A founding member of ValeArts, Diana Eichler has been plein air oil painting for nearly 20 years.You might have seen her with her easel at Margaret Thomas’s garden on Lawyers Road in May or at the Cacapon River or Colvin Run Mill in October. Fresh outdoor scenery, mixed with the riots of color calmed by the cool green brushstrokes: all of this encompasses the painting of this local artist.
Though an artistic child, Diana’s training began with her art studies at Chatham College in Pittsburgh. Continuing in adulthood, she began studying the en plein air (“in open air”) technique with Oakton artist Laura Bealey in the mid 1980’s. Laura and her art entourage painted in numerous Northern Virginia locations, always emphasizing the pureness of the individual brushstroke and the immediacy of the alla prima (“all at once”) painting. Several of the Bealey students, along with friends from Torpedo Factory classes, founded the ValeArts group in 1996. The group’s twice-yearly shows have continued over the past 19 years at the Vale Schoolhouse.
Another influence on Diana’s work has been the workshop classes she has attended both in Ireland and Provence. She has participated in O’Neill’s Burren Painting Center summer program in County Clare several times. In fact, Diana’s entire family has picked up brushes with her there and made the trip a true family painting holiday. The Eichlers have lugged oil painting supplies to many locales including St. Andrew’s in Scotland and St.-Remy-de-Provence in France. The impressionist style which has evolved over the years, is primarily due to these trips to France where Diana’s son Jeremy lives. Unfazed by wind,sun, temperature, and only slightly by rain, the artist has painted these landscapes while she is in the landscape itself. She invites you, the observer, to sit on the grass with her!
Diana has lived in Reston 42 years. In addition to the Vale show, her paintings have been shown at the Berryville/Clarke Mill Show in Millwood numerous times, the Reston Historic Trust, the Vienna Art Society show, and in the Jo Ann Rose Gallery in Reston. In 2002, Diana was seen in élan magazine as a featured artist with paintings of her hometown, Reston. Her paintings are in private collections in D.C., Maryland, Virginia, Massachusetts and France.
"More recently, Diana has traveled to Maine
and has painted sites on Monhegan Island and the mainland. An outdoor painting
trip to Reedville in the Northern Neck also produced a series of Chesapeake Bay
paintings. Landscape is continually exciting to this painter who hopes to
involve you, the observer, in the adventure that is travel."
"Hills of Provence", oil, 30" x 40"
"The River Path", oil, 24" x 30"
"Cacapon Barn", oil, 14" x 18"