Folks who attend The Chatham Studio Tour the first two weeks in December have the opportunity to experience an enchanted garden. Watercolorist Linda Watkins has captured the blooms, bugs, frogs and fish that inhabit her lovely property on Prince Creek, near Pittsboro. “I am fascinated both by color and detail,” Linda explains. “I like to zoom in on nature.” Born in North Carolina (“an Army brat,” she quips), the Fort Bragg area was her home base growing up. Apart from a 5 year spell in England in the early 90’s, she has lived mostly in or around the Raleigh/Cary area until moving here in 1997. “I am blessed in my Chatham County home, and my garden, since they offer so much that captures my interest,” she asserts. Her grandparents were farmers and gardening has always been an essential element of her life.
Linda’s paintings have a delightfully delicate and airy feel. Her pallet is rich with an emphasis on oranges and blues. They adorn her lovely studio with a vibrant, natural environment. Named by her grandsons when they were preschoolers, Frog Pad Studio got its name through association with the Prince Creek neighborhood the Lily-pad covered koi pond and the Frog Prince of fairy tales.
Linda is mainly a self-taught painter. As a child, she was never without a number 2 pencil and always sketching. “None of the schools I attended offered much art education,” she remembers. Despite an attempt at Acrylics while working at NC State … “it wasn’t until the late 80’s that I discovered the joy of watercolor and it has been my first choice ever since.” Having only dabbled at art while establishing her home here in Chatham, two years ago Linda realized “so much time has slipped by, if I’m ever going to do anything serious with watercolor, it has to be now!”
Linda’s paintings can be viewed on her website http://frogpadstudio.com. She still carries a number 2 pencil and is currently the featured artist at The Carolina Brewery in Pittsboro.. Her work ranges in price from $200 to $600.
“I paint what I see and hope you like it,” Linda exclaims. Tour goers certainly will.