An oil painter, began her art education, studying privately under Florida artist George Earl Fox. After retiring from the American Foreign Service, she embarked on self-guided art education, studying extensively with Diane Ainsworth, Larisa Aukon, Camille Przewodek, and Scott Gellatly. Offutt developed her sense of composition during the three years she lived in Japan. Her sense of color comes from 40 years of living and visiting Greece and Arizona. In both these places, clear unfiltered light through dry air gives power to colors. Offutt has exhibited in Germany, Greece, the mid-Atlantic, Arizona and Washington state.
I paint because I can’t communicate what I see in any other way. My inspirations are light showcased by clouds, mountains curtained in mist, tangled forest canopy, rim light on a dog’s head, the motion of waves or the pattern they leave in the sand. These are my subjects. They signify our relationship as humans with all that we see and are part of. I want to foster awareness of these interrelationships.
I use oil paint on stiff panels or canvas because I can manipulate the paint in many different ways. I can cause “accidents” by thinning it or use crude tools like squeegees or knives when the paint is as thick as putty. I want unexpected results because that’s what life presents us with: constant new opportunities calling for new responses. I also want these “accidents” because they ask the viewer to interpret them. Color plays an important role in this.
I intensify colors to invite the viewer to step into a different place. I want the viewer to be an active participant in my art. I don’t want to present them with the whole story. This is the central theme that ties my work together.