Featured Artist Dot Courson

Artist Dot Courson shares her view of beauty through stunning landscape paintings of her native rural south. See more of her artwork by visiting her website.


Oil landscape painting of a forest by Dot Courson

“Into the LIght” Oil, 40″ x 30″


Art has always been my passion. Growing up in the rural south, I found art in the trees and the layering of the distant landscape—pastures, streams and cloudy hills at the horizon. It is amazing to find beauty in things others pass up every day without notice.


Oil landscape painting of a snowy forest scene at dusk by Dot Courson

“January Evening” Oil, 30″ x 30″


I’ve always had a strong affinity to natural design, visual rhythm and light. In life, I enjoy watching graceful dance, rhythmic ocean waves, swirling wind movements over fields and graceful clouds.


OIl landscape painting of a Mississippi woodland by Dot Courson

“Mississippi Woodland” Oil 30″ x 40″


My goal in incorporating these natural design elements is to make viewing art as relaxing as hearing a lovely melody; however, I take care to avoid emptying the painting of real substance by over-designing my works.


Artist Dot Courson painting plein air in her backyard

Artist Dot Courson painting plein air in her backyard


Some of my paintings are created on location working outside—I feel the very air I am painting into the scene. Some textures are smooth, and some are painted more thickly with a brush or palette knife. I take small paintings and photos inside to my studio to paint large works. Some of my paintings are up to 72 inches in width or height; their visual depth is difficult to appreciate in a photograph.


Oil landscape painting of a rural country road through the woods by Dot Courson

“Rural Life” Oil, 36″ x 24″


My ongoing “Rural South Collection” consists of southern scenery that allows the viewer to create a visual story. I use a limited palette, refusing to have bright colors just for the sake of making my art pretty. I want my paintings to speak in a whisper, prompting the viewer to lean in closer.


Oil landscape painting of a cotton field by Dot Courson

“Shaded Cotton” Oil, 48″ x 36″


My subject matter tends to lean toward memories of the most unique and creatively rich patches of the earth that ever existed—the Mississippi Delta. I was greatly influenced by the area from my childhood summers there with my share-cropping grandparents.


Oil landscape painting of distant mountains beyond a lake by Dot Courson

“Look to the Mountains” Oil, 40″ x 30″


Like characters in a Faulkner novel, my subject and focus changes from location to location. The Appalachian foothills inspire me with beautiful vistas, intimately painted trees and lush vegetation.


Oil landscape painting of a Mississippi home by Dot Courson

“Mississippi Homeplace” Oil, 60″ x 30″


After years of trying to find my own voice I found it by being passionate without any fuss or concern over my painting style. To describe passion and honesty in a painting I must quote from a poem I once wrote called “A Poem of the Land”:

I remember you, land that I love – and the harvest of your fields: cozy and warm in the cotton wagon – a white contented comforting hug.

I come back to paint my pictures, and think of ways to re-join of all the links, a painting that connects the dots … So that the pieces make a whole again.


Oil landscape painting of a rutted dirt road in the rural south by Dot Courson

“Delta Tracks” Oil, 40″ x 30″


I visit you in my mind, running through the hills, running down dusty Delta roads, with a young heart unchanged over the years. The wind in the tree limbs give me breath. I grope the earth and beg to stay.

Time altered memories of the lost days become longings – encircling me as if they are my tomorrows.

You are me and I am you,

 I love you from afar.


Oil landscape painting of a road along a field in the rural south by Dot Courson

“From the South” Oil, 36″ x 48″


I’m very grateful for the awards and the recognition I’ve received over the years, but nothing is as rewarding as capturing a memory that I love.


Artist Dot Courson invites you to follow her on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter.


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  1. Beautiful! Dot your words are as poetic as your paintings. I admire your work!

  2. Tina,
    That means so much to me! I love writing but am not confident in it. Thank you so much for your encouragement.

  3. Very glad to see Dot’s work here. Well deserved as a storyteller of her home.

  4. Carolyn S Beaver says

    Exceptional artist, wonderful article, and love the poem.

  5. Susan fagan says

    Wow, You have embraced yourself in words and work! Congratulations on completing yourself.

  6. Thank you, Susan! What a thoughtful comment!
    In order to be true to myself and others, it’s hard- but I sometimes try to direct my attention inward in order to explain my painting and thought processes. I feel very blessed that God has allowed me to be a creative person. Dot

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