ocean paintings

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tropical art

watercolor artistA perfect day, for me, is to walk down a beautiful white, sandy beach with a beach chair, sun-umbrella and a beach bag with my paints and a thermos of hot coffee. After setting up my chair and umbrella I dip my cup into the salt water at the ocean’s edge, thus adding the sea to my paintings of the sea. I love hearing the gulls crying, the sea lapping at the shore and the muffled voices of people enjoying the beach and seeing the sea oats as they sway gracefully in the sea breeze. People who swim, shell, sunbath, or fish often unwittingly become models in many of my landscape paintings. When I’m not painting I comb the beaches for interesting shells, barnacle-encrusted crab trap floats, dead crabs, unique pieces of driftwood, and, of course, shells - all of which find their way into my artwork eventually.

My first ocean paintings were done (in oil) while attending the University of Guam in 1969, where I fell in love with the tropical climate and beautiful scenery. These are all things that were totally foreign to me as a child growing up in the suburbs of Chicago. After completing my B.S. in Education at Northern Illinois University and teaching for 4 ½ years at Eastview Jr. High in Bartlett, Illinois, I moved to Florida, where the climate was similar to that of Guam. In Florida, during the past 24 years, I have had the pleasure of guiding thousands of middle school students through countless art projects, hopefully instilling in many of them the same enjoyment of the creative process and satisfaction with a finished piece of artwork that I feel.

florida paintingsOver the years of teaching and raising a family, the time I could devote to my watercolor paintings was primarily limited to when we vacationed each summer on the beautiful island of Sanibel, near Fort Meyers, Florida. Now, with the support of my wonderful husband and grown children, I am finally realizing my dream of working as a professional artist, though it is difficult to think of this as work, because I enjoy it so much and find peace by the sea. Between living in St. Petersburg, Florida, just 150 miles north of Sanibel, and vacationing there my paintings naturally have a sea theme. My portfolio includes watercolor paintings with many different tropical sea themes, including still life paintings of seashells, beachscapes, ocean paintings, light house paintings and paintings of Fishing Piers. I have also painted numerous large wall murals, which is something else I enjoy doing very much.With each painting, big or small, I develop a special relationship with my source of inspiration, the brush and my creation.

Thank you for visiting my website. Please feel free to view my paintings and order prints if you like my work.

I am also available for custom commission work -- especially for paintings of yachts, houses or buildings (business or residential) and scenic landscape paintings. Custom matting and framing are also available. I am also experienced in large mural paintings. Previous subject matter of my murals has included landscape paintings, ocean paintings and children's themes. If I can be of any assistance to you, please contact me.

I hope you enjoy my paintings as much I enjoyed creating them!

In Loving Memory
My husband, Bob, was my strongest supporter. He was so proud of my work and encouraged me to take it from being a hobby to a business - to make my paintings into giclée prints for others to enjoy. His favorites were the realistic landscapes. He was planning to help with the marketing of my website and artwork, unfortunately, a month after I entered my first art show (Fall of 2002) he became ill with pancreatic cancer. He bravely endured surgery and chemo, but this terrible and deadly disease claimed his life on August 30, 2003. In his honor I will donate 10% of all profits from my artwork to PanCan, the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. He was a wonderful man who cared so much about others. If you would like to learn more about his life and our family please visit our memorial website to him at RobertHCrawford.com.

© Copyright Carol Crawford
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