By Ann Leach 

Covid-19 quarantine provided Grove, Oklahoma, artist Carol Merciez time to learn some new art techniques. 

“I discovered Let’s Make Art on YouTube and learned to paint with watercolors,” she said. “I had enjoyed drawing when I was young (her first drawing was recreating a picture of a boy and his cow), but I didn’t pursue art as an adult until 2021.” 

The portability of watercolors appealed to Merciez. “All you need is a small palette of colors, a couple of brushes and paper, as well as water,” she said. “I enjoy the soft impression watercolor makes.” She describes her work as colorful and detailed and loves to paint fish, birds and flowers. “I’m inspired by photorealistic painters such as watercolorists Vincent Jeannerot and Alisa Shea, and oil painter Daniel Gerhertz,” she said. 

A friend asked Merciez to join the Brush and Palette Art Club and Gallery after seeing her work on her Facebook page. “The Brush and Palette Art Club and Gallery was the first place I displayed and sold my art,” she said. Another club member introduced her to oil painting, which she also enjoys. “I love the dynamic colors I can put in my paintings,” she added. 

But Merciez will have to wait a while to fully devote the time she would like to her art. “I have a new job at the Grove Area Chamber of Commerce and I’m training to be a yoga teacher, so my painting time has suffered, but I will eventually find some balance and get back to it,” she said. “I do have some work for sale at Blu Bayou Gifts and Décor in Grove now. I’m trying to find balance between work, art, home and play.” 

Despite her life demands, she is determined to achieve her 2024 art goals, which include having some art displayed at Integris Hospital and Lendonwood Gardens, and to participate in the Grand Area Creative Alliance Artsplash Weekend May 3-4. 

“This is art displayed downtown at Food Truck Friday Art Festival on that Friday night, and at Art in the Garden at Lendonwood Gardens on Saturday,” she explained. And her long-range goal is to try portrait painting. 

Merciez moved to Grove because of Grand Lake. “I’ve been coming here with my parents since I was young. I stay here because of all the other wonderful things about the area. It’s a fun place to live.” 

See more photos in the April 2024 print and digital editions.