Heather W. Ernst

Heather W. Ernst’s collectors say her paintings shout, “I am alive!”, and say her work “makes me so happy!”.  Heather’s multimedia abstract landscapes and abstract expressionist work is found in private collections throughout the US, UK, New Zealand and Germany.  She is a retired architect from Auburn, WA.

Heather so often hears; “I feel so happy when I look at your art.”  Collectors say, “your paintings shout, “I am alive!” or “I don’t usually like abstract art, but I like yours.”  That’s when Heather thinks she’s succeeded.  She expressed spirit, got an emotional reaction in return, conveyed her joy of painting and shared it with you.

She’s so inspired by color that she’s compelled to express the feelings pigment creates. Sometimes she’s moved by a natural scene and will express the emotional connection she has to the earth in a playful, rich, dreamy or whimsical way.

“I record feelings with paint, charcoal, and pastel, which is a completely different pursuit than my previous career.  As an architect, I planted buildings for use by code, via zoning, safely anchored to the ground, according to required, civilized mandates. When I make an abstract landscape come alive, I think of energetic parts of a living whole.  I imagine shapes, colors, and lines all having mischievous intentions or choreographed roles.  I think of impish little Fiddleheads sprouting from the soil, or tiny breezes swirling past one’s ear.”

“When I drive emotion direct from thought to canvas, with no planning, I‘m at my best. When I record my reaction to an environment, a recognizable form might not be the color it is in reality, because what I see and feel internally isn’t.  My imagination is way more vivid than the world I live in, and that’s what sets my mind on fire.”

The extent of her planning may involve laying out tubes of colors that inspire her, the order corresponding sequence with which she plans to glaze. She has a pretty photographic memory, so she tries to picture how the hues will interplay.  When she paints the next layer, she’ll add a skosche of pigment from each succeeding layer to harmonize the colors.  Sometimes she puts the painting away for a day or two.  When she comes back, nine times out of ten, it’s completely obvious to her what it needs.


Heather shares her work at:






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