LYNNE K. RAILSBACK
AWARD-WINNING BOTANICAL ARTIST
About the Artist
Lynne Railsback is member of the American Society of Botanical Artists. Other professional affiliations include the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s Florilegium, Florida Society of Botanical Artists, the Geneva Lake Arts Foundation, Reed-Turner Woodland Botanical Artists and Venice Art Center.
When Lynne began painting, she didn’t paint roses, orchids or iris. The plants that grew in the woods and prairies in the Midwest were her favorite subjects. She particularly enjoyed the plants in fall and winter with their interesting shapes, colors and textures. When she became a snow bird and moved to Florida for the winter she found new specimens. She’s still working on this transition but her process hasn’t changed.
She begins a painting without doing preliminary studies, drawing pencil lines on the paper or relying on photographs. Instead her inspiration is the physical plant “close up and personal”.
With a degree in graphic design and a career in commercial interiors, she has been able to utilize her skills through a variety of art forms. It was through painting, however, that she was able to privately enjoy her talent. Because watercolor can be either transparent or opaque, it became her favored medium. Using a “lift-out” technique, she has been able to illustrate fine details and wispy, thin lines. It is this controlled and time consuming style that she finds stimulating.
Her pigments are viridian, quinacridone pink, burnt umber, aureolin and French ultramarine which she mixes to create the appropriate palette. With that completed she picks up her brush and begin. After applying areas of color to suggest the initial composition she develops one area of the painting at a time.
She finishes the piece by using a damp brush to draw out the pigment into fine lines. When Strathmore revised their 500 series 3 ply Bristol board she switched to Canson’s Moulon du Roy 140 lb. hot press paper. Jack Richeson 9000 series #3/0 synthetic brush is her favorite although she also uses W&N Sceptre Gold II #101 brush. She doesn’t worry about” mistakes” as she can always add leaves, seeds, whatever until the composition feels right.
It is in the mornings you would find her in her studio. The light is best at this time and if she waited until afternoon she would never get around to putting a brush in her hand on that day.
She has been privileged to have had solo exhibitions in botanical gardens, arboretums, museums, galleries, corporations, libraries and a variety of other public spaces. Her watercolors have been included in juried compositions throughout the United States and Europe. She has become a notable botanical artist as her award-winning paintings are purchased both by museums and private corporate collectors.