The Majesty of the Mountains
Landscape artist Lita Gatlin finds it convenient to live in Charlotte.
That way she can either travel north two hours to the Blue Ridge Mountains, or southeast three hours to the Atlantic coast and low country – her two favorite place to capture.
“Living in Charlotte, I am surrounded by a wealth of inspiration for my paintings,” Gatlin said. “Trips to the mountains usually involve a hike or run on the many wonderful trails offered by the National Park Service or a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway.
“Some of my favorite paintings have come from the unbelievably quiet vistas when you reach the summit of a trail or the lush sounds when you start out by a mountain stream.”
A new collection of Gatlin’s paintings inspired by the Blue Ridge Mountains is currently on display at Blowing Rock Frameworks and Gallery. An artist’s reception for Gatlin’s new exhibit will be held at the gallery from 5 to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 18. The reception is free and open to the public.
“This is the third show we’ve had with Lita,” said Tim Miller, owner and curator of Blowing Rock Frameworks. “Over the past five years, she has been our most popular artist, in terms of numbers of paintings sold.”
Indeed, art lovers purchased several of Gatlin’s new paintings in the hours after the exhibit was hung in the gallery. Fortunately, those paintings will remain at the gallery until the new exhibit concludes its run on Aug. 25.
The new exhibit features 30 new works.
“My style is influenced by early American impressionism,” Gatlin said. “I use similar brush strokes and color palette.”
One look at Gatlin’s paintings from the Blue Ridge Mountains and the viewer realizes he is looking at the work of an artist who understands light and shadow, of how the mist coming off a mountain stream can create a faint cloud in the middle of a forest.
“I am always amazed at the colors in nature and how they constantly change with daylight and atmosphere,” Gatlin said.
A native of Georgia, Gatlin began pursuing painting as a full-time career in 2002.
“I have drawn all of my life,” she said. “My first career was in banking, and, after 17 years in that field, I thought I would give painting a try.”
Although the majority of the paintings in Gatlin’s new show are landscapes, she also paints figurative works and images of cows, turkeys and other animals.
“In addition to landscape painting, I love to paint life being lived,” Gatlin said. “It is great to capture the essence of a child by their curiosity or emotions as they experience life – leading their sibling on a walk, exploring sealife at the shore, picking berries, etc.”
For more information on the new exhibit by Lita Gatlin or the artist’s reception at Blowing Rock Frameworks and Gallery, located at 7539 Valley Blvd. in Blowing Rock, call (828) 295-0041.