Sunday, May 16, 2021

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Bringing Art from Deep River to Australia



Manhattan Reflections, watercolor by Alan James

Manhattan Reflections, watercolor by Alan James )


Artist Alan James was recently filmed for an episode of Put Some Colour in your Life in his Deep River studio. Photo courtesy of Alan James

Artist Alan James was recently filmed for an episode of Put Some Colour in your Life in his Deep River studio. (Photo courtesy of Alan James )

With the click of a button on his computer’s keyboard, award winning impressionist watercolor artist Alan James was able to fulfill one of his bucket list experiences.

A fan of the Australia-based art show Put Some Colour in your Life, James looked up the show’s website and low and behold, the site had a section that prompted, “if you want to be on the show, push here.” So he did. After filling out additional information and sending along images of his work, James was chosen as one of six artists to be featured on the show’s Hot August Nights tour, which will air in late October. The other artists are from Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Maine, and California.

On Aug. 31, show host Graeme Stevenson, along with a professional film crew, visited James at his Deep River home and studio to film the 24-minute segment, which focused on his Impressionist art, the tools he uses, the sources of his inspiration, and his unique technique. No stranger to talking about his art, James teaches classes at the Lyme Art Academy as well as at his studio.

“It was a very exciting process,” said James about the taping of the show. “I prepared quite a bit for it and I feel like my preparation paid off, because I was very relaxed. It also helped that Graeme and his crew were consummate professionals.”

James, who has spent his life working as a musician and an artist, grew up in North Haven and has called Deep River home for the past six years. During the past two years, he said, art has completely taken over and become his main focus.

He spent a large chunk of time from the late ‘70s until around 2012 pursuing his music career as both a solo artist and as part of band, playing a variety of instruments including the guitar, drums, and mandolin, among others.

A self-taught artist and musician, James said he has loved art since a young age and was often found perfecting his first self-portraits in school, when he should have been focusing on other studies.

He was drawn to Impressionism because it allows there to be interaction from the viewer and the use of imagination, its not just a complete replica of what the artist sees.

His favorite subjects to paint are city street scenes in the rain because of the reflection of light created by the water and the overall feeling the paintings create. His advice to other artists is to follow your heart and work at it every day to become better.

“Art is constant learning,” said James.

To see James’ television segment, visit or James’s episode will be aired on Nutmeg Public Access Television in late October.

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