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Jo M. Orise

Born in Maine near the Atlantic Ocean under the sign of Pisces may explain my attraction to the sea since childhood. At three, a rogue wave suddenly tumbled me about under water. Euphoric at experiencing such unanticipated adventure, I was unafraid—Dad had said I was part fish.

Living on the Penobscot Bay Coastline, ocean visible from my studio window, I am again drawn to observe the sea, perhaps anticipating further adventure.

The sea appearing tranquil is truly deceitful. A delicate ecological balance of thousands of species live and die within its belly. Being aware of a mere segment of its enormity, how do I, as an artist, express such a subject on canvas?

Imagery derived from seascapes, landscapes and people provide opportunities in a variety of forms which I am drawn to interpret in my painting style. French Impressionism and American Realism have influenced the shape and form of my art, to depict every-day life of the ordinary.

When attracted to any subject, I am haunted by it and am compelled to honor it with sketches, photographs, quick watercolors or words—to release, to reveal my idea. Transposing the desired composition onto my canvas, my intuition and imagination challenge me as paint follows the dance of hand and brush. Through all of it, I strive to make color vibrant, figures interesting, landscapes inviting.

The creative journey is immensely satisfying from beginning to end. My desire is to create and to share. My intention may or may not be obvious, but that does not matter to me. If someone says, "I like that," I have accomplished my goal.

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