Carol Bemby Dove


Carol Bemby Dove was born and raised in Norfolk. She is a graduate of Norview High School and attended Norfolk State University where she majored in Fine Arts. After winning first place in an art contest, she received the Hermitage Foundation Award Scholarship for two years. She is a member of the Hampton Arts League and exhibit in its Member Show for the past two years. Carol was surrounded by art as a child and drawing at the age of eight. Her inspiration came from her oldest sister, who also majored in art at Norfolk State. Instead of toys, she would ask for the paint by numbers sets in oil. When money wasn’t available, she would paint on any material that she could find. In 1977 she landed a job at the Chrysler Museum as a preparator. It was here that she became fascinated with Impressionism. Carol began to incorporate this style in her drawings, as seen in her works today. Throughout the 1980’s she would freelance from her home, creating backdrops and paintings for her church. In 1990 she became the only visual merchandiser in distribution for the Army-Air Force Exchange Service. She designed t-shirts for company functions & painted murals, along with illustrations on eight foot plywood. She has drawings as far away as Atlanta. IN 2007 she suffered a heart attack. The severity of her illness caused her to retire from AAFES after 19 years of service. In the past three years it has been difficult for her to produce art because of health issues. In her words, “The road may be rough, but the results are worth the journey. It is only through God’s mercy and grace that I am an artist today.” Carol has been married 41 years to Aaron Dove, Sr., she is 63 years old and has two children ages 33 and 39.

“I feel that ART is the ability to communicate visually. I am able to accomplish this b the use of colored pencils with oil pastels on colored paper. This technique gives my drawing the emotional vibrancy that was lacking in previous works. I use color for tint rather than black for shadow. When I draw people, I usually start with the eyes in order to capture their spirit.

The Impressionist painters, Vincent van Gogh and Edgar Degas, inspire me to use no-traditional colors for skin tone. I allow the color of the paper to dictate complexion and use pastel paper for texture. I have been influenced greatly by the powerful drawings of Paul Goodnight. His use of vivid colors and compelling imagery has challenged me to be expressive in my artwork.The subjects that i draw are reminders of my cultural experiences while growing up in Norfolk, Virginia. ”