Gregory Packard - An American Impressionist (8)
Gregory Packard is an American impressionist painter. His paintings celebrate both the medium - colorful, richly textured oil paint - and the subject. He likens impressionistic painting to capturing a fleeting moment in time. The emotion of that moment and the scene are lyrically and poetically frozen in time with Gregory's expressive brushwork. His work invokes an involuntary, visceral response from viewers. Gregory is drawn to impressionistic painting in part because of the extraordinary range of colors that can be used to represent the subject of the painting. He believes people are drawn to impressionistic paintings because they allow the viewer to inject their own meaning.
An American Impressionist
The quality of oil paint draws Gregory into a painting. He loves thick paint and the textures that can be created. Gregory loves the duality of a beautiful impressionistic painting - the intriguing abstract quality of paint viewed up close and the and the joy of seeing the subject of the painting resolve itself when you pull back.
Gregory’s journey into art began with drawing. He says his tightly rendered, realistic drawing skills that he developed early now contributes to his ability to paint very loosely. To paint a subject matter well, Gregory first tries to feel it. His approach to painting is intuitive. He paints from life, but also uses photographic references – with thoughtful awareness of their limitations and pitfalls. Greg is not to a slave to the photograph nor to the subject itself. These merely suggest what could be in a painting. His intuition and emotional response to the subject is key to the development of a painting.
Though he had dabbled with oil painting in the past - including taking a few painting classes in college - it wasn’t until later that Gregory would pursue art as a career. As improbably as it may seem, the turning point was a chance encounter of entering a gallery in Boise, Idaho, to kill time while waiting for a work meeting. Gregory saw the stunning artwork of artist Robert Moore and fell in love with his work. He immediately signed up to attend a workshop conducted by Robert Moore. On the heals of that workshop, he attended yet another workshop - this time conducted by Delbert Gish. There was no turning back. At that moment Gregory decided he was going to be a professional fine art painter. It took about five years or so of hard work and dedication to accomplish his dream of finally making a living as an artist.
I was introduced to Greg by artist Ralph Oberg who I had met up when my wife and I visited our daughter and son-in-law in Montrose, Colorado. Ralph told me about Greg and suggested that I invite him to be a guest on the Artful Painter podcast because “he’s really good.” Ralph invited me and my family to visit an annual show at a small gallery in Montrose called the Cimarron Song Gallery. The gallery is owned and operated by Gregory. Gregory and his wife bought a 100 year old building that was lying derelict, gutted it, and transformed it into a warm, inviting place to showcase his art. Cimarron Song Gallery also displays the works of other artists currently including Ralph Oberg, Shirley Novak, and Julee Hutchison. We loved the gallery and it was there that I met Gregory and his wife. We were blown away by his beautiful paintings. Ralph was right when he declared, “he is really good.”
This episode of the Artful Painter is Gregory Packard’s inspiring story.
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