Judy Baggett to open show tonight at Imperial Calcasieu Museum

By By Alex Onken / American Press

Judy Baggett’s “As I See It” exhibit will open at 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 15, in the annex at the Imperial Calcasieu Museum, 204

West Sallier St.

“I always wanted to be an artist, but I thought you had to be born into it,” Baggett said.

This is her first solo show.

A graduate of St. Louis High School, Baggett said she was never much of a doodler.

She started drawing in 2000. Wanting to build on her skills, she attended the New Orleans Art Academy while working as a flight

attendant.

In between flights and layovers, she said, she would find opportunities to draw.

“Every night I would sit and draw. I have so many pictures and drawings of feet. I would sit or lay down and draw my feet,

just because I would want to hone in (my skills).

“At the art academy, one of the instructors I really loved told me, ‘Judy, I’m so happy you started out here. Leave. Don’t

stay.’ I’m glad I left when I did because I learned the basics.”

Baggett describes her creative process as trying to have a concrete image in her mind before starting a project. But, she

says, she welcomes changes in direction with her art.

“When I travel, I don’t often have reservations, and I may see a place I want to stop, and that’s how my art is,” she said.

When Baggett moved back to Lake Charles, she took classes at McNeese State University to continue learning not only from the

faculty but also from the atmosphere of young students.

“One girl mixed sand in her oil,” she said. “If she would have done that at the art academy, they would have died. If Rembrandt

didn’t do it, then you can’t do it.”

When not painting, she spends much of her time at her ranch in Texas and in Lake Charles.

She said that among her favorite subjects to paint are her cows.

“I love living in the present, and my paintings are my journal. I love August. I love the sun’s rays and the way things fall.

In the fall, everything gets to be so much brighter and warmer.

“It’s those things I want to keep. It’s how I see it.”

The show will run until Jan. 4.

Online: www.imperialcalcasieumuseum.org.