As I compile the responses from the artists in our current show, “Mushrooms”, I feel as though my office in the back of our gallery space is in the middle of a forest. I am surrounded by the most beautiful representations of mushrooms and fungus. This open call show has brought in so many different types of artwork—pyrography, alcohol ink, fiber work, photography, paintings, pottery, glass work, and the list just goes on.
We have pieces from over 20 artists. Some of them have responded to a questionnaire about them, their artwork, and where you can find them and/or their artwork. But I’d like to introduce you first to the woman who made ALL of this possible.
Kelly Green is on of our co-op members and has coordinated shows for us in the past. This show is her 2019 effort.
I've been drawing and fascinated by art since I was very young. I really enjoy working in an endless variety of mediums from pen & ink drawings and painting on canvas to sculpting and customizing toys to photography and collage. Sometimes I use each on their own and sometimes they are all mixed up. It's very organized random chaos.
My process depends on the piece since I work with so many different mediums, and time plays a big role in how I proceed with each piece. I always have a bunch of different pieces and/or projects going on simultaneously which means making constant messes throughout the house. From randomness happening in my studio, to framing on the dining room table and multiple projects belonging to me and to my very creative daughter on every other surface available, the whole house can easily be overwhelmed by the creation process, and I am usually scrambling to try and keep the art messes under control.
I usually only paint, draw, or work on any detailed pieces when the house is completely quiet during the early hours before dawn. I cherish these rare meditative creative moments when the elegance and depth of silence can transform thought into spontaneous visual imagery.
I am super excited to be showing Bee and Butterfly Baths made out of recycled glass that I made with my amazing daughter Hali who is 8 years old and quite the artist herself already. She designed and stacked all of the glassware and I did all of the gluing. It was great fun, and they turned out really cool and beautiful.
I applied to Commonwheel for this gallery show after, (like most of my brilliant ideas), it was suggested to me by our super insightful Marketing Manager Juanita. A lot of my artwork actually has a lot of mushrooms in it for various reasons. I enjoy drawing, painting, and sculpting mushrooms because their shapes and colors are amazing, I find them an incredibly interesting and vast organism. Sometimes I just try to recreate them and sometimes they morph into Octopuses and/or hold symbolic meaning in my art. I thought it was a brilliantly fun idea to have a whole show dedicated to this amazing Fungus so I went for it.
I'm a proud member of Commonwheel Artist Co-op in Manitou Springs and Colorado Creative Co-op in Old Colorado City. I also have some art work available in the super groovy hippie and mushroom friendly Poppy Seed in Manitou Springs.
My website: http://www.flyvisions.com/
On Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kellygreenhbaum/
I loved to paint as a child, and a career in the arts was the only choice I ever considered. My studies were in Textile Design, and I received a degree, LSIAD from Canterbury College of Art in 1975. I have always enjoyed creating patterns and was lucky to join the Hallmark team in Kansas City in the early eighties. My occupation as an Illustrator lasted for twenty-five years, most of them working as a freelance and licensing artist with major companies in the US. Presently, I am expressing my creativity in watercolor, as this allows me to work fast and in a spontaneous way. As I have retired from product design, I am able to devote my time to the pursuit of painting, which is a wonderful transition.
Lately I have taken on painting without a sketch or drawing on the paper. On the one hand this offers greater freedom; on the other hand, this requires a lot of concentration, as you can’t alter watercolor much. In this piece I started painting the mushrooms general shapes and added the detail later.
The piece I entered is called “Dancing Mushrooms”. I was trying to convey playfulness, while developing the many patterns that are present on mushrooms.
I happened to be working on this particular theme and saw that “Commonwheel" was having a show depicting mushrooms. What a fun moment of synergy!
My work can be found at www.beatricetrezevant.com, Trezevant Art on Facebook, beatrezevant on Instagram.
I am a collector of hobbies and a jack-of-all-trades. I’ve painted, knitted, crafted, and written stories since a child. In high school and college, I delved into the performing arts, becoming a Dance and English major and choreographed an entire musical as well as original dance pieces. After college I dabbled in professional modeling and got very involved in the medieval re-creation society (SCA), where I learned medieval sewing, embroidery, knitting, and weaving, as well as medieval dancing and singing. I enjoyed knitting sweaters and making costumes for my four children as I raised them. Later I started my mermaid swim tail business, opening my small factory here in Colorado Springs where I designed, sold and shipped mermaid swim tails all over the world for seven years. I even got to choreograph a mermaid dance/swim solo – a fascinating challenge. After closing my business in 2018, I transitioned to being a full-time novelist, and I’m also learning to spin my own yarn. I’ve also gotten into LARPing (live-action role playing) instead of medieval recreation, which is a great place for improv acting as well as costuming.
Above is my dryad character at my medieval-style LARP in winter, knitting a red cap in the round. I also spun the yarn to knit the medieval shawl you see here, with a turquoise crocheted edging.
I’m drawn to knitting strange and unusual pieces. I also long for the days of my youth when I traipsed through the woods for hours at a time. Mushrooms transport me to mysterious forests again. I’ve been working off a template with varying patterns for caps and stems, which I can mix and match. I’ve begun to experiment off of the pattern, creating unusual shapes to the stems – making them bulbous then diminish to very narrow stems.
For these pieces, I find special felting yarn. I knit the cap, then the stem. I use hot water and felt the pieces by rubbing them together – creating heat and friction. Once dry, I stuff and stitch them, matching a cap to a stem. I forage the woods for unusual weathered wood from nature, matching a mushroom to a piece of wood, then gluing the mushroom into just the right spot. Sometimes I take a single mushroom and tuck it into a plant, onto a homemade wreath, glue it onto a flat stone, etc.
I love Redcap Path. This piece of wood has many tiny little “paths” eaten into it, leading to this mushroom with the flat, curly cap. The redcap is one of the most beautiful mushrooms – standing out like a spot of joy in the dark forest.
I learned about the show from another writer/artist. I’ve been knitting these mushrooms for a while and am now getting requests for them as gifts, so I wanted to participate in this special call for mushrooms. This is the first time I’ve submitted and am selling my art!
My author website will be including knitting patterns and progress on my various projects: www.jerilynwinstead.com. I also post my work on my FB page: https://www.facebook.com/jerilynmermaid
Drawing and painting was a favorite activity for me as a child. Both of my parents were artists who met and fell in love as students at the Herron School of Art in Indianapolis, so looking back, I think they naturally supported and encouraged me. I learned so much from their constructive criticisms, which is so vital to the process. I also wanted to make them proud of me, so I tried really, really hard at getting better. My main focus was always drawing, but later on, I've taken an interest in alternate mediums and surfaces to include 2D & 3D. I enjoy making an ordinary object something beautiful and special.
The first step in my process is the idea or inspiration, and usually, I know right away if it's something I can turn into an actual piece or image. I think about it quite a bit before I actually start, like what colors I want to use, or how I want it positioned on the surface. With my salt lamp art, I sometimes try to find an image in the salt crystal itself, and then work the design into the natural shape of the lamp. Next, I prepare the surface by hand sanding. I begin with a light sketch and then apply darker and more permanent paints and layers. I use a Dremel tool to sharpen and create more detail. Then I finish up with several coats of sealer.
My favorite piece for this gallery showing is the salt lamp entitled, "Mushroom & Butterfly" due to its whimsical feel and vibrant colors. It makes me want to do a HapPy DaNce :)
When I saw the Commonwheel's call for artists with a mushroom theme, I had two pieces that I had already completed. I had an epiphany and got busy submitting my entry form! It's hard putting your work out there, but I'm so glad I did, as should every artist. I love seeing other artist's creativity and work so that inspired me to apply as well.
In the past, I've had my needle felting work in two shops; The Pink Tulip in Indianapolis and The HeArt Market in OCC, but currently you can find me on my Facebook page, Bittie's Shop, where I sometimes post videos while I'm working on the salt lamps or drawings.
I'm an avid "Pinner" and have a large variety of visual interests and boards on Pinterest, to include a "Fungi" board! Just search for "Bittie's Shop" and I should pop up.
I started an Etsy Shop about a year ago and add new pieces as often as I can. Here's my Etsy Shop address: www.bittiesshop.etsy.com.
If you like my work, please consider giving me a like and a follow on all of the above!
I am a self-trained artist. Art was a found blessing in my life. Growing up, drawing and painting was just a rainy-day activity when I couldn’t be outside. However, after many years of unexplained illness, I was diagnosed with the chronic disease Lupus in 1992. During the difficult times trying to get my disease under control, I struggled with significant cognitive loss. For several years, I lost the ability to read or write…. but drawing was my life jacket. Since then a simple means to express myself has become my identity and a growing business. I am an active volunteer with the Wake Forest Guild of Artists and currently serve on the Wake Forest Public Arts Commission. I live in Raleigh, NC with my husband, two teenagers, and far too many pets.
I often choose subject matter connected to nature because I love dramatizing saturated hues and shadowed forms. My unique mixed-media techniques are work intensive and use both de-constructive and building processes. Each canvas becomes its own anthology. I start with a slew of understudy paintings done on variety of papers and materials. Once I rearrange and set the patchwork of squares into a composition that will make a good foundation, I then overlay my intended image. This lends the work to have depth, texture, and just a tad randomness. The common thread for all of my work is the creativity joining representational, raw, tactile, and abstract elements.
My favorite piece accepted into Mushrooms is “Humbled”. The painting is a reproduction of a photo I took while hiking in the Keweenaw Peninsula, MI. The intention behind this painting is a juxtaposition of how we view our life span versus that of the everyday life cycles of nature. “Humbled” is the stage of life when we have reached our maturity and we gain gratitude for even the smallest of blessings. In this case, a battered, leaning tree was giving way to a rich golden stand of mushrooms.
Since I integrate multiple elements into each work, I find it challenging to pick out appropriate call of entries. However, my creative heart was so happy to see Mushrooms! I see beauty in the unexpected…. So, I had mushroom art! Thank you for this opportunity.
Wake Forest, NC : Southern Suds & Gifts 213 S.White Street Wake Forest, NC 27587
My love for art started when I took Introduction to Art in high school, winning Second Place in a student art show with my very first painting. Being poor, I relied on teaching myself but would take college courses or private lessons as I could afford them. I mostly focused on acrylic painting but eventually added airbrush in 2008 and oils in 2009 (I had briefly worked with them in 1987). I’ve been doing murals since 1995. I’ve loved charcoal and graphite since high school, and I began working with pastel chalk in 2012 and colored pencils in 2014. I’ve been sewing since middle school and created “Bearing My Soul” Custom Teddy Bears in 2009. I’ve been whittling since 1992. My sister introduced me to pyrography in 2015, and I’ve been on fire for it ever since! (See what I did there?) It is very difficult for me to choose a favorite medium, which is why my art business is called “Stephanie’s Smorgasbord,” because I offer a little bit of everything.
When I am working on a painting, I will picture the layout in my mind for days, weeks, sometimes longer. I gather several reference photos before I get started, then sketch the layout in my sketch book, then onto the canvas, erasing and redrawing many times until I am satisfied with the composition. Unlike many artists, I don’t like to “prime” my canvas—I prefer to work on a white background. I put down basic shapes and colors, quickly working my way around the canvas (acrylic has a fast drying time!) building up layers until the canvas is covered, most likely redrawing many objects that got covered up in the initial stages. Once I am satisfied with the background, I break out the small brushes to work on the fine details and foreground objects. I believe I have one of the most unconventional methods of painting on the planet! Most artists mix their paint on their palettes, then apply it to their canvas. I do that to an extent, but for the most part, I mix my colors directly on the canvas, adding layers until l I get the details right. Even as I go through the painting process, I may change many of the objects based on shape, color, or size until I settle on what looks good. Once finished, I let it rest for several days, then look at it with “new eyes” to see if I need to tweak any additional details that I hadn’t previously done during the process.
My favorite piece for this show is “Fungi Fiesta” (credit for the title goes to my son Christopher Merchant). My 24”x48” acrylic painting of a forest scene with shafts of sunlight and mushrooms in the foreground. I birthed the concept when I was temporarily living in Maryland, which is when my obsession of mushrooms and appreciation of the forest began. I never realized how many different mushrooms there were! I spent hours photographing them and adding them to my Instagram feed (stepmercjohn), where I followed many other mushroom enthusiasts (machelspencephoto, yellowelanor, jill_bliss, and freymanbg are some faves!). I dreamed of doing a large painting for myself and began collecting reference photos, but it wasn’t until I moved back to Colorado in 2018 that I got serious about putting it all together. I bought a canvas but was so busy that it sat in my closet for over 6 months until my friend Carole Morrison (“Off the Leash Art”) sent me the link to Commonwheel’s Call for Artists. This was the kick in the pants I needed to get started! If it sells, I get to create another one! If it doesn’t, it’ll look fantastic in my new art studio! The painting took almost 80 hours to complete, and I loved every single mushroom I painted!
My obsession with mushrooms inspired to apply for this show! I have mushroom jewelry, mushroom embroidery, mushroom pillows, mushroom art, mushroom wreaths, mushroom knick knacks, mushroom keychain, mushroom fabric, mushroom kitchen canisters, trivets, salt & pepper shakers, coffee mugs … the list goes on! Of all the things I have ever collected, my mushroom collection is the largest! (Hmmm … I may have a serious problem here!) I am so grateful to Carole Morrison for sending me the Call for Artists link—she said, “This is right up your alley!” I felt like the show was created “just for me,” but I know there are many others who love mushrooms as much as I do!
Facebook Business: Owner, Stephanie’s Smorgasbord
Facebook Personal: Stephanie Merchant
Instagram: stepmercjohnart, stepmercjohnart
I have always loved drawing and painting, but it wasn’t until I retired that I had the time for it. It was then that I started taking classes for certification in Botanical Illustration at the Denver Botanic Gardens. I discovered within myself a curiosity, love and wonder at the complexity of a plant’s structure and found that I wanted to record all that!
Botanical Illustration is a precise form of art. It requires accuracy which can only be achieved by studying the plant where it is growing, measuring it, counting its components and noting their arrangement. Only then do I start to make preliminary sketches. I try to capture, not only the plant’s beauty, but also the accuracy of its make-up. This can result in several messy sketches! When I am pleased with a composition which shows as much detail as possible, I will make a contour drawing from it, showing only the outlines, by tracing the sketch. On a separate trace, I will make a value study, which shows only the shadows and varying degrees of shade. I will then transfer the contour drawing on to a clean, final piece of paper. I will set that aside, while I try to match the colors of the plant and mix up batches to use while I’m painting. Then the fun part starts, setting the plant in front of me, referring to my value study and my sketches, I start to paint – exactly what I see - with all its lovely details!
I only have one piece in this exhibition “Sarcodon imbricatus”, or the scaly hedgehog mushroom. I remember doing the preliminary sketches, while sitting under a tree, getting a slightly damp behind, in the mountains! Fun memories!
I have loved looking at all the exhibitions that have come and gone in the back gallery at Commonwheel. I have been interested in showing one of my pieces, but this is the first time I felt there was a “fit”.
My work is displayed at the Commonwheel Co-op and I have my own web-site at smithwickbotanicals.com
I recently moved from Delaware to Colorado Springs to pursue my photography career. I got my first DSLR camera in 2010 and have loved taking photos since. My junior year of college I officially declared my major as photography and dove in head first. Landscape, nature, and wildlife photography have always been my "jam" as I like to say. Photography gives me a means to find myself. Sometimes it takes getting lost to be found. Even at the most remote locations, in solitude, as long as I am camera in hand, I’ve never felt lost or alone, in fact those are the moments in which I feel most alive. Photography completes me in a way nothing else can. I have been taking small steps to further my career since moving to Colorado and I could not be more excited to see what the future holds.
First and foremost, I have to venture out into nature. Mother Nature is the ultimate artist and her inspiration is endless. I guess Photography is a bit of a different process than most mediums. I keep my eyes peeled at all times, constantly looking for interesting compositions (hint, they’re everywhere) but other times they jump out and smack me in the face. That’s one of the great things about Colorado, almost everywhere you look is picturesque. When I see a composition I like, I line it up through my lens to see how it translates through the camera. If I like it, I’ll go ahead and click the shutter. The editing process is a huge part of photography. I’m not big on Photoshop. I use Lightroom to adjust saturation, contrast, and highlights/shadows if needed. I like to bring out the bright, warm tones in a photo.
My favorite piece accepted for this show is Chanterelles. I just love the contrast between the green and the orange. I also love how the composition of it leads your eye from mushroom to mushroom. When I look at my photos I am always taken back to the moment I took it. This one was taken while I was hiking through the Great Smoky Mountains. I am back in the lush, mountainous, serene forest and it makes me feel at peace again.
This question is a bit ironic to me in this context. I was never big on mushrooms until I went on my road trip around the country last summer. Mushrooms are such a unique and diverse plant and I did not realize this until my trip. Traveling around the whole country I found countless different kinds and ever since I have loved mushrooms, so when I saw this mushroom-themed show, I knew I had to be a part of it! I am very excited to see the rest of the art on display.
While in high school, my art class took several field trips to the Appalachian Center for Craft. From the first visit, I knew that I wanted to study at the Craft Center. It’s beautiful location and amazing facilities was the best place for me to pursue art. I graduated from the Appalachian Center for Craft in December 2017. I graduated with a BFA in Ceramics and a minor in Social & Behavioral Science. I’m currently the Gallery Manager at the Craft Center and I also teach ceramics to high school students through the Appalachian Center for Craft’s Focus on Fine Craft Program.
My forms are thrown on the potter’s wheel and then altered and pinched to leave my own touch, documenting my relationship to each vessel. I paint quick, expressive imagery using Amaco Underglazes, inspired by my perception of environments I’ve encountered in my life. I carve through my imagery to reveal my terracotta clay body beneath, providing contrast in each piece. This process is called sgraffito. My pots are then bisque fired to Cone 08 (1728 degrees), glazed in a clear glaze, and then fired again to Cone 3 (2106 degrees).
I enjoyed making my Mushroom Bud Vase! It’s different than what I usually make! I came across the call for entry for this show on Instagram and I thought it would be a fun show to enter!
Galleries: Appalachian Center for Craft Retail Gallery, Smithville, TN
Julia L. Wright
My love of Nature and being outdoors has been part of my life as far back as I can remember. Creating art in many forms has been the basis of my life starting with theatre when I built sets and directed others in High School and college. After college, I created fiber-based crafts that often incorporated found objects. For about 20 years, I traveled to art shows, participated in RenFests and showed in many galleries. Feathers have always been part of my art creations and that evolved into my creating feather masks, earrings, hairclips and pendants.
I have taken thousands of photographs on my hikes and in many gardens. About seven years ago I started using my realistic nature and other photos to illustrate my books and journals. And more recently, I began to use my realistic photographs to create different types of decks of cards for children and adults. Original versions of my photographic Nature-based images are just one way I express my love of Nature. Mushrooms have often been subjects of those photos in late summer and early fall when the pop up out of the Earth to delight folks that look closely at the ground.
A few years ago, I “fell down a rabbit hole of creativity” and began using my Nature photos to create abstract, kaleidoscopic and mandala style images by taking a little part of a Nature photo and playing with it in Photoshop. Two of these styles of images can be seen in this show.
When I am sitting at my computer, I get totally lost in the process and my imagination can run pretty wild thinking about how to take the images I captured and create something totally unique and fun or hone in a specific element found in a photograph, such as a mushroom. It uplifts my spirit to honor the beauty of the amazing places I get to hike and glorify Nature in various artful ways.
All art involves an artist taking up some media and transforming it into a new form or image that comes from their vision and imagination. I try to transform what most people see as ordinary into something extraordinary with a unique way of seeing the world.
Working in my feather studio or on a computer or taking photos on my hikes always has my creative juices flowing. I am constantly looking for some new way to use the images I captured in the wilderness or a garden to create a bit of awe and wonder when someone sees the finished art.
So, my favorite piece in this show is the one that I played with and abstracted. “Meet Me at the Vortex By the Orange Mushrooms” is my favorite image I submitted to this show. It incorporates bits of bark to look like a couple of adventurers thinking of stepping into another realm. A group of brilliantly orange mushrooms marks the place for them to meet and contemplate where they might go next.
Nature is my most powerful inspiration. When hiking or passing a beautiful garden, I often stop to take in the amazingly beautiful natural creations that surround me. A driftwood stump or a rock formation or some fungi popping up out of the ground can be as enticing to my eye as a beautiful wildflower. Each one makes my heart sing and my spirit soar with joy when I take the time to really look at the beauty others pass by each day without noticing it.
I have a great respect for the pristine areas found in our surrounding mountains. And I have respect for folks that hunt for edible mushrooms in a consciously sustainable way. The often share this fun adventure with friends and family members to increase awareness of what Nature offers to us on many levels. So glad to be part of a show that celebrates this often-misunderstood types of flora. I have the hope when people view photos expressing the beauty of Nature, the might become a bit more aware how they can take actions to keep where they travel as pristine as when they arrived and look closely at some fun fungi that may be overlooked for their less showy aspect than wildflowers exhibit.
Stores/Galleries: Commonwheel Artists Co-op
Manitou Art Center in the First Amendment Gallery
My books are also on Amazon under the brand name of HieroGraphics Books.
I’ve dabbled in many artistic media, but I’ve found that fused glass is the one that gives me the most joy. I love experimenting, and particularly enjoy creating 3-D pieces in the kiln. This requires a number of firings at varying temperatures, all taking between 9-20 hours, with 4 or 5 hours of cool-down time. My inspiration comes from nature, including both the mountains and the sea. I have been working in fused glass for over 14 years, I have four kilns, and have taken over every inch of available space in my house and garage for my studio!
I create the components of my pieces individually, which requires cutting glass, finishing the edges, and firing to create each one. Then they are fired flat in the kiln, fired again together to create the piece, and fired slowly a final time to drape over a form which creates a 3-D piece.
My favorite piece for the Mushrooms exhibit is my Mushroom Luminary. The idea for this piece has been brewing in my mind since I first heard about the exhibit. It turned out just as I imagined it, and I’m very pleased with the result.
I’ve loved mushrooms since I was first introduced to Alice in Wonderland as a child, so I was thrilled when I heard the theme for this exhibit!
My work can be found on my Facebook page, LoLo’s Paloozas (www.facebook.com/LoLosPaloozas/), and is currently sold in the Strictly Guffey Gallery in Guffey, Colorado. I exhibit at many other venues in the Colorado Springs area including the MAC, the Modbo, Cottonwood Center for the Arts, and others.
I have been making glass art for 25 years. Inspirations for me come from everything around me. I look for interesting patterns, textures, and colors from nature and try to depict those inspirations in glass.
For this mushroom show, I have made some really fun lampworked glass mushroom beads which have been strung for necklaces. The process for making a glass mushroom starts by melting a pencil thin rod of glass in a torch. I then wind the hot glass onto a mandrel and squish the glass into the form of the top of the mushroom. The stem of the mushroom (a bit of a rod of glass) is then delicately placed on the underside of the mushroom top. Once I’m happy with the form, I anneal the glass, cooling it slowly over time. This annealing process assures that the glass is molecularly sound, and the glass mushroom will be just as beautiful in 10 years as it is now.
All of the mushrooms that I have made for this show are favorites for me in different ways. I have made a variety of styles of mushrooms for this show, and each is very unique!
I was inspired to apply for this show because I’m a “fun guy”!
My work can be found at The SideDoor Gallery in Old Colorado City, The Poppy Seed in Manitou Springs, and Commonwheel Artist Coop at which I am a member.
I dabbled in just about every media before discovering pyrography, also known as wood burning. I was drawn to the arts because it’s a language I can understand. As a deaf individual, I connect to the details of the visual world. My art is largely inspired by my passions. I adore animals, nature, science, and I also don’t mind smelling like campfire!
Pyrography has been around for centuries. It’s an age-old technique where a heated metal pen is used to burn wood. Each burn begins with selecting a wood slice and studying its character – the knots, grain, texture, and size. Next, I practice design ideas in my sketchbook. When satisfied, I draw in pencil the base sketch to the wood slice. I use a Razertip (10 amp detailed burning system) to burn the wood slice. The detail of each burn is achieved using a variety of wire tips and a range of heat settings. Each burn is unique because each wood slice is unique, which in turn affects how the wood is burned. My favorite part of my process is burning – it’s a slow, smoky art. I also love mixing my medias, after burning I will add watercolors or dried flowers to the wood slice.
Deciding which piece is my favorite is a tough choice – I really enjoyed burning complex mushroom gills in some of my other pieces. However, I would have to say “Moon Shrooms” is my favorite. I loved playing with rocky and smooth textures to bring imagination to life.
Mushrooms are such a fun subject matter – they are imperfectly perfect. Nature’s reminder that flaws are beautiful. I was also inspired by Commonwheel’s charm and cooperative mission: community.
On social media you can find my art by searching Woodstove Studios. Woodstove Studios started in my childhood home which was built in the late 1700s. My warmest family memories are gathered around our wood stove. Wood and wood burning will always smell like home.
Etsy Shop: Woodstove Studios
I enrolled in my first pottery class in 1975, I have not put clay down since. I love that I can take this malleable material, "clay" and move, manipulate, and form creative pieces to oneself and hopefully to many others!
I've been throwing mushrooms on the wheel for 8 years. I made these unique to this show, as they are "salt fired". A process where, when the kiln reaches 2400 F you add rock salt which instantly vaporizes and glazes the pieces with salt vapor. The finished piece has an "orange peel" texture, and an earthen or woodland appearance
My favorite piece for this show is the tall spiral mushroom that has the orange peel texture and some movement.
I wanted to participate in the show to see the public reaction to something unique.
My work is available at Hunter Wolff Gallery - 2510 West Colorado Avenue www.hunterwolffgallery.com
I work primarily in acrylics and my favorite subjects are florals, landscapes, fall scenes, animals, (especially lions and cows), mountains, abstracts, and now "mushrooms".
Both paintings* accepted for this show were inspired by a hike on the Pancake Rock trail 10 years ago during the height of the mushroom growing season. I had taken several photos and selected 2 that I very much enjoyed because of their location, natural color, texture of their surroundings and light. Creating new paintings for this show was a challenge as I had never done a mushroom before, and I remember still the excitement of finding these lovely shapes of nature that were so unique and fun to look at, almost playful.
I applied because I like the challenge of a new theme for me and knowing the colors of the forest floor and colorful mushrooms would complement my style. I hoped I could give the subject new life and style on canvas.
I sometimes post my work on Facebook. I currently have 2 paintings at First Pres. Downtown and 3 locations that are part of the "Art Aloud" art and poetry shows: Hooked on Books (downtown on Bijou), Academy Art and Frame, and Pikes Peak Market Place on E. Pikes Peak.
*I would say this is my favorite of the 2 because I experimented with more variety of color and the angle was harder to work with. The variety of colors are a more Impressionistic landscape.
Michael Ryder graduated from Metro State in Denver with a focus on large acrylic or resin paintings. Having spent a lot of time with some Navajo silversmiths he switched to jewelry, but presently enjoys both painting and silver work. Paint application is very important to achieve the effect he’s looking for.
This is a truly beautiful show that has been assembled. We have work by 24 Front Range artists in this juried show and wow, what a mix of work. The members who hang our gallery shows were very excited to see all of this art.
We asked these artists four questions:
1) In a short paragraph, tell us about yourself.
2) What does making art mean to you?
3) What has inspired you for this show?
4) Where can we find your work: website, social media, local stores.
Below are their responses.
I have always been told that I have an "eye for photography". I purchased my first Canon DSLR in 2010 and have been studying digital photography on my own ever since, with the help of a few inspiring hands-on workshops. My other passion is studying wildlife behavior. So naturally my "focus" is wildlife and nature photography. A year ago, I moved to Colorado where I have begun to expand my focus to the majestic Rocky Mountains, fascinating wildlife and beautiful flora of this area.
I love being in Nature and capturing it's beauty so I can share my visual images with others.
Flowing water in the high desert is not as plentiful as in other part of the country that I have lived in. Any chance I get, I capture its smoothing flow and am excited to shear my images in this show.
Here is where you can find my images:
Facebook: Alan Boucher Photography
Local Store: Bella Art & Frame
My grandmother was an artist with an appreciation for the environment. Growing up around her creative influences pushed me to pursue art at a young age. It started with just a pencil, then I continued with color throughout high school and graduated from Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania with a BFA. I have been painting for about 10 years, focusing on landscapes and environmental awareness.
I like telling stories with a visual platform for the viewer to understand my interpretation of environmental issues. These statements will hopefully plant a seed to make people think more about their impact.
My love for the ocean. These two paintings are directed towards our acidic oceans bleaching coral reefs, our plastic problem and overall pollution to our lakes and rivers, which eventually lead to the ocean. We all live downstream!
"Sometimes I spend hours applying paint on a canvas before I feel Like I'm painting". Hedy DuCharme
Painting for me pure is relaxation and a challenge mentally and spiritually. My soul needs to create and express itself to be content and alive. It's a wonderful feeling to be totally absorbed in creating something from the mind and heart, even if it doesn't become a "best ever" creation.
My interest in art began in High School back in the 60's. It was the first time I was exposed to art: drawing, color, paints, clay, ink drawing, and learning to see.
I went on to study art and art history at Michigan State University and graduated with a BFA. I went on to teach art for 5 years. In high school and college I learned that I was most interested in painting. I love working and creating with color.
My favorite period of art is the Impressionists with their loose brushwork, textured paint, nature themes, natural light, and creating their own interpretation of a theme or scene.
For the past 10 years I have had much time to devote to painting more confidently, regularly, and with a more sincere passion then I previously had.
I was a docent at the Colorado Springs Fine Art Center for 13 years. I had the opportunity to be immersed in great art not just locally but in museums around the country on docent organized trips. The ongoing training in the docent program kept me engaged with art principles and theory on a regular basis, which kept me learning, and discussing art on a regular basis.
During this time I became more inspired to create my own work and appreciate the art of many local artists. I had to challenge myself to enter juried and non-juried shows to expand my abilities, to be challenged by new themes, and to become part of the local artists community. Traveling to the great museums in Europe has been a huge inspiration to see some of the greatest art, architecture and artists from all over the world.
Many of my paintings are created from photos I have taken around Colorado, New Mexico, Europe, from my garden and gardens I have visited.
Submitting paintings for this "Water" themed show was a good challenge because water is such an important part of our everyday life, we can't live without it. And we enjoy water visually in the mountains—lakes, streams, waterfalls, ponds, and rain. We enjoy swimming in water, fishing, snorkeling in oceans, and walking a beach. There is life in water. We see reflections in water.
Water is many colors and no color making it a challenge to create on a 2-dimensional surface. I wanted to expand my use of using a sponge instead of a brush to create softer lines, layers of colors, and smooth edges, and more use of my hands than a paintbrush allows.
To see some of my paintings and current shows I'm exhibiting in I post them on my Facebook Page under Hedy DuCharme.
Locally I have exhibited at Cottonwood Center for the Arts, The former Colorado Springs Fine Art Center (docent show), Chapel of our Savior, Academy Art and Frame,, First Presbyterian Church, Discovery Church, The Bridge Gallery, and currently The Little Wine Barrel.
I’ve had a love for photographing nature since childhood. While attending church camp in the summer, instead of coming home with pictures of new friends and fun times, the whole role of film would be filled with chipmunks and forested area. The passion has always been there, but it wasn’t until around 2005 that I decided to start sharing my work. There is beauty all around us, and I want to share God’s masterpieces with others.
To me, making art means being able to share something unique with others. I want the viewer to feel that they are in the photograph ~ that they can feel the cold, or smell the flower, or touch the tree.
Water is a powerful force on different levels. Whether it's the vastness of an ocean, or the intense momentum of a waterfall, they can equally make one feel like they're a minute part of our universe.
You can find my work at Facebook.com/ANobleTouchPhotography
Julia L. Wright
My love of Nature and being outdoors has been part of my life as far back as I can remember. Creating art in many forms has been the basis of my life starting with theatre when I built sets and directed others in High School and college. I created fiber-based crafts ranging from macramé plant hangers or unique wall pieces that included found objects and woven elements. Feathers have always been part of my art creations. Mandala style feather wall hangings evolved into my creating feather masks. Creating those masks still is very fun! Creating earrings, hairclips and pendants was a natural progression to ways to create artful accessories using feathers and found objects.
I have taken thousands of photographs on my hikes and in many gardens. About six years ago I started using my realistic nature and other photos to illustrate my books and journals. And more recently, I began to use my realistic photographs to create different types of decks of cards for children and adults.
Three years ago, I “fell down a rabbit hole of creativity” and began using my Nature photos to create abstract, kaleidoscopic and mandala style images by taking a little part of a Nature photo and playing with it in PhotoShop. Currently these can only be seen online. Original versions of my photographic Nature-based images can be seen in this show and express my love of Nature.
When I am in my studio or sitting at my computer, I get totally lost in the process and my imagination can run pretty wild thinking about how to take the images I captured and create something totally unique and fun or hone in a specific element found in a photograph, such as water. It uplifts my spirit to honor the beauty of the amazing places I get to hike and glorify Nature in various artful ways.
Working in my feather studio or on a computer or taking photos on my hikes always has my creative juices flowing. I am constantly looking for some new way to use the materials at hand to create a bit of awe and wonder when someone sees the finished art.
Nature is my most powerful inspiration. When hiking or passing a beautiful garden, I often stop to take in the amazingly beautiful natural creations that surround me. A driftwood stump or a rock formation or a bit of moss can be as enticing to my eye as a beautiful wildflower. The reflection of a mountain or rock formation or clouds in water can stop me in my tracks to look deeper into that fleeting image. Each one makes my heart sing and my spirit soar with joy when I take the time to really look at the beauty others pass by each day without noticing it.
The normal concept of a photograph is a translation or transformation of a scene onto a two-dimensional surface, and most photographers leave it at that. Back on my computer, I become immersed in the process of creating something new and visionary from what I saw to create a unique view and transform that image into an artistic composition.
Some of my photos get used as they were taken, or maybe have sections highlighted. Other times, the process of transformation starts when I notice some interesting element in a section of a Nature photograph. Then I will start to transform that photograph by modifying a section of the image in such a way that it becomes something totally new and uniquely changed from its original shape.
The idea of using my Nature photos for card decks for children came from seeing too many instances of how little respect people have for the natural world and can only hope that by showing how beautiful and fragile wildflowers can be starting with a card game that might inspire more kids to get out and search for them and find other reasons to respect their natural surroundings.
My books have very practical advice and have come from my own experiences and based on creating a more sustainable art festival and natural solutions for health. And I recently updated my tree squirrel book and created a new one about ground squirrels in which I express my love of squirrels and teach children a bit about them.
My journals are based on specific themes, but they are not just “blank books”. They have practical advice in the introductions and some photographs related to the journal’s subject. Each one has prompts for a person to fill in the blanks relating to that prompt and can be used to write down their thoughts and have pages to sketch on or color designs in some of the books.
All art involves an artist taking up some media and transforming it into a new form or image that comes from their vision and imagination. I try to transform what most people see as ordinary into something extraordinary with a unique way of seeing the world.
Often when hiking, I, Julia, stop to take some time to look at a bit of Nature. Sometimes it is a part of a tree; maybe a root, a stump or a burl. Looking towards the ground I may spy a uniquely shaped mushroom or flower that catches my eye. Sometimes moss growing on a tree or on a rock causes me to stop to look closer at a section of it. So I take a photograph.
Reflections seen in water have always captured my imagination. I am often surprised when I look at a photograph on the computer to see a reflection of clouds or shoreline plants that create a lovely addition to the landscape that I was seeking to capture.
I have a great respect for the pristine waters that flow down from mountains in rivers and creeks and form ponds and lakes I discover along hiking trails. It saddens me to see trash collecting in them and have never understood why if someone can carry in a heavier item, when it is empty, they can’t carry it back out . . . I am always careful to be sure the area I visit is not burdened with any items I bring in and pack them out myself. I have the hope when people view photos expressing the beauty of Nature, the might become a bit more aware how they can take actions to keep where they travel as pristine as when they arrived.
My work can be found at:
Manitou Art Center in the First Amendment Gallery
My books are also on Amazon under the name of HieroGraphics Books.
kj becker is a manitou springs-based artists with a unique set of skills and over 22 years of combined experience in the areas where there are deficiencies in the social system for the expressive arts and how we connect with marginalized populations, such as, military veterans, sexual assault survivors, and differently-abled folks. kj has been an artist all her life and received a bfa in studio art and psychology from the university of illinois in 2007 after 5 years of active duty in the air force as a mental health technician. kj went on to manage the arts of life in chicago and then worked for the va doing expressive art peer support. today KJ is a full-time professional artist.
for kj, artmaking is all about the process. having physical disabilities and ptsd from her time in the air force, kj has found the physicality of artmaking is most beneficial compared to traditional therapies and medications that are commonly prescribed.
"adored" is an artistic expression of kj falling in love with her partner in the summer of 2018. contrary to previous works that were more about the physicality of the art piece, rather than concept, kj is just starting to explore what her "story" is, as she has felt invisible for decades.
current residency at art111, the manitou art center, library 21c, and a solo show in april 2019 at goatpatch brewery
As with all life-changing shifts, I did not come to art gracefully or willingly. I received a channeled message in Jan. 2014 that I would be used as a conduit to create paintings that contained energetic messages designed to benefit humanity's evolution and that these messages would be embedded into the paint. The messages themselves would draw the people to them that needed those frequencies. My instruction was to "hold the brush and wait." I experienced tremendous discomfort and frustration in this process. It was 18 months before anything started to happen, before I felt any "click" while moving color on canvas or wood. I disliked almost everything I painted during this time. The one thing that made a difference, and that kept me squarely in the instruction, holding the brush while seemingly nothing occurred, was an earlier experience with receiving an internal intuitive message that also made no sense and was in direct opposition to my lifestyle, yet brought forth an outcome for me that consisted of success and happiness beyond my wildest dreams. At some time early on in this extremely stuttery, cranky-producing painting process, some dragon shapes started to appear in the paint that I had not created myself. They insisted on being seen and on being painted. They are in charge of this energetic process and bring joy to these paintings and to me.
The painting "Transformation: The Fire/Water Dance" is a channel or portal for balance. During the floods after the Waldo Canyon fire, I often thought about how what we perceive as an extreme negative event might just be the exact thing that brings about perfect balance. The dance of fire and water in our particular geography is ancient and, I believe, directly impacts our consciousness, even if we are unaware of these effects. Our fiery moments tend to consume us. Our watery moments bring forth more fluidity in our moment to moment living. We are integral to our landscapes and our landscapes continuously offer us their blessings, even when they come disguised as catastrophe.
The dragons and I are eternally grateful for all opportunities to express, fulfill, and serve as conduits for any who are drawn to the energetic gifts of the galactic light art paintings.
Paintings can be viewed at http://www.galacticlightart.com and at Movement Arts Community Studio, 525 E Fountain Blvd, Ste. 150, Co Spgs: http://www.movementartscs.com.
Like many people, I had to wait until I retired to begin exploring my artistic abilities. Luckily I was able to retire early, and after experimenting with many media, including clay, mixed media, alcohol ink, jewelry, etc., I found my true passion in fused glass. I enjoy experimenting, and particularly enjoy creating 3-D pieces in the kiln. This requires a number of firings at varying temperatures, all taking between 9-20 hours, with 4 or 5 hours of cool-down time. My inspiration comes from nature, including both the mountains and the sea, having lived near the beach in Florida for 12 years. I have been working in fused glass for 14 years, I have three kilns, and have taken over every inch of available space in my house and garage for my studio! I’m looking forward to adding a fourth, larger kiln to my collection so that I can create taller and larger pieces.
Creating art is the most important thing I do. It makes me feel like I am contributing something of value, and it brings me much happiness, both in the process of creating and in the end result.
As stated above, the sea is a huge source of inspiration. All of the colors found at the sea shore are my favorites, and the beautiful colors of art glass lend themselves perfectly to this theme. I try capture the whimsy and movement of the sea, so I can remind people of how they feel when they are on the shore and in the water.
My work can be found on my Facebook page, LoLo’s Paloozas (www.facebook.com/LoLosPaloozas/), and is currently sold in the Strictly Guffey Gallery in Guffey, Colorado. I exhibit at many other venues in the Colorado Springs area including the MAC, the Modbo, Cottonwood Center for the Arts, and others.
These works represent a technique I discovered quite on accident over a year ago but have only more recently started to create actual pieces. I use a variety of surface material and then combine water and tissue paper to create texture and color. I control the color and design for any piece. They are then finished using a high gloss urethane. The water adds a fluid and abstract nature to the works that changes the color, light and perspective for the viewer.
I grew up in an artistic family and have always been drawn to creating, designing and working with color and pigments. My father was an interior designer and I learned much of the foundation of my knowledge in textiles and design from him when I was growing up. I later attended Denver University where I studied Interior Design and the Instituto Allende in Mexico where I studied the fine arts and sculpture. As an adult I studied French Interior Design and French Culinary Arts in Paris.
I have lived in the Cascade area now for over 35 years permanently. These last 5 years I have enjoyed studying and experimenting with many different mediums, creating my own, directly from plant-based pigment. I photograph natural color from food, flowers and birds. And study light. The only element that creates color. I cook. And eat. And enjoy life, from a different perspective these days. And always creating. And designing.
You can see more of my design work by visiting my website at: DeramusDesigns.houzz.com linkedin.com
Rhonda Van Pelt
I grew up in an artistic family: my dad worked in wood and my mom painted. I earned my bachelor’s degree in art (painting emphasis) in 1980 at the University of Southern Colorado, where I studied with Lew Tilley, Robert Wands, Ed Sajbel and Orlin Helgoe. I’ve been a working artist ever since and have combined that with my love of writing to work as a graphic designer and as a journalist with various publications.
For me, a day without being creative is a wasted day. I am excited and inspired by nature, other artists’ work and simply walking down a street and being observant.
I love the patterns I see in nature. I manipulated photos I took at Monument Valley Park to make them abstract and then, for the first time, had my photos printed on metal. I think it’s especially appropriate and effective for this subject matter.
I mostly show at the Manitou Art Center and Academy Art & Frame Co., but in March, I will also have a solo exhibit in Colorado Springs City Hall. Also see: rhondashouseofcreativity.shutterfly.com.
As a child I was always making stuff with no concern about whether or not it was art. I simply enjoyed it. Born and raised in central California, I attended Fresno State College (BA Degree and General Secondary Teaching Credential), followed by graduate work at the University of California at Berkeley (MA Degree with Specialty in painting). Further studies were undertaken at the University of California at Los Angeles, the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, and overseas at the International Summer Academy of Fine Arts in Salzburg, Austria.
Before moving to Colorado Springs in 1995, I spent 29 years as an art teacher with the Department of Defense Dependents Schools in Germany and Belgium. Extensive travel, including photo safaris to East Africa and scuba diving trips to the Red Sea, Indian Ocean, Mediterranean Sea, and Hawaii have been rich sources of inspiration for my art, which has appeared in local, national, and international shows.
Here in Colorado, I was a studio artist at the Manitou Art Center for 4 years, a member of the Commonwheel Artists Co-op for 10 years, and taught ceramics part-time for 12 years at Pikes Peak Community College. Now I enjoy working in my own studio at home.
Art, in whatever form it might take, is something that I must do, and I’ll keep doing it as long as I’m able.
Fifteen of the most exciting years of my life were spent as a scuba diver, exploring the undersea world in such faraway places as the Mediterranean, The Caribbean, and the Red Sea, as well as the Indian Ocean and the Hawaiian Pacific. It was like entering another world of coral reefs teeming with life beneath the surface of the water, and with an underwater camera was able to capture some of it on film.
Now that I no longer dive, I can relive those fabulous adventures by scanning a few of the many slides I’ve collected. Each has a story to tell. These old photos can be reworked and improved by enlarging, cropping, repositioning, and enhancing in various ways. The possibilities are endless. My goal is that these pictures have artistic value and are more than just snapshots. For me, a clay artist, this is an exciting new creative adventure into another medium that I’m happy to share with you, the viewer. I hope you enjoy these pictures.
My ceramic work and photos can be seen by appointment at my home studio in Colorado Springs. I can be contacted by phone at 719/592-0984 or online at email@example.com. Also, I have a few ceramic pieces in Commonwheel’s online store at www.commonwheel.com.
I recently moved from Delaware to Colorado Springs to pursue my photography career. I got my first DSLR camera when I was 18 and have loved taking photos since. My junior year of college I officially declared my major as photography and dove in head first. Landscape, nature, and wildlife photography have always been my "jam" as I like to say. I have been taking small steps to further my career since moving to Colorado and I could not be more excited to see what the future holds.
To me, making art means I get to show the world the way I see and feel it. One of my favorite things about photography is that no one else sees the world exactly like I do or feels exactly what I felt in the moment that I create a photograph. It is fulfilling and profound to create something that makes you happy no matter how simple, or complex, it may be.
Being from Delaware I grew up surrounded by water - ponds, lakes, the bay, and the ocean. It has been a common subject of my photography since I first started out 8 years ago. There is a huge draw to water for me, whether its capturing a reflection on a still lake, or the rushing waters of a river.
Instagram: @ amyshortphoto
Gallery: Colorado Creative Co-Op in Old Colorado City
I've been drawing and painting as long as I can remember! I was the "artistic" kid in my family, even in elementary school. I majored in graphic design in college and worked in that field for 20 years. Although I took some painting classes in college, I'm mostly self-taught. Throughout my teens and adult years, even when working full time as a commercial art, I continued to paint - always in watercolors. I started showing and selling my work in local and regional art festivals about 15 years ago. I feel that my artwork enjoyed a significant "growth spurt" in quantity and quality a few years ago when I was able to devote more time to painting.
To me, making art is one way that I interpret the world that I experience, and one way that I "archive" an experience in a tangible form. Art is a recording of my experience and an invitation for the viewer to share that experience.
I was inspired to start painting water scenes because, frankly, it was a challenge, and I like to take on painting "challenges" especially when others comment "oh, that's SO hard to paint!". I'm especially drawn to interpret and portray local water scenes in my paintings, because water is so precious and so scarce here. I painted the 'Blue Mesa Reservoir" scenes from photos I took there on a cold, very windy day. The rocks and whitecaps made me feel like I was at the ocean, and I tried to capture that feeling.
I belong to the Mountain Artists in Woodland Park, the Pikes Peak Watercolor Society, and the Western Colorado Watercolor Society. My work can be viewed on the Mountain Artists website, and in various exhibits that they sponsor in Woodland Park, including the Mountain Arts Festival.
A 1998 graduate from the Colorado Institute of Art, I found my love for photography at an early age through the appreciation of geometric angles and in 2013 evolved to underwater photography...
Underwater photography should take you to another realm, a world that people can experience through my imagery.
Challenged by the unpredictable element of water and weightless gravity, the outcome produces some of the most visually unique images - human forms unlike any found on land, free flowing of fabric, no worry hair and an unearthed world that is created.
I am Underwater Conceptual Photographer
I have always had a love for the water from the sound to touch to even the smell. When I see underwater imagery there is a kind of purity and freedom. By putting people into an environment that human life is not generally pictured, a whole new world of imagination can be created. There is such natural beauty within the source of water. We are surrounded by water internally and externally and combining the two shows the strength that water is composed of and how it truly is a source of life. Water can be interpreted in many ways, it is up to the audience to decide what they see and how it moves them. I love the unpredictability of the outcome, both for myself, the subject and the audience.
I was motivated to take my photography further upon moving to this beautiful state of CO from the Midwest. I am a self-taught photographer and have been taking photos professionally for 7 years now but photographing as a non-professional for years & years prior. I work full time in corporate America but photography is my passion and the pastime in which I lose all sense of my surroundings and time. I can completely submerge myself into the act of photographing and love to spend a day doing nothing but shooting.
Making my art is an opportunity to capture, with a lens, & share the extreme beauty I see in this world, painted all around me. My hope is to inspire others in some way or to give others the chance to see something they may not ever have the opportunity to see with their own two eyes.
My inspiration for this show was the amazing beauty of Grand Exuma Island in the Bahamas. I saw water in colors I had never seen before and every where I turned were spectacular landscapes and amazing sea life.
You can find my work in the Commonwheel Co-op Gallery in Manitou Springs, in the Colorado Creative Co-op in Old Colorado City, and online at http://tinarodholm.zenfolio.com. You can also follow me on Instagram @hisbeautifulcanvas and on Facebook at "His Beautiful Canvas"
My art is in photography, from shooting to processing, framing and printing. I can't call it a career since I did that in the electronics field, and am retired. My quest is to take decent pictures and process them with an intent to capture the beauty or other fascination that was observed at the moment each was taken. I am highlighting the third dimension by distorting the print in various ways. I have been at this now for six years.
My great pleasure is in seeing the printed image “come to life” as I do my work. Sometimes the added value is amazing, other times perhaps marginal, but I am inspired after working with each one to continue making them “better”. It means a lot to me when others can see and enjoy my finished work.
I keep looking for opportunities to display my pictures and since I have some that fit into the category of “Water in the High Desert” there was no hesitation to enter. I was pleased to have two accepted. In fact, those two were a new design I just began, using a 5”X7” Shadow Box frame to display a couple of my 3-dimensional ideas. It allows me to use a distance gradient on the print (it is slanted back toward the rear of the picture) as well as a form of embossing the surface to further emphasize that phenomenon.
I have a lot of pictures on Fine Art America, but you won't see any 3-D on the website since that part of the process takes place on the print. firstname.lastname@example.org I have entered my work previously at Commonwheel for the “Autumn Colors” event, at Tri-Lakes Monochrome Photography gallery and at the Academy Art and Frame Gallery where one photo placed second and another got honorable mention in their Miniatures event.
To promote my work further, I have rented a hallway room at Cottonwood Center for the Arts for the months of March and May and will also have work on display at Boulder Street Gallery and Framing during the month of April, 2019. I registered my photo business as Richard's Photo Craft in Colorado, working in my home. Contact me at email@example.com.
We had 27 artists submit almost 100 items for the jury for this show and accepted 60 works from 21 artists. All these artists were asked to tell us a little about themselves and their work.
Here are their responses.
I am 19 and a senior at the University of Northern Colorado, and I’m studying Graphic Design. I’m graduating this December and I’m so excited about it! I’ve been an artist for as long as I can remember. I really enjoyed writing fictional stories when I was 5 or 6 years old, and I liked to illustrate my made-up stories with detailed drawings of my characters. From there stemmed my interest in drawing, and after placing 2nd in an art contest when I was in 2nd grade, I knew this was something I was passionate about. Up until the age of 16, my main media I worked in was pencil; I enjoy drawing photorealistic drawings of people and occasionally landscape sceneries. For my 16th birthday, I received a camera as a birthday present, and that opened a door to a whole new world. Photography very rapidly became my primary media. I love photographing nature, from landscapes to close-ups of flowers to shots of wild animals. To this day, photography is still my favorite and best-developed media to work in; however, since coming to college, I have discovered I really enjoy acrylic painting as well, and also like to paint sceneries and objects.
My photographs often reflect my love for the outdoors; I love hiking, camping, kayaking, anything out in the mountains. I have to time the weather, lighting, and location right in order to catch a good photograph, but it is well worth the tedious efforts. Autumn and winter have proven to be the most opportune times for me to photograph; the colors of the trees in the autumn, the snow, and the frequently cloudy skies create the perfect photo environment.
The particular piece being featured in the “Autumn Glory” exhibit is a photo I took in October a few years ago. I was driving back through Independence Pass from a trip to the mountains for a couple days, which consisted of mostly photography opportunities for me. I saw this specific spot in the distance and immediately had to stop; the pop of the yellow aspen trees amongst the dark pine trees was captivating to me. Additionally, a storm was starting to form above the mountains, and the clouds were creating the perfect lighting. Yellow is one of my favorite colors, so this piece is a favorite of mine because of the splash of bright yellow among the earth tones.
To see more of my work, please visit my website: www.courtneybobo.com
Like many people, I had to wait until I retired to begin exploring my artistic abilities. Luckily, I was able to retire early, and after experimenting with many media, including clay, mixed media, alcohol ink, jewelry, etc., I found my true passion in fused glass. I enjoy experimenting, and particularly enjoy creating 3-D pieces in the kiln. This requires a number of firings at varying temperatures, all taking between 9-20 hours, with 4 or 5 hours of cool-down time. My inspiration comes from nature, including both the mountains and the sea, having lived near the beach in Florida for 12 years. I have been working in fused glass for 14 years. I have three kilns and have taken over every inch of available space in my house and garage for my studio! I’m looking forward to adding a fourth, larger kiln to my collection so that I can create taller and larger pieces.
In order to create a fused glass piece, you must start by designing the piece flat, and you must fuse it at a high temperature, between 1400 and 1480 degrees, depending on the effect you are hoping to achieve. If the first firing is successful and does not need additional work and another firing, the piece is cleaned, and dried. Many times there is cold working that must be done after the first firing, which smooths out sharp edges and points. Another firing, called a fire polish, is often necessary to remove any cold working marks left on the glass. The piece can then either be slumped into a bowl form or draped over a mold to make a vertical, 3D piece, as with Glimmering Aspens, the piece I created for “Autumn Glory“. The temperatures of these other firings are much lower than the original, full fuse.
I am only exhibiting one piece in this exhibit, so this is my favorite! This is one of my Aspen Grove series that I designed, and I enjoy making variations on this theme.
I have always loved Commonwheel Co-op and have been a customer for many years! It is the quintessential retail art gallery, and I have always wanted to enter one of their exhibits. Additionally, I love the theme as trees in general, and aspens in particular, are my favorite things in nature, and autumn is my favorite season of the year!
My work can be found on my Facebook page, LoLo’s Paloozas (www.facebook.com/LoLosPaloozas/), and is currently sold in the Strictly Guffey Gallery in Guffey, Colorado.
I fell in love with fused glass art about 10 years ago when I saw someone wearing a dichroic pendant and took a class to learn to make my own. I love the beauty of art glass and the infinite combinations and reactions that can be achieved. I love that the melting glass changes form and defines itself. The anticipation of opening the kiln to see the new creations is really exciting.
My fused glass landscapes are created over several days in multiple kiln firings by melting layers and pieces of sheet glass between 1200-1500 degrees. First, the basic layers are built and completely melted to form the base, then, painterly details are added with smaller pieces, grains of glass and glass powders. When all the layers are complete, the glass is cut with a wet saw to make nice edges that allow the light in to the glass. Finally, I paint lithograph style details and fire one last time to polish the cut edges and cure the paint. Glass must be heated and cooled slowly. The entire process takes about a week to complete a picture.
My favorite piece accepted in the event is Maple Blaze. The piece incorporated several experimental processes and turned out stunning with so much depth, complimentary color and interest. It is a very deliberate, happy accident.
My favorite subjects in glass landscape are trees and Autumn truly is a glorious time with so much inspiration.
My work can be seen online at https://www.facebook.com/TigerLilyStudio/
As an elementary art teacher, my students and their sense of wonder in the world constantly motivate me. The beauty of our Colorado landscape and wildlife inspire my mixed media paintings and my love of nature as a gardener, skier, mountain biker, and hiker is reflected on my canvas. I create whimsical imagery and form in my aspen tree paintings that combine my formal training as a botanical illustrator and collage work using trail maps found on my travels. The assortment of materials I use transport you to my outdoor playground of colorful whimsy and realism and offer a moment of peace to consider our paths.
I was given an Olympus OM-10 by my father that I carried in my backpack through the Sierras, Olympics and Cascades long before the luxuries of digital cameras came along. In the 90’s I made my home in the Rockies and attended The Art Institute of Colorado to study Interior Design. I prefer to work in one click, one frame. I see my camera as meditation, an opportunity for peace and stillness. Rather than layering or stacking frames I chooses to step into the stillness offered in the silence created within my camera lens.
I try to “work” every day. But calling is work makes me giggle. Quite simply, for me, my camera is meditation. Working is spending time with the sky, the birds, and the flowers. It may mean I am on my patio with snowflakes or hummingbirds. If I am lucky it means my husband is my driver and I am wandering our beautiful country with our camping gear looking for a peaceful spot to wake up in. Because my work process involves being in the right place, at the right time—hopefully with the right light. My “work” is helping learn patience. Without it I would have lost focus long ago.
The Story (above) is my personal favorite in this show because it is my story, it is the story of all of us. It is why I take the photos I take. It is The Story I attempt to tell with each photo. It is what I wrote when I first opened my site to sell my art - Life is a cycle. We plant seeds then nurture them as they struggle to find the sun and bloom. It is the purpose of all living things to reach into the earth and find the power to bloom again and again. I don’t pose photographs, I capture them. She is, in my mind, the perfect capture of The Story – and she tells it beautifully exactly where she fell.
I love Commonwheel. I can’t image many places it would make me happier to see my pieces hang. It really is that simple.
My work has been shown locally at TwentyOne8, Colorado Springs Annual Fine Arts Exhibition, and Gallery 132. I was also a featured artist in the 2018 Fusion Garden Art Show in Palm Springs. You can follow me on Facebook at Sheila Fuller Photography on Instagram at SheilaFullerPhotography or visit my website: http://sheilafullerphotography.com
What is art? To me, art is beauty, though beauty is in the eye of the beholder. As a child I enjoyed coloring, cutting out paper dolls and clothes, reading, putting puzzles together (still do). I loved looking at pretty pictures. Maybe I was born with this love of putting things together, of seeing a swan in a lake and painting its likeness to the best of my ability, of making a story come alive in MY eyes, through painting. Or maybe I just inherited it from my Mother who started painting after I left home, or my Father who was a carpenter and loved making beautiful things. Even though I didn’t know it as a child, I’ve always been interested in art. I am a realist artist, oils being my choice of medium. I love the Old Masters and their proven methods of traditional painting skills and I continuously strive to learn and practice these skills.
I love plein air painting – portraying the beauty of the landscapes and wildlife as I see it; striving to make the viewer feel the water flowing, see the flowers blowing in the wind, feel the snow falling, feel the energy of the animals romping in the fields or the birds flying. I also love painting in my studio using my own photos as reference material. The painting, Elk in the Water, is a combination of my imagination for the background and a photo of the elk. I drew the elk first, making sure I had its features correct. Then, using acrylic paints, I partially painted the elk, so I would not cover up the drawing as I painted the background. As the background is not as detailed as the elk, I didn’t draw it in but just started painting the sky. Then the mountains and background trees. Then came the small island on the right side, water, and left bottom land, painting around the elk. Next came the island trees (trunks only) on the right and bottom left. Leaves then completed the trees. Right now, I am still working on this painting. The elk has to be completed and refined and the elk’s legs need some splashing water around them. Then I will put the painting away for maybe a week or so. At that time, I will decide if I am happy with it, or if it needs more work. As acrylic dries as you use it, I will be able to spray this painting with an acrylic conservation varnish to preserve the painting from dust and light. Then comes a most important decision, the frame. I must use a frame that will enhance the painting, not detract from it. The color must agree with the colors used in the painting. Voila! A new piece of art.
My favorite piece for this Autumn Glory Show is, Elk in the Aspens. I used my favorite medium, oils, because it flows easily. I had fun doing it and I think it turned out great. It portrays my love of the beauty of this country, its fauna and its wildlife.
I love to show my work and I happened to have on hand a few paintings that fit the theme of this show.
My work can be found on my website: www.yessy.com/artbyellen
Fine Art America (Ellen E Hinson)
World Artist Directory
AERA (Association Embracing Realist Art
Since I was young I've been interested in art, and because my mother is an artist, there were always materials available for making art. I've drawn, painted, collaged, and sewn since early grade school. I began oil painting seriously only recently, in January 2016, first taking lessons with Erin Gillespie at Bemis School of Art, then painting with her weekly in my home from April 2017 until present. Oil painting captivates me because it allows for such freedom of expression in both color and stroke.
Subject choice is both emotional and intended to challenge me to grow as a painter. In the painting of pumpkins, I was excited to capture a magical day with my kids at the pumpkin patch, as well as to paint the pumpkins and aged wheelbarrow - two subjects I had not painted before. Each painting starts with a sketch, either in graphite or charcoal, followed by a wash of oil paint thinned with mineral spirits. Once the wash is dry, thicker layers of paint are put down, with highlights being added last to make the painting sparkle.
While I love the vibrant and voluminous pumpkins, the painting of grain harvest in Afghanistan is my favorite for several reasons. The idea for painting the Afghanistan countryside came when I heard a former military service woman on the radio talk about how meaningful the rural parts of war-torn Middle Eastern countries are to many soldiers since they spend months and years in these areas getting to know the people and landscapes, areas not widely featured in media coverage of the wars. I grew up on a farm in the high desert of Northern California, a rural region with a landscape that is very meaningful to me, so I can relate to a little-known landscape holding such personal import. In addition, my father grew and harvested grain himself, so the light coming through the partially harvested grain evokes especially fond memories, and this particular painting features interesting rock formations not unlike those found in my own home region. I also loved the idea of painting a scene of peace in a region most commonly associated with political turmoil and war.
Fall is my favorite season and provides such inspiration in terms of colors and light.
I do not yet have a website, but some of my paintings can be found on my personal facebook page, Arin Holecek. Other works have been displayed at Carnelian Coffee, Ute Pass and Fountain libraries, Cottonwood Center for the Arts, and here at Commonwheel Artists Co-Op.
I started painting when I was 10 years old. My mother was painting on slate at the time as a hobby and was self-taught. She allowed me to explore with her paint set and I did my first few landscapes on cloth. After producing them, my family saw I had a talent for art. My medium of choice is oil on canvas. I love the rich, smooth texture of oil paints and the ability to blend colors easily. High school and college seemed to fly by, and it was after college when I really started to explore different styles of painting in my free time. I always had an interest in metaphysical and other worldly themes and became highly impressed when I discovered Salvador Dali. Thus, in my twenties, I experimented with the depth of my mind and imagination. It had become tradition for me give away my paintings to friends and family. I moved to Tucson, Arizona at the end of 1999 and became involved with the artist community there. Tucson was home to so many talented artists who represented a variety of mediums; it was there that I felt comfortable experimenting with various styles and themes within my work. For the most part, I still painted for joy and not with the idea I would ever sell my artwork, but eventually I was commissioned a few times and sold pieces in auctions where the proceeds went to charities. As time passed, I really fell in love with painting trees. My style moved away from the psychedelic and more so into painting landscapes and trees. I also found joy in turning photographs into paintings, as to capture elements of emotion and real memories transferred onto canvas. I moved to Colorado Springs in April 2018 and am continuing my journey as an artist. I am excited to share this next chapter of my growth with my new community here in Colorado. It has been an honor to meet some of the local artists here and become involved with the talented artist community in the area.
My process with painting involves uncovering the layers of my mind. Painting is an emotional process for me. I find peace in the strokes and each layer speaks to me in way that are hard to put into words. In the case of doing a landscape or a tree, such as Curly Tree, the background goes on first. I find skies to be wondrous and soothing. The background for Curly tree is simple. A blend of shades of orange and yellow creates a golden tone often sought out in early dawn or dusk by photographers for its glowing effect. This sky needs no clouds, as the color inspires the autumn feeling of a new season arriving. The floor of the background is done in soft grass for this piece. Once the background is on the canvas, it's all tree from there. I personally love trees. For me, they bare symbolism of rooted growth. Curly tree is strong, it's rooted, and it's fun! The outline of the tree goes on first, with its strong trunk and beautiful curvaceous branches, and then the branches are filled in with several shades of brown for the textured effect of the bark. After the browns are put in, it's time for the finishing touches. Abstract leaves provide the fall colors and little fallen tree branches and fallen leaves provide the final layer for the floor covering.
Curly Tree is my favorite accepted piece for this event because it's fun, glowing, and all over the place - like the artist!
I was inspired to apply for “Autumn Glory” for a few reasons. One reason is that I love trees. Once I heard about the theme for the show I felt like I'd be right at home creating and submitting my work for a theme I already enjoy. I also love the Autumn season and the colors it boasts. Painting with autumn shades is a pleasure. Additionally, I really like the vibe at Commonwheel and I like the artwork being displayed there, as well as the layout of the store. Manitou Springs is a great place for local talent to showcase their work, and places like Commonwheel, that have character, are a joy to be involved with.
Website is at www.Cristina-Manos-Art.com and I have a Facebook page at Cristina Manos Art.
I’ve had a love for photographing nature since childhood. While attending church camp in the summer, instead of coming home with pictures of new friends and fun times, the whole role of film would be filled with chipmunks and forested area. The passion has always been there, but it wasn’t until I was an adult that it really developed. There is beauty all around us, and I want to share God’s masterpieces .
My artistic process is simple. Whether I’m headed to the Colorado mountains or out of state, my camera is always with me. I shoot scenes that speak to my heart and take several shots, bracketing them at various angles. It’s amazing how different a photo can look with a slightly different viewpoint. Additionally, I do my best to capture how the scene truly looks and use very little Photoshop, if any, to modify my pieces. My motto is Have Camera, Will Travel.
Easter Frost is my favorite piece accepted for this event. That Easter morning was bitterly cold, and everything had a heavy frost attached. The area was so serene and peaceful. Though my hands were frozen, I wanted to capture this majestic scene for those who wouldn’t see it in person. It was too beautiful not to share.
My family and friends are a wonderful support system who continually inspire me. Having said that, I am drawn to photographing trees. Their symbolism of strength, stability and perseverance is always inspirational.
I am just beginning to show my work publicly. You can find me at A Noble Touch Photography on Facebook. Thank you for attending this show and supporting local artists.
I am a runner. About three years ago, my running obsession came to a halt because of health reasons. I needed a new obsession and outlet. My friend and fellow artist, Eric Fetsch, invited me to one of his watercolor workshops. I knew how to draw and sketch but didn’t know how to put color onto my drawings, plus I was intrigued by the magic and beauty of watercolors. I took my first watercolor workshop and was hooked. After several more workshops with Eric, I set out to learn as much as I could about the properties of watercolor, color theory, and composition. I was a woman on a mission to become an artist. Painting nearly every day and putting miles on the brush for the last three years has helped me hone my technical skills and artistic ability. I am primarily a self-taught artist who has also done several workshops with fellow artist’s Randy Hale, and Sterling Edwards. I started out painting still life’s and landscapes, transitioned to a more funkified realism style, and now am obsessed with total abstract expressionism. The artists who inspire me are Franz Kline, Mark Rothko, Willem, de Kooning, Kandinsky, and Georgia O’Keefe. I enjoy creating art that leaves lots of room for the viewer’s imagination and interpretation. I primarily work in transparent watercolor on paper and acrylic on canvas.
I believe art should be fun and my goal is to convey a sense of fun and playfulness in my work. Negative painting is a key element in highly stylized and abstract art. It is incorporated into nearly all of my paintings. It’s fun to paint the space around an object instead of the object itself, then create multiple layers, adding depth to the piece. It’s almost like solving a puzzle. I also use a limited palette of color and ground most of my work in soft neutrals and put pure color near my center of interest. I try to create a variety of soft edges so that your eye can move through the painting and hard edges where I want your eye to linger a bit.
My favorite piece for this show is Changes. I wanted to show aspen leaves differently. This piece was done on Fabriano Artistico cold pressed watercolor paper with several washes of transparent watercolor. Then, I negatively painted the leaves. To make the transparent watercolors more vibrant, I negatively painted several layers of opaque gouache. Once the piece was dry, I mounted it onto 2” board and finished it with several coats of varnish to protect it. Changes was a fun piece to do and a different way to showcase the beauty of Colorado’s aspen leaves.
First, Fall is one of my favorite times of year. I love the cool crisp air and the change in colors of the landscape, especially in the High Country. I am an emerging artist and would like to share my art and hopefully brighten someone’s day with my artwork.
You can find my work at www.susanrandolph.com <http://www.susanrandolph.com/> and Susan Randolph Fine Art on Facebook and Instagram. I am the November guest artist at Boulder Street Gallery on Tejon Street. My work was also accepted into the Parker Art and Music Festival, the Pikes Peak Studio Tour, and The Fine Art and Craft Market in Monument.
My life has involved wearing many hats: wife, mother, science and math teacher, naturalist, traveler, and now painter. Taking up watercolor painting after retiring has been rather life changing. Finally, I'm exercising the right side of my brain! And it feels so good. Being a longtime Coloradan, my inspiration comes from my local surroundings and travels. I immensely enjoy the challenge of plein air painting as well as translating photos into watercolor art back in my studio. I can be reached via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
I’m a major bibliophile. I read books, I teach books, and I write books. I’ve even worked as a mender of books. Loving books first led me to love the process of printing. The reproducible page is such a compelling and rich medium. That said, I love bold and wild art of any medium, and love throwing myself into a new process.
Carving a linocut is a quiet but savage procedure. The lines are sketched, and the plan is transferred, but all can change with the twist of a wrist. I love the visible movement of the carving in linocut.
My favorite piece for this show? That's a tough choice! The aspen trees were particularly fun. The colors of the aspen in Colorado are so changeable and vibrant. I had a good time mixing the ink for these prints. But, most of all, I love the faint lines of wind in Wind.
The tree is a great theme. There is something so appealing about making art of something so fundamental.
You can follow me on twitter: @mj_rilling.
First of all, I am a pretty old guy that continues on living after already living a full and rewarding life. When I entered into this new domain, I decided to improve on my hobby in photography. I take pictures of things I like, especially if they include natural beauty - (in my opinion). To me, the flat print of my pictures does not represent all the "beauty" of the scene. To overcome this, I have been developing my own technique to restore the feeling of presence to the print. I call it Photo Craft, since it combines two disciplines.
This has been my passion now for 4 years and has evolved through many stages. The process today has four basic steps: 1) Take a photograph (or select one from my files), 2) Photoshop process the image into a JPEG file, 3) Print the image, and 4) Add crafting. Framing considerations are kept in mind throughout.
The "craft" part of the process consists of poking, bending, stretching and manipulating the physical print in places that alter the appearance of the photograph. When these distortions to the paper print are made correctly, the picture has a new dimension and is more interesting to view.
My favorite picture for the Autumn call was the only one that was accepted - Independence Pass Gold. It was taken after a visit to the Maroon Bells, and on the return drive we stopped for this photo-op. At the base of Independence Pass in autumn, you look back to see a wide panorama of hills and mountains with nuggets of golden aspen groves. Lake Creek, which feeds into the Arkansas River, also adds to the view, and the picture lends itself nicely to my craft technique.
I was inspired to enter my work because of the opportunity to have it viewed in the art community. I love crafting the photo prints and seeing them come to life. Needless to say, I have a house full of "bent up" pictures now but am doing my best work today.
I have photographs on my Fine Art America website: http://richard-risely.pixels.com/ and have a few on ETSY under RichardsPhotoCraft. Of course, the craftwork doesn't show on a computer screen, which is like a flat print.
At this time, photos that include my craft work are only available from me. I will be on wall space At Cottonwood Center for the Arts next year in March and May, and at Boulder Street Gallery in April, and hope to more active with Commonwheel.
I have been doing batik since I was an art education major in college. But it wasn't in a fibers course. Rather it was a workshop in a non-western art history class. It was only set up for a week, but I was there every chance I could get. Now, I use every space I can get, including my classroom at Patrick Henry Elementary where I'm blessed to have a full-time art teaching job. The need for that space has been especially true ever since my son was born 2 1/2 years ago and my studio became his nursery. But the joy he brings to our world is more inspiring than any other masterpiece I've encountered!
Batik is a fairly involved process. I like to summarize for those who want a quick answer that it's "glorified tie-dye". But that's a simplified answer by far. I start with muslin and either brush on or use a tjaunting tool to drip on hot wax to any areas I want to keep white. The whole cloth then goes into the lightest color needed for my design, e.g. yellow. Then.... wait: lots of dry time is involved. I usually have many designs going on at once because I can only complete one step in a day. The next day, I isolate the parts I want to keep (yellow) and then choose the next darkest color to dye. At the end of all the many days of dyeing, the whole cloth is sealed in wax, crumpled, and placed in black or dark brown dye to achieve a crackle effect throughout the piece. That's my favorite part! Then, all the wax is removed (not as fun). But it's so worth it to see my artwork come out from the obscurity of the wax! Every time there's something that happened that wasn't entirely intentional or clear to me during the days and layers of the process. It always stretches me since I'm more naturally an artist who would rather be 100% in control. Even so, batik is my medium of choice without hesitation.
Who doesn't love Autumn? And especially in Colorado? I've been inspired since my very first hike out here 10 years ago! Last year I made Path of Reflection as an extension study of my smaller piece, Aspens in Autumn that was done a few years ago. This show was a perfect fit for these pieces. I am elated to have the perfect opportunity to display it with other artists who have been encaptured by this magnificent season!
On Facebook I can be found at Gestalt33
Rhonda Van Pelt
I don't remember when I wasn't interested in creating and looking at art. Both of my parents were creative (my dad with woodworking, my mom with painting) and so it seemed natural to take art all four years of high school and then major in it in college. I have worked in just about every medium there is (except glass), but currently I take photos; sometimes I print them on fabric and create a quilted, embellished wall hanging around them. Since I'm very, very busy, photography works well for me - I can socialize with friends and take photos as we hike. Multi-tasking!
Basically, my process is to carry a camera nearly everywhere I go. I make sure that I observe as much as possible around me, whether I'm in the mountains, at the seashore or in a city. I look up, look down and look back - there's so much more to life than what is right in front of us.
Delicate Dance is the one that was accepted, and I do think it was one of the best I submitted. It illustrates one of the things I most enjoy about being an artist - finding something remarkable that other people might dismiss as ordinary, if they see it at all.
Autumn is glorious, and Colorado's autumns are among the best. It's as if nature gives us those warm colors to ease us into monochromatic winter.
I post photos on my Facebook page (www.facebook.com/rhonda.vanpelt) and this site: rhondashouseofcreativity.shutterfly.com, but I haven't had time to update it lately. I also show work at Academy Art and Frame and at the Manitou Art Center.