Flagler Artists: Reflecting the master artist

Doreen Hardie is a local painter with a passion and love for reaching people.
She started painting at a young age, working on landscape scenes in Jamaica. She never really received formal training; instead, she started taking a class with a retired professor who would one day become her mentor.
Over ten years, he taught her most of what she knows and influenced her work forever.
Hardie didn’t publicize her passion for art for a long time, going so far as to hide her pieces from others. In an interview with Palm Coast Magazine, she remarked, “No one at my job at the Jamaican Embassy in D.C. even knew about my passion.” Her work remained hidden until she saw an ad for the First National Black Fine Art Show in New York.
Hardie related the story of her first attempt at joining an art gallery after taking the advice of a friend. They told her not to bury her talent, so she loaded up her gallery and drove to the show in New York. She was promptly turned down there because they did not allow artists to join the art show on the spot.
Eventually, however, she entered a show and was able to display her paintings. She sold many paintings at that show and started her career, selling in exhibitions in New York, Philadelphia, and Washington, DC. Her work eventually brought her to Florida, which reminded her of home. She’s been here ever since.
Like her late mentor, Greek painter Antonis Karafyllakis, she considers herself a “semi-Impressionist.” She uses her style to paint scenes of peace for her viewers. Her paintings speak the message of peace so well that she never really has to point it out. Routinely, her viewers tell her that her paintings seem to impart the message of peace directly to them. Hardie says, “I want to paint the peace that God paints on peoples’ hearts.”
Her faith in God inspires most of what she does. In a world of confusion and chaos, she believes that the only true peace can come from God, which is why she paints what she does. Hardie wants her paintings to be the doorway that leads others to the peace that Jesus Christ offers. She says, “Some people preach the Word, others write the Word, and others sing the Word, but God wants me to paint the Word.”
In her eyes, God is the master artist, and He is the one who has guided her through every situation. He has given her every award, accolade, and opportunity. “Without Him,” she says, “I would be nowhere!”
Her foundational scripture, which she prints on all her business cards, is Psalms 19:1. It reads, “The heavens tell of the glory of God. The skies display his marvelous craftsmanship.” Hardie wants to remind everyone, “There is a God!”
She currently has a display at the Ocean Center in Daytona Beach, which will be up for an entire year. She also wanted everyone to know about the Sea Spirits Gallery in St. Augustine, which has many of her pieces. She says, “They’ve been so kind to me, and I want to show them some love.” For those interested, you can see more of her work at www.doreenhardie.com.
— Joseph Cogswell