Mary Ann Stafford

Mary Ann Stafford

Medium: pastel, acrylic, colored pencil, pen and ink

Drawing has always been my first love as an artist and nature is my favorite subject: landscapes, still life, and animals. I love working with line to build up shapes, textures, and values. I sometimes divide my compositions into rectangular sections and vary the colors and values in juxtaposition. My personality is calm, steady, and structured, and it shows up in my art works.

One of my latest series is about trees– pen and ink drawings of bare trees superimposed on colorful watercolor backgrounds. I am fascinated by the patterns of limbs and branches and the negative spaces between. This inspiration is endless, even as the seasons change, and I am exploring new ways to incorporate the theme.

Recently, I have expanded my drawing media to include colored pencil and scratchboard. Although both of these require painstaking, patient attention to detail, they also offer flexibility and contemplative experiences. Colored pencil drawings can be seen as paintings, while scratchboards can also be painted as well as scratched.

In 2013, I published a book that included images of my pen and ink drawings of the 25 historic structures on the National Historic Register in the Argenta District of North Little Rock as a result of receiving a scholarship award from the Arkansas committee of the National Museum of Women in the Arts. The publication also includes my research of the historical and architectural facts of this NLR area.

My artist website can be seen at and a teaching blog at In addition, my paintings and drawings have been included in four publications: Best of America: Landscapes, Best of America: Pastel Artists, Art & Artisans of the Ozarks, and The Art of Living presented by Arkansas Hospice. I am a signature member of the Pastel Society of the Southwest, Arkansas League of Artists, the Arkansas Pastel Society, and a diamond signature member of Mid-Southern Watercolorists.