WILLSBORO - Patricia Reynolds has enjoyed the relative seclusion and amazing lake views of her Willsboro Point home and art studio for more than 40 years.
On Sunday, Aug. 8, she will be opening her studio to the public yet again for a look back at her prolific career as an award-winning artist and many of the stunning works she's produced.
A native of Westchester County, Reynolds moved to the North Country in 1953 and attended the State University of New York at Plattsburgh for a year before settling with her husband, Carlyle, in his hometown of Willsboro.
"I moved and came here because I love the country," Reynolds said, "I just felt a soul connection with it."
"It has everything to do with my inspiration," she added. "It's up to me to take it from there; to take the reality and deepen the mystery."
Largely self-taught, Reynolds developed a love of painting during her teenage years and continued to develop her skills. She exhibited several paintings at the Essex County Fair during the 1960's, winning Best in Show in 1968. Her career as a professional artist then took off from there.
"I improved, and there were certain people of influence that helped me," she said. "They respected my work and wanted to help me. I owe it all to a handful of patrons."
She has produced hundreds of works since then in a variety of media - watercolors, oils, acrylics, and even some collages. Her art has been featured in numerous exhibitions throughout the U.S. and abroad, winning some very prestigious awards along the way.
"If I had lived in another location, I might have gotten further ahead, but I don't know if I would have been as happy," she said.
Much of her work focuses on nature as she presents impressionistic views of scenery she's encountered on trips to Europe, Africa, and the Caribbean Islands. Still, the landscapes of the Adirondacks and the Champlain Valley, continue to be a major source of inspiration for her.
"This view changes every hour," she said, referring to the vista of Lake Champlain out her back window. "I've painted it maybe 300 times, and each one is different."
Today, at 75 years of age, Reynolds admits she's slowing down somewhat, but hopes to continue painting as long as she can.
"I just want to be able to put two feet on the ground when I get up in the morning," she said. "It's nice that I can just enjoy being leisurely when I need to."
Reynolds has made it a point to open her studio each summer, but illness prevented her from doing a show last year. This year, more than 100 of her paintings, both new and old, framed and unframed, will be on display to celebrate the 40th anniversary of her studio.
An opening reception for the show is scheduled for Sunday, Aug. 8, from noon to 5 p.m. The studio is located at 828 Point Road. All are welcome to attend.
Other viewings are also available by appointment by calling Reynolds at 963-8356.