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Artist making colorful paintings – without a brush
Town of Muscoda
Paul Tichenor's art
Artist Paul Tichenor stood among some of his detailed paintings created without a brush, placed on Masonite.

MUSCODA - When artist Paul Tichenor goes to work early in the morning he has only a few steps to travel from his home to his studio. The structures sit side-by-side on a parcel of Town of Muscoda pines.

Paul, now 77 years old, grew up in Muscoda in the painting business. He was at first a building painter, following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather. Homes, barns, churches, inside and out, all felt the gentle stroke of their brushes,

There were no art classed offered at the local high school during the time when Paul was developing a passion for art and its beauty and beginning to paint for himself and the public, creating pieces now on display in area homes, offices, medical facilities, some internationally, including Switzerland. He has donated his creations to Wisconsin Public Television to be sold during their annual fund-raiser auctions.

Paul has traveled throughout this country and many others as he fished, hunted, photographed, enjoyed nature and visited major art galleries, developing what he calls an “inner landscape” that is now part of his nature.

He recently returned from spending time in Sedona, Arizona, a major art center in the Southwest, home for many artists, art lovers and galleries. He says it’s a place where you can see art priced at a few dollars or for several thousand dollars.

A special project for him now is the development of a way to paint pictures without using brushes. A system of stencils is built to form a pattern that is then cut out and the space spray-painted. The actual painting is a quick process. However, cutting the stencils can be slow, requiring exacting work.

Unusual items can be used while cutting stencil patterns, such as laying out strings of cooked spaghetti, garden strings or onion sacks. Spray paints used are available in local hardware and building supply outlets.

Paul’s brushless paintings can be detailed presentations of such things as trout and bluegills, perhaps colorful butterflies or flowers, or something abstract he found resting in the interiors of his mind.

In contrast, in a place of honor in his studio is an old paint-spattered stepladder that was used during decades of painting with brushes. It’s a cherished reminder of the Tichenor family past.