On First Friday, November 1st, the work of exhibiting artist, Fred Sprock, will be featured at The Artists’ Gallery in Chestertown. In this body of work, Fred’s landscapes of the Eastern Shore are the focus, along with images from both Italy and Ireland. In addition, Fred has included a few puppy paintings. In all of his work, Fred continues his exploration of the surface, more so on panels than on canvas. He enjoys painting with a palette knife because he finds it to be less precise than a brush and is useful in scraping off the paint, softening the visual impact. He also uses cold wax to build up texture and depth in certain areas and a wire brush or steel wool to do the opposite in other places. With this method, the viewer is not immediately given all the information. However, within the soft lines, muted colors and close values, he also develops areas of hard edges along with sharp hue and value contrasts. As a result, Fred encourages the observer to investigate the painting more closely. When that happens, those strategically placed edges, bolder colors and values will guide the viewer through the painting, revealing the most important aspects of the work.
Fred Sprock was born and raised in Charlotte, NC and moved to what he likes to call the “eastern shore of the Eastern Shore” – Snow Hill, Maryland. After a career in advertising, he began painting in oil, and studied under Dee Beard Dean, Morgan Samuel Price, Richard Fennell, Roger Dale Brown, Wayne McDowell and Stuart Shils. Fred has taught at The Upstairs Gallery in Tryon, NC and Braitman Studio, including a field trip to Tuscany. While teaching beginning classes, Fred would instruct, “If you do this, that will happen.” It was then that he began to define for himself the difference between a “painter and an artist.” Over time, the painter acquires the technical skills necessary to render a strong likeness of the subject, knowing that ‘if do this, that will happen.’ “To become an artist,” he says, “at some level you must, to the extent possible, abandon that knowledge and ask yourself, if I do this, what will happen?” That is his challenge.
The public is invited to visit The Artists’ Gallery on First Friday, November 1st, from 5 to 8 p.m., enjoy a light reception and meet the artist. Fred Sprock’s work will be featured in the gallery throughout the month of November. Located at 239 High Street in Chestertown, The Artists’ Gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10-5 and Sundays from 12:30-4:30 p.m. For more information about The Artists’ Gallery, please visit www.theartistsgalleryctown.com or call the gallery at 410-778-2425.