Shirley Novak is wild about poppies. She loves to paint them, to grow them and to share them with her fellow gardeners. Poppies and the other beautiful flowers she grows in her extensive gardens provide both inspiration and pleasure. An avid gardener since childhood, she says, "My love of flowers and color are the passions that drove me to become a painter."
Born and raised in California, Shirley feels her inner voice has called to her to paint for as long as she can remember. Her childhood passions were growing, drawing and painting flowers. She majored in art and took many workshops and classes over the years, eventually turning her attention to painting full-time under the tutelage of her mentor, Len Chmiel.
Shirley paints in oils using a wet-on-wet technique. She paints "en plein air" whenever possible either in her garden or on location when she travels. "What I try to do with paint is recreate the joy I experience in my subjects - the flowers I grow and the wildflowers in the mountain meadows", says Shirley. When not out of doors, she paints in her Colorado studio overlooking the San Juan Mountains or in her summer studio, aptly named "Poppy Cottage."
Shirley shares a passion for painting with her husband, landscape and wildlife artist Ralph Oberg. Her works are exhibited at many fine galleries.