Oct. 1, 2012 06:25 PM

A busy life makes for beautiful work.



A Lynn Sanders piece in Gary Hebert's River Ranch home adds a contemporary vibe to his eclectic blend of pieces.

Is it art that imitates life or life that imitates art? In the world of artist Lynn Sanders, it's a circular question that perhaps never gets answered properly and, yet, is answered ever so clearly with each stroke of her paint brush.

Painting, she says, is like life right now.

"Hectic, and then you edit it down," Sanders says.

Sanders' work, which she describes as "abstract, impressionistic" is inspired by, at the core, color.

"The colors really dictate the painting. I have a concept of color in my mind, and when I start working with the painting and the color ... they drive the direction of where the painting is going. I do a lot with layering," she says.

It's a practice she equates to wrapping a Christmas present. In some pieces, she sands off layers to reveal the beauty of what's underneath. What's often underneath is what makes a great painting. And what's underneath the surface of this busy mother and artist is a life that is going in different directions.

"I'm impatient and I'm hurried and I want to get things done," she says. "I'm a mom and I truly do say my painting is really a comment on everyone's life. How busy we are and how crazy we get and to find any kind of balance you have to edit it down and say these are the things I want to do to make my life happy and fun.' You only have so much of yourself to go around to everybody."

Sanders, who hails from Lafayette and now calls Alexandria home, has been painting for seven years. But experts like Debbie Mahtook of European Classics Interiors (where you can find her pieces locally) say she already is proving to be a diverse talent.

Photos by Robin May

"She has such a vast range of what she can paint," Mahtook says.

A lifelong business woman who took art lessons in her youth, Sanders began painting again after being inspired by her cousin, who is an artist in Memphis.

"I picked it back up again and it was a kind of relief," she says.

Since she returned to painting, her work has snowballed, most recently allowing her to paint full time.

"I'm very flattered and humbled," she says of those who collect her work.

They are people like Gary Hebert, who has a piece displayed in his River Ranch home. And Amelie and Dr. John Storment, who are working on a new home that will display two pieces.

"The colors were just so vibrant," Amelie says of one piece she has planned for a foyer area. "I had to have it ... they were colors I had not ventured to use in décor - like pinks ... it's a really cool statement piece so that when you walk in my front door that's going to be the first thing you'll see."

The Storments' home is not super traditional, but does lean more toward that aesthetic with a timeless approach coupled with art that's unexpected. Sanders says much of her work is found in what she would call a "contemporary traditional home."

"Traditional furniture, but they bring in art and have a kind of eclectic look," she says.

According to Mahtook, Sanders' work truly works in just about any home.

"I don't think she's locked in," Mahtook says. "I can put her in a Hays Town and a modern house as well."

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