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Meet the Artist: Alyn Carlson

Alyn Carlson with her paper flower art

Alyn Carlson is a multidisciplinary artist, creative director, and author with deep curiosity and a passion for bringing beauty to life through various mediums. With over three decades of experience, she has developed a diverse set of skills that encompass oil painting, water color, gouache, graphite, and digital art. These works have been exhibited in over 20 galleries throughout the Massachusetts and Rhode Island areas. As a creative director, she has helped many brands obtain a strong visual presence by having a keen eye for aesthetics and understanding of branding principals. Her book The Paper Hat Book guides families by transforming an every day material into wearable art. Alyn’s work is a true testament to her dedication, innovation, and artistic expression of the world through her eyes.

You can have the privilege of meeting the artist during her opening reception “Walk with Me” on February 16th starting at 5pm!

Can’t make the opening? Stop by between 9am-2pm Monday-Friday for a self-guided tour. Alyn’s work will be on display in the Groundwork Gallery from February 4- March 1st.

What materials do you work with?

"Sand Hill Cove" by Alyn Carlson
Sand Hill Cove by Alyn Carlson

Mostly oil paints on wooden panel. But also watercolors, paper and fabric, as in wearable art.

Tell us about your current body of work. What motivated it?

My synesthesia leads the way usually and did with this collection of art. Synesthesia is when your brain routes sensory information through multiple unrelated senses, causing you to experience more than one sense simultaneously. My abstract landscapes often begin with a combination of colors I smell, taste or hear that lead me to a memory of a place I’ve been.

Do you work full-time as an artist or do you wear other hats?

Everything I do relates to art. I do graphic design and creative director work as well as art making. But mostly painting.

How do you integrate art into your life and other responsibilities?

I see the world as an artist, experiencing everything that way. The design work I do, how I relate to family and friends, is informed and colored by my art making. When there is interest, I teach my grandchildren and friends ways to be creative and integrate art making into their lives. It’s hard to separate anything I’m involved in from my art.

How has your art practice evolved over the years?

I drew and painted daily as a child and young woman. I’ve always had to balance art making with making an income ( always in a creative field) and raising my family. I’ve found a daily journal practice has helped a lot. Even 30 minutes a day has saved my connection to my art. Having different avenues of creating; performing in theater, making wearable art, designing an artful home, quilting, writing, thai chi, have contributed to my flourishing as an artist.

Alyn wears a garment that reflects h

What or who inspires you?

Children and how they look at the world has been a huge inspiration. My very creative parents, both artists. My partner, Paul and I have an ongoing conversion about our creative work, it’s struggle and joy. And very much the earth. My grandmother, a farmer, taught me how to take in the landscape I see and make it part of my inner life.

Who are some of your favorite artists?

Helen Franfenthauler, Diebenkorn, Walter Feldman, Agnes Martin, Anni Albers, Sophie Tauber-Arp, Charles Seliger, Elin Noble, Blanche Lazzell, Dries Van Noten, Klee, Paul Clancy

How is community important to you as a practicing artist?

Feeling I’m not alone and that I can always find someone to learn from, guide me through new territory. As I get older it feel it’s also important to pass along what I’ve learned to others.

What is the biggest challenge you face as an artist?

Carving out time to paint! There are so many things to juggle… social, finances, inventory, finding and feeding the right galleries and venues, a daily practice of journaling, seeing family and friends. Keeping my studio a highly functioning place I can thrive in and my home a sanctuary I can rest in.

What are your goals for the future?

To travel more, get my art into more international venues, find a good support person to give me more time to paint, and continue to find ways to stay healthy and strong.

You can find Alyn on instagram @alyncarlson and visit her website to learn more about her art mediums, upcoming workshops, and shows. She is also the 2023-24 Artist in residence at Taste Design, Inc.