ABOUT THE ARTIST
Cat Pope was raised in Clearwater, Florida and earned her degree in painting from Judson College in 2011. Whether working on location or in the studio, Cat paints to capture the atmosphere and light of her subjects with dynamic color and confident brushwork.
Cat currently lives with her husband and overstuffed tabby in Mobile, Alabama, where she focuses on painting the life and culture of the Gulf Coast region she loves. Her work has been featured in exhibitions throughout the southeastern United States and is collected throughout the nation. When not in the midst of creating, Cat is passionate about teaching workshops and encouraging others to chase after their inspiration in all of their creative pursuits.
As an artist I cherish adventure, and I am continually enchanted by color and its power to translate atmosphere. My work explores the coastal lifestyle - past and present - with the soul of a simpler, romanticized era. Industries of travel and entertainment may change, but nostalgia never grows old.
I enjoy painting subjects that are refreshingly simple so I can focus on the technical aspects of building up the paint surface. My process is constantly evolving, but usually begins with a formal sketch to outline the major value range. From that structure, I scrub in a thin layer of pigment to gauge the overall color scheme of the image. When satisfied with the basic tone and mood, I add heavier layers of paint with expressive, direct application – often scraping, smudging, brushing, and wiping with a variety of brushes and palette knives. The resulting works incorporate impressionist and contemporary realist techniques, with a heavy emphasis on the emotional quality that color and texture can create.
It is quite possible that I am in love with a painterly surface as much as I am with the emotional connection I have to a subject. I believe painting, at its very core, is a very abstract way of telling a story: a visual language made up of color, form, edges and texture that narrates without the use of words. The story I am telling is one of love for place and home, and a dedication to a way of living that values relationships and a legacy of joy and hope.
A BIT OF MY JOURNEY . . .
Living a creative lifestyle is something I was taught long before knew I wanted to be an artist. I grew up surrounded by a family of makers, and creativity and imagination were always encouraged in our home. My parents and grandparents are the bravest people I know: life on their terms is joyful, bold and adventurous. Making art as a child felt fearless.
Taking art courses in college solidified the desire I had to express the beauty I saw into making art, and I was blessed to have several instructors who recognized this dream and invested their skills in me. After receiving my BA degree in Studio Art in 2011 I began teaching art to children and adults for four years. Along with teaching, I took commissions and painted on my own, developing my style and technical skills in a very organic way. Moving to Mobile, Alabama in 2015 provided a new slice of the world to explore in paint and the opportunity to pursue a career as a professional working artist.
So much of my inspiration comes from my experiences growing up and living along the Gulf Coast. I have a deep admiration for the natural landscape and its creatures, and also a tourist's heart for the timeless travel and entertainment culture. It is that curious balance which pushes me to explore my surroundings through the medium of painting.