Nancy Orme Mysak

by Dana Kester-McCabe

Watercolor painter Nancy Mysak grew up on the Eastern Shore and continues to live and paint in Eden, Maryland. Her paintings celebrate the beauty of her surroundings. Nancy treats each piece as an experiment combining mercurial transparent washes with controlled detailed brushwork.

When she was very young her parents encouraged her to take all kinds of creative classes including ballet and piano. Her favorite was the accordion. But a difficult experience drew her away from music into the world of visual art.

For many years Nancy was an art teacher at Del Tech, the Art Institute and Gallery in Salisbury, and in various local schools. About ten years ago she began painting full time. Her subjects are most often from the natural world.

Nancy’s approach to water color is rather traditional. This involves a resist method using frisket, a liquid mask, to paint out the areas that will remain white. She also uses a limited number of colors and the knowledge of how their transparent layers will make the illusion of being lit from within.

Like many watercolorists Nancy treats each piece as an experiment creating several paintings of the same subject and only framing the one that stands out as the best.

Difficult economic times are tough on artists trying to make a living at their craft. But for the committed artist succeeding financially is secondary to their emotional and spiritual connection to the work itself and to their audience.

Nancy wrote a beautiful poem about how this anxiety was relieved, about how the quilts that she wraps her art work in to transport to her shows connected her to the women in her family. For Nancy the blankets which were passed down to her from her mother and her grandmothers, symbolize their support of her work. (Watch the video to hear a reading her poem.)

Nancy is a signature member of the Baltimore Watercolor Society, the Wicomico Arts Council, and the Rehoboth Art League. Her work is shown at various area galleries including Bishop's Stock in Snow Hill.