Artist’s watercolors brighten Community Center corridor

Take a look at the beautiful paintings that folks are seeing at the East Portland Community Center, when they are on their way from the front desk to the pool …

Along the way to exercise studios and to the East Portland Aquatic Center is Martha Han’s art exhibition.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
Throughout the month of December, folks coming through the East Portland Community Center have been treated to a gallery of watercolor paintings created by artist Eunchung “Martha” Han.

“When I was very young, I realized I was an artist,” Han told East Portland News. “I did attend a university in Seoul Korea and majored in art. That was many years ago.”

Artist Martha Han shows her watercolor of an orchid she entitles “Simple Sophistication”.

After working in the United States for seven years as a teaching assistant and sixteen years as a special and teacher for the Portland Public Schools, Han said she retired and took up painting again.

“I currently use watercolors,” the artist revealed. “I used to use acrylic but it’s too difficult to transport and work with. My children live out of town, and it’s easier and fun to take watercolors when I travel.”

Community Center visitor Jennie Lochelt holds Milo as they examine the bright colors in some of Martha Han’s artwork.

The best part of painting, Han said, is to “play with the colors. Really, I don’t know much about colors from a scientific standpoint. I just think of whatever color I want, I just mix it, and it comes out so beautifully.

“And, after I finish a work I do feel a great deal of satisfaction.”

In addition to painting, Han said she also volunteers at the outer East Portland CherryBlossom Meals on Wheels Loaves & Fishes Center, just down the hall from the art gallery. “I love the people, and love the idea that we are helping each other. This will be my eighth year of helping there.”

The artist says she likes the idea of holding a show in a setting open to everyday people.

She likes the idea of exhibiting at the Community Center, Han said. “If my art were in a gallery, it would be seen by only a few. Here, everyday people come by, look at it, and enjoy it.”

> On the front page: Martha Han’s 2013 Christmas card cover entitled “Joy to the World”

© 2013 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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