Work by more than 100 Artisans inside new Carmel more

Oil Paintings
CCA Gallery
Cindy Cradler

“My paintings evoke memories of childhood and fun. I want my work to remind people immediately of something they have seen, touched, tasted or smelled. I use the subject matter to appeal to the senses and the emotions.”

An Internet challenge refocused Cindy Cradler, diverting her attention from drawings and pastels to oil paintings.

The challenge was to create a painting a day for 50 days. “I figured if I still liked painting after 50 days, I would continue,” she said of the 2009 experience. “I haven’t stopped painting in oils since.”

The majority of her paintings capture familiar toys that she and her husband owned, though she’s always looking for new subjects to make her arrangements different and more interesting. “I have countless ideas and hope that I can manage to get them all to canvas at some point,” said Cindy.

“I take a great deal of time determining my subject matter and setting up the still life to represent something in my memory or to represent a sentiment,” added the Hendricks County artisan. “This makes my work very personal and original. I enjoy spending time remembering my childhood in Indiana and work hard to reflect those memories and emotions in my paintings.”

Seeing a painting of a Fisher Price toy or the quintessential yellow rubber ducky stirs strong childhood memories in the people who buy and admire Cindy’s work.

“Part of the reason I select the Fisher Price Little People for a number of my paintings goes back to the endless number of hours my sisters and I would spend playing with them,” she said. “Many times my customers will comment on the memories they have as children playing with the same toys.”

This artist’s process doesn’t follow a traditional path. She applies paint very thinly with a sable brush, primarily mixing the paints on her palette and finishing the blending on the canvas. Cindy completes most of her paintings in one day, which allows her to have smooth transitions of colors and brush strokes. It enables her to get the realism that she wants.

She was attracted to Indiana Artisan because she wanted to be part of a group of like-minded artists that were all working to promote Indiana art.

“I was ecstatic to have my work selected,” Cindy said.  “To enjoy painting as much as I do and having someone else select my work to be labeled as created by an ‘Indiana Artisan’ is truly an honor.”