Cheryl Johnson an Abstract Expressionist Contemporary Artist. Creating art and painting around the world. Buy Art Online. Charlotte NC


Cheryl Johnson

North Carolina- based studio painter Cheryl Johnson works with many media including oil, acrylic, latex, silicone encaustic, using silicone to build texture and beeswax and resin to convey elaborate depictions. Utilizing tools designed for ceramists, Johnson carves, fills, layers, and fuses the wax, creating areas to be filled with pigment. Her paintings and landscape abstracts evoke a sense of wonder, guiding the eye through geometrically complex landscapes teeming with rich detail.

“I feel a personal connection to the work in front of me and I can look back at what I’ve accomplished while planning my next step for tomorrow.  It’s a clear path that is soothing and I hope my paintings project my celebration of life as I pursue my passion and have more joy every day.” – Cheryl Johnson


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Women artists play a crucial role in the internationally-renown Abstract Expressionist Movement.

I sometimes work on a series of paintings at the same time.  I begin with a thought in mind while allowing each painting to develop its own unique story.  I enjoy painting on canvas, linen, wood panels and paper using a variety of mediums.  Emotions enter as I build up layers, add lines and gestural marks while using complementary colors. My being open to serendipity and chance keeps a sense of surprise and spontaneity in the finished painting. I paint intuitively while adjusting the composition and choosing bold and contrasting color.  I am mindful to keep space, light and dark balanced while still taking daring risks until the end so the painting keeps the feeling of energy flowing.

I also paint under the pseudonyms Cheri and  Chearh Boryl Jaurvaii a family name. 

...more about Cheryl

"...If you’re decorating an important room, the work needs to be something with a bit of gravitas.'"


Primarily a painter, Cheryl's work focuses on gesture and colour; emphasizing energetic, animated brush strokes and bold palettes. Her work is both highly abstract and highly personal, a dynamic expression of emotions.

She regularly exhibits her work in galleries and art fairs throughout North America. In addition, she teaches online (artlessonsnow.com) and often teaches painting workshops, and has served as a jury member on several national art prizes.

About her artworks

Inspired by people and nature. Created by the use of quality oil paint with the use of large brushes, palette knives on quality canvas, arches oil and stone paper. 

Layered carefully over a period of time. 

Creating a strong emotional or expressive abstract in her unique style, inspired by the work of Gerhard Richter and Joan Mitchell.

Inspired by the beauty and  power of nature

Turning a passion into a lifelong career, Cheryl Johnson takes inspiration from great artists such as, Claude Monet, Mark Rothko. 

A great lover of traveling, she draws inspiration from her surroundings. For this reason her abstract paintings result from her love of beauty, texture and color. 

Emotion evolve through an encounter with landscape, ocean and sky. In this way, the love of beauty and color emerges through her technique, and is instantly noticed and admired by the viewer.

Chromatic strokes blend with Achromatic tones

Deftly mixing Values and ColorsChromatic colors are colors in which one particular hue predominates. For example, blue and green are chromatic colors, while white, gray, and black are achromatic colors, as they have no dominant hue. They have lightness but no hue or saturation. They can be created by mixing complementary colors together.

 An extremely versatile multi-media artist, Cheryl Johnson, approaches each medium in a unique and exacting way. From photography, to watercolor and oil painting, each painting is characterized by a different process. The technique of oil painting consists of deliberate slow layering, overlapping, layer by layer, of different colors and hues, to obtain abstract works ranging from minimal to more complexity. Deep Grays, Blues and greens  and reds are often recurrent in her works, but each art piece is an ongoing experiment to discover new nuances by mixing the colors.

A Lifetime career

Cheryl Johnsons’s career consists of numerous high-level exhibitions. Her works are currently exposed in many collections around the world, from Europe to the US.



Cheryl Johnson is a contemporary painter born in Kellogg, Idaho.  She is best known for her abstract compositions layered in textured brushstrokes, layered  pools of paint and beautiful faces and forms. Cheryl received a B.A. in Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in 1969 and an  M.A. in Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Oklahoma in 1971 .  In 2008, she traveled to Kauai, Hawaii, bringing her into collaboration with local artists. She has since returned annually, finding inspiration for her work in both the terrain and culture. Cheryl  lives and works in Charlotte, NC.

American, b. 1947, Kellogg, Idaho. Contemporary | Established | Mid Career female Artist | Kauai | North Carolina | USA | Abstract Expressionist.

With a distinct style that merges abstraction with representation in increasing degrees, her work brings together instinctive compositions while revealing her precise powers of observation. Remarkable for their compositional rhythms, bold coloration, and sweeping gestural brushstrokes, Johnsons’ paintings bring alive the fundamental quest to express something personal, subjective and emotive, in a poetic, abstract way.

American Artist, Cheryl Johnson is a painter best known for her strong use of color, and intuitive mark making.  Resonating with the Abstract Expressionists, as well as the language of figurative painting; interested in creating paintings that invite viewers to spend more time with an artwork to expand their ways of seeing. She has created a body of work based on gestural energy and the intuitive expression of deep inner emotion. 

Cheryl considers herself more in line with Abstract Expressionism since her work flows from the deep well of her inner emotion. 

Johnson’s art consists of abstract paintings more often made of mixed media; oil, acrylic,  latex, pastel, charcoal, oil crayon. 

In a career that has thrived through multiple evolutions in style, she combines brushwork with bold splashes and drips of color that encompasses mark making that is poetic and gracefully formed and at times boldly colored––that emerge in an uncanny, perfect balance. Her large-scale portrait paintings investigate the potential of big, aggressive brushstrokes and vivid color to convey emotion.

Johnson’s subjects range from abstract themes inspired equally by the landscapes to intimate figurative studies and poignant faces. By presenting two suites of paintings from her disparate styles in dialogue with one another, Cheryl Johnson will offer viewers a concise and rare opportunity to examine how one artist explores media, technique, and style — developmentally, artistically, and spiritually — through two seemingly oppositional, but nonetheless complementary, bodies of work. 

An established artist, Cheryl Johnson is defined as an individual who has a lifetime of painting and who has more than 50 years of experience and is at a mature stage of her career, with an extensive body of work and a history of public exhibition.

Large-Scale Painting, Large/Loose Brushstrokes, Women Artists, Contemporary Figurative Painting, Gestural, Splattered/Dripped, Painting, Line, Form, and Color, Mixed-Media, Oil Painting, Sculpture.

About the Artist

Cheryl Johnson Cheryl Johnson is an American abstract artist whose work has appeared in galleries throughout the US. Her works are held in numerous private collections in the US, Europe, and Canada. She maintains a studio in Kauai, HI and divides her time between there and Charlotte, NC. A highly collectible artist. 

With a long and varied career as an IBM Talent Manager, Instructional Designer and Website Manager; ensconced in a life of technology and marketing. In 2010, she gave up a regular pay cheque at IBM to pursue her love of painting full-time. 


Cheryl Lynn Johnson (born February 12, 1947) is a female American Abstract Expressionist Artist.  She was born in Kellogg, Idaho.  In her early years, she lived in the Rocky Mountains on the border of Idaho and Canada surrounded by immense beauty. Nature was her playground and inspired her to create art from a very young age.  Today Cheryl lives in Mecklenburg County, Charlotte, NC. 

She is of Finnish, Swedish, and Scotch-Irish descent. 

Her family migrated from Kemi Finland and settled in Canada in the 1800's, working a farm in Hughendon, Alberta. Her parents moved to the U.S. and ran a small motel in Eastport, Idaho on the Canadian Border. Yearly family vacations across Canada from the states kept her interested in the beauty of nature that has influenced her work to this day.

In her early artistic career, Cheryl  painted both under her familiar and family names: Cheri' and Cherah Boryl Jaurvaii. Cheryl graduated with a BFA from Oral Roberts University, MFA from Oklahoma State University continuing on with two years of study toward Doctorate Degree. She received MA  in Education and Teacher Certification from the University of Tulsa. 

She began painting professionally in 1969 and has had numerous shows throughout her career. She studied and worked in her early career as a Teacher, Video Producer, and Director. Skilled as a videographer, photographer, commercial artist and designer she moved to North Carolina in the early 1980s. She has continued to paint throughout her varied career while working in the corporate world and retired from IBM to paint full time in 2010. 

While in the corporate world. 

Cheryl L. Johnson proved herself as a multi-faceted professional with deep expertise in adult learning and creating corporate learning content, instructional design elements, websites, marketing, learning and performance improvement solutions for large and small organizations.

Ms. Johnson is an expert in adult learning, creative concept, branding and strategy development for large interactive learning, video and marketing campaigns. In her 25+ years of corporate business experience, Ms. Johnson has demonstrated success in managing strategic corporate initiatives, and provided thought leadership in innovative performance improvements in many industries. 

Cheryl Johnson is an ART IN EMBASSIES ARTIST

Art in Embassies, a program within the U.S. Department of State, creates vital cross-cultural dialogue and mutual understanding through the visual arts and dynamic artist exchanges. Where is the art exhibited: The art is installed in the representational spaces of U.S. embassy residences,, chanceries, consulates, and annexes around the world.


Skills Highlight

Ms. Johnson has proven ability to motivate and inspire cross discipline creative teams to deliver superb creative work under tight deadlines. a thorough understanding of project management, website and instructional design; and is a thought leader in adult learning theory, standards and practices.

She has the ability to quickly become a trusted advisor and is an engaging presenter, skilled graphic artist and writer with varied talents in graphics and fine arts.

Senior Level experience in International Sales and Marketing. Having produced creative and compelling e-learning and videos for fortune 100/500 clients (IBM, AT&T, Prudential, Nortel, Piedmont Gas, GridSouth, NC DSS, etc.)

Professional Experience

Sr. Instructional Design, Talent Websites Manager, Training Specialist, IBM - 2004 - 2012

IBM Talent-Learning & Workforce Management:  Websites Manager for 25 internal sites; suite of career programs and resources available to 450,000 IBMers to integrate the work of recruitment, learning, workforce management, business and technical leadership, and global mobility to pursue talent strategies in a highly coordinated, focused and purposeful way.

Workforce Management Global Community of Practice Leader; established multiple communities to enhance leadership, workforce management and social media connections.  Community available to 450,000 IBMers to share and exchange ideas.

Expertise Management Specialist. Website Manager/Communications lead. Created Career Smart, Expertise Taxonomy, Expertise Assessment and Career Framework websites; supporting enterprise wide global HR system employee replacement, skills and capabilities assessment tools. Created 27 sites accessed globally by 450,000 IBMers to update their skills and expertise.

Talent Website Integration Project Leader: Lead initiative to analyze, reduce and maintain Workforce Management sites globally. 

Business Consulting Services: Supported key internal/external clients i.e., Freddie Mac, National City, IBM Retail Sales, IBM Delivery Excellence. Executive Leadership. Marketing, Support.

Sr. Consultant, CLJohnson Consulting - 2001 - 2004

Charlotte, NC

Principle Consultant supported Fortune 100/500 clients. Ms. Johnson used a unique combination of skills, expertise and learning experience to design, develop and  manage projects. Additionally, Ms. Johnson utilized  strong writing and graphic design skills.


Lead project teams on complex projects and manage multiple engagements for multiple customers.

Responsible for delivering projects for customers that are on-time, on-budget, and on-scope.

Identified new business opportunities with the customer and followed the proper process for ensuring cultivation of those identified opportunities.cv

Performed Business Analysis - Worked with customer personnel to help understand business challenges and strategize regarding a solution design and implementation for addressing those challenges.

Drafted deliverable documents, proposal content, work estimates, leading internal and customer meetings, providing sales support, and designing and delivering presentations as well as reviewing all types of communications and deliverables from other team members.

Managed large and/or multiple project P&L(s) (budget) and work closely with all project resources to ensure that the project is delivered within the allocated budget.

Act as a leader and mentor for other Managers and Business Consultants and specifically managed the day-to-day activities of the project team resources.

Creative Director/Senior Instructional Designer/Instructional Technologist. SOS, Intl. Created training in North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC) Designed Online University Training Concept.

Computer Based Training Sr. Instructional Designer.  County Department of Social Services (DSS)/Information Technology-Charlotte, NC. Designed and developed 30 hours of e-learning for integrated solutions customer data management proprietary software.

Project Manager and Team Lead Integration/Merger Sr. Instructional Designer. Piedmont Gas: NC Designed and developed Customer 

Skill and Competencies

Training Director

Lead project teams on complex projects and manage multiple engagements for multiple customers.

Responsible for delivering projects for customers that are on-time, on-budget, and on-scope.

Identified new business opportunities with the customer and followed the proper process for ensuring cultivation of those identified opportunities.cv

Performed Business Analysis - Worked with customer personnel to help understand business challenges and strategize regarding a solution design and implementation for addressing those challenges.

Drafted deliverable documents, proposal content, work estimates, leading internal and customer meetings, providing sales support, and designing and delivering presentations as well as reviewing all types of communications and deliverables from other team members.

Managed large and/or multiple project P&L(s) (budget) and work closely with all project resources to ensure that the project is delivered within the allocated budget.

Act as a leader and mentor for other Managers and Business Consultants and specifically managed the day-to-day activities of the project team resources. 

Sr. Instructional Designer

Training Director and Sr. Instructional Development team lead and instructional designer. Has strong abilities to design, develop, evaluate, and maintain learning programs in the areas of business systems, customer service and sales, new hire training, and processes. As an instructional designer skilled in maintenance of instructor-led and web-based training materials - Designed and developed new content, ensuring high quality delivery of the program. Courses available in global locations. Assessed impact and reviewed results of new curriculum. Facilitated virtual design overviews for the train-the-trainer sessions for trainers who deliveres the program(s). - Follow the standard ADDIE instructional design process for all projects - Consistently adhere to departmental design, editorial, and branding standards to ensure the highest possible quality. - Applied proven process to assess business and audience needs and created training materials that met business objectives - Developed creative and innovative activities, exercises, simulations, and customized content to engage learners and ensure on-the-job application of skills - Coordinated project teams for mid sized to large initiatives - Planed and facilitated team and project-related meetings - Effectively managed projects using established project templates to document tasks and deliverables - Ensured all tasks were completed with accuracy to detail and in a timely manner - Proactively communicated progress and built strong relationships with business partners.

Basic Qualifications: 20+ years learning or human resources consulting experience.

15 + years of instructional design experience - 10+ years of experience developing courses using e-learning development applications (e.g., Breeze, Captivate, Articulate, Dreamweaver or related system) - Working knowledge of adult learning principles - Demonstrated ability to analyze needs, create learning objectives, design interactive learning activities and mater


IBM Certified Learning Specialist -2004 

BA Oklahoma State University - Stillwater, OK1970-1971

Master’s Degree

Special doctorate and graduate university programs at the University of Tulsa - 1970- Tulsa, OK.

Oral Roberts University 1965-1969

Bachelor’s Degree

BA: Bachelors of Arts Certification Education/Teacher Certification - 1970 - Stillwater, OK.

BA: Bachelor of Arts degree in Education from Oral Roberts University -1969 - Tulsa, OK.

Cheryl lived in winter months in Hawaii and shared a home and studio on Kauai showing her work in local galleries. Cheryl is very connected to her family and is blessed to keep studio spaces in her sisters properties in Montana, Vancouver Canada and Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. These environments clearly inspire her vibrant and layered works. She effortlessly moves between oil and mixed media. The bright colors and multiple layers of her paintings create energy, space and psychological impact, while the figures are staged like actors in a play.  

 © Cheryl Johnson 2018

Looking beyond herself, often into the majesty of nature, Cheryl Johnson's art is known for reflecting the energy, joy and startling beauty of her surroundings.  She shares her time between her studio in Kauai, Hawaii where she is surrounded by the ocean’s inspiration. Her valley home shimmers with waterfalls and rainbows.   In contrast, her studio in Charlotte, NC is near a secret forest nestled in the vibrant energy of a beautiful cosmopolitan city.  Both of these places energize and influence her style and creations. The exploration between city living and the freedom of island life is evident in her work.

Cheryl Johnson Kauai Home

I am an Abstract Expressionist Artist specializing in eclectic abstract and contemporary works of art. 

Fill your Life with Beauty. Make each day a Masterpiece! 

in art we find beauty

and comfort

"I wish to ignite a sense of joy. I create paintings that reflect the people and moments that touched my life. I allow imagination and emotion to commingle into memorable creations. My works are a collection of memories, philosophies, and experiences. I hope to enliven a sense of connection and optimism." 

Welcome to my ever-evolving space. 

Designed to connect with art that touches and inspires you.

Mentors and Inspirations

In 2011 Cheryl studied design with the German contemporary artist Werner Haker, who catalyzed her ongoing passion for art making. 

I have followed closely the work of Brian Rutenburg who has influenced my Secret Forest Studies. I have had the pleasure to attend his speaking engagements at Jerald Melberg Gallery in Charlotte, NC. 

I am an avid learner about art in general and in some ways, my work is a compilation of my love affair with artists: Joan Mitchel, Cy Twombly, Rothko, Whistler, William de Kooning and a new favorite Anslem Kieffer the list goes on an on. 

The primary purpose of my extensive travel is to visit great museums around the world and study the masters from many fields of art.

Tate, Guggenheim, Royal Academy, Louvre. MOMA - The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York I could spend a lifetime perusing.

The Uffizi Gallery, Florence, Italy holds the world’s finest collection of Renaissance paintings. All the famous names of Italian art are here—not only the Renaissance masters, but also painters from the early medieval, baroque, and Mannerist heydays. My Main attraction: “The Birth of Venus” by Botticelli. 

The National Gallery in Prague is a state-owned art gallery in Prague, which manages the ... Rodin, Gauguin, Cézanne, Renoir, Schiele, Munch, Miró and my favorite Klimt. 

Gustav Klimt “The Maidens (Virgins)” 1913, unfortunately, under glass so there is always a glare, but simply magnificent. 

"Changing the world one great idea at a time."

"I am an artist painting in the language of abstraction. I see the opportunity to make something amazing. My work continually evolves and changes as I explore emotion and the idea of place. The verdant forests of North Carolina, the translucent skies of Hawaii, the sea surrounding the island of Kauai, the warmth of Fall in the Northwest, the power of Glacier National Park are all subjects explored in my work. I have moments where I am drawn to faces and figurative studies. Series continues to examine secret forests as I am inspired by the beauty of nature: landscape, changing seasons, and the passing of time. 

While colors, light, weather and atmosphere act as the impetus in my work, the painting themselves evolve in recalling the memory of a place and continual moments of discovery. Early influences in painting were Monet and JMW Turner.  Experiments in impressionistic landscape painting eventually led to a language of abstraction related more to the female abstract expressionists, Joan Mitchell, Helen Frankenthaler. My goal is to keep the  elements universal and invite the viewer to experience it on an  emotional levels as well as visually. I am honored that my work is collected by private individuals and is found in public collections worldwide.


American Contemporary 

Abstract Expressionist 

Fine Art

Cheryl Johnson is a well-collected Contemporary Artist. Abstract Expressionist painter known for her compositional rhythms, bold coloration, and sweeping gestural brushstrokes. Her paintings photographs and limited edition prints can be seen in galleries and collections across America, Canada and Europe.

Cheryl Johnson a Charlotte, NC and Kauai, Hawaii based artist creates powerful paintings and sculptures that convey beauty, color, strength and, vulnerability. Cheryl Johnson’s oeuvre has garnered attention from gallerists, notable collectors, museums and the media alike, both on a local and international scale.