Michelle Thomas’s studio includes a small gallery where she displays the work of fellow artists as well as her own. Swalebrook Studio will feature several different artists throughout the year. Openings will be on the fourth Friday of selected months unless otherwise noted. Her goal for the gallery is to make visiting it a welcoming, experience for everyone.
Swalebrook Studio & Gallery
221 W. Tioga St., Tunkhannock, PA 18657
GALLERY / STUDIO HOURS:
Mon – Fri: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sat: 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
I began my formal art education at Keystone College in LaPlume, PA in the late 70’s and continued studying on my own while raising a family. Over the years my art has grown and developed through workshops with artists such as: Martha Sampson, Bill Teitsworth, Renee Emmanuel, Brian Keeler, Karen Rosasco, Elizabeth Parry-Faist, Judy Youshock and Karen O’Neil. Learning from fellow artists has been an invaluable experience. Whether you are an artist yourself or just enjoy art, it is a fascinating experience to be invited into someone else’s creative process.
I am a member of the Endless Mountains Council of the Arts in Tunkhannock PA, AFA (Artists for Art) in Scranton, PA, Wyoming Valley Art League, National Society of Painters in Casein and Acrylic, North Branch Art Trail, Kitson Arts Alliance and the EMCA Monday Painters group which has been meeting every Monday for over fifteen years to paint en plein air (in the open air) together.
When painting outdoors, I work mainly with watercolor and water mixable oils. The work on my website is completed in the studio using a variety of mixed media. The subject matter is influenced by my plein air work as well as images of family, both my own and photos and ephemera that I find in antique and second hand shops. Sometimes friends give me old letters and maps as well as advertising flyers etc. that they think I may be able to use. I find it a little sad to find old photos that have been discarded because to me, they represent someone’s family history and may be the only picture that exists of that person. I feel that if I use them in a piece of my art, they will be in some way immortalized.
I enjoy teaching workshops using experimental watermedia and collage techniques. The process is very intuitive which is fun and playful but also challenging. Participants are encouraged to allow a piece to evolve naturally which can be more difficult than it sounds since most of us prefer to start with an idea and then make it happen rather than start with no idea and let the piece tell you what it wants to be.