PLATTSBURGH — Creative Brianna Forkey expresses herself artistically through painting, jewelry, leather and crystal art.

BForkeyArtStudio is her online Etsy shop, but you can share space with her works in “Inside and Out,” an exhibition at the Strand Center Gallery through Aug. 26.

Forkey lives in Champlain and is a 2017 alum of Northeastern Clinton Central School and 2021 alum of SUNY Plattsburgh.

There, she earned a BFA in Studio Art with a double concentration in painting and drawing.

“Inside and Out” features 36 paintings and two sun catchers and two dream catchers.

Forkey has a lifelong interest in art.

“I started with drawing basically, and when I decided that that was something that I like to do, I chose to go to SUNY Plattsburgh for my art degree,” she said.

“From there, I kind of spread from drawing to painting as well.”

LAKESCAPES

“Inside and Out” is an exploration of landscapes and interiors.

“A lot of them are local of like Lake Champlain,” Forkey said.

“There are a lot of lake landscapes. I focus a lot on the clouds. There is a section of landscape paintings in the show that I did while traveling abroad in Ireland. It was a program where we could through SUNY Plattsburgh where we go to Ireland and do painting.”

Forkey went to Dingle, located on Ireland’s west coast.

“We were right on the coast, so there was lots of ocean,” she said.

“There was lots of hills. We were in a small town, so there were a lot of local architecture that we painted as well. They were stone buildings. This experience in particular was plein air painting, so we were actually outside in the elements with portable easels. We were doing our paintings out there. That was a new experience for me.”

THE FREEDOM OF OIL

All of the exhibition paintings are oil.

“Oil I find is a lot easier to mix colors and to get different textures out of because acrylic dries very fast whereas oil you can blend it a lot more and you can work with it more,” she said.

The paintings range from intimate views such as “Harbor Stone” and “Irish Coast” that are 9” by 11” to imposing “Old Fort” or “Killarney” that are 30” by 40.”

“For making the clouds, I like the texture of the clouds,” she said.

“I like to making them thicker. I like making them stand off the canvas. I find that when people think of clouds, they think of white. But I find that a lot of clouds in my paintings are very colorful. There is a lot more in them than just white. I enjoy focusing on them.”

In her interior paintings, Forkey explores abandoned buildings or abandoned areas.

“There is a subway that was abandoned that I painted,” she said.

“There was an old caboose train. There’s a room from a Civil War museum that I painted as well. So it’s like older buildings. I enjoy the emptiness and the roughness of those interiors. Because they are abandoned, they tend to have, like, peeling paint or broken steps. Things that I find interesting when I’m painting. Not just a flat, clean, paint wall, but a textured area.”

‘I ENJOY ART’

Forkey views other artists’ work, but she doesn’t draw inspiration from anyone in particular.

“I just kind of paint the way I think I like it,” she said.

“I enjoy art. I enjoy going to museums and galleries, but I haven’t really found an artist that I’m drawn to that I look in depth at their work.”

Email: rcaudell@pressrepublican.com

Twitter@RobinCaudell

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Staff Writer

Robin Caudell was born and raised on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. She holds a BS in Journalism from the University of Maryland, College Park and a MFA in Creative Writing from Goddard College. She has worked at the Press-Republican since 1990

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