Edmonds Arts Festival poster: Ned Mueller's impressionism

By Brian Soergel | Jun 14, 2018
Courtesy of: Edmonds Arts Festival

At first impression, Ned Mueller’s official poster for the 2018 Edmonds Arts Festival could be taken for a nice piece of wall art. Isn’t it lovely?

Look closer.

Mueller’s commissioned piece – “At the Beach” – is inspired by Brackett Landing North, and you can visualize the popular park if your glance is brief. But there’s more to the oil painting, as it’s a composite of several studies of the area gathered from more than 20 photos, some of it real, some of it made up.

The finished version has hats. A dog. A photographer. Benches. Beaches. Sailboats.

It’s an impression of Edmonds.

Which comes as no surprise, as Mueller is a Master Signature Artist with the American Impressionist Society, as well as the Oil Painters of America.

“It’s a poster, so I was more concerned with the design than a lot of detail,” said Mueller, speaking over the phone from his home in Renton. “The design has a sense of place. The Arts Festival Commission wanted me to include a variety of ages and types of people.”

Mueller is no newcomer to Edmonds or the the Edmonds Arts Festival. He’s been involved for about 25 years, and has juried art pieces several times.

Mueller won’t have a booth at this weekend’s show, but he does have a concurrent exhibit at the Frances Anderson Center gallery, as well as three paintings and two drawings in a juried area.

Born in Wisconsin and raised in Montana, Mueller has been drawing and painting all of his life. He graduated from the prestigious Art Center School of Design in Los Angeles, where he also taught drawing – and got paid for it – while still a student.

His love for life and art is reflected in his superb paintings of a wide range of subjects, including portraits, figures, animals and landscapes, both studio and plein air.

Mueller worked as an illustrator for 25 years while building a foundation, and has worked as a successful full-time artist since 1984. He continued to enhance his knowledge and skills by taking workshops with master artists Harley Brown, Richard Schmid, Bettina Steinke, Del Gish, and Sergei Bongart.

Like many artists, Mueller enjoys passing on his knowledge to others.

He conducts workshops (including later this month with a plein air class in the Beartooth Range in Montana) and offers instructional videos, for a fee, on his nedmueller.com website.

Mueller said he plans to make appearances Friday and Saturday at the Edmonds Arts Festival.

“This festival is not just a favorite locally, but all over,” Mueller said, pointing to the outdoor view-setting, as well as the quality of art. “I really love the atmosphere. People just mob to it, and the weather is usually nice. Bellevue has its festival, but it’s all underneath in a garage.”

Mueller will probably get in some sightseeing while in town, as well.

“Edmonds has always been one of my favorite cities,” he said. “It’s tucked away, and hasn’t been overdeveloped with high rises and ugly buildings. It still has a lot of character.”


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