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Sanibel artist is driven to create imaginative pieces

By Staff | Oct 2, 2009

When Joelene Black experiences different phases and stages in her life she doesn’t just sigh and and chat about it – she paints it.

Black, a pretty brunette and co-owner of the Italian Il Tesoro restaurant on Sanibel puts her soul into her art.

“My Art projects and portrays the amazing people, beautiful places, and interesting things that I love from my life,” she said.

“I attempt to expressively showcase the connection between the “subject” and myself as the Artist-translator”.

Black, 42, is a self-taught artist who has been painting professionally since the age of 13. At 13 Black’s talents were noted by a woman who commissioned her for $35 to paint roses on her knitting basket.

Several decades later Black gets $10,000 and up for her detailed murals and work.

Black paints landscapes, places and people in rich oils that convey feeling.

“When I do a portrait i try to portray the soul of the person,” she said.

Her work can found lining the walls of the Il Tesoro whom she co-owns with her husband Chef AJ Black.

Paintings with grapes and clouds form a dreamy backdrop for patrons while angelic images of children – one of her daughter Sophia bring an air of warmth to the restaurant.

“I am inspired a lot by my family,” she said.

Though Black paints canvasses and walls she will do other items if requested by a customer.

“There’s really no limit,” she said. “I do paint really killer drapes.”

In her work Black will often paint archetypes of people she knows.

“By engaging my creativity versus the persona of the painting, I evoke the spirit of my personality as well as the likeness and soul of the subject,” she said.

She recently worked to remodel a dollhouse at the Sanibel Public Library. For Black it does not matter if it’s a mural or a dollhouse – if the inspiration to make something is there she goes with the feeling.

“I believe that everyone has creation inside them, but being an artist for me is like being an activist of creativity,” she said. “I am driven to my craft, I must do it , I can’t imagine my life without it.”

To see more of Black’s work or to contact her go to www.wemakeover.com.