Laura McGowan is an oil painter living and working on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. She earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Pratt Institute, and her first career was in interior and graphic design, in New York and London. In 1994, Laura moved to Onancock, VA and became a teacher, introducing children to many art styles, media and a love of creating.
Laura left teaching in 2016 to become a full-time artist. She shows her work in galleries locally, as well as in Delaware and New Jersey, and participates in many art shows and festivals in Virginia, Maryland and Philadelphia. Laura also teaches oil painting classes on the Eastern Shore.
Landscapes, seascapes and still lifes, which capture the beauty of nature and light, are her favorite subjects. She combines studio work with plein air painting, and has won awards in the Paint Onancock Plein Air event and the Eastern Shore Art League Member Show.
“I have always been drawn to images and environments that evoke emotion. I want people to see my paintings and pause, drawn in with a feeling - of joy, melancholy, peacefulness, a treasured memory, longing. Capturing a certain light often creates this mood, and for me, oils serve best to communicate it.
I paint en plein air or alla prima when possible, but sometimes spend many hours on a painting to achieve what I have in mind. Seasons and the outside environment influence what I paint and when, just as they affect my mood.
I am influenced by the American Tonalists, as well as the artists of the Barbizon School, for their use of light and landscape to convey the spirit of a place and time.”