In the Zone with Andy Lord
Andy has been painting for most of his life. “I’ve been swinging a brush for 45 years”, Andy told me. Well, house painting that is. It has only been in the last 7 or 8 years that Andy has been drawn to the easel to paint as a form of art, a form of expression.
Andy is not formally schooled in painting or the fine arts, but he was exposed to art from an early age. During his childhood, Andy’s mom brought him to art exhibitions at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. It was during those early years that Andy developed an appreciation for art. Amedeo Modigliani was one of the first artists Andy recalls being drawn to.
In more recent years, Andy has been inspired by artist and friend James Beatrice. James has painted a number of portraits of Andy and his family, including the portrait of Andy included here. James has encouraged Andy’s strong sense of composition and color, directing him to not worry about taking lessons, but rather to “Just paint.” And so he has.
Andy works primarily with oil on canvas. He likes painting with oil because “you can push it around”. Also, he loves working with this medium because it allows him to play with pigments, creating interesting colors and tints – of course, making good use of the eye he has developed from his experience as a house painter. Check out the colors of the water and sky in the Whale Watch painting.
In this collection of over a dozen paintings by Andy, you may notice some recurring themes. Most noticeable perhaps is the inclusion in his paintings of the structures Andy paints during the work week – houses, barns, and even my zen den. You could say Andy paints them twice, once literally and then again, as a reflection, paying homage to the beauty and function of man-made structures. In most cases, the man-made structure is enhanced and surrounded by a beautiful natural setting – trees, bushes, mountains. Well situated, embraced by the beauty of nature.
Many of Andy’s paintings depict the places and people who make up the fabric of his life: Hannah reading to their granddaughter Evie; Andy and Hannah’s first home together, the barn that Andy has painted multiple times for a long time customer. However, not all of Andy’s subject matter is based on actual places and events. The “Trees” painting, for example, was inspired by a lakeside in NH but is a creation of Andy’s imagination.
Finally, it is important to note that what is most satisfying to Andy is the experience of creating the artwork. This is when he gets “in the zone”. As Andy explains, “It starts with an idea. Something visual that moves me. But it often evolves into something else.” As he creates, Andy gets absorbed in the creative effort. I guess you would describe it as a meditative, creative state – a zen-like state of being. “When I get in that zone, it’s a very sacred place”, Andy says. I am honored to host Andy’s artwork in my zen den, a very sacred place indeed.