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February 8, 2023

Nature, wildlife and humanity in oil

Marie Massey has been drawing and painting since she could hold a pencil—as young as 4 years old in her grandmother’s garden. Since then she has been drawn to nature, wildlife and humanity in her artwork and has been painting professionally for 19 years. 

Her style ranges from highly detailed realism in watercolor to loose, impressionistic paintings in oil.

Massey currently is showing 17 of her works through Jan. 3, at the Santa Cruz County Building, 701 Ocean St. 

“Sailing Cerulean Seas” by Marie Massey.

Massey credits her advances in art to her mentor and teacher, Barbara Marquardt.  

“This method has helped me to unleash my creativity and allow the magic to happen on the canvas,” Massey said.

She studied art at the California College of Arts and Crafts, UC Santa Barbara and the Loveland Academy of Art as well as with many well-known contemporary artists. She teaches both plein air and studio workshops. 

In 2014 Massey was juried into the California Art League as an Exhibiting Member. Also in 2014, Massey founded the Central Coast Plein Air Painters. In 2013, Massey and fellow artist, Diane Edwards, founded Paint the Poudre Plein Air, a plein air painting competition and exhibition that benefits the preservation and conservation of the Cache La Poudre River in Colorado

Massey’s work is represented by the San Francisco Women’s Art Gallery in San Francisco, Independence Gallery in Loveland, CO and Gallery 620 in Pacific Grove. Massey typically works at her Dolphin Dunes Studio in La Selva Beach and her Painted Meadows Studio in Bellvue, CO.

Her inspirations include Monet, Renoir, Bonnard, Cezanne, Gaughuin, Jackson Pollock and Wolf Kahn. 

“I admire the ability of these artists to take a fresh look at the world both inside and outside themselves, see the beauty of it and express it. It is my aspiration to do the same,” she wrote on her website.

“New Brighton Sand & Sea” by Marie Massey.”

Massey, who has claimed numerous awards, has shown her work extensively nationally and internationally and has been juried into more than 130 shows. In addition to her oil on canvas paintings, she also offers high-quality giclée prints produced on state-of-the-art, professional-grade Epson printers.

“We use acid-free papers and canvases with archival inks to guarantee that your prints last a lifetime without fading or loss of color,” she said.

For information and to view her work, visit

Tarmo Hannula
Tarmo Hannula has been the lead photographer with The Pajaronian newspaper in Watsonville since 1997. He also reports on a wide range of topics, including police, fire, environment, schools, the arts and events. A fifth generation Californian, Tarmo was born in the Mother Lode of the Sierra (Columbia) and has lived in Santa Cruz County since the late 1970s. He earned a BA from UC Santa Cruz and has traveled to 33 countries.


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