Wanderlust palette: a global journey through abstract art

Painting "Faraway Lands" by abstract artist Claire Desjardins, was inspired by travel.

As an abstract artist, my travels weave a vibrant tapestry of inspiration, each destination infusing my canvas with its unique essence. From the lushness of Costa Rica to the historic charm of San Miguel de Allende, the rich heritage of China, the tranquility of Thailand, and the artistic fervor of Italy, each place holds a special place in my artistic journey.

In Costa Rica, the riot of colors in the rainforests and the lively wildlife like playful monkeys and vivid birds like the quetzal, provided a spectrum of hues that broadened my artistic palette. This land taught me the art of capturing movement and vitality, influencing my approach to texture and form.

Rich green and purple hues in painting "Loving Amazonia" by abstract artist / painter, Claire Desjardins.

Red-eyed tree frog, Costa Rica

Rich green hues and pops of red: Costa Rican jungle inspiration!

San Miguel de Allende, nestled in Mexico's northern central mountains, offered a contrast with its colonial architecture and vibrant street life. The warm sunlight casting shadows on colorful buildings, and the rich cultural tapestry of the locals, inspired me to blend boldness with subtlety, reflecting the city's spirited yet serene nature in my work.

Colourful abstract painting, "Cobblestones of San Miguel", by artist Claire Desjardins.

China–where I attended an artist residency in 2013– presented a different aspect of inspiration, where ancient traditions meet modern vibrancy. The intricate designs of silk fabrics, the balanced forms of traditional architecture, and the disciplined harmony of Chinese gardens influenced my perception of structure and artistic balance, encouraging a thoughtful approach to composition.

Abstract painting, "In Plain View", inspired by travels to China: "In Plain View", painted by artist Claire Desjardins.

My 2011 journey through Thailand was a lesson in harmony and serenity. The ornate temples in hues of gold and red, the tranquil coastal landscapes, and the bustling energy of markets introduced me to a world where chaos and calm coexist, guiding me to find a similar equilibrium in my abstract creations.

Abstract painting, "Faraway Lands" by artist Claire Desjardins.

Italy, with its unparalleled artistic heritage, was like walking through a living museum. The Renaissance masterpieces, the dramatic Baroque architecture, and the vibrant street scenes of cities like Rome and Florence deepened my understanding of color, light, and emotional expression. Italy's blend of historical depth and contemporary vibrancy encouraged me to explore more expressive and daring color combinations.


Abstract collage painting by artist / painter Claire Desjardins.

Each destination, from Costa Rica's natural splendor to the historic textures of San Miguel de Allende, the cultural richness of China, the peaceful landscapes of Thailand, and Italy's artistic legacy, has enriched my perspective as an artist. Traveling is not just about seeing new places but about absorbing their essence – the colors, the light, the culture – and translating these experiences onto my canvas. As my journey continues, each new place promises not just inspiration but a fresh lens through which to view and capture the world in my art.

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