Inside Barefoot Studios

Pamela Wingard, founder of Barefoot Studios interviewed with us and welcomed us inside her process and inspiration of her art.


1. What medium(s) to your work in? Why? I work in acrylics and mixed media. I learned to paint using oils but transitioned to acrylics in the last few years because of their ease of use. I love adding marks with oil sticks and pastels as there is something satisfying about getting to both draw and paint. I drew for many years before I learned to paint, so I love exploring the combination of the two techniques.

2. What materials do you use? I use acrylics, oil sticks, pastels, charcoal, and graphite. along with fluid acrylics for making drips.

3. What is your favorite tool? Give an example of how you use it. I particularly love the use of the palette knife in my work, using it to make texture. I use it a quite a bit when painting water as it allows me to add layers of various shades of color.

4. Briefly explain the process of creating one of your pieces. After guessing the canvas, I like to add a thin ground layer in a mid-tone, often an orange shade. I use a lot of blue in my work, and I enjoy seeing the complementary orange peek through in various places. I use a diluted paint to sketch out basic blocks of shapes, focusing more on shape than line. I then build my work in layers, going back and forth on various areas of the canvas. I also tend to work on multiple canvases at once. Once I’m satisfied with the composition, I start adding more color and details, use the palette knife for texture, and finish up with line and drips, using fluid paint and oil pastels and sticks. I also like scratching back through the surface to reveal previous layers of color.

5. How did you decide on your signature? How do you create your signature? No one has ever asked this before, and I love it! My dad used to call me ‘PJ’ and hardly anyone ever calls me that anymore. I like to sign my work with PJ WINGARD, because it reminds me of my dad. I also tend to print in all caps, so I like signing my work the same way. I use very thinned out paint and a rigger brush. Usually I work backwards from the D in the bottom right corner, so I can make sure I don’t run out of room with my signature. I just have to make sure I spell my name correctly when I’m working backwards. Quirky artist thing I guess.


1. What series of work do you have? Briefly describe them. I like to work in a series as it organizes my artist brain, which is usually all over the place. I find that it helps me focus. Most of my collections have to do with a theme, such as ‘Relaxed’ or ‘Grounded’ which are two of my most recent collections. They have to do with the way I want to make the viewer feel when viewing my art, as well as the way I feel when painting them. Sometimes I’ll create a collection about a place that I love, such as somewhere on the coast.

2. What is your favorite piece of art you ever made (if not sold on TUS please include a photo)? Hmmm, my latest piece is usually my favorite! My latest favorite is ‘Morning Walk’ which is an 8 x 8 that is available through TUS. I like it because of the transparencies and the softness of the palette. Usually I work in a lot of color, but this one is soothing, which is what many of us need right now.

3. What are some new pieces you are creating? How did they begin? I am working on a collection of small pieces for gifts and ornaments. I’ll attach a silk ribbon to the mini canvases for hanging. This collection has a soft palette and includes abstracted pieces and a few churches, which I don’t usually paint, but I love. They were inspired by those small churches you see on country roads as you are traveling through.

4. How do you organize your inspiration for your pieces? I focus on one theme, or otherwise I’d be all over the map. I want to paint it all! Like many artists, I have lots of ideas, and I have to reel myself in so I’m not all over the map. I am particularly inspired by travel and the coast.

5. Where do you see your art? Be specific, list a piece and where you imagine it in a space. I see my art as colorful spots in a neutral home. I like my art to remind people of a special place, somewhere they’d like to be, or have been before. I imagine this piece ’Settled In’ in a cozy space with lots of blues and grey, maybe somewhere near the beach.

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