I have always lived by the beach,
surfing, fishing, diving, snorkeling and watching fish. I got
my first boat when I was seven years and I learned to respect
and love the sea, especially all the beautiful creatures that
dwell within her.
My Mother, Ruth Swayze, rescued the
Hermitage one day while walking on the beach, and became her
caretaker. The Hermitage Artist Retreat was born from that.
Our family was lucky to spend years in this house and on this
beach and I can't tell you what a thrill it was to spend time
making art here. Thank you
I was taught to understand that we
are the caretakers of our fragile planet. I have always been
passionate about the ocean. My subject matter reflects my love
of the sea. We depend on its health for our very livelihoods,
it is the reason we have such a good quality of life.
I have been on the quest to find the
perfect palm tree for most of my life and my stay here gave me
the solitude and the time I needed to focus on a new direction
for my work and I'm very excited to present it to you for the
I hope you enjoy my painting
"Always remember, we're
all riding on the same ocean
~ Carroll Swayze
Birth to Present
I have been an independent
artist my entire life. My mother was a writer who owned a coffeehouse
in the 60's and my father was a theater director so musicians,
actors, writers and artists surrounded me from the moment of
my birth. I started painting when I was 8 years old and did my
first outdoor art show, The Allentown Art Festival in Buffalo,
NY, when I was 14. I worked my way through high school painting
and selling my work at shows as well as starting my own commercial
art business painting signs, logos, designing album covers for
bands and backdrops for theaters in the area.
After two years in the Fine Arts Department of York
University in Toronto, Ontario, I decided to continue my artistic
studies at a new school at the time, The Ringling School of Art
& Design, in Sarasota, Florida, and moved south where I studied
painting and printmaking.
I have always been a painter.
I started working in oils, moved on to India inks, then watercolors
and finally acrylics. Soon after moving to Florida I bought my
first etching press and started working in Intaglio Etching Hand
Painted with Acrylic washes. At that time the outdoor art fair
circuit was young and thriving and the American economy was healthy.
With a full show schedule and monthly gallery orders, being a
real printmaker allowed me to maintain my artistic integrity
and continue to offer original art to the public.
I believe in original
art. As artists, our solitary natures find us spending a great
deal of time alone in our studios working to create new and exciting
artwork while striving to maintain our own individual styles.
I believe that the independent artist who actually toils to create
original art in their studio is special, unique and unusual and
should be protected, nurtured and supported as treasures.
I believe in education. We
need to work to reeducate the public as to the importance of
original art in everyday life. Artists are thinkers and dreamers
and I believe their work enriches the lives of everyone who comes
in contact with them.
I am currently a board
member of the National Association of Independent Artists. The
mission of the NAIA is to strengthen, improve and promote the
artistic, professional and economic success of artists who exhibit
in art shows. We are committed to integrity, creativity, and
the pursuit of excellence and we advocate for the highest ideals
and practices within all aspects of the art show environment.
I am presently working on an informational booklet that will
hopefully be used as a guide for both show directors and artists
to help create a level playing field. It is an informative guide
to aid in the discovery of rule breakers, buy/sell vendors, art
festival imposters, production studios posing as individual artists
and imported art, all of which are greatly affecting the art
I have maintained my studio
here in Englewood, Florida for over 35 years now and have developed
a good reputation as a fine artist being very involved in all
aspects of art in my community. I was on the steering committee,
which saved, restored and created The Hermitage Artists Retreat,
an international artist's retreat connected to the Greenfield
Foundation, in what was my Mother's old house on the beach. I
was on the board of directors of the Englewood Art Center when
we raised the money to expand and build what has become one of
the most vibrant community art centers in the area, now operated
by the Ringling School of Art & Design. I was chosen as one
of ten North American artists to participate in the first ever
outdoor art festival in Japan, the Yokohama International Open
Air Art Fair in Yokohama, Japan, in October of 2009 and experienced
an amazing cultural exchange that enriched my life immensely.
I teach art to the home schooled children of three counties,
I sponsor many programs in the schools and in my studio to help
keep original art alive and I am honored to have a scholarship
named for me in our local high school, Lemon Bay High, sponsored
by our Rotary Club.
I am 56 years old, I am
well traveled and I've raised three sons and have four grandchildren.
I have been a working artist my entire life and I have an enormous
amount of life experience that I am proud to share. I am well
spoken and I am not at all afraid to speak in public. I've seen
the early years of the art show movement, and with 41 years of
outdoor art shows under my belt, I'm pretty sure I could win
Survivor if they'd just let me play because I know I can build
a dry shelter with my eyes shut. I've experienced the ups and
downs of the economy over the years and I have struggled to stay
the course, maintaining good work ethics and standards along
the way. I believe that art is important in every day life and
I strive to continue the adventure.
Swayze has exhibited in every major Fine Arts Festival in the
US & Canada. Her Limited Edition Hand Colored Etchings and
Original Acrylic Paintings are in public and private collections
worldwide and she is represented by over forty galleries.
Englewood Art Center
Boca Grande Art Alliance
Venice Art Center
Charter Member Florida Printmakers Society
National Association of Independent Artists
Steering Committee Hermatage Artists Retreat Project
Englewood/Cape Haze Chamber of Commerce
Boca Grande Chamber of Commerce
Florida International University,
Walt Disney Corporation, Orlando, Florida
Steven Simoni Collection, Dallas, Texas
Margaret Adorjan & Associates, Englewood, Florida
Debbie Weston Collection, Englewood, Florida
Donald & Sharon Shaffett, Englewood, Florida
Florida Institute for Saltwater Heritage, Cortez, Florida
The Carroll Swayze
Art Scholarship was established by the Englewood Rotary Club
in 1996. This ongoing yearly scholarship is given to one or two
Lemon Bay High School art students to help them pursue their
was chosen as 1 of 10 North American Artists to participate in
the first ever outdoor art festival in Japan in 2009. The Yokohama
International Open Air Art Fair in Yokohama, Japan. She holds
the position of consultant with their organizing group, the IACP.
A Few Galleries
Fisheads Gallery, Brant
Beach, New Jersey
Gallery B, Tokyo, Japan
Island Style Gallery, Key West, Florida
Island Style Gallery, Sanibel Island, Florida
Mermaids Gallery, Little Cayman Island
Nancy Markoe Gallery, St Pete Beach, Florida
Old Opera House Gallery, Sebastion, Florida
Paradise Gallery, Boca Grande, Florida
Pea Island Gallery, Pea Island, North Carolina
The Carroll Swayze Gallery, Englewood, Florida