About the Artist

"Selfie at Seventy" by Charlotte Mertz (10"x8" oil, #181104-o)

“Selfie at Seventy” by Charlotte Mertz

Charlotte Mertz began expressing herself artistically in her youth but abandoned its pursuit as an impractical dream. After her husband’s early retirement, however, a shipboard watercolor class captured her heart and imagination.  She determined that it was time to pursue her art again seriously.

A neighboring artist mentored her until she was eventually able to fill in the gaps of her art education through the Virtual Art Academy, an international online self-study program, for which, when the curriculum was revised in 2013, she was invited to contribute to, and help review, the new watercolor-related curriculum.

Meanwhile, already in demand as a teacher herself, she had begun in 2010 to teach both private and community watercolor classes.  She believes in challenging both herself and her students to continually improve their understanding, master their techniques, and stretch their boundaries, striving always for that elusive and ever-advancing carrot of “excellence” while still maintaining joy in the freedom of expression through paint.

Charlotte’s paintings reflect characteristics of her own personality—contemplative, confident, and controlled.  While her watercolors have always relied more on temperature and chromatic variations than on exaggerated hues, her more recent forays into oils have encouraged her to extend her artistic voice into bolder statements with stronger colors and deeper value keys.

Charlotte’s loose, interpretive approach to realism, using subtle color and simplification, takes advantage of the power of suggestion and limited detail.   Enthralled by reflections, translucence, and the play of light across forms, she enjoys incorporating these elements in her work.

As a lifelong traveler, she also has developed an appreciation of the differences and similarities among locales, cultures, and people she encounters.  So her paintings are often imbued with a sense of both the uniqueness and the universality of her subjects.


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