Patrick Howe Biography
I find that painting is a wonderful way of going deeper into the beauty of the present moment. While painting, time seems to disappear as forms take shape on the canvas. There is a deep sense of peace in the way I experience the creative process.
I assist my students in letting go of self-judgment, and mental distraction while painting. If a student is thinking about the finished painting he or she may miss the simple yet extraordinary brushstroke being applied right now. That is where the real action is. The finished painting then becomes a record, a history, and physical evidence of the creative process in action through the student.
I hope it is evident to anyone looking at my artwork that I have a profound respect for nature, particularly as it is revealed in various qualities of light. Painting light in its various expressions has been a passion of mine from the beginning. My approach is basically inspired by curiosity. As a young boy of ten the first painting that moved me was a reproduction of a Van Gogh painting I saw in a frame shop window. My first thought was ‘That is so beautiful!’ My second thought was ‘How can I do that?’ A good artist is inherently curious, I think. You’re hungry to learn, grow, and discover.
I primarily work in my studio, though I spend many hours in nature taking photos. There isn’t any aspect of paintings that I’m not interested in. All styles and techniques are interesting to me, and I explore many of them, incorporating them when I can into my painting. Therefore my personal painting method is a combination of many techniques.
But my teaching method is very simple. I start by teaching the Direct Painting Method used by Monet and others. It produces stunning results without using any mediums or complex formulas. More than one student of mine has said they would have started painting much sooner in life had they only known it was so easy!
I had my first one person show in the lobby of a bank show at age 15. Then later, after art school, I tried to make it as an artist but ‘reality’ soon set in, so I worked during the day and painted at night. Eventually I worked in the advertising field for many years and learned many of the skills that most artists lack, such as marketing, public relations, and branding. But in 2002 I left that and I returned to painting full time. In 2004 I opened Patrick Howe Gallery in Seattle, where I show my art, hold classes, and paint.