Larry Preston: Beauty in the Everyday

NOAPS Preston 2155717w360   “Three Onions”, 8×10, Oil on Ampersand Gessoboard, Winner of the Best Still Life Award in the 2016 NOAPS Fall Online International.  Available through William Baczek Fine Arts, Northampton, MA.

It is perhaps the reverence with which the still life objects are painted by Larry Preston that make his work outstanding.  The everyday objects are elevated to importance; they are rendered with careful skill, detailing the their glorious existence.  The objects are bathed in light to show their intricate shapes and colors, all set on a neutral background in order that they make a statement.

NOAPS Prestonwild-pink-roses

“Wild Pink Roses”, 22×22, Oil on Panel, Private Collection.

Larry Preston has gained this amazing command of his chosen profession by teaching himself.  At a young age he was interested in art, and though he also became a musician, his art was never far from mind.  In his thirties he began what was to become a successful professional career as an artist.

Although being self-taught, he has had mentors along the way who have encouraged him; namely Don McCabe and Scott Prior.  As a teen, he often visited the Worcester Art Museum, studying the work of the Flemish still life painters.  Old Master painters such as Vermeer, Rembrandt and Sargent fueled his passion, as well as the more contemporary work of Norman Rockwell and Daniel Sprick.

NOAPS Preston two-sunflowers   “Two Sunflowers” 20×10, Oil on Panel, available through the William Baczek Fine Arts.

Aside from still life, Preston also enjoys painting landscapes and figurative work.  His chosen medium is oil, and works mainly on gessoed panels.  His palette is composed of lamp black, raw umber, Van Dyke brown, burnt sienna, raw sienna, yellow ochre, Indian yellow, cadmium lemon yellow, cadmium yellow, cadmium orange, cadmium red, alizarin crimson, purple lake, ultramarine blue, sap green and titanium white.

NOAPS Preston fruit-bowl-5   “Fruit Bowl #5”, 17×30, Oil on Panel, available through William Baczek Fine Arts.

Starting with a charcoal drawing, Preston then creates an underpainting using burnt umber and thinner.  The painting then progresses with many layers of glazes; as few as three layers and as many as ten layers.  The process of painting “Fruit Bowl #5” can be seen on YouTube by visiting Preston’s website, http://prestonfineart.net.

NOAPS Prestonlemons-with-canton   “Lemons with Canton”, 13×24, Oil on Panel, available through William Baczek Fine Arts.

Preston’s art has been recognized with many national awards, and is widely collected.  He considers that making a living through working as an artist his greatest accomplishment.  He has remained true to what he loves to paint, regardless of trends or other demands. His advice to us is to “Paint what you love and don’t give up.  I follow a rule of patience, passion and perseverance.”  His patience, his appreciation for beauty, and his ability to translate that beauty into paint is a gift to everyone who views his work.

Preston’s work can be seen at the following galleries:  William Baczek Fine Arts, Northampton, MA; Principle Galleries, Alexandria, VA and Charleston, SC; Susan Powell Fine Art, Madison, CT; The lily Pad Gallery, Watch Hill, RI; Dean Day Gallery, Houston, TX.

To view more of Larry Preston’s work visit http://prestonfineart.net.

To view more of the 2016 NOAPS Fall Online International Exhibit, visit http://www.noaps.org.  Become a member today, and enter our Best of America Exhibit at the beautiful Castle Gallery, Fort Wayne, IN.

 

 

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