Vibrant and infinitely touchable, Jessica Reynolds’ paintings shine both on the wall and as functional products.
While photographs pay colorful tribute, a touch is worth a thousand words when it comes to the artwork of Jessica Reynolds. Layered and textural, the painter’s original pieces depict joyful, simple scenes of citrus fruit, florals, and domestic life, and are crafted in a time-intensive collage style that lends them a satisfying depth.
“I work in multiple layers, where I paint on glass and then, as the paint dries, I peel the pieces off and [arrange them on the canvas],” says Reynolds, who works out of a sunny home studio in Taylors. “So it ends up being more collage than a traditional painting, even though every element is still purely paint. The background is usually paint applied with a palette knife, to give it even more texture,” she adds. The result is something totally unique, almost sculptural—and full of fresh hues.
“I’m really interested in how we perceive color. My graduate school thesis was all about our emotional response to seeing different colors out in everyday life and the memories [those colors] evoke,” reflects Reynolds. “Right now, [I’m focused on] a lot of kitchen themes like lemons, fruit, lots of florals . . . things that bring you back to your memories around the breakfast table or out on a picnic.”
When asked what response her work often provokes, Reynolds lights up: “I often hear that [my work] makes people smile because my colors are so bright and fun—or they’ll remember a lemon tart that their grandmother would make, and the memories with that.”
Her subject matter of choice led to a natural partnership with Six & Main, an online hand-crafted goods retailer based in Greenville. Through curated gift guides and newsletter features, Reynolds sells small original paintings and turns her illustrations into vibrant prints that shine as dish towels and more. “I want to be able to produce work that people can give as gifts, so I try to always keep my work budget-friendly,” says the Clemson grad and part-time teacher. “I’ve always been drawn to textiles and things that can be used, and I love that my art makes people happy.”