Ambassador of the Week: Carmen Gardner

Meet Carmen Gardner, this week’s top American Watercolor Weekly Ambassador!

“Tropical Harvest” (transparent watercolor 22 X 30) Painted from flowers grown here in Haiku, Maui.

Carmen Gardner’s artistic celebration of Maui is a luminous tribute to the people, special moments and natural beauty that, together, make Maui “no ka oi.”

“When folks ask me why I paint, I’ve wondered myself at the answer . . . what should I say? Because it brings me joy? Because I want to share that joy with others? The answer comes to me every time I pick up a brush. Every time I mix a color or watch pigment mingle on the canvas . . . I realize then, it is about the process.

“Mo’olelo” (Transparent watercolor 16 X 20″ on Arches 140# CP stretched) The word mo’olelo means story, myth, legend and history.

For me, the deeper meaning in what I paint, lies in my passion to share the Maui we treasure: The greens are greener here, the ocean bluer, the skies full of drama and light . . . Maui is teaching me to see. I hope to continue learning to view Maui not only through the eyes of an artist, but through the eyes of her beautiful people, and that I may one day come close to adequately saying with color and shapes that for which I have no words.
A signature member of Hawaii Watercolor Society, I teach locally and internationally.

“Malama na Ohia” (“Care for the Ohia”) (Transparent watercolor 21.5 X 29.5″ on Arches 300#CP) This piece was done for a juried exhibition “Malama Wao Akua” (Caring for the Realm of the Gods) which supports the East Maui Watershed preservation and fosters awareness of indigenous and endemic species. It was chosen for inclusion in the 2017 exhibition and as the image for the 2018 show. The Ohia tree has been plagued recently by “sudden Ohia death.” The bird is the native I’iwi.

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