Learning the techniques of abstract painting

Abstract artist Pam Brekas demonstrated the techniques she uses to create her art at the monthly meeting of the Carson Valley Art Association at the Douglas County Public Library in Minden, Friday.

Brekas, an art teacher for 35 years, retired and is finally able to devote most of her spare time to her creative and imaginative work. She still substitutes in area high school art classes and also shares her techniques with others, as in Friday's demonstration and workshop.

Her next workshop, Abstract Acrylics and Creative Play, will take place 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday at Artistic Viewpoints Gallery & Studio in Gardnerville.

"This is fun, this is play," Brekas said as she demonstrated her techniques to a full room of fellow artists. "There is a child in me that just wants to come out."

Her mixed media creations, using a variety of colorful acrylic gels, pencils and colored pencils, are produced with an odd assortment of tools, none of which include a paintbrush. Block print rollers, straws, spatulas from her kitchen and a handful of other tools, all find a creative use in the hands of Brekas.

"When I need something to help me achieve a desired effect, I know I will usually find it in my kitchen," she said. "When my paper has become too saturated with water, I have even used the microwave to dry it out."

"I never know where it's going to go," Brekas explained as she steadily worked on the demonstration piece in front of her. "What it is going to be, what it needs to be, what they are supposed to be. When I stopped trying to make things look like things, I had much more success."

"People ask how I name my stuff," Brekas said. "I just tell them, 'You sit down and have a glass of wine and you figure it out. It will usually tell you what it wants to be called.'"

As this year's president of the Nevada Artists Association and an active member of the Carson Valley Artists Association, Brekas stays immersed in the art world.

"I love to paint more than anything," Brekas said.

To see the abstract works of Pam Brekas, visit East Fork Gallery or Artistic Viewpoints, both in Gardnerville or the Brewery Art Center Gallery in Carson City. Pam Brekas can be contacted by calling 265-7888 or e-mail brekas@charter.net

For more information on the workshop, Abstract Acrylics and Creative Play, call Artistic Viewpoints at 783-0633.

n Jonni Hill can be reached at jhill@recordcourier.com or 782-5121, ext. 213.


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