Where Women Create - Geri Lindsey`s website. A native of the


Where Women Create - Geri Lindsey`s website. A native of the
Geri Lindsey lives and creates in Sequim Bay, Washington. Her
chosen medium is oil paints. She is not your typical artist, she’s not
typical anything. She has the wit of Oscar Wilde, the honesty of
Twain and the artistic flair of Blake.
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I have a very special doll that watches over
my studio. If you look closely, you will see
that she stands on the beam and overlooks
my work. It is a Javanese doll given to me by
my son Brett Froomer, who is a world traveler
and photographer. This house was designed
by Sidney Drasnin, an architect in California
who was a protégé of Frank Lloyd Wright.
The drive leading up to the house is always a
welcoming site with fir, cedar and hemlock
lining the entrance.
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All of the wood beams were made from naturally
felled trees found locally. While there is ample
track lighting, I paint by natural light. One of
the things I love most about this house is its
windows, which are really too many to count! I
prefer working with Daniel Smith oil paints, and
I always keep hundreds of tubes on hand.
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Paint! Dip your brush in the paint
every day! Make every day a
complete work of art!
I sort of live life in the balance, ready for adventure and exploration
in all arenas. I’m a real people person. I enjoy nature, travel, food, art. I
love both the excitement of the city and, in stark contrast, the peaceful
serenity of the woods.
I’m a Seattle native, and I have been an artist all of my life. My
mother was an artist and instructor. She worked in oils, was always
drawing — a very creative type. When I was a young child, she instilled
in me the desire to make art. She collected lots of magazine clippings,
something I still do to this day. I guess it was just inevitable that I take
up a brush and paints. Making art has always come naturally to me.
I make it a point to create something every day, “mini pieces” I call
them, something small like a greeting card, something I can start and
finish in a short period of time. Plus, there is always a card handy for
any occasion, birthdays, thank-yous and anything else that might pop
up! The alcove in my bedroom is the perfect cozy spot for this kind of
“quick” work. It’s also where I like to work on my many journals. I use
the collected magazine clippings to create vibrant interesting collages
for the covers, which are then kept stacked in a corner of the room.
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I love getting up early in the mornings, yes, 4:00 a.m., because that’s
when the magic happens! I will work a bit with my favorite Diane
Townsend pastels, you know, just to limber up, sort of like a singer would
run an arpeggio. I really enjoy working alone in my studio, save for my
companions Mimi, a sweet little calico, and Rudolpho, our Wheaton
terrier, both of which were named after characters from “La Bohème.”
We live on the Olympic Peninsula, at the farthest western point,
just before Alaska. The house overlooks Sequim Bay, and on the other
side of us are the Olympic Mountains. We are surrounded by nature’s
divine beauty! After warming up, I’ll grab a bit of breakfast, then head
off to the studio for some serious fun, take a short break for lunch,
often in what I call my “artist’s garden,” and then go back to paint long
into the afternoon.
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Once I am in my studio, the hours seem to fly. The studio was
custom built, and we tried to incorporate as many of nature’s gifts
into it as possible, from a 1,500-lb. madrone tree trunk, felled in a
snowstorm 20 years ago, to little details like the driftwood handles on
the studio doors. An antique wood burning stove keeps it warm and
inviting in the winter, and the cool breeze flowing up from the bay is
refreshing on hot summer days. And the flooring, well, it is kind of
unusual, hundreds of 2 × 4s set on end, really lovely, solid and very
sturdy; except for all the paint smatters, I consider it a work of art in
itself. The shelves are overloaded with a quite large library of art books
that spill over onto other surfaces. Every table surface in my studio is
covered with stacks of books and wooden boxes filled with pastels in
every color of the rainbow.
I live amid excess, with big canvases and lots of brushes stored in
pottery mugs and drinking pitchers. When I paint, I work fast, usually
on three or four pieces at once, and I like to keep my palette full, as
witnessed by the literally hundreds of tubes of oil paints I own. A tall
cabinet with wire baskets that slide out keep them reasonably neatly
arranged. Let’s just call it orderly disarray.
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My paintings are abstract impressions of my life. I take many photos while traveling.
Our last trip was to Assisi, Italy. Paris is a favorite destination, and right now we are
preparing for an upcoming trip to Ireland. When I return home, I paint from my photos.
My artistic style dramatically changed or, let’s say, took on a different direction after I
attended a class in layering pastels. Oil paints are succulent, really pure colors while pastels
are what I consider to be brief and sketchy. They lend well to my scratching them on with
twigs and tree branches, which I often do as the last few finishing touches. I can’t really
say I have a preferred palette, as everything is fair game. Nothing is sacred. I wouldn’t ever
cut myself off like that, by sticking to a particular color theme. I go 100 percent freely and
totally on intuition, and work hard to “keep the intellectual out.” When a piece is finished,
it is finished, that’s it, that’s all, done.
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Every series of paintings has a theme. I work with music by Philip
Glass playing, or I listen to CBC, the Canadian Broadcasting Company.
I need music. It is an intricate, very necessary part of the process for me.
The radio is always on. On a recent commission, I listened to a Quincy
Jones recording, “Q’s Jook Joint,” and when I was finished with all of the
pieces in the collection, I sent the CD along with the paintings to my
customer. After all, the music did help create it!
I suppose I consider myself primarily a painter, 35 years and
counting, but along with photography I enjoy sculpting as well. The
large circular piece you see on the top shelf of the bookcase is cast
in concrete and titled simply “Sun.” Asian art is a favorite of mine.
On a madrone tree trunk I’ve built an altar of sorts with sculptures,
including many organic things I’ve collected from the forest, rocks,
leaves, shells, even an eagle’s feather. Oh yes, and memorabilia, small
trinkets that once belonged to my mother and father. This shrine is
regularly rearranged and changes with the seasons.
Just recently, last April 8 as a matter of fact, I was asked
to participate in a show with 44 other artists called “Seeds of
Compassion” which was held in conjunction with the Dalai Lama’s
visit to Seattle. This quite large affair was held at the Friesen Gallery,
and the entire collection was purchased by Seattle University and is
traveling around the world as we speak. I’m currently just beginning
work on a new series of abstract florals; the key painting is tentatively
titled “Jezebel.”
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Geri’s Favorite Quote
“It’s not about where your dreams take you.
It’s where you take your dreams, and a woman
who follows her dreams makes them come true.”
— Geri Lindsey Froomer
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Lastly, I’d like to share with you a wall at the entrance to my studio.
I call it “Past Life Way.” It is covered with photographs of my 20-year
modeling career. I believe in living life to the fullest. All I need is one
teaspoonful of inspiration. A single flower can set me off on a brandnew direction and on to an exciting new series of paintings! My best
advice for budding artists is to take the time to find your groove,
discover your place and then just go for it in a big way!
“Courage is but a leap in the dark.”
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