While working in the music industry in California, artist Lee Ann Payntee took a trip to the Photography West Gallery and saw for the first time Brett Weston’s photography, a series called “Underwater Nude 1980”. Seeing these photos, Lee Ann’s life was changed, and in a way it was the beginning of her journey as a professional photographer and artist.
Since a young age, Lee Ann Paynter has been involved in photography. A Kentucky native who is from and currently lives in Danville, Kentucky, Lee Ann has her BFA in Studio Art from the University of Kentucky in 2009, and in 2011 her MFA in Photography and Media from the California Institute of the Arts.
Besides photography, Lee Ann artwork, also involves sounds installations, video installations and intervention work (where the art intervenes with the public). Her work consists of both color and black and white photography. Regarding the artist’s process, it often changes with each piece of artwork. Over time Lee Ann’s work has evolved through the communication and meaning found in her artwork, that features both abstract and realistic work. Lee Ann’s role as an artist often blends with her role as an activist. When viewing her artwork environmental issues, religion, feminism, social and political statements and issues, are found as common themes in her work.
“Most of my work is about social statements, or social, political statements, turning a mirror on society. My goal with that is to just get people to think about their own point of view. I’m not looking to change everyone’s mind but to consider the way they feel about social issues. To make them think.” -Lee Ann Paynter
Lee Ann is currently a professor at the University of Kentucky teaching digital media and photography at the University of Kentucky’s School of Art and Visual Studies. Her work has been shown both through out Kentucky and nationally. She is also involved with the Lexington Camera Club, Kentucky Artist Coalition, KFTC, and Kentucky Women’s Photography Network. One can find more information about Lee Ann Paynter’s artwork on her website (link to website listed above.)