I’m Joan C. Thomson

I am a visual artist with deep roots in the Bible and an insatiable need for color, helping those who relate visually gain a deeper understanding of who God is and what he has for them while refreshing the world-weary with fresh doses of color.

 I tell stories with my collages and paintings, colorful stories of joy that are not so much illustrations but an exuberant response to the wonders of life.  At the same time, before I begin painting, I often seriously research the details --botany, symbolism, color, Greek and Hebrew word meanings, history and customs.  Serious study and joyful color--I guess you could say that I take joy seriously and that it's a joy for me to seriously study, in order to bring deeper understanding.  Seriously joyful, joyfully serious.

I've taught adult art workshops around the Southern Piedmont region of North Carolina and in Spain, Albania and England,  and exhibited often. I studied art at Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts in Tennessee, The Frog Hollow State Craft Center of Vermont, Vermont Community College and hold an Associate of Fine Arts Degree from Central Piedmont Community College in North Carolina.

I love making my art and telling its stories as well as mentoring other artists in their art. I also write and have written a book that combines my art, gardening and faith--A Leafy Journal, based on my blog of the same name: leafyjournal.blogspot.com .

Gardens are a huge influence on my art, from color to pattern, from the Garden of Eden to my own gardens. I also read voraciously, especially enjoying reading to my husband while he cooks. I know, what a deal!  It's amazing how many books we've read together this way.

Originally from Houston Texas, my husband Farris and I spent many years in the Charlotte, North Carolina area and have recently moved to northern England.


How I Choose My Media

I choose my media for a particular piece, whether oil, acrylic, watercolor, ink, colored pencils or printing ink, that will best serve the art and what I want to express through it. Does it work?  Will the secondary media make marks on a slick acrylic surface?  Will it move the way I want?  Will it work on a canvas? Will it dry properly and endure the elements? Will it be bright enough? I love to mix the media!  One just doesn't seem to be enough to say all I want to say.

What I'm Doing Now

Currently, I’m pushing further into layers of color and marks, shapes and words, with increasing abstraction. My flower and landscape paintings have always been abstracted so it’s a natural progression for my paintings to become more abstracted to reflect close-ups of creation, and light through color.  Pattern has always fascinated me, objects with many aspects keep my attention. To me, layer upon layer is not “busyness” but an invitation to linger and look more deeply. …

I've recently had one of my textile designs printed on fabric!