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story.lead_photo.caption Krysten Haynes poses next to one of her paintings at the Texas A&M University—Texarkana's John F. Moss Library. Haynes grew up painting and started doing the hobby again about a year ago. The painting Haynes is standing next to is "Star Seed"—it took her three months to complete. Photo by Hunt Mercier / Texarkana Gazette.

Anyone experiencing the art of Krysten Haynes for the first time will notice the vibrant way the painter handles texture.

Haynes, who only took up art again in the past year or so after showing an affinity for it during childhood, has a one-woman show up at Texas A&M University-Texarkana's John F. Moss Library, starting Tuesday and going through February. A reception for the artist will be held Tuesday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

At that reception for the exhibit titled "Integration," you can bet Haynes will pay attention to the reactions she sees among exhibit visitors. The effect her art has on others excites her.

Texture is an aspect of art she's always enjoyed. "I always have. Even when I was younger and my mom would take me to art exhibits and stuff, I was the worst because I would want to reach out and touch every one of them," Haynes said about art with texture.

To create it herself in a painting, Haynes might lay fabric down upon the canvas, move a piece, and then she glues it. She'll continue in this manner, and then she'll place a substance over the fabric to harden it, followed by painting it. Another material makes it look watery.

Haynes works primarily with acrylics. She has roughly 35 works to show at this exhibit. She's had a few small viewings of her work, but this is the biggest. As a stay-at-home mom to a daughter and son, she eventually found time to devote to art.

When the Texarkana-born Haynes was younger, she painted real life, representational art, such as people. Now she's more abstract.

"I picked it up about a year ago. Until I had my son I'd always worked, and I think I was just coming out of my skin for something to do," the artist recalled. "So I was like OK, I'll try painting again. My painting has actually evolved tremendously just in a year."

Haynes moved back here five years ago, and she married. She studied graphic design while in college, and also worked as a bartender and server.

"My kids, my family, my work, the painting, is everything," she said.

When she first got back to art, she moved on from art depicting everyday life to more abstract modes. "I kind of liked that," she said. Other people did, too, when she got the courage to show them. It was sort of her private thing, the art. Her husband took her to an art show in Hot Springs, Ark.

"Integration," shown at left, is one of the works in the Krysten Haynes art show. (Submitted photo)

"He said, 'Your stuff is like this,'" Haynes recalled. She remembers visiting an art museum when younger and how it moved her emotionally in ways she can't quite explain. She can also recall the first time she saw people looking at her artwork when it was displayed at Cafe 511 here.

"The first time I ever saw other people looking at my work like that it was just one of the most extraordinary things I've ever experienced," Haynes said. "I still have goosebumps. It's amazing."

To see the reaction motivates her. She sees how art affects people. Now she's converted a bedroom in her home into a studio. She'll put her art down and just watch it for a while to figure out if it's done or not. It's hard for her to stop.

Why acrylic? "The way it blends together," Haynes said. It also dries quickly, and she admits she's not patient enough for oil. She likes metallic acrylics, specifically, and alcohol inks. She favors shades of blue, but says it's not intentional. Given her love for water, this may make sense.

She enjoys artists who employ texture in their art. She loves Salvador Dali, and she puts swirls and circles in her own work. "I love gold. That's usually in a lot of my stuff," Haynes said.

To learn more about her art, check out her artist page on Facebook by searching for Krysten Haynes Art & Graphic Design.

(The John F. Moss Library is located in the University Center, third floor, at Texas A&M University-Texarkana, 7101 University Ave. More info: 903-223-3100.)

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