Seagrove Beach artist Melody Bogle debuted her first one-woman show recently at The Hidden Lantern Gallery in Rosemary Beach. The name of the exhibit is "The Carmel Sea + The Emerald Coast."
The Hidden Lantern's newly dressed walls feature the work of the acclaimed local artist. Bogle's skill was applied in translating two diverse coasts — the jagged edges and temperamental seas of Carmel against the powdery dunes and nearly elusive, tranquil aura of the Emerald Coast.
Bogle has been painting for decades, dating back to high school days in Freeport. "It's my passion," she said.
However, a different career choice got in the way of pursuing her passion.
Bogle worked as an air traffic controller in Chicago and Memphis for 28 years. On retiring, she moved back to Walton County in 1998 and found she finally had time to again pick up her paint brushes. For the past 10 years she has been pursuing her passion and attending painting workshops.
Bogle has been painting her inspirations using pastels since the 1980s and still loves to use them. And these days, she also likes to paint with oils.
"I am finally at a point in my life where I can travel and go to workshops and pursue it," she said.
The artist has gotten involved in painting en plein air, which she says has brought it all together for her since she primarily paints landscapes.
"There has been a big surge in painting en plein air and getting out and painting our beautiful land," she said. "I have always loved the beaches, and I love the dunes. I have always been inspired by light on an object, the light around an object, colors, and shadows."
Her work has won recognition, including Best in Show at ArtsQuest 2013, runner-up to Best in Show at Back to Nature 2013 and Best in Show at Back to Nature 2012. She was juried into Southeast Regional 2012, and juried into Women Painters of the Southeast for 2012 and 2013. She is a member of Oil Painters of America, American Impressionist Society, Emerald Coast Plein Air Painters, and Pastel Society of North Florida, where she served as president for two years.
Last year Bogle visited Carmel and painted outdoors on that coast. When she returned home, she thought it would be wonderful to show the differences in the coastlines in an exhibit. That exhibit is now at The Hidden Lantern.
"I've got plein air and studio pieces in the show from both coastal destinations — the Carmel sea and Emerald Coast in a one-woman show," said Bogle. "It's quite an honor."
"The Carmel Sea + The Emerald Coast" exhibit is up through Feb. 16 at The Hidden Lantern in Rosemary Beach.