For local Texoma artist Janet Karam art is is all about play. She feels her best work is created when she has fun and doesn’t take it too seriously. She uses a limited palette and enjoys texture and experimentation.

This was how art was introduced to her and she has kept that childlike ability of having fun.

“I’d call my art playful adventure,” she said. “It is lyrical in nature.”

Her journey started when she was 5 years old and a young man placed a piece of paper in front of her. He showed her how to draw a 3D box and a bicycle wheel.

“I was blown away!” she exclaimed.

She tends to always favor her recent completed piece the most because she can see the immediate measure of how she is evolving as an artist. Recently she has begun to incorporate collage into her paintings, using scraps of papers from important meaningful times to her giving her paintings an extra layer of symbolism as well as texture. Her most recent piece she included nature, architecture, and collage work. Her next piece she is adding crossword puzzles into the mix, another part of her playful side.

For her, each art piece leads into the next creating a story of her growth as an artist and showing her love for experimentation.

“There was a time when I took painting too seriously. It kills all the fun for me to think of creating art as a profession, or an income-producing endeavor. When a window of time presents where I get to paint I am elated. That is when I do my best work.”

She never forces herself to paint but instead lets the mood strike, painting in bursts of time that can go with a lull of years in between. She never feels herself losing the ability but only growing during those lull’s, allowing herself to rest and refill the creative fluids.

Karam’s paintings capture a sense of joy, most are full of bright colors and upon closer inspection there are wonderful textures and bits of paper blended so beautifully into the paintings that they’re indistinguishable from the paint itself. She continues to become increasingly more playful as a painter and explore more mediums and techniques.

A published poet and occasional photographer she claims painting her favorite form of play. It speaks to her the most becoming therapeutic.

“It’s my voice when I can’t speak,” she said.

She does not work for commission but she does sell her work through her personal Facebook page as she completes them. Currently through Dec. 20 you can find Janet Karam’s work on exhibit at MK Gallery in Denison.