Theresa Grillo Laird
Painting, like the rest of life, is a journey filled with glimpses of the less obvious truth if you take the time to look. What is truly there beyond the impressions of a first glance? This question filled my mind after an early painting experience. I was younger than school age and was sitting at a child size picnic table in my back yard on a glorious summer day. In front of me was a coloring book with an image of an elephant already covered in a layer of black dots. There wasn’t much room to color between those black dots but I picked up a crayon and was about to begin when my mother set a brush and glass of water beside me. “You need this.” I touched a dripping brush to the page and jumped back in startled amazement as a sea of viridian green raced across the page. After that, I started looking more closely at other things to see if there was another reality underneath. I scraped rocks to see if they held color under their dusty surface. I peeled the beige paint off the metal buttons of my shirt to see if the paint was hiding colors. When I didn’t see colors, I dreamt dreams of buttons with layer upon layer of vivid colors. And as for painting, I was hooked!
I was still in elementary school when I began painting in oils. Today I still paint in oils, and I’m still searching for what lies hidden beneath. What am I really seeing and what combination of line, brush stroke and color do I need to reveal the true character within the seeming ordinary? That is the journey I’m so fortunate to have been set upon. I invite you to enjoy the results.
Theresa grew up in New Jersey near the Palisades of the Hudson River. She started painting as a young child and her art has always been the focus of her life. After living in Canada for twelve years, she moved to the Florida Panhandle where she works out of her home in Gulf Breeze, by Pensacola. Through her generous use of color and bold brush strokes, Theresa creates oil paintings that represent the intimate and emotional bond she has with her natural surroundings. Theresa was honored when her painting Gulf Islands National Seashore was selected to become part of the Permanent Art Collection of the Federal Reserve Board Bank in New Orleans. She has been juried into Oil Painters of America and participated in their recent Salon Show of Traditional Oils. In addition to her studio work, Theresa teaches painting from her Gulf Breeze studio, and is an adjunct instructor at Pensacola State College teaching Plein-Air painting, floral still life and color workshops.