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Chisholm Trail 150

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Christen Humphries

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Nature shares its songs to local watercolor artist

Echoes of nature create a hymnal of inspiration for artist Christen Humphries.Christen Humphries

Watercolor paintings of nests, leaves, birds – or even the intricacy of their wings – reveal the details few people see up close in nature.

Details, like the lines and cracks in a dried leaf, or a pebbled bird egg shell, are brought to life through graphite sketching on paper and canvas with the help of a magnifying glass.

Each piece begins with something discovered – like the bird nest found in a plastic container, by her husband, Shawn, or leaves or pinecones picked up on walks in the woods near their home.

Muted tones of grays, greens, browns, blues and red create a hauntingly, ethereal beauty of her, sometimes abstract, art.

This is further complemented by the titles. Christen has a collection of old hymnals where she seeks passages, or she’ll look for a Scripture, when naming her completed art.

Eight leaves in a row painted on watercolor paper, and then mounted on a 72”x36” box canvas, is the show signature piece, “Woodland Hymn.” Ranging in size from miniature 5×5-inch
paintings to 36×24-inches, there are 42 works in the show, available to purchase.

“Leaves, botanicals, and fragments of nature compel me to create visual narratives in watercolor and pencil. The stories are woven in layers of graphite or watercolor paint. The beauty of past seasons reveals itself in the lace of leaves and bones of trees, and it is those vestiges of nature I seek to reveal in my artwork.”

Christen resides in rural Oklahoma, outside of Duncan. She teaches art appreciation at Cameron University-Duncan. She earned her B.A. in Art from Cameron University in 2003 and her M.F.A. in painting from Texas Woman’s University in 2008. She exhibits her artwork at the Davis and Blevins Gallery in Saint Jo, Texas, owned by Donna Howell-Sickles, known for her vibrant paintings of cowgirls. Donna’s work was exhibited at the Heritage Center in 2009.

Christen has had a few solo exhibits throughout Texas and Oklahoma. This will be her first show at the Heritage Center.

Woodland Hymn: Sketches and Paintings by Christen Walden runs Monday, Aug. 31 – Saturday, Oct. 31, 2015.
A reception for Christen and Shawn was held 1-3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12.

This article was published in the Chisholm Trail Heritage Center’s August 2015 newsletter.
Written by Toni Hopper, CTHC PR & Marketing Coordinator and Show Coordinator for this show.

Walks in the woods turn into brush strokes on paper

Aug. 31 – Oct. 31, 2015

Christen Humphries seeks inspiration in the forests and prairies. What she discovers and sees in nature becomes the vignette for her artist’s palette.

“Leaves, botanicals, and fragments of nature compel me to create visual narratives in watercolor and pencil. The stories are woven in layers of graphite or watercolor paint. The beauty of past seasons reveals itself in the lace of leaves and bones of trees, and it is those vestiges of nature I seek to reveal in my artwork.” – Christen Humphries.

From her home studio window, she is provided a perfectly framed view of the Wichita Mountains. She earned her B.A. in Art from Cameron University in 2003 and her M.F.A. in painting from Texas Woman’s University in 2008. She exhibits her artwork at the Davis and Blevins Gallery in Saint Jo, Texas and teaches art appreciation at Cameron University.

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Christen Humphries discusses the process of creating her art, with students from the FAME Academy.

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See posts and photos from the show and reception on our Facebook event page: Woodland Hymn: Sketches and Paintings by Christen Walden

Update: In May 2017, Christen has published a new website to view her work. Please visit: Christen Humphries website