Singing With Color
Award-winning oil and pastel painter Astrid Paustian is an unabashed and fervent lover of the interplay of light and color, creating all of her oil and pastel paintings in a spontaneous and expressive manner. The walls of her North Boulder home and studio exhibit the skillful range of her painting style and subjects. Atmospheric cloudscapes and sunsets sweep Colorado skies in lustrous hues; soft, impressionistic yellow aspen rise from sumptuous purple shadows, in a series of three radiantly lit canvases; and numerous flowers and birds from her garden and travels find expression in vivid detail. “The common denominator is color. I love color. I’ve tried to subdue it, but it keeps getting brighter and brighter. I’ve decided to stop fighting it.”
Astrid’s art took a back burner to a nursing career and raising a family, until she literally brought her paintings “out of the closet” for a Boulder Art Association exhibit in 2003. She had been painting since childhood. Growing up in Hamburg, Germany, then travelling Europe and Asia as a young woman, she had access to many of the great art museums, where she practiced her painting, mostly self-taught. Astrid reflects, that it may be, in part, her life experience that influences her to revel in and express color with such exuberance: “In my work as a nurse, I experienced how precious, short, and sometimes tragic, life can be. So, I seem to go in the opposite direction with my paintings. I want them to be colorful, joyful, and playful.”
Regarding the satisfaction she gains from completing a painting, she says “Lighting can make an ordinary subject shine, it can fill a landscape with emotion. If the viewer can sense that emotion in a finished piece, I consider it a successful painting.
Light can also draw attention to flowers, and animals, such as small birds. I find birds especially fascinating, admiring their beauty and resilience”
Astrid has found much creative inspiration through her relationships with other artists, which she has developed through her involvement with various local art associations, such as the Boulder and Louisville Art Associations, The Art Center of Estes Park and Open Arts. Since she joined the local art community and began exhibiting in 2003, she has won numerous awards for her paintings.
A signature member of the Pastel Society of Colorado, Astrid’s paintings are frequently exhibited in Boulder and across the state. Currently, her work is being displayed at the North Boulder Recreation Center, through the end of October. Additionally, Astrid’s oil paintings are displayed throughout the year at The Art Center of Estes Park, in the Middle Stanley Village Shopping Center. Her studio is part of the NOBO Art District and frequently open during the First Friday Art Walks.
Astrid enjoys sharing the excitement of the artistic process and offers daily painting demonstrations during Open Studios, as well as hands-on activities for children and those young at heart. Her website is www.astridpaustian.com.
Referencing her favorite quote by Monet, “I want to paint the way the bird sings,” Astrid expresses her joy of painting and the spontaneity and creativity that delights her. “I’m having fun with every brushstroke.”
4390 13th Street
Boulder, CO 80304