"That's when I just freed myself and decided to paint what I want and not worry about what others think. I was brainstorming about art ideas and it came to me. Using oils I have made underpaintings with the brown burnt umber color, and I have always loved the feel of just that part of the painting. Coffee is very close to that in color, so I just gave it a try and it worked for me."
While he says he's self-taught, he readily divulges that he bought a Bob Ross painting kit that helped him grow as an artist.
As a child, he loved art.
"I remember drawing He-Man figures as a kid," Johnson said with a laugh. "Art was my favorite class in school. I even got in a show at the Culture Center my senior year."
Johnson has been married for 18 years and has four daughters ages 17, 13 and 8-year-old twins. His paintings can be viewed and purchased on his website, www.keithjohnsonpaintings.com. But it's his email address, draggingsti...@aol.com that describes what he does.
"It's about art. I am trying to word it right, but it's like the brush is the stick and you are dragging it across the canvas," Johnson said. "I just thought it was a cool name too."
As for his switch to coffee, he's using regular for now, but plans to experiment with new and different flavors.
"I love it. It's crazy that I love it so much that I want to focus on it with my art. Basically you are painting in values, but I love the warm coffee feel the painting has -- and the smell too."
Reach Sara Busse at sara.bu...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1249.