She is known for her love of vivid color in a style that she refers to as abstract lyricism, the “space between” the realistic and the abstract, the personal and universal, the intellectual and intuitive. “Water, landscapes, and gardens will always ‘pull’ at me,” she says. “I’m not interested in them as subjects per se. I’m more interested in their energy and the emotional response that energy evokes, the way nature expresses abundance without reservation the way so many people are afraid to in their own. We are connected deeply to nature, and yet in our fast-paced, technologically addicted society, we too easily lose touch with that connection. I will never tire of exploring the mystery of how integral those natural forces are to our well being.”
She works mostly in oils, although pastels and acrylics are both media she turns to when a painting or circumstance dictates. Her style is bold, with energetic marks and thick paint, applied mostly with palette knife or a combination of palette knife and brush. Most paintings are done alla prima; some are revisited and layered with more thick paint until they convey the emotional resonance Boyer wants to express. She tries not to plan too steadfastly, as she is not as interested in subject depiction as in how a painting communicates with a viewer and creates a response. She concentrates on the interplay between color, harmony, shape, light, and value. She allows the painting to say what it needs to as she moves the knife or brush across canvas or panel or board, steps back to listen and observe, then approaches again. Music plays a big part in her process (Boyer is a professional singer as well as an artist); she always listens to it as she paints, finding it helps to create a rhythm and “flow” as she works. Chopin’s nocturnes, French gypsy jazz, New Orleans jazz, blues, roots-based gospel, and Memphis soul are particular favorites.
Dawn has a love for renovated mills. Her studio is in one in Rollinsford, NH, and she lives in one in Somersworth, NH.