The Therapeutic Power of Water – Artist Insights from Ellen Welch Granter

“Painting about water is a bit like painting about paint,” says artist Ellen Welch Granter.

When viewing anything, it all breaks down into pieces of color. From there it is all in how you see it, or in Granter’s case, how you paint it.

“Secretly…it is about the effect of light on the water. Sparkling or leaden, transparent or opaque, glossy or flat, the water’s surface is always mesmerizingly beautiful,” shares Granter. “I tried to convey the sense of peace that the water surface inspires with deeply saturated color fields. Of course, the birds are nearby.”

Marsh wrens in the reeds are the subject of three paintings in this group. The flat pink water and gold reeds recede into the background so that the noisy wrens can sing their attention-grabbing song.

“In these paintings, I can get around the fact that in real life, deep in the marsh, wrens are usually very hard to see,” says Granter.  “And seen this way, you don’t get mosquito or greenhead bites.”

Between her birds and her brushes, Granter found a piece of peace during a time when it was rare but so necessary.

“During the horrible months of isolation, I was delighted to have this painting challenge as an antidote to the meditative trance of that constant tech connection,” explains Granter. “Creating this series of paintings was my effort to remember to keep it simple but keep it beautiful. And it helped, as art always does.”

Granter truly celebrates water in this new collection of work. There are familiar aspects that assure you it is an original Ellen Welch Granter. Then, of course, there are a few surprises.

All are welcome to visit and view Water, a four artist show featuring new works from William B. Hoyt, Ellen Welch Granter, Jill Matthews, and Kathy Ostrander Roberts on Maine Art Hill at 14 Western Ave in Kennebunk. The show opens Saturday, September 4, and runs through September 22. The gallery is open every day from 10 AM to 5 PM. FMI call 207-967-0049 or visit


To see the show in its entirety, including the 360-degree virtual tour, click here.

Preview opens Wednesday, September 1. Virtual Tour is available on the evening of Friday, September 3.

To see our complete collection of each artists’ works, click below

William B. Hoyt  –  Artist Page

Ellen Welch Granter  – Artist Page

Jill Matthews – Artist Page

Kathy Ostrander Roberts – Artist Page

To read more about the process, inspiration, and background of each artist, click below.

William B. Hoyt – Insights and Stories

Ellen Welch Granter – Insights and Stories

Jill Matthews – Insights and Stories

Kathy Ostrander Roberts – Insights and Stories