Artist of Nature's Details
O LORD, how great are thy works!
and thy thoughts are very deep.
- Psalms 92:5
Being near-sighted most of her life, Harlan pays more attention on details than others, and tries to present them in an artistic way. In her eyes, a dry leaf, a grass blade, a wild flower, a bunch of wild berries, a broken twig, a rotting log, and other small things that are often overlooked by most of us, all possess an amazing beauty of their own that is no less than the majestic beauty of a grand landscape of rivers and mountains, seas and oceans. Through her paintings, we too feel this beauty of nature's small, intimate things, and learn to see God's creation from another perspective, which makes us feel a love and an appreciation of Nature and its Maker that we did not used to have.
Harlan grew up in a family that was infused with artistic atmospheres. Her parents were both lovers of arts and Nature. Their family often took long walks to explore the surrounding nature. From these early experiences, Harlan developed a deep love for nature. Living not far from an art academy, their home was often a gathering place for talented artists. Harlan began to learn arts since very young. Almost every year she was introduced to a new medium: ceramics, encaustic painting, collage, graphics, acrylic painting, weaving, watercolors, basket weaving, and metal smithing, etc. Of whatever medium, she would quickly get the knack and become good at it. But she loved oil painting best. "Oil painting is like an extension of my mind." She said.
Harlan is a serious artist. She said she took great pains to study the science behind oil painting, to understand how and why oil paintings are constructed as they are, so as to achieve perfection on every aspect in her artworks. She opposes the popular attitude of contemporary artists of focusing on being different instead of on producing lasting artworks. She admires those masters living before the 20th century. Those masters, she said, were all well-trained in the techniques of painting, and strived to create lasting works of true greatness.
Harlan's dream is to create paintings that have lasting values. Has she achieved this dream? Let the readers look at her paintings, and make their own judgement.
Some of Harlan's Paintings
See More of Harlan's Paintings