Birgit Angern-Dorgarten

painting-seascapes.com

I was born near the Baltic Sea, where I spent my childhood. I studied Geography and Architectural History and got a Ph.D. Later, my husband and I moved to the coasts of Northern California and Greece, where we spent a couple of years: studying, working and creating a family.

Being at the seaside for so long has left a deep impact on me. Also, living on a large, secluded farm with our children, and with sheep and dogs, is a daily challenge within nature. It is exactly, what I want to do. Then, I love hiking with my painting gear, experiencing all sorts of weather and painting plein-air, no matter, how the wind blows – it´s my adventure!

I additionally studied painting watercolors and drawing, in which I hold a degree. I had the chance to study oils with John Burton (www.burtonartstudio.com) and Kathleen Dunphy (www.kathleendunphy.com) in California as well as with Roos Schuring in the Netherlands (www.roosschuring.com). I love the work of Anne Packard, Evgeniy Kulish, Kyle Buckland, Barry Robson and Scott Christensen. Creating fine artwork starts with seeing and feeling objects and nature in a very subtle and differenciated way. The redwoods growing on the Pacific coast of the Northwest US and Canada create a unique picture: you can see huge, sturdy chunks washed ashore – enormous logs that are scattered like matches. Or you find tiny, sandblasted pieces that you pick up very softly in order not to break them. In my eyes an old piece of wood is not just an old piece of wood...

If you travel along the Northern Pacific Coast and decide to walk off-the-beaten-track, you see the most astonishing and brilliant masterpieces of driftwood buildings and other extraordinary architecture. Dreams of their  inhabitants, they are personal and a wonder of imagination and out of the ordinary. These houses are just awesome: they melt with the woods and the ocean simultaneously, because their building material was a gift from the forest, shaped by the sea and given back to the land. Go for it and see nature with new eyes - then paint it!

The blues of the oceans and the grays of the skies above – those have been speaking to me ever since I can remember.

 

I am in awe of the solitude and force of coastal spaces, and I cannot stop watching the continuous coming-in of the waves. There is new movement and perception all the time. Sometimes soft winds and sometimes strong ones deeply influence the color of air and water and change the whole picture…

There...

...you can feel the serenity and tranquility of the scene under a cerulean blue sky…

...you can step out in the morning with a coffee mug and walk barefoot in the cool, grayish sand…

...you can beachcomb: every shell, every white-washed driftwood or colored pebble is unique and you found it. You might be the first person in the world who touches and appreciates it…

...on a stormy day, you can see dark clouds reaching down to the horizon, and at the same time you may see a fine, but all the more strong, sunray illuminating just a small patch of the ocean, which is now turning emerald…