The oldest of five siblings, Lynn grew up in Denham Springs, a small rural Louisiana town located on the outskirts of Baton Rouge. Since she was a little girl, Lynn has always had an affinity for drawing pictures with colored pencils and building things. Lynn’s father was a “hands on” home builder that devoted most of his time to work at the the job sites. The book-keeping, selecting the decorator items and raising five children were incredibly all her mother’s responsibility. Lynn has fond memories of spending hours as a child looking through carpet samples and stacks of wallpaper books together with her mother, selecting the most attractive designs, colors and patterns. Her mother would be first to admit that even as a child her daughter always had a knack for coordinating the most attractive designs, colors and patterns.
Lynn’s passion for art emerged after attending a two-month summer Art and Architecture study program in France & Italy her junior year of high school. Seeing works done by the masters inspired a new appreciation of design, art and specifically an affinity for impressionism. Following graduation from high school, her passion for design drew her to enroll at Louisiana State University School of Art and Design. Not a stranger to hard work, Lynn began her design career with a part-time job at the Baton Rouge Ethan Allen Design Center while attending LSU to help cover the cost of her education. Working at the design center of a well known national furniture store provided a great opportunity to become acquainted with the business side of her newly chosen profession in addition to gaining real world experience working with clients. After successfully completing an extremely demanding five-year design curriculum, Lynn graduated with a Bachelor of Interior Design Degree with a minor in fine art.
However, after a few years of conforming to rigid corporate design guidelines, Lynn realized the only way she could better serve clients’ and permit her to provide the level of design creativity she was capable of delivering was to go into business for herself. The process of developing new customers from scratch was counter intuitive when compared with the immediate past, a place where customers were attracted to a national brand, would walk right through the front door. Now, survival dictated that she participate in alien but customary processes to develop new business relationships; for example, cold calling potential clients to schedule a self-introduction. In short order, the never ending process of diligently hustling new business and cultivating new relationships became just part of the daily routine. Lynn’s diligent work ethic wasn’t motivated by ambition or money, but inspired by passion. The next twenty years the title describing Lynn’s vocation evolved from a freelance interior designer to an entrepreneur. Her passion for designing interior spaces didn’t change, but the methodology did. Lynn and her Mother opened a retail interior design boutique in 1985, which became the platform that enabled Lynn and her staff of design professionals to better serve their clients for the next two decades. Building a great reputation and hard work doesn’t guarantee financial success, but in Lynn’s case, it sure helped.
In one moment, “everything in my life completely changed”, Lynn recalls, “Ever since I was diagnosed with cancer, it seemed as if even work related issues previously regarded as urgent were mentally filed in the same container as articles read in the morning newspaper”. Another eye opening moment occurred after reading this quote contained in an article about Steve Jobs; “If today where the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?”. The answer was “No”. The events that followed this admission occurred swiftly and without reservation; she completed all outstanding contracts and closed down the design business and initiated the journey of rediscovering her most coveted passions.
Lynn’s new life mantra was embraced by family, friends and business associates. Her recent works passionately express the emotions she can't always explain in words, but feel in her heart. The subject matter of her paintings are not restricted to predetermined subject matter, but guided by how best to expresses what is in her heart, whether figurative to totally abstract. Lynn is confident of her accomplishments as an artist, especially whenever her work is acknowledged by an onlooker with a smile or a tear. Lynn is proud of the privately commissioned works for corporate and residential clients in addition to those works created for exhibition. However, she can’t help showing a particular fondness for some of her most recent works which include figurative paintings of her son and granddaughter.
“I am blessed, one of the fortunate ones who can say they are a cancer survivor.” “I awaken each and every day, confident that if today were the last day of my life, I would want to do today what I am about to do”. Lynn McDowell Washauer
The following are just a few of the renowned artists I have studied with:
California Colorist, influenced by Hensche & Hawthorne
Georgia, Russian Impressionist and Portrait Artist
Washington State, Russian Impressionist
California, Abstracts in Oil
Morten E. Solberg
Wisconsin, Water Based Media
Samuel Morgan Price
Florida, Plein Air Impressionist
Louisiana, Study of Light and Color
Paris, France; Daily Sketchbook as Inspiration for Paintings