Annie Wetli

Artist’s Bio

I started my artistic journey in Kentucky, at a very young age using graphite and colored pencil. I used to draw pictures while my mother read books to my siblings and I before bedtime. I developed my graphite technic to an appreciable level by my teens. I began experimenting with watercolor, perusing books on the subject, and winning several awards during these years. I especially loved to draw ballet dancers, and to this day, no matter what the subject matter, I look for a graceful line, as I saw in them.

I kept growing through my art after high school doing some plain air painting as well as experiencing some time in the Southwest utilizing my skills. I began to use oil and acrylic paint and read some very helpful books on the composition of paints, their binders and pigments. I also discovered through a simple exercise I found in a book, the discipline of a limited pallet. Tricolored to be exact. This appealed to my low budget and minimalistic thinking at that time. So, I spent several years using mostly Permanent red, Pthalo blue, and Lemon yellow, Windsor & Newton paints. Whatever subject matter caught my eye I painted or drew. Portraits and landscapes, architecture and botanical pieces, it was very eclectic, but always grounded stylistically in realism.

After meeting my future husband and relocating to West Lafayette in 2015, I began to play around with pastels and settled on chalk vs oil. This naturally led to a branching out in the palette, as chalk is much harder to mix than paints. But in the area of painting, I still use just a few colors.

Wanting to find a unity within my work, I painted a series of doors, which have come to represent in my mind how we can choose a direction in our lives. My subject matter in recent years has been informed by my reading. After catching a love of gardening and farming from my parents, I began reading authors like Gene Logsdon, Wendell Berry, and Elliot Coleman. So, I have been drawing and painting pieces of farming and gardening subjects that reflect my conviction that the happiest life is lived on the land with practices that reflect respect and love for the earth.

In the future, I would like to paint and draw more on site, Plein air, and align my artistic pursuits more to my philosophy of living on the land. I am interested in egg tempera, and would like to do a series of works based on green alternative building methods.