Painter Lori Anderson loves scenic vistas. As a phone company splicer, she enjoyed views from atop a telephone pole but these days the pole-climber-turned-artist opts to capture the moment using her camera and from those pictures she creates vivd paintings in her own “impressionistic realism” style.
“I never thought I’d paint,” said Anderson, president of the El Dorado Hills Arts Association.
Working above and below ground, Anderson didn’t explore her artistic side until she neared retirement. She and her husband took a trip to Italy in 2001 and a photo offered an inspirational spark. Anderson bought some craft paint and a brush and recreated the Venice scene.
“I was so proud of it,” she said with a chuckle.
Several classes later, Anderson has ditched the craft paint for the real stuff and refined her technique, painting everything from farm animals (she loves chickens) to pelicans and flowers to landscapes. She recently began offering her paintings imprinted on ceramic tiles.
“It’s relaxing and frustrating and just fun to have something that turns out,” Anderson said of painting. “And then it’s really fun when someone buys it.”
She sells her art at Gold Country Artists Gallery in Placerville and Bag Lady Boutique in Folsom.
Art lovers who embark on the 2014 Spring Art Studio Tour hosted by the EDHAA Saturday, May 31, and Sunday, June 1, will get the chance to see Anderson’s work and take it home straight from her studio. The annual studio tour features 50 artists at locations from Shingle Springs to Folsom, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days. An eclectic mix of artists — from jewelry designers to painters to glass artists — will share their techniques at more than studios as well as The Gallery at 48 Natoma in Folsom.
Download a free map at eldoradohillsarts.com or pick up a brochure at The Gallery at 48 Natoma, the El Dorado Hills Senior Center or at Gold Country Artist Gallery on Main Street in Placerville.
Since joining the EDHAA several years ago, Anderson has participated in the tour and said she loves to meet people and talk about the art. She’s sharing her Folsom studio with painters Phil Lachapelle and Carol Quinn.
Anderson’s entire home is her personal gallery and she said she frequently pulls a painting off the wall to make changes. Anderson said she also loves to help new artists avoid some of the bumps she hit during the learning process. Hint No. 1: Don’t spend a small fortune on framing!
Anderson’s contribution to the arts community was recently celebrated when she received the 2013 Arts Achievement Award from the Folsom Arts & Culture Commission. But all the success and accolades don’t go to her head. She still has that first Italian-inspired painting in its expensive gold frame in her home and a photo of her emerging from a manhole in her studio — humble beginnings for a talented artist.
Artists on the studio tour
Lisa Aikenhead, Sandy Allie, Lori Anderson, Lynn Anderson, Judy Arrigotti, Beverly Austin, Darlene Balsama, Ramona Kaye Beckwith, Jenny Briggs, Joey Cattone, Katie Caulk, Sally Chamberlain, Sue Chapman, Lorrene Baum Davis, Crista Dixon, Jerry Fenno, Gwen Flores, Tatyana Fogarty, Trudy Franzen, Thaleia Georgiades, Bonita Gohler, Marie Gonzales, Jimmie Grann, Karen Greene, Suzanne Haydu, Marilyn Kasko, Phil Lachapelle, Varya McMillan, Mary Mendlein, Roy Moffatt, Bill Monaghan, Anton Nemeth, Barbara Nilsson, Sandy Parris, Judith Perry, Carol Quinn, Jeanine Robb, Annette Schachner, Diane”Annie” Sherer, Diana Spencer, Anca Statescu, Barbara Steffen, Jackie Stevens, Elena Tucker, Roma Turoff , Linda Vargas, Rod Williams, Pat Woodward and David Young.