Saturday, January 23, 2021     Volume: 21, Issue: 47
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Santa Maria Sun / Art

The following article was posted on January 13th, 2021, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 21, Issue 46 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 21, Issue 46

Local pastelist Jim Tyler discusses New Perspectives, an upcoming trio show at Gallery Los Olivos

By CALEB WISEBLOOD

Editor’s note: This story is the first installment in a series profiling the three featured artists of New Perspectives, a biennial group exhibition at Gallery Los Olivos. 

Looking back on 2020, pastel artist and professional art instructor Jim Tyler noticed a big increase in commissions compared to previous years, especially with pet portraits. This boost in sales was a huge silver lining for Tyler, who was forced to cancel nearly an entire year’s worth of in-person workshops due to the pandemic.


New year, new artists
Gallery Los Olivos presents its biennial showcase dedicated to new members, New Perspectives, which is scheduled to open on Feb. 4 and run through March 1. The gallery is located at 2920 Grand Ave., Los Olivos. Call (805) 688-7517 or visit gallerylosolivos.com for more details on the show. To find out more about featured artist Jim Tyler, visit jimtylerfineart.com.

OCEAN EYES
Jim Tyler’s figurative painting, Into the Water, depicts a mysterious young woman stepping into the ocean with a long, sheer cloth. Tyler based the piece off of a reference photo he took at Montaña de Oro.
COURTESY IMAGE BY JIM TYLER

“I believe that’s [the increase in commissions] due to more people nesting at home and realizing that their walls need some new artwork,” said Tyler, whose own pet cat, Phoebe, is the subject of Don’t Even Think About It, one of his featured animal portraits in an eclectic upcoming group show, New Perspectives, at Gallery Los Olivos.

“She [Phoebe] was stretched out on the bed with the sun shining in behind her. Because of the sun and the red bedspread, there were some beautifully vibrant orange colors bouncing up onto her fur,” Tyler said, commenting on the portrait. “But it was her attitude and her reaching paw that made the scene.”

2020 was a prolific year in general for Tyler, who created more than 40 new pastel pieces last year. As a member of SLOPE (San Luis Outdoor Painters for the Environment), Tyler dedicates many of his plein air landscapes to promote and raise funds for local environmental causes. 


PURRFECTION
Jim Tyler based Don’t Even Think About It on his pet cat, Phoebe. “She was stretched out on the bed with the sun shining in behind her. Because of the sun and the red bedspread, there were some beautifully vibrant orange colors bouncing up onto her fur. But it was her attitude and her reaching paw that made the scene.”
COURTESY IMAGE BY JIM TYLER

One of Taylor’s favorite perks of painting with the group is getting to capture private locations he otherwise might not have been able to visit.

“We’ve had access to several ranches where the public is not allowed, and that has given us some unique painting opportunities,” said Tyler, whose favorite of his own landscapes this year was Santa Rita Ranch—View From the Top, which he painted during a SLOPE trip.

“The Land Conservancy of SLO is working on conserving this incredible property, which is located west of Templeton. We’ve been able to paint at the ranch twice, and I got a jeep ride to the top of the property to paint this scene looking back toward Morro Rock,” Tyler said of the piece, which will also be displayed at the gallery during New Perspectives.

This trio show is scheduled to open on Feb. 4, and will feature works by Tyler and fellow local artists Karen McGaw and Neil Andersson. The purpose of the exhibit, which occurs only once every other year, is to showcase new members of Gallery Los Olivos, or relatively new, at least. While Tyler joined the gallery in 2019, he only missed the previous New Perspectives exhibit by a month, prompting him to join the next one. 


FEATURED ARTIST
“It’s a highly desirable place to show and sell artwork, so I was very motivated to be a part of it,” Jim Tyler (pictured) said, commenting on why he wanted to become a member of Gallery Los Olivos in 2019. “The artwork is really first class, and the gallery itself is big and bright and shows off the art well.”
PHOTO COURTESY OF JIM TYLER

“It’s a highly desirable place to show and sell artwork, so I was very motivated to be a part of it,” Tyler said, commenting on why he wanted to become a member of Gallery Los Olivos. “The artwork is really first class, and the gallery itself is big and bright and shows off the art well.”

Tyler also mentioned the gallery’s ample amount of wall space as another draw-in. 

“With only three artists in the show, we each have a lot of room to show our art,” said Tyler, who described New Perspectives as an opportunity to showcase a variety of his favorite works across all subjects without being tied to a specific theme.

Alongside his landscapes and portraits in the exhibit, for example, will be Into the Water, a figurative painting. The scene depicts a mysterious young woman stepping into the ocean with a long, sheer cloth. 


THE GREAT OUTDOORS
One of Jim Tyler’s featured landscapes in New Perspectives is Santa Rita Ranch—View From the Top, which he painted during a plein air trip with SLOPE (San Luis Outdoor Painters for the Environment).
COURTESY IMAGE BY JIM TYLER

“The model, Kadianne, and I set up this photo shoot at Montaña de Oro near the Sandspit. It was late afternoon, and the sun was perfect for backlighting,” said Tyler, who primarily would only paint from his own reference photographs, prior to last year.

Aside from works like Into the Light, most of Tyler’s pastel pieces completed in 2020 were painted outdoors, which he especially appreciated as a safe way to paint with others, including other members of SLOPE, during the ongoing pandemic. 

“I have mostly been a studio painter in the past, but this year I’ve had a focus on plein air painting,” said Tyler, who hopes to jump back into in-person teaching with outdoor workshops this year. “It’s an invaluable way to see true colors and light, as opposed to looking at photos that may have been skewed by the camera and the printing process.”

Stay tuned for the next chapter of Arts Editor Caleb Wiseblood’s three-part series on New Perspectives. Send comments to cwiseblood@santamariasun.com.










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