The Pastel Journal

A Marked Intuition

“YOU HAVE TO FOLLOW YOUR PATH IN A PAINTING; the painting will tell you where it needs to go,” says Bre Barnett Crowell, winner of the Pastel Journal Award of Excellence for her abstract work, Nandina Graffiti. “This one told me to keep making lines and to keep making gestures.”

In much of her work, Crowell often doesn’t know what a painting is about until she finishes it. As she’s making marks and gestures, she says her subconscious mind is also at work. “I get so swept up in the process of an abstract work; sometimes I don’t recognize what’s influencing me and what’s coming out until I sit back and look,” she says. “It might relate to something in my life or something

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