Laurel Sherrie is an accomplished artist, based in Southern California, known for her beautiful landscape paintings. I visited her in her studio, located in the town of Arroyo Grande, California. We drank homemade peach soda and chatted about her creative process and the inspiration she draws from the surrounding landscape.
“That one I’m painting from a photo I took in my car,” she said gesturing to a work in progress on an easel in the middle of her charming studio space at her home in Arroyo Grande. “It’s this beautiful scene I drive past all the time, but there’s no place to pull over and take a picture, so I just snapped it really fast one day.” This is how a lot of her paintings begin, she elaborates, saying that the surrounding area offers so much beauty and diversity, she’s never without inspiration. “It’s kind of the ideal place for an artist! I have coastline, and mountains, I have ranches, and desert.”
Her landscapes are beautifully representative of the environment(s) in that area: lush, colorful, romantic, and expressive. Originally from Illinois, she came out to California in the late 60’s, lived in Berkeley for a time, and a brief stint in San Francisco, before moving down to Southern California which has now been her home for many years. She is passionate about preserving the landscapes of her adoptive home and is an active member of SLOPE (San Luis Obispo Painters for the Environment) a group dedicated to promoting the beauty of the surrounding area and encouraging conservation.
In partnership with WineCoastCountry.com, Laurel has painted scenes representative of the 10 destinations along the Highway 1 Discovery Route, one of which is the Edna Valley. She took me to the Old Edna, one of her favorite places and, incidentally, a beautiful place to dine!
This charming B&B is a converted historical town site, nestled in the picturesque Edna Valley.
Every inch of the Old Edna site is overseen by the proprietor, Pattea Torrence. Fiercely dedicated to the restoration of the original buildings, Pattea is a bundle of energy and enthusiasm.
As she welcomes us and walks us around the historic site, the place practically breathes with the life she has imbued into it. Her approach is to preserve the integrity of the old buildings, letting them speak through her distinct style which adds a modern vintage feel to the interiors.
The Old Edna shares it’s space with Sextant Wines, which has their tasting room and Gourmet Deli there. We sampled some delicious paninis, a heavenly tapenade spread over even more heavenly garlic crostini, and of course Sextant wine. The ingredients were fresh, the bread was delicious and the flavors were bright, with nice spice and seasoning. The weather was warm, a soft breeze floating through, a chicken clucked nearby…I agree with Laurel! This is definitely one of the most beautiful places to dine on the California Coast. See below for her complete list!
Artist Laurel Sherrie’s Top Ten Most Beautiful Places to Dine on the California Coast
1. Ragged Point Inn, north of San Simeon on Highway 1
2. Sebastian’s General Store in San Simeon
3. Sea Chest in Cambria
4. The Cass House in Cayucos, a beautiful restored Victorian B&B
5. Back Bay Cafe in Los Osos, a cute place in a secluded area of Los Osos
7. The Sea Venture in Pismo Beach, fantastic 4th story views over the beach and ocean
8. Adelina’s Bistro in Nipomo, at Monarch Dunes Golf Club. Beautiful restaurant, beautiful surroundings
9. Rooster Creek Tavern in Arroyo Grande
10. The Gourmet Deli in Edna Valley, at Old Edna
For more information about Laurel, visit her website LaurelSherrie.com. There you can purchase her beautiful paintings, read her blog and find out more about upcoming exhibits!
Eat Well, Travel Well ~ Samantha3 comments