biography
Gregory Blue - In the Studio 2010
In the Studio 2010

Gregory Blue was born in 1955 and raised in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania. He began drawing almost as soon as he could hold a pencil. He was encouraged by his parents and a next door neighbor that had taken a correspondence course and provided a rudimentary introduction to form, proportion, perspective and chiaroscuro.

Upon graduating highschool, Gregory majored in illustration at York Art Academy. There, he became fascinated with impressionism, and changed his major to Fine Art with a concentration in Painting. After graduating with honors, he worked as a commercial designer and illustrator. In 1983, Gregory moved to New Hope, Pennsylvania, birthplace of the American Impressionist movement. It was during this time he began to paint plein air along the river and canal.

Gregory married in 1988 and returned to a commercial career eventually relocating to Chester County in 1995. He continued painting, but his work schedule limited the time necessary to paint plein air. He began the practice of painting from photographs and was forced to rely more and more on his imagination to produce images.

By 1999, he departed from photographic reference altogether and began to work from memory. These compositions of simplified shapes with a more vibrant palette became more spontaneous and he focused more on color abstraction. Frequently these paintings were executed without any preconceived plan of the final composition. He referred to this method as “unintentional painting”, an attempt to find universal symbols and elements that engage the viewer on a visceral level.

Beginning in 2008, and for the next several years, a series of personal tragedies affected Gregory’s ability to work unintentionally. “The place in my heart and mind that inspires my art has been broken. It is no longer a source for brilliant colors, or beautiful landscapes.” Unable to reconcile this experience, he focused on his commercial work.

In 2012, Gregory remarried and moved to West Chester, Pennsylvania. He built a studio and began to focus on his painting. He enrolled in several workshops focused on realist figure and portrait painting. The study invigorated Gregory’s love of drawing. The years of unintentional painting had expanded his color thinking and informed a greater sense of atmospheric perspective. He discovered a renewed interest in plein air painting and has now returned full circle, to his beginnings.

Gregory Blue’s paintings have been exhibited throughout the eastern United States. He has participated in group and solo gallery shows, as well as various juried shows. His work appears in numerous corporate and private collections, both nationally and internationally.

Gregory Blue resides in West Chester, PA with his wife, step daughter, and their two dogs.