Bennett Waters Biography

I grew up in Eastern North Carolina, and Raleigh was like my second home.  I have lived in Charlotte for the past 34 years, and still spend much time in the Eastern part of the state.  My family is still in Smithfield.  After graduating from UNC-CH with a degree in Journalism, I had a 20+year career in marketing and advertising.  While loving the business, I still longed to use my creative energies to make something I could touch and hold, not just business plans or positioning strategies.   So I began painting in oils, and studied with Curt Butler at Butler Studios and Andy Braitman at Bratiman Studios.  

I have found that painting has a complete hold over me, yet I also find it very therapeutic.  For me, painting is like hiking through the woods on a trail.  You know which trail you will choose to follow and where you will most likely end up.  The things you carry and use are most likely the same as before.  But it is the unpredictable surprises along the way that make each time special and unique.  Every painting is a new artistic journey for me.  

I love to reinvent the everyday world using color, shape and different perspectives of space.  You might be looking close up, or from far away.  Or both.  Energy abounds in my work.  Color draws you in.  Lines lead you through the scene.  Shapes bind together for familiar references.  Altogether my style is contemporary, and somewhat abstract, yet somehow familiar.  

I paint in series of work.  Each series has its own special characteristics.  Most originate from travels I have taken, and pictures that captivated me.  

In the Aerial Perspectives series, each painting offers a different bird's eye view of the earth.  The rhythms and patterns that I see from above appear in the first paintings as if from a moderate distance.  You might be taking off from ground level or perhaps landing.  As the series developed, the perspective reflected in each painting became a closer and closer look at the townships below, yielding a more and more abstract interpretation, and often a chaotic viewpoint.  Color and shapes dominate this series and enhance the calm or chaos.  
My different series of city scenes capture color and reflections using either definition or abstraction of objects, depending on the light availability.  In this series of daytime paintings from Provence, I hope you will feel the curiosity I had when I was visiting there.  What would it be like to live here or to stand before a friend's doorway, to wander down side streets at leisure, or to meet with friends at the local cafe?  With these paintings I am reinventing these villages, using repeated shapes and color to make them my own.