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Architecture demands attention from both the left and right brain.  "The design aspect of architecture offered at the UW appealed to me. Perfect for me! I really enjoyed this design aspect in my career … being involved in the artistic side of the process: sketching freehand, meeting with clients, helping them to program their ideas. A design architect relies on the right-brain, the creative visualization. "

Marilyn was introduced to watercoloring in the architecture program (a year of watercolor classes) as a way to communicate her ideas to clients. She continues to explore the medium both on her own and with a variety of mentors, including Eric Wiegardt, Tony Van Hasselt and Diane Hill among others, and is a very strong advocate of the medium.


"Watercolor is an amazing medium.  I am amazed at what comes from paper and a few tubes of paint. The magic inspires me to make each painting a one-of-a-kind,  showing the joy I feel. Only watercolor gives such jewel like brilliance. Each painting is a new adventure. Often I only remember the joy I felt while doing the painting, as the painting can change along the way."


Marilyn has gained considerable experience painting all over the world, including  Guatemala, China, Korea, Viet Nam, Argentina, Chile and Mexico, Maine, Virginia, Georgia, Washington DC. She is now painting a new series, "the amazing coastal scenes and rural landscapes of Washington State, particularly the Salish Sea area".

You might think an architect's approach to painting would be precise and controlled, but the loose and free style she celebrates is contrary to that notion, and she finds joy in the surprises this media can offer.  "There are some traits of watercolor that continue to engage me. Watercolor can granulate…the pigments create marvelous granular textures. The pigment of granulated colors settles into the low spot of the paper. Hard to plan for but great when it happens."  Thank you Marilyn!

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