Barbara Willingham was born in Harlan County and raised in Southeastern Kentucky. She received her master’s degree in Art and English education and now taught art to middle school students in the Corbin Independent Schools. When she retired in 2009, she began to devote her time to painting and managing a small gallery situated beside her home in London, KY
Barbara’s style of painting is a realistic style that often depicts simple and quaint objects and activities that are a part of her Southern Appalachian upbringing. Barbara, explains, “When I compose and paint, I must be personally connected with the subject matter, whether it is an architectural treasure, a still life, or a beautiful landscape. My attention to detail comes from my visual experience with lines, shapes, colors, and other elements of the subject itself.”
Barbara believes that her geographical and cultural connections enhance the spirit which is essential to her artwork.
Barbara’s watercolors can also be found at her gallery, Mountain Laurel Gallery, in Corbin, in the Cumberland College Inn Gift Shop in Cumberland, KY; and at the Kentucky Artisan Center in Berea, KY.