McCullough blends art and design

Artist Kate McCullough of Fountain City went back to painting in watercolors 13 years ago after studying art in college and enjoying years in a career in interior design. She says that art and design relate to each other and complement one another, and that probably explains why she enjoyed teaching Feng Shui, the art of arranging a home for the ideal flow of energy.

“The same principles apply in art as they do in interior design,” McCullough told Celebrate Knoxville in a phone interview this morning. “When I returned to school, I immediately fell in love with (how watercolors looked) while taking courses at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. I remember going into the art supplies store and thinking how much I wanted to learn to use watercolors. I can’t really explain what I love about them; I just love how they look.”

Kate McCullough, whose husband Roy is also an artist, says that the couple travel as often as they can and get inspiration on the road.

“We have been around the U.S. and Europe already but we would love to visit Japan and study the art there,” she says. “I am not really a landscape artist but I do enjoy painting urban settings, trains, still life scenes.”

McCullough’s work is among those featured at the upcoming Blount County Public Library’s Knoxville Watercolor Society art exhibit, February 1 through February 29, 2016.

“I joined the Knoxville Watercolor Society in 2009 and found the organization to be very useful to me as an artist,” she says. “They have five or six shows per year that members get to participate in plus I enjoy sharing and learning from other artists in the group. After the show in Blount County, we have shows scheduled in Knoxville at The Emporium and at the Knoxville Museum of Art.”


Tennessee Gold, watercolor by Fountain City artist Kate McCullough. 

McCullough says the above watercolor painting “Tennessee Gold” was from a photo she took of a shelf in Downtown Wine and Spirits, a business located in downtown Knoxville on Gay Street.

“I asked if I could take some photos in their store, and they said yes,” she says. “The painting of the moonshine jars is a favorite among fans of my work and I think that is because it speaks so much of the history of this area.”

McCullough’s work was featured in last year’s juried exhibition, Artclamation! at the Lighthouse Events Center. She is also a member of the Art Market Gallery, The Tennessee Watercolor Society and Fountain City Art Guild. She teaches painting classes at the Fountain City Art Center on a regular basis.

For more information, visit the artist web site at

Regular hours for the Blount County Public Library exhibit of the Knoxville Watercolor Society is Monday through Thursday, 9 am to 9 pm, and Friday through Saturday, 9 am to 5:30 pm. Sunday the library is open from 1 pm to 5:30 pm.

The Blount County Public Library is located at 508 North Cusick Street, in Maryville.