As it’s been told to me by my grandmother, herself a sculptor, when I was 4 years old she asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up and I responded without hesitation, “An artist, like you!” as if there was ever any doubt?! Throughout my childhood, growing up in Knoxville, Tennessee, I loved to draw and paint. By the age of 15 I had started applying my paints to the surface of walls and before long I was painting professionally, working with interior designers, builders, and home owners, creating large-scale murals and custom faux finishes. Upon graduating high school, I was accepted to the Rhode Island School of Design where I earned my BFA in Painting in 1998. During that time I also had the unique opportunity to study in Rome, Italy through the school’s European Honors Program, which proved an invaluable 9 months of study, artistic freedom and constructive criticism from other artists.
Following college I married my husband, John, and we moved to Kansas City, Missouri where for the next 5 years I established a successful trompe l’oeil (French term meaning “to fool the eye”) mural career which would span the next 2 decades. We enjoyed a brief time in Stillwater, Minnesota before relocating to Florida in 2004 and starting a family. In 2011, after attending an intensive 10 day plein air oil painting workshop in Italy, a passion for painting the landscape outdoors began to grow and take hold of me. As much as I had loved making other peoples’ artistic visions a reality on their walls for so many years, I was feeling a strong desire to seek out and paint that which inspires me most.
Continuing my studies locally with a variety of noted plein air painters and teachers, I soon started entering and winning awards at various juried Paint Out events throughout the sate of Florida. In 2013 I began showing my work at The Studio at Gulf and Pine Art Gallery on Anna Maria Island, a barrier island off the West Coast of Florida, and in 2016 I opened the doors of Cory Wright Art Studio & Gallery at 419 10th Ave. W in Historic Palmetto. My paintings are now held in numerous national and international private collections.
These days I can most often be found outdoors at my easel, capturing the essence of light on the land, sand and sea around me. On particularly hot/cold or rainy days you’re likely to find me working on larger paintings in my studio, using small plein air studies for reference. I also teach classes and workshops in oils, watercolor, and plein air painting throughout the year.