- Written by webmin
Regular readers of Hemmings Classic Car magazine will already be acquainted with Wendy Marquis, whose evocative vintage truck paintings were featured in the inaugural “Art & Automobilia” spread in the redesigned June 2010 issue.
Wendy and her husband Michael are New Hampshire natives who, for the past five years, have lived in the Bozeman, Montana, area. The move west has been a fortuitous one for this talented artist, as it inspired a new series of paintings, her “Vintage Montana Collection.”
I had the opportunity to meet Wendy and see her 1960 Ford F100 truck, as well as her studio, during a recent visit to Montana. Her truck, with its inline-six engine and three-speed manual gearbox, was mechanically and cosmetically refurbished by Michael last winter, and during our short drive, she was approached by someone interested in purchasing it. “I’ve only been driving it for a few months, and I’m not ready to give it up yet,” she explained. “It’s so much fun!”
Notice her license plate!
Wendy didn’t plan to become the “Truck Lady,” as she explains; “I think that was totally subconscious. I’ve always loved old trucks and cars. My mom had a great old Jag and a few other classics, and to me, they represented joie de vivre. Out here there is no rust, and a lot of old vehicles are still alive. People tend to park their old trucks on their farms, so there’s a plethora of trucks. Their history intrigues me.
“I was taking a walk one day and I saw a perfect red truck. I had to paint it! I became addicted, and because I love landscapes, I combined them to make my own niche. I really get into the details, and I try to make the paintings look 3-D. Twelve or 13 truck paintings later, I was at an art festival at a farmer’s market, and someone approached me and said, ‘You’re the ‘truck lady!’ People come to me and tell me stories about trucks they’ve owned or ridden in. I hear stories about Grandpa, about a farm truck, about Mom’s truck where they made out in the back. They raise peoples’ sentiments – they’re magic, neat.”
Wendy creates her original pieces in acrylic paint over canvas or board, and uses glazes and varnish to achieve the layered depth. ”They take a couple of weeks of work until I feel like I’m done with them,” she explains. “The image and composition have to make sense, and I have to feel the painting. I’ll tweak them, leave and come back.” In addition to her paintings (available as originals or prints), she has created a number of accessories that include refrigerator magnets, greeting cards and handcrafted and hand-embellished, yet practical, wood serving trays.
Her latest project has been making decorative wall-hanging tiles, which she calls “Minis,” featuring giclees of selected pieces.
Her own truck has even had its turn at fame!
Keep up the good work, Wendy, and thanks for sharing your truck art with the Hemmings Nation!