If there is an artist today who is the embodiment of a driving passion, it would have to be Ed Obermeyer, an artist and teacher from Virginia Beach, Virginia, USA.
You can see just by looking at his website that he is someone who makes the most of every day, either taking photos (out in the surf or of nature), painting prolifically, teaching art, exhibiting extensively or travelling with his wife. He absorbs all experiences which are then reflected back into his work. (All images courtesy of edobermeyer.com)
Ed says “My paintings reflect my passion for nature and a desire to tell stories with images from my personal experiences around the world. As an art teacher, active waterman, and artist, the purpose of my artwork is to share with others, my diverse experiences with nature and cultures I have encountered throughout my travels”.1
"Much like my painting, my photography of ocean waves and surfers is from a very unique angle, while treading water well over my head, with no board or floatation device, all year in virtually every temperature range"2.
Ed’s passion for art began when he started teaching in the 1970s, acquiring a Masters in Inter-disciplinary Studies as well as a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Virginia Commonwealth University. He is one who obviously thrives on interacting with his students, passing on his knowledge and moulding their perceptions of the world through art. He has won “Teacher of the Year” at schools in Virginia Beach a number of times, so his efforts are obviously much appreciated!
Ed says: “My immersive journeys led me to Australia where I had a profound experience studying the types of patterns and symbolism used by many aboriginal artists throughout the country. I have reinvented myself as an artist and express my feelings about the diverse culture of the Aborigines I met this summer with my own personal voice and symbolism.”2
He has also travelled to other exciting places besides Australia, such as the Grenadine Island chain, Barbados, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Nova Scotia, and says that “this is the inspiration for my work. On each of these trips, I have kept a journal with photos taken during the adventure and share the written and visual story with my viewers through my paintings”2
Ed generally works from his extensive photo collection, but also takes inspiration from the work of the other photographers he collaborates with. Let's have a look at a small selection of his work..........
Do you like the dramatic motion of the surf, captured in a moment in time? Or the more peaceful serenity of nature and landscapes? Do you like the variety of his evolving styles?
Which is your favourite?
I think the only way to fully appreciate his work is to spend some time browsing through Ed’s website, (by clicking the bookmark below). I do recommend you spend some time looking through the tabs at the top, particularly the:
• Artist’s Statement which tells how his painting style has changed based on his water photography and his study of Aboriginal and other cultures;
• travel diaries, which document his experiences in words and photos;
• catalogue of paintings, year by year, which show his changing techniques; and
• garden and nature photography.
Lastly, we leave you with these delightful pictures of Rusty and Raven, his beloved Labradors, of whom he says: “Rusty and Raven have had a huge impact on my life. We only get to borrow them for about 14 years before they go to doggie heaven so I plan on making sure every moment is noticed and will paint lots of pics of them!"2
- Courtesy of Fine Art America/Ed Obermeyer
- Courtesy of edobermeyer.com