.  I am very grateful when the weather permits and I can grab my travel easel, plop down and create a little work of art.

More about the artist.

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