“Fall Birch” by Pam Fries, a featured artist at the Blue Whole Gallery in Sequim this April. Submitted art

“Fall Birch” by Pam Fries, a featured artist at the Blue Whole Gallery in Sequim this April. Submitted art

Art as storytelling at Blue Whole Gallery in April

SEQUIM — Blue Whole Gallery’s featured artists for April are active with the written page and canvas.

Jeannine Chappell and Pam Fries, both artists and authors, will highlight the Sequim gallery’s “Artists are Story Tellers” exhibit that debuts Friday with the opening set for 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Chappell, known for incorporating digital expertise into her artwork, is currently challenging abstract paintings.

Fries, author of an award-winning children’s book, presents color combinations interwoven with the stories she writes.

The gallery at 129 W. Washington St., is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.

Facial coverings and social distancing are required in the gallery.

Chappell is showing a group of recent abstract paintings on paper and panels this April.

The work represents a new direction from her previous digital paintings of birds and other animals.

“I am especially drawn to the process of abstract painting, in which I begin a painting and don’t know where it will go,” Chappell said.

“I like the challenge and the excitement of making the moment-to-moment choices involved with this work, which is a counterbalance to the restrictions we have been living with for this past year.”

Her new paintings are made with primarily acrylics, along with pencils, crayons, pastels and other mediums.

Fries is fairly new to the Blue Whole Gallery; she began displaying her artworks there in December.

Among her works can be found multiple mediums and her signed children’s book, “Something’s Eating the Garden,” which she also illustrated.

She started graphite drawing 15 years ago. With encouragement from loved ones, she began painting in color and now says she would paint 24/7 if she could.

For several years Fries has been a commissioned pet portrait artist in the community.

She began painting pets on rocks and then as time went on, canvas.

She still is creating both as people request them.

One of the new mediums she has been working with is acrylic build-ups which give a 3-D effect on a flat canvas.

She likens them to a sculpture that hangs on the wall.

For more information, see bluewholegallery.com.

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