A special technique

HARLINGEN — Carole Boyd believes she is a pioneer. She may very well be.

Carole’s painting with a mouse, a computer and basic Microsoft Paint software is unique and goes back as far as 2003.

Self taught, this attorney, horse lover and now resident of Bayview, is a digital fine artist who creates the hard way.

And her works will be on display for the next several weeks at the Harlingen Art Forum downtown on Jackson Street.

She’s looking forward to showing her works and explaining the type of art she loves.

“Digital painting is something people really don’t know what it even is,” she said sitting in the Harlingen Arts Forum earlier this week with her works already hung on the wall ready for the show. “I have done a lot of things to try to educate the public.”

She also has held clinics for kids and seniors.

Carole said it is a medium that takes up less space and can be less pricey to do. Most people have computers and this only requires a machine and a mouse.

“When someone comes on an art walk, you have to go through the explanation,” she said. “I work on a program on a computer and you paint like conventional artists do with a paintbrush, spray can, pencil, eraser, etc. Then, you get it on the screen and save the file and send it out to a printer. It can get printed on whatever — canvas, paper, whatever.”

And it’s gaining in popularity and acceptance as a fine art.

“It took photography years,” she said about acceptance. “Digital paintings, there’s not that much of it.”

But, while some may understand the concept, Carole’s work is different.

“My entire work of a digital fine art painting — color, texture, detail and subject matter — is painted entirely by hand using my mouse as a brush,” Carole states.

She doesn’t know of anyone else who actually hand paints everything starting with a plain screen.

It is time consuming and challenging, but Carole said it is more satisfying and will one day separate her from her fellow digital artists who use Photoshop, photos and other digital effects that make things easier to create works of art.

Her entry into art happened by chance years ago. It was a business day in her law firm and she was on hold with another attorney.

She started playing around on the computer and found a program called “paint.”

“I clicked on it and got a blank screen with some utensils shown on the left and a color chart below. I clicked some more and found a pencil I could draw with. Neat, I thought. So I drew a few lines, thinking ‘landscape,’ and by the time the attorney finally got back on the line, I had discovered how to add ‘fill’ and paint the picture.”

Now, she has her own style, which is mostly for the viewer to focus on the subject, which is realistic in nature and the rest of the painting is often impressionistic.

She loves to paint horses and birds among other subjects. She has exhibited her works throughout Texas, Scottsdale, Rome, Italy, and in New York City.

An artist and computer tech once asked Carole why she makes it so hard by hand painting everything despite the digital effects that can be used.

She said he told her artists use projectors, trace and other types of tricks nowadays and there’s even more tricks of the trade with digital effects.

But Carole was clear — she doesn’t use any and doesn’t plan on it.

“I guess I like to do things the hard way,” she said. “I guess I like to know it is pure. I paint, but nobody will know that. But someday they will. I will be recognized for what I do that is different than what others are doing.”

If You Go

WHAT: Harlingen Art Forum Artist of the Month Carole Boyd

WHERE: Harlingen Art Forum, 115 E. Jackson

WHEN: Open house reception July 27, from 6 to 9 p.m. Boyd’s works will be on display through most of August.

More Information

What you need to know about Carole K. Boyd

* She was formerly a professional musician traveling all over the country singing

* She was a songwriter, tennis pro, acress, pilot and gives dressage lessons

* She now lives in Bayview on her farm with two horses, three dogs, four cats, wild ducks and much more

* She most enjoys painting birds, animals and Native American and Mexican subjects