From her childhood to art school and throughout her career, Gretchen Hess's art has been the passion of her life. She says, "My work is exploration and experiences of the soul. It is both the strong and subtle impressions of the physical world."
While Hess likes the swiftness of collage, the emotion of paint, and the spirit of drawing, the medium she chooses for a work depends on what she needs to communicate. For example, if the mood were calm and introspective, she would intuitively choose to work with soft pastels. But for stronger or more expressive work, she would choose paint or perhaps collage, and the image would be abstract.
Hess enjoys working in series. She says, "My inspirations are like a short story: they need more than one image to complete the thought." Her background in the decorative arts industry required that she tell a strong, compelling story using a spectrum of imagery and technique with broad appeal.
Hess currently lives and works in a tranquil setting-horses included-outside Chicago, Illinois, which gives her the best of both rural and urban worlds, she says.