Saturday, September 19, 2020     Volume: 21, Issue: 29
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Santa Maria Sun / Art

The following article was posted on September 16th, 2020, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 21, Issue 29 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 21, Issue 29

Cypress Gallery's California Landmarks showcases landscapes by Liz Poulin Alvarez

By CALEB WISEBLOOD

While her choice of media varies between each artworkfrom oil to watercolor, acrylic, or charcoalthe theme that ties together each piece in Liz Poulin Alvarez’s new landscape exhibition is exactly what its title suggests. 


Make your mark
California Landmarks, an exhibition of landscapes by Liz Poulin Alvarez, runs at the Cypress Gallery through Sept. 27. The gallery is located at 119 E. Cypress, Lompoc. Visit lompocvalleyartassociation.com for more details. You can also find out more about Alvarez and her artwork at elizabethpalvarez.com.

VINEYARD VIEW
Presented by the Lompoc Art Association, California Landmarks showcases a variety of landscapes by local artist and art teacher Liz Poulin Alvarez.
IMAGE COURTESY OF LIZ POULIN ALVAREZ

Presented by the Lompoc Art Association, California Landmarks is the second exhibit to be held at Cypress Gallery since its official reopening to the public in August. The show opened on Sept. 2 and is scheduled to run through Sept. 27.

“Being an intrepid traveler, painting outside gives me more enjoyment to appreciate the sensory feel of a place,” Alvarez said, expressing her preference for plein air and painting on the go during her travels. “California Landmarks is a collection of local scenes that visitors and residents alike recognize as they travel through Central California.”

Born and raised in Maine, Alvarez didn’t move to California until after college, but she’s been painting nearly her whole life, she said.


OCEAN EYES
“The pandemic gave me renewed appreciation for my surroundings, and that’s what I wanted to paint—to promote a sense of stability of a recognizable place and the calm memories that go with it,” Liz Poulin Alvarez said.
IMAGE COURTESY OF LIZ POULIN ALVAREZ

“I learned to view the natural world with the eye of an artist and began my formal art training at 8 years old,” said Alvarez, who went on to study art at the Rhode Island School of Design, where she earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. 

“A job after college brought me to California where I fell in love with the landscape and met my future husband to be,” she said.

“It was not until I moved from Maine to the Central California Coast that I learned to appreciate the variety of textures and nuances of green in the landscape,” added Alvarez, who said she aims to capture the subtleties of weather and changing seasons within her works through varying amounts of shadow and light.

A full-time art teacher at Lompoc High School, Alvarez first came across the Cypress Gallery while searching for a local venue where she could promote and showcase her students’ artworks. She described the gallery as a positive support system for local artists of all abilities and ages.


ARTIST AND TEACHER
A full-time art teacher at Lompoc High School, Liz Poulin Alvarez first came across the Cypress Gallery while searching for a local venue where she could promote and showcase her students’ artworks.
IMAGE COURTESY OF LIZ POULIN ALVAREZ

“There is something for every level of artist at the gallery, from the budding high school artist who is looking for support to the more established artist who enjoys being in a local community of other like-minded artists,” Alvarez said.

Over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, Alvarez painted around 20 new landscapes, all included in the California Landmarks exhibit.


BY THE SEA
“California Landmarks is a collection of local scenes that visitors and residents alike recognize as they travel through Central California,” Liz Poulin Alvarez said, describing her latest exhibit.
IMAGE COURTESY OF LIZ POULIN ALVAREZ

“The pandemic gave me renewed appreciation for my surroundings and that’s what I wanted to paintto promote a sense of stability of a recognizable place and the calm memories that go with it,” she said.

Although the pandemic put a halt to most of her planned travels this year, Alvarez found comfort in revisiting old photographs from previous trips, which also fueled her creativity. 

“Looking at photos of past vacations helped me to feel better and take my mind off of current events,” said Alvarez, who opted to paint landscapes closer to home, including many destinations she had already painted before.

“It felt natural to return to familiar places to paint outside and appreciate my surroundings with renewed interest,” she said. 

Arts Editor Caleb Wiseblood embraces familiarity, occasionally to a fault. Pop his comfort bubble at cwiseblood@santamariasun.com.









Weekly Poll
Should the county Public Health Department help elementary schools apply for the state’s waiver program?

Yes, that’s what the department is there for.
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Schools should have to fend for themselves; it shows whether they’re ready to handle reopening.

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