Local Folks: Beth Robison

Local Folks: Beth Robison
Beth Robison

Some local folks are fortunate enough to have their hobby and their work be one and the same. Beth Robison, an abstract landscape artist from Ortega, is one such lady.

Many might know Robison as the mom of James, Jack, and Anna who run Grassroots Natural Market on Park Street in 5 Points. Others might recognize the bold colors and broad brush strokes that are characteristic of Robison’s paintings that can be found around town.

Her paintings evoke childhood memories of exploring beaches, marshes, and woods near her home. “I have always adored anything creative—painting, drawing, coloring—all of it!” she said. Growing up in Ortega Forest, she’d draw pictures of her house and build forts along the riverbank with fallen tree branches.

Beth Robison holding “Marsh at Ft. George Island” June 10, 2121
Beth Robison holding “Marsh at Ft. George Island” June 10, 2121

Robison also remembers as a child visiting relatives and friends who had art on the walls. “Going in their homes and seeing the paintings, I was just always drawn to them,” she said.

Now, she paints fulltime, every day in her upstairs home studio that used to be her son Jack’s bedroom. It has lots of windows, lots of natural light. “I just started painting, painting, painting after the children were grown. That’s when the painting bug really bit,” Robison said. She began with watercolors, then took some oil workshops.

Beth Robison with “The Mountains are Calling” September 4, 2020
Beth Robison with “The Mountains are Calling” September 4, 2020

Her works spilled out of Jack’s old bedroom and began accumulating in the living room. That’s when Robison approached a garden shop in Avondale about hanging her paintings there; for she had seen other artists’ pieces there for sale. Robison’s works sold! That was the start of her hobby evolving into her career.

Robison’s next step was to approach a childhood friend who owned a gallery in San Marco. Again, sales. Robison was gaining notoriety around Jacksonville. She began branching out beyond the local market with Instagram postings and then made contact with an online art consultant. “It has grown from there,” Robison said.

Robison has a daily ritual she follows prior to picking up a paintbrush. Her creative process begins with a walk through the neighborhood to clear her mind. “I love to hear the birds chirping,” she said, as part of her morning routine. But other than that, Robison prefers quiet, and she paints alone. “I’m so passionate about it. It’s what I love to do,” she said.

“Sailing Camp II” July 17, 2021 Stinson Park near Ortega Bridge
“Sailing Camp II” July 17, 2021 Stinson Park near Ortega Bridge

Robison draws inspiration from the warm, sunny skies of northern Florida. She works primarily in acrylics and prefers large canvases, although she does work on small pieces, too. “What inspires me is a day trip, looking at the marshes, just the openness, the vast sky,” Robison said. Her husband, Jim, often accompanies her. Once she’s back home, it’s those feelings that she translates onto the canvas. The pictures she relies on are within.

Although Robison is known as an abstract landscape artist, she does occasionally do portraits. Her pieces can be found in retail establishments as far as St. Simon’s Island in Georgia. “I love to do commissions,” she said. Her paintings hang in both private and corporate collections nationwide.

Beth Robison’s paint
Beth Robison’s paint

By Mary Wanser
Resident Community News

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