By Sandi Mackey
Special to The Times
The Southern Tennessee Ladies Society kicked off the New Year with a private art show during their January meeting held at the Franklin County Country Club in Winchester.
Nashville-based artist, Rene Stubblefield Poe, shared stories of her career at the ladies’ luncheon and treated the women to an exhibit showcasing several original works of fine art from her collection.
Would you believe that her long-standing career was launched accidentally? A local coffee shop in Seaside, Fla., was looking to grab attention from visiting tourists and offered Rene a free cappuccino if she would doodle to create some chalk drawings on the sidewalk in front of the shop with her daughter. Rene had not been accustomed to drawing or any type of artwork at the time, but agreed to play around. Looking for a source of inspiration, she sketched the buildings across the way from the shop. Later that day, she was encouraged by the positive feedback of the shop owner who told her that she was talented and should try to paint that same scene on canvas. Why not?
Being on vacation with time on her hands, she purchased some meager painting supplies from a nearby art store and recreated the scene that evening using acrylic paints.
Do you ever believe that things happen for a reason? Early the next morning, her daughter was excited to show off her mom’s new painting back at the coffee shop; it was barely dry from being painted the night before. Rene went to the store to retrieve it, only to find that the shop owner had sold it for a few hundred dollars. And so her life as an artist began.
Rene is originally from Huntsville, Ala. She studied at Auburn and graduated from the University of Alabama in Huntsville. She lives in Nashville with her husband, Mark Poe, where she continues to work and teach from her home studio. She has three grown children and enjoys spending time with her two little granddaughters. Rene’s mother, Marge Schmitz of Winchester, is a member of STLS.
Rene Stubblefield has been painting in the impressionist tradition since 1999. The impressionistic movement originated in Paris during the 19th century and is characterized by small visible brush strokes that capture light and its changing qualities, depictions of movement, unusual angles and open composition of ordinary subject matter. Some of the most famous impressionist painters include Monet, Van Gogh, Renoir, Cassatt and Cezanne.
Rene has been fortunate to study with present day impressionist master Quang Ho, based out of Colorado. She has also been influenced by working along with other important teachers, including Russian-American artist Murat Kaoulov, Roger Dale Brown, from Brentwood, TN, C.W. Mundy, and while in France with Atlanta native, Jill Steenhuis. Each new work of art is an expression of the influences, education and experiences she has encountered throughout her life. She has been enjoying her artistic journey in finding her own signature stroke and look.
Visit Rene’s website to view her artistic creations at www.renestubblefield.com.
Rene recognized that Franklin County has a thriving collection of artists and crafters, including several members within the ladies’ club. She shared stories about traveling abroad and the shear enjoyment she gets from painting, especially in plein air. As she exclaims, “I simply love to play in the piles of delicious color. Sometimes the result is pleasing; sometimes it’s more of a challenge. But, every single time I paint, I learn. I overcome. I face a fear or two (or more), but I am rewarded by the process so much more than the product. I am grateful to God, the original artist, for any natural talent I may possess.”
The Southern Tennessee Ladies Society (STLS) is a not-for-profit association of women who are interested in social activity with other women in the community and women who want to make a difference in the lives of graduating high school seniors by awarding scholarships each May.
The 2018 scholarship applications have been distributed to guidance counselors in high schools throughout Franklin, Coffee, Moore, Lincoln and Grundy counties. Scholarship applications are due by March 1, 2018.
STLS meets the first Wednesday of each month at the Franklin County Country Club at 9:30 a.m. Membership is open to the public. For more information. contact STLS at www.southerntnladies.com.