Nanette Oleson’s mission as a school counselor was to help every child discover his or her area of giftedness. In the process of helping children discover their hidden talents and follow their dreams, she discovered her own area of giftedness: impressionistic oil painting. In what she calls a God-ordained meeting, she encountered a woman in the mall one day who offered to teach her how to paint. The 75-year-old dear friend-to-be, who years earlier had guided the young Thomas Kinkade to paint the light in his work, drove to Nanette’s home, charged nothing for her instruction, and left supplies to get Nanette started.
An immediate passion to paint flamed in Nanette, then 45, and within six months she received a scholarship to study at the Scottsdale Artists' School. Soon thereafter she made plans to build a studio, and began plotting a course as a full-time artist.
Nanette’s paintings resonate with a passionate joy inspired by her love of gardening, the koi ponds in her yard, and her soul-soaking hikes in the wilderness accompanied by her energetic border collie, Cobalt. It is not surprising to her that many people feel a sense of joy in her work. As Nanette says, “Art came to me as an unexpected surprise and gift from God and I want my paintings to reflect that joy.” She has learned to capitalize on her familial tremors, which contribute to a spontaneous, playful expression using broken, lively strokes and heavy texture. Her paintings overflow with brilliant, evocative colors.
Nanette's work has received international honors and has been selected as an inspiration for many health care and corporate facilities.