Linda has been painting for as long as she can remember. As a child, she was inspired by the detailed wildlife artwork of Robert Bateman, Carl Brenders, and others. Primarily self-taught, she pursues a realistic approach to drawing and painting, creating detail in meticulous layers. Each painting can take months to complete, as she must wait for each layer to dry before adding the next.
Linda prefers to work in oils and soft pastel. Oils provide durability and a glow that cannot be achieved with other media, and soft pastels provide a brilliance and immediacy that can also not be equaled. She advocates for the revival of time-honored painting techniques, learning and then teaching painting techniques used by the Old Masters, including grisaille, glazing, and layering.
While these techniques take far longer than some of the more immediate modern art forms, Linda’s paintings take on a glow that cannot be achieved with any other technique. This quality has been recognized in the numerous awards that she has received since she first began exhibiting her work – her very first show entry won Best of Show, and she has since many other awards for her work. She has exhibited in national and international juried shows and has also had many solo exhibitions of her work.
Linda Merchant holds a B.A. in Archaeology from Youngstown State University and a M.S. Degree in Special Education from National University, as well as teaching credentials in K-12 and Pre-K special education, and has been a teacher since 2003. She is currently visual arts faculty at the Center for Arts-Inspired Learning, Willoughby Fine Arts Association, Ashtabula Arts