Artist Adrianne Penny


Adrianne Penny paints houses. The Hazlehurst native has moved a bit with her Presbyterian minister husband, Robert, and she’s taken her paintbrush and watercolor tools with her on each stop. With a lifelong love of art, she’s made a lifetime of putting her artistic paintbrush to work and enjoying every stroke. 

“I have loved to draw my whole life. I went to Belhaven and I didn’t want to write any papers,” Penny said. “I majored in art because it just seemed natural. I just did it because I loved it. When I was growing up they didn’t have art classes. I didn’t take an art class until I got to college. Whatever I did, I did on my own. I can’t list any wonderful teachers. I did have a crush on a boy who was a wonderful watercolorist and I wandered around following him around and learned a lot.”

Once she graduated, she started teaching art. First in Jackson Public Schools while her husband was in seminary at Reformed Theological Seminary. Then a stint in Columbus.

“I taught for a few years and when I was in Columbus I taught at The W when they needed someone for night classes,” Penny said. “I’ve taught a lot of private stuff but I like to watch Cary Grant movies and sit on my sofa and do my own painting.”

The watercolor painter has found a niche with her work – painting houses. And she’s realistic about her vocation and career. 

“I love to paint houses because I love architecture. And mostly, it’s about making money for me. I’ve always painted pictures of houses because I can sell them by the dozens. It’s not very creative but it’s very dependable. I do a lot for real estate agents and they give them as gifts when they sell a house.”

She explained as a young lady you had to go to Auburn or Mississippi State to become an architect so she threw her passion into painting and settled on watercolors for basic reasons.

“I wasn’t really motivated to do that so I took it out on houses because I do love architecture,” she said. 

Her “art studio” is different than most as she’s had to adapt over the years to painting on a budget as a retired preacher’s wife. 

“I paint every day. I do not have a studio. Just a worn out sofa and a good television that I can watch Turner movies,” she said. “You know why I chose watercolor? This is really the reason. It’s because it was cheap. I never had a studio. We were always living in a church house and watercolor supplies are really inexpensive when compared to acrylic and oil where you have to have easels and canvases. It’s a lot more complicated. And I love to draw and watercolor drawing is fun to do. It’s like painting in a coloring book. I did it because of the economy of it.”

She also enjoys the quickness of watercolor. 

“It’s very fast. It dries quickly. You can get up and stir the soup and go carpool and do all the other stuff you have to do,” she said. “That’s a lot of the reason why people do watercolor. They think it’s hard but it’s learning what looks like a mistake isn’t really a mistake. They are predestined to be mistakes (laughing.)”

Painting every day except Sunday, Penny creates one to two paintings a week that are 11-inches by 14-inches. She also paints quite a few animals – dogs and cats. The award winning artist continues each day with her “God given talent but God giving me time to practice it all these years.”