Thursday, July 9, 2009

Doreen Adams…. One tessera at a time

Doreen Adams

As I write this entry, I am in a beautiful house at the edge of the ocean just south of Santa Cruz. At this moment, I can hear a seal calling through the distant fog. That said, I thought to write an entry about fellow artist and Facebook friend, Doreen Adams, because her studio,, is located in a similar environment in the hills above Malibu, also overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Being where I am right now, (and as a flock of pelicans makes circles in the sky outside my window), I can truly relate to the inspiration Doreen must feel as she looks down over the ocean from her studio each day. I think I understand why she is compelled to create art to express her love of nature and her respect for all living things. Being here has caused me to gain a new appreciation for these things as well as for the art that Doreen creates.

Doreen is one of the finest mosaic artists around.

One of the most defining characteristic of Doreen’s mosaic art is its resemblance to paint on canvas. She tends to lay the tesserae in concentric patterns, using a style known among mosaic artists as ‘painting with glass’. The fine detail with which she executes each mosaic must require the patience of a saint!

Doreen's imagination is clearly not limited to the natural beauty that she sees from her studio window. This piece, entitled simply, "Cheeseburger" was included in the 8th Annual International juried exhibition at the Museum of Man in San Diego last February during the convention of the Society of American Mosaic Artists. The mosaic was also featured as cover art on the "Mosaic Rocks" CD.

When her “White Rabbit” (above) piece won second place in the 3rd Contemporary Mosaic Art Competition “Breaking the Rules” also at the 8th Annual International juried exhibition at SAMA 2009,one of the judges had this to say:

“We love this mosaic! Everything about it is considered. In the first place it is very well drawn and composed – you can feel the white rabbit’s ‘lateness’ and, astonishingly, considering the strong use of complimentary oranges against greens, the overall effect is very harmonious.

Andrew commented on how the tesserae at the front are very small and detailed compared to the larger broader work at the back – this is the opposite to what one would expect and so there’s an interesting lesson to learn here – you don’t ALWAYS have to get smaller and fiddlier as you progress back into the picture.
We would therefore like to award this mosaic joint second prize.
(I will provide the prize for Doreen – namely a book on the work of Boris Anrep, which I feel will be useful to her in her future mosaics.)” Martin Cheek

Talented on many artistic levels, Doreen began her life’s journey in Edinburgh, Scotland, and has traveled the world taking classes from many inspirational artists. She describes herself as a “freelance, self-taught, self-employed artist” and writes, “My love of animals and children can be seen throughout my art whether it be my mosaics, decorative painted furniture, children’s illustrations, fine art paintings and drawings or my handmade crafts. “

Here are a few of Doreen’s watercolor illustrations:

Doreen is available for commissioned work and takes a flexible approach to these projects, sometimes working from a selection of photographs or if possible, paying visits to a specific site personally, to gather her own reference material. As she works through her commissioned art, she periodically documents her progress on her web site so that her clients can appreciate the painstaking detail that she enlists to create their mosaics.

Doreen is a member of SCBWI, (The Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators), SAMA, (The Society of American Mosaic Artists), MAA (The Malibu Art Association) and MAO, (The Mosaic Artists Organization).

Please visit her web site to see more of Doreen's beautiful art work or to get further information.


Annie B said...

Excellent article and choice Stacy. Congrats Doreen!

Artist Victoria O'Neill said...

love the bugs..!

Maria said...


kevangirl said...

Beautiful work, very inspiring. Thanks for this highlight.

Stacy Alexander