Painting Before Baltimore

It’s been a race against time to finish the last few paintings in my studio before I head back up to Baltimore for MFA classes at Maryland Institute College of Art.

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Things got trippy in my studio with lots of spirals happening in my latest paintings.

I was able to snap a few progress shots of my first circular panel piece, all sculpted oil on wood.



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And the finished piece:


It came out just as expected from my sketches from my residency at Morris Graves Foundation (which rarely happens in my studio!) The palette is very candy-like (taffy, anyone???). It’s 24 inch diameter panel, so a good size in comparison to my past sculpted paintings.


They’re so good, you could ride those oil waves!


It made my day when I finally had the chance to see my bus billboard in person on the highway in Tampa recently. It still never ceases to make me giggle seeing that!

Today is my last day in Tampa until August, but I look forward to 7 weeks of intense studio time in Maryland.


Shaped Painting Panels

Round panels

After weeks of waiting, I finally got my round and oval panels to start working on paintings from sketches I did at Morris Graves Foundation. A huge shout out to Crone’s Woodworking for the awesome job with them! (They also have round and oval stretcher bars- that’s next on my to-do list.)


And since my studio is running in all sorts of tangents now, here’s some other work that’s being pumped out:


Crunches (small sketch), 5 x 7 in., oil on canvas, 2016


Crunches, 36 x 40 in., acrylic and oil on canvas, 2016



Details from Crunches


Peekers (small sketch), 6 x 9 in., oil on canvas

(Don’t you ever get the feeling…. you’re being watched?)

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Sketches while watching the Lightning hockey games (Go Bolts!)

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I’m enjoying this time in my studio to pursue all things I’m interested in, instead of limiting myself to one idea or sole body of work. (I’ve been incredibly inspired lately by some great figurative/narrative painting by the likes of Nicole Eisenman, Dana Schutz, and Todd Bienvenu) It’s always good to be experimenting and keep things fresh in the studio.


Morris Graves Foundation: A Week of Solitude

On Saturday, I got back home from a wonderful week of solitude, meditation, inspiration, and art at The Lake at Morris Graves Foundation. It truly is a unique residency, as one artist stay at Morris Graves’ studio at a time. Robert and Desiree Yarber, who maintain the land and the Graves’ Estate (Robert was Morris’ assistant for 25 years until he passed away in 2001), made my stay a real adventure.

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It’s taken at least a week to slowly get my feet back on the ground from the residency stipulations of no phone, no internet, no photo recording device (camera, video, etc.), no newspapers, no radio; the purpose of the residency is to immerse yourself in nature and be completely disconnected from the outside world.

One would think a millennial would have trouble leaving all of those “luxuries” behind for a week, but I found myself not missing them. I loved hearing the wood ducks on the lake, chattering to one another, without the radio interrupting. They allow CDs to be played, but I decided ahead of time to just enjoy the sounds around me while I was there- I didn’t want to miss out on anything.

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I spent my days immersed in my artwork, focusing on watercolors while I was there (for multiple reasons: I didn’t want to bring oil paints and make an oily mess bringing things back home, and I wanted to experiment with watercolors since I don’t do that enough). I also spent a lot of time just thinking; it was an incredible luxury just to have the time and mind-space to really soak into my own thoughts, and write them out for further consideration once I got home. Lots of sketches were made for new oil paint pieces to start working on as well.

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Most artists leave to go on residencies to “get away from distractions,” and while it’s great that artists want to come to The Lake to strictly work, I found myself distracted by nature in the best way possible. Why would I want to have my head down working all day, when I had the chance to watch the bald eagle fly across the trees surrounding the lake? If I didn’t look up from my work through the wall of window panels in the studio, I would have missed enjoying the cormorant aggressively hunt for his fish dinner. Coming to The Lake is about immersion and experience directly with the land- smelling the cloud-like azalea bushes that were blooming behind the studio (and were mostly composed of flower-little leaves were to be seen!), and touching the bark of a fallen tree to feel its moist, rough surface. Being there sharpened all of my senses again from being so desensitized by the commotion we all experience in our daily lives.

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Earth Print 1, 19.25 x 12.25 in., watercolor on rice paper, 2016

One of the fallen trees had exposed where tree beetles had bore into the wood, carving out paths in the bark. It was like looking at a highway, paths, rivers, topography, the universe- all in one place. Being in nature so pure and unadulterated by man, it sort of makes you have to say, “Why am I even making art? It’s all right here.” Nothing comes close to this kind of beauty. I made a few monoprints to try and capture the markings, but it still doesn’t do justice.

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Earth Print 2, 19.25 x 12.25 in., watercolor on rice paper, 2016

It was a treat to see Morris Graves’ paintings in person hanging on the walls; they have an aura about them that you can’t feel in reproduction. It was yet another treat to go through his archives, sifting through images of his work and life over the years. Robert told me he was a great storyteller, and I can believe that just by looking at his works.

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Earth Print 3, 18.75 x 12 in., watercolor on rice paper, 2016

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Earth Print 4, 18.75 x 12 in., watercolor on rice paper, 2016

MGF pinecones sketch

I don’t typically journal, but every day I made it a point to write about my experiences candidly, and include some little drawings from life or from memory on what I saw on my daily hikes.

MGF sketches for paintings

Sketchbooks full of drawings for new paintings- round and oval panels are in my future.

MGF flowers sketch

It was a shock to the senses coming back into civilization (and 294 emails sitting in my Inbox). I still feel like the right words I want to say about my experience haven’t come to me yet – to really describe it – but it is a week I won’t forget.


Firsts of 2016


Close-up of the piece below:

Strata Blocks Wave 1

Strata Blocks Wave 1, 7.25 x 5.5 x 1 in., oil on panel, 2016

Strata Blocks Wave 2

Strata Blocks Wave 2, 5.25 x  5.5 x 1 in., oil on panel, 2016

Creamy Oval

Creamy Oval, 8 x 8 x 0.8 in., oil on panel, 2015

In addition to the new paintings, I’ve also been updating my site and added my new “Sweat Prints” and a video in my portfolio. Enjoy!


Golden Foundation

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(Sunset, Peeled; 12 x 12 x 1 in.; oil on canvas; 2015)

I’m incredibly excited and delighted to announce that I’ve been selected for a Sam and Adele Golden Foundation residency for 2016! Since this will be my first artist-in-residence experience, it’s going to be hard to wait until August 21st next year to get to experiment with all sorts of delicious Golden paint materials during my month-long stay. I can’t wait to meet the other amazing artists who were selected, and see what they create during their time at such a unique program!

For the complete list of 2016 Artist-in-Residence:


Solo Show Set-Up Tomorrow!


Lots of white paint in the studio, here’s a nice little clip of one of my newest paintings.

Tomorrow’s the big solo show set-up day! If you’re in Tampa (specifically the Channelside area), please make sure to stop by and check out my paintings with a nice cup of tea from Bamboozle Tea Lounge. My show “Hack, Twist, Life: Cutting the Paint” will be up from Oct. 22nd through Nov. 19th. Hope to see you there!

Press Release:


Pinellas Park Better Block Pop-Up Show

This past weekend’s pop-up show “The Space We Share” during the Pinellas Park Better Block event was a big success in bringing arts to the area.

"The Space We Share" Gallery Space

Photo Credit: Leslie Curran

Better Block panorama_Luis Gottardi

Panorama Photo Credit: Luis Gottardi


A big thanks to ARTicles Art Gallery and Custom Framing for hosting three of my paintings in this pop-up space, and also to artist Nathan Beard for pulling together an ambitious, successful event. I was able to show one of my newest paintings, seen below:

Moody Purple Peel

Thanks to everyone who came out to support the arts during this 2-day event!


P.S. If you’re unfamiliar with Nathan Beard’s paintings, I suggest you check his beautiful acrylic paintings out. They truly are stunning, especially the piece below, “Exit Music #42 (Cabin Fever)”

Nathan Beard

ArtPop Tampa: Live!

Artpop Tampa Billboard Caitlin Albritton

Since the ArtPop Tampa billboards were put up when I was in Baltimore, I finally had the chance to see the electronic billboard in person this week!

Bringing the beard to the people.

Once again, I have to give thanks to all of those who helped out and voted for me for the People’s Choice ArtPop Tampa, I truly appreciate your support!


White Crease/Grassy Field

White Crease/Grassy Field

White Crease/Grassy Field, 8 x 8 x 1 in, sculpted oil on panel, 2015

This piece must have been an omen for the weather recently in Florida, it’s been pouring rain the past few weeks here! Like the main color in this new painting, all of the grass and trees are a bright, vibrant green. This was the last painting I made before I started my first MFA summer session at MICA. Hope everyone else is staying dry!


Big Brown Peel/Purple Scrapes

Big Brown Peel/Purple Scrapes Big Brown Peel/Purple Scrapes, 13 x 11.5 x 2 in, oil on panel, 2015

I’m just finally starting to get my feet on the ground after finishing my first intense 6-week summer at MICA for the low-residency MFA program, so I am just getting around to documenting all of my new works. Here is one of my favorite pieces made in Baltimore, and I am surprised that it made it home in one piece with that large flap of oil paint hanging precariously off the edge!