Tuesday, November 12, 2013


We are so excited about our Artist of the Month feature, Elizabeth Fontaine-Barr.  Elizabeth is a wonderfully talented artist and was just recently featured in the Westchase Fifth Third Bank branches.  She also has a solo show running at Hillsborough Community College in the Culinary Arts Gourmet Room!  It really is a treat to see Elizabeth's paintings in person.  So without further delay, here's Elizabeth's interview.

 Question: Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I grew up in New Orleans and lived there most of my life until moving to Tampa in my late 30's. I feel so fortunate to have grown up in such a unique and creative city. I'm married to a musician/financial adviser and we have one daughter who just started college this fall getting her BFA in dance. I'd say we've got all the arts covered.

Question: What first made you want to become an artist?

It has always been a part of my life. As a little girl I loved to draw and doodle. It was something I always thought I would do. After graduating from college with a major in painting, the "making a living" reality set in, so I stopped that pursuit.  It has been wonderful to finally get back to my passion an d sharing it with others.

Question: Describe your creative process.

I love to paint landscapes and I love intense color. I'm always working on 2-3 canvases at a time and often its a "not knowing" process. Sometimes I use my travel photos as a trigger to create a place but it doesn't really look like that. I want it recognizable but not quite real. The mystery and beauty of nature is what I'm aiming to capture. I scumble paint onto a canvas and then feel what is right for the scene with color and shapes on top of that layer.

Question: What are your favorite books, movies, groups, web sites?

My reading is usually non-fiction educational stuff- art books, magazines, health. I love all kinds of movies except super creepy and gory ones. So all the vampire/walking dead stuff isn't me at all. I'm not much of a computer person.- I'd rather do things with my family or friends- go see a movie, ballet, or paint. I'm not a solitary painter. I love to paint with other artists.

Question: What groups are you affiliated with?

Westchase Artists Society, member of Tampa Museum and Morean Art Center.

Question: In ten years I'd like to be...

Well known as an accomplished artist, healthy and active, still traveling a lot with my husband and living close to our daughter wherever she is.

Right now I am honored to be the Artist in Residence at the HCC Dale Mabry Campus. You can see my solo show by making reservations with the Gourmet Room for lunch or dinner on Wednesdays and Thursdays at diningroomreservations@hccfl.edu or call 813-253-7000. The show is up thru the second week of December.

Elizabeth thank you so much for the interview and the fabulous images!!!  Check back next month for another Artist of the Month feature.