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Artistic Journey | By Kelly twedell


Angelina Woehr sees life as an adventure, an ever-changing process to which we must all adapt. It’s a major theme in her art and in her life. The Virginia native now resides in Fayetteville, where she is trying to make a name for herself in our local art scene. She describes her style as abstract, with a focus on shape and color and if you’ve been in the World Cafe at Manna Church recently you’ve probably seen some of her art. In May, Woehr had an art show titled “New Journey” at Gallery A in Raleigh and some of her works are visible on her website, www.eangelinawoehr.com. “It’s been quite a journey,” said Woehr. The newlywed and proud military wife said she began showing her art in coffeehouses in Richmond, Va. and eventually displayed her work in galleries. Later – and her biggest show to date – she was one of just three featured artists to have her work shown at the Peninsula Fine Arts Center. The following fall Woehr was nominated for an emerging artist award, which brought her even more opportunities in the Hampton Roads art scene. As a result of those shows she was booked for future shows in Newport News, she sold pieces in the gallery shop and was hired to create art for individual clients on commission. Woehr considers her art to be intuitive and said she starts small and waits until it evolves. She does not pre-plan her pieces and explains that there is a great deal of trust between the client and her when she embarks on a commissioned piece. “Sometimes I will turn to my sketch book and use something in it as an inspiration to create a larger projection from it,” said Woehr. “I try to incorporate the drawing into the painting and blend them together, but my drawings can be very different than the finished painting.” Woehr said she does not need solitude when working on her creations. Sometimes she has music on in the background and other times, depending on the stage of the piece, she likes to have company around to talk to while she paints. “I skate the line between controlled and uncontrolled,” Woehr said. “I don’t like having things that are untitled,” she said, noting that from the start she likes to refer to each of her pieces by name. Names of some of her recent paintings include “Fresh Rain,” which relates to how she feels after the rain and “First Saturday,” which she painted to deal with her emotions on the first weekend after her husband deployed. She said her paintings often represent something she was experiencing at the time she created the piece or represent a stage in her life. She also likes to obscure her signature somewhere different on each painting. While she has experimented with different mediums, Woehr said she prefers oil paintings for large canvases and often uses other solutions with the oils to create a layered effect. Recently she began using clayboard, a panel with a clay surface that enables her to scratch into it or draw on it, instead of oils. She has also been working more with water colors since she is currently pregnant and should not be exposed to harmful fumes. Among her favorite artists and biggest influences are Georges Seurrat, James Rosenquist, Romare Bearden and Jasper Johns, but she’s quick to add, “I’ve learned and loved so many artists, it’s a shame to call any ‘your favorite’.” Perhaps Woehr’s success in selling her work and being hired for commissions is due in part to understanding what potential buyers experience when they are shopping for art to purchase. “When you find that piece, it’s like falling in love. You can’t get it out of your mind,” Woehr said.