Barb Pennypacker







Barb Pennypacker

Barb Pennypacker

State College, PA


Barb Pennypacker was a faculty member in the College of Agricultural Sciences at Penn State holding the rank of Professor of Agronomy and Assistant Dean of the University’s Graduate School before retiring in 2005. She soon realized that the farmland she enjoyed during her career at Penn State was rapidly disappearing.

While not yet an artist, Barb wanted to paint the endangered barns before they vanished. To realize her dream, she took a private, total-emersion drawing class. The studio was an abandoned farm with a crumbling barn. Barb spent the first year of her retirement visiting Centre County farms and making plein air sketches of the old barns. The immense barn beams, marked with adze cuts and fastened with wooden pegs to create the soaring structure of the barns, speak to old-growth trees that are long gone from Pennsylvania. These barns are virtual windows into our agricultural past.

The gift of a set of Yarka watercolors from a Russian friend resulted in a three-year adventure in painting plein air watercolors of Centre County barns and landscapes. Finding watercolor a frustrating medium, Barb switched to oils after taking classes at the Art Alliance of Central Pennsylvania.

Barb became a member of the Farmland Preservation Artists of Central Pennsylvania in 2009. The mission of the FPA is to help preserve farmland by donating a portion the proceeds from art sales to the Centre County Farmland Trust. The Trust funds are used to buy development rights from farmers, thus ensuring the land will remain a farm. Barb finds a great inner peace when creating her farm-themed oil paintings and works closely with a local dairy farmer. Many Amish friends have permitted her to paint on their farms, broadening her appreciation of farming in central Pennsylvania.

Barb exhibits her paintings with the Farmland Preservation Artists and has participated in numerous regional juried shows. She is also a member of the Art Alliance of Central Pennsylvania and the Bellefonte Art Museum Artists’ Registry.


Blazing Autumn Color by Barb Pennypacker


Fond Memories of Rachael by Barb Pennypacker


Autumn flings her fiery cloak by Barb Pennypacker


Winter Tranquility by Barb Pennypacker


The Great Escape by Barb Pennypacker


Blissfully Unaware Mallards by Barb Pennypacker


The Cow Parade by Barb Pennypacker


Tilly of Bear Meadows Farm by Barb Pennypacker


Mother and Son by Barb Pennypacker


The Frog Hunter by Barb Pennypacker


Oak Hall Barn by Barb Pennypacker


Finally It's Spring by Barb Pennypacker


A Bright Blue Winter Day at Bear Meadows Farm by Barb Pennypacker


Abandoned Farm in the Mountain's Shadow by Barb Pennypacker


Ambling through the Snow by Barb Pennypacker


Day is Done by Barb Pennypacker


Deer's Eye View of Bear Meadows Farm by Barb Pennypacker


'Come see the north wind's masonry' by Barb Pennypacker


A Pause in the Mowing by Barb Pennypacker


Inquisitive Cows by Barb Pennypacker


Early Autumn at Bear Meadows Farm by Barb Pennypacker


February at Bear Meadows Farm by Barb Pennypacker


Evening Comes to Penns Valley by Barb Pennypacker


'Summertime and the living is easy' by Barb Pennypacker


'No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace' John Donne by Barb Pennypacker


Sharing Secrets by Barb Pennypacker


Biddles Barn Kitties by Barb Pennypacker


Winter on Penns Creek by Barb Pennypacker


Centre County Farm Lane by Barb Pennypacker


Autumn the year's last loveliest smile by Barb Pennypacker


Softly the evening came by Barb Pennypacker


Centre County Farmstead by Barb Pennypacker