ArtQuench Presents James McCarthy

ArtQuench Introduces

Artist James McCarthy

 With his creative mind, true heart and real passion for his artistic gift ,

James creates amazing surrealistic images of nature and life.

“To this day I’m still inspired by my first nine years of life living in Kalamazoo, Mich. where I was born.
My work is seasonal. Though I’ve lived in Florida for the last 48 years I am still fascinated by Winter imagery. Music inspires me, as well.”

James McCarthy 047 Autumn Harvest


 I like Halloween a lot, too. It reminds me of childhood, especially my early days in Michigan.

“Autumn Harvest”

Oil on canvas. 18″x 24″


James McCarthy Photo for Tara


“Stars and Snow” Oil on canvas. 15″x 30″.

I’ve always been much more spiritual/scientific than religious but I’m very sentimental about Christmas.

James McCarthy Stars and Snow

Surrealism and the Landscape

by James McCarthy

I’m originally from Kalamazoo, Michigan where during the early 1960’s I was part of the first generation of TV kids. Besides cartoons and comedies I also liked science fiction and fantasy.

My Mom, baby sister and me along with my best friend, the TV.

James McCarthy  child photo with mother ArtQuenchetc 005 (2)

My dad as a kid. He was an artist, too. He was very proud of this drawing. We still have it here. The older we both got, the closer we became.

James McCarthy father image with fathers artwork ArtQuenchetc 007 (2)

At the same time, nature and the changing of the seasons made a profound impact on me, especially the mystery and melancholy of Winter. Even though my family moved to Florida when I was ten and I’ve lived here ever since, I’m still fascinated by Winter imagery.

“Heart of the Sunset; Lost Father”

Oil on canvas. 15″x 30″.

My father died when I was working on this painting so I depicted him wandering away on the left. I’m the one by the hearth with outstretched arms. This painting was stolen from a local gallery even though I had won a prize for it and it wasn’t for sale. After I stopped feeling sorry for myself I painted it over again.

James McCarthy Heart of the Sunset Lost Father f50cde3142827effadd1a1398829de94


“Along the Frozen Lake”

Oil on canvas. 18″x24″.

This was inspired by a pond near my house up in Michigan. Flotsam would collect along the edge covered in ice and snow. I enhanced the memory somewhat. It is also an homage of sorts to

Roger Dean, the illustrator of many Yes album covers.

James McCarthy Along the frozen Lake 6e440b123dbea6f99e99fe80e805f376 (2)

James McCarthy garden photo 2006-01-01 01 11 39 (2)


“Heart of the Sunrise; Lost Dreamer”

Oil on canvas. 20″x30″.

Inspired by the song “Heart of the Sunrise” by Yes.

James McCarthy Heart of the Sunrise dec721225bc633c0aa5ce5d20e933e7e


I graduated from Tampa Catholic High School in 1974 and attended the University of South Florida as a painting major from 1977-1981. I had no real direction at the time though so I went to work for my father at his commercial art studio for twenty-five years. Finally, in 1999 I realized my true calling and began seriously painting. I’ve exhibited my work in various galleries in the Tampa Bay area.

James McCarthy 1977 ArtQuenchetc 003

College artwork

James McCarthy college 1980 ArtQuench (B) 008

I like to paint spontaneous organic imagery

(in Surrealism this is known as ‘biomorphism’).

“Mellotronia II”

Oil on canvas. 20″x30″.

Inspired by mellotron music.

James McCarthy Mellotronia 2  2012-02-03 11 03 50 (2)

However, I also consider myself a landscape painter. I like to depict the seasons and weather. Some of my landscapes are also influenced by places in and around my neighborhood here in Brandon, Florida which I then ’embellish’.

“Florida Scene II”

Oil on canvas. 10″x 20″.

James McCarthy Florida Scene 2  2012-08-05 11 31 20

James McCarthy neighborhood photo 2  Autumn Spirits IV etc  Oct 23 2013 030 (2)

James McCarthy image at home 2012-01-18 10 18 40

James McCarthy neighborhood photo 2012-01-04 20 51 10 (2)


James McCarthy tree image 2006-01-02 03 38 44 (2)

“Cosmic Petunias”

Oil on canvas. 20″x 30″.

James McCarthy Cosmic Patunias a8059930d899c26b2d15499fc62428c7 (2)

I’m also fascinated by the scenery of the British Isles with their rolling hills, mountains, gardens and especially the ruins. I would like to live there someday if possible.

“Dawn in the Garden of Creation”

Oil on canvas. 22″x 28″

James McCarthy Dawn in the Garden of Creation 2012-02-27 15 25 55 (2)


“The Garden in the Valley of the Stars”

Oil on canvas. 22″x 30″.

James McCarthy The Garden in the Valley of the Stars(B) 020

“The Place Where Forgotten Dreams Dwell”

Oil on canvas. 22″x 28″


James McCarthy the_place_where_forgotten_dreams_dwell_by_tolkyes-d4yf0by

Often my inspiration comes from music, particularly ‘mindscape’ music such as prog rock, psychedelic, new age, medieval and certain classical music.

“Autumn Spirits IV”

Oil on canvas. 18″x 24″


James McCarthy Autumn Spirits IV etc  Oct 23 2013 039


“Close to the Edge; Seasons Will Pass You By”

Oil on canvas. 15″x 30″.

Inspired by the song/album of the same name by Yes.

it is about seasons and the passing of time. A common theme in my paintings.

James McCarthy Close to the Edge  Seasons Will Pass You By More 002 (2)


Besides the seasons, which also represent the passing of time and our mortality, recurring themes in my work involve creation and death along with the big question: is the Final Door a door to infinity or oblivion?


“Through the Afterlife (A & B)”

Oil on canvas. 12″x12″ each.

Cover art commissioned for psychedelic music compilation by ‘Silent Existence’.

James McCarthy Through the Afterlife 2012-04-19 16 34 20

You can view my work on the internet if you google:

James McCarthy-Surrealism and the Landscape.

You will see my artwork on various sites such as DeviantArt, Redbubble, Visionary Art, Tumblr, Utopic Studios, Saatchi Online, Zazzle, etc.


I’m also on Twitter and Facebook( ArtUndiscovered James McCarthy).

Most of my original paintings are for sale and some of the art sites have prints available, as well.



Be Inspired and…


Hey kids, thanks for sharing!

If you like ArtQuench Magazine Like Us on #Facebook!

Enter in this month’s Art Competition “October Vibe”

for a chance to WIN the COVER of AQM Issue “TWO”

coming in Dec. 2014

(All entries in all AQG art competitions from June – November 2014 will automatically entered to win the cover of AQM)

Each month someone will win One Year of representation with

ArtQuench Gallery!



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s