Michael A. Stasko was born in Chicago Heights, Illinois on October 30, 1948. He lived there until joining the U.S. Navy in 1969. Stasko was stationed in California where he remained until 1975 when he moved to Eugene, Oregon. After earning an undergraduate degree in Computer Science at the University of Oregon, Stasko moved to Portland, Oregon where he has enjoyed a successful career in the Information Technology industry. His vision is to segue into a full time career as a professional artist after retirement from IT.
Stasko has a formal Fine Arts background with emphasis on drawing and intaglio and serigraphy printmaking techniques. His renderings are done using various media including graphite, pastel, and charcoal. As a colored pencil artist, he is completely self taught. He began exhibiting at Portland's Art in the Pearl in 2010.
In "The Sunset Series" Stasko explores the changing effect of light over distance, particularly at sunset. He works from photographs taken in Central Oregon. Most are of locales recognizable to those who travel or fish on the Deschutes River, which adds to their appeal. Stasko uses a photograph as a basis for an image but does not strictly adhere to the natural colors of the landscape. What feels right and creates a mood is of more importance to him.
Stasko uses Prismacolor colored pencils because they are thick and soft, lay down evenly and provide good saturation of color. His rendering is done on 4 ply 100% rag Strathmore museum board which stands up to repeated working. Images are created using standard colored pencil techniques such as overlaying to create new and vibrate hues, construction of dark values, variations in pencil pressure, and in some cases, impressed line technique. Blenders or solvents are not used and he does not burnish his work. Stasko's technique is as much subtractive as it is additive. A kneaded eraser is used to lift pigment from the paper to expose lighter areas and to create and define contour.
Stasko's use of soft pigments applied lightly to the textured surface of the museum board creates a unique depth and luminosity that must be seen to be appreciated.
Please visit my website to learn more about my art and passions.
Michael A. Stasko lives in Portland, Oregon and is a member of the Colored Pencil Society of America.
Curtiss's interest in photography began with film and darkroom development and grew into the digital age. His images show his fine eye for composition and beauty in subjects that we ’see’ every day. He has been photographing Central Oregon’s dramatic scenes and interesting subjects since 1985. Many of his images are taken at Black Butte Ranch, OR. His work is frequently displayed at local photography exhibits.
Curtiss is available for special events, catalogue/product photography, group and individual portraits, and for help with post production and large format printing.
You can purchase his images by emailing us and at the Sisters Gallery & Frame Shop in Sisters,OR. You can purchase cards by email, through this site, and in stores in Central Oregon.
Gary was born and raised in the Willamette Valley of Oregon. From his earliest memories, the natural beauty of the Northwest landscapes captured his heart on every family outing.
Following 25 years as an award winning graphic designer, including an internationally acclaimed self-published nature storybook, "FIRE MOUNTAIN: The Eruptions of Mount Saint Helens," Gary retired from corporate communications. He traveled extensively to Mexico, the Yucatan Peninsula, the Caribbean, and the South Seas. It was on these journeys that he honed his photographic skills.
In 1995, while traveling in Rarotonga, his kidneys failed. Back in Portland, a willing sister was the perfect organ donor. Grateful for life, he became more determined to perfecting his gift for fine art landscape photography.
Following his recovery, he moved to Camp Sherman on the banks of the Metolius River. Here he would focus on capturing the rare beauty of this valley and share it with the world.
In 2010, Gary lost most of his eyesight as a result of pigment dispersion glaucoma. Yet he masterfully continues to capture the raw beauty of Northwest landscapes, but his first true love is the Metolius Valley. He has earned a reputation as the "Ansel Adams of the Metolius." You can see more of Gary's work at GARYALBERTSON.COM.
Paul Alan Bennett
Since the age of nine Paul wanted to be an artist. "I suppose it’s because children are attracted to powerful things and art always struck me as being very powerful. I had prints of paintings by Van Gogh all over my room when I was in middle school. I don’t know where I got them - probably from a calendar - but I found them inspiring."
In school, Paul did well in art but he always had my own art outside the classroom. Mainly, he loved to draw. He liked the ways ideas evolved as he drew. "My own curiosity keeps me going. What is it that I am after? The inventiveness of art and the hold it has on my own imagination and spirit captivate me," he says.
Paul studied drawing and ceramics at The Maryland Institute of Art in Baltimore, and followed up with an M.A. in Greek history at The University of La Verne, Athens, Greece. His schooling deepened his love of art and history, and helped him to find work as an art and art history teacher in a number of different places around the world.
Paul's work has a certain style that looks like knitting in paint. This evolved from purchasing a pair of knitted gloves in Istanbul. He was attracted to the simple patterns and the texture of the gloves, so he decided to see if he could copy the “knit” look in paint. He used gouache watercolor as it is easy to change and is a logical extension of drawing but in paint. The “knit” look gradually became his signature style. At one point, Pendleton Woolen Mills was attracted to his work and created 16 tapestries in wool based on his designs.
Paul states, "Like any form of self-employed work, art can have its frustrations. However, the longer I stay with it (30 years now) the clearer it becomes to me how important art and culture are to our lives. I feel fortunate that I have been able to do it as long as I have. I hope to continue producing art for as long as I am able."
Roger Dorband is a native of Grants Pass, Oregon where he grew up on the Rogue River. He received a bachelors degree in psychology from the University of Oregon before earning a second degree in fine art from Portland State University in 1975. He twice exhibited sculpture in the Portland Art Museum’s Artists of Oregon Exhibition, was included in a national drawing exhibition and the Oregon Print Makers Annual. He received both public and private sculpture commissions and exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions before turning to photography.
In 1993, Dorband’s black and white photography was published in Blue Moon Over Thurman Street, a collaboration with renowned author Ursula K. LeGuin. Since then he has published The Rogue, Portrait of a River in 2006 and Out Here, a second collaboration with Ms. LeGuin, in 2010. In addition to photographing in the Northwest, he has traveled extensively, creating bodies of photographs from Europe, Mexico, Egypt and India. His photographs are included in numerous private and corporate collections, and in the collection of the Portland Art Museum. Dorband lives in Astoria, Oregon with his wife, psychiatrist Patricia Barnes.
From California, to Canada, back to California to marry her very best friend, and now in Sisters! Jennifer Hartwig is “scratching out” a living in the best place on earth! Scratching?
Yes! Jennifer is a intensely gifted artist who expresses the joy in her life through scratchboard art. “It builds my spirit as I work from the nothingness of black. The work comes alive with each dot and scratch I place on the board.” And there are thousands of scratches in each work.
A scratchboard is a drawing board coated with a fine layer of white clay, then top-coated with permanent black ink. Using a sharp, scribing tool (like an Exacto knife or a wire brush) Jennifer creates pictures. Each image is made up of thousands of marks on the surface of the board, producing a white mark that represents a light in the design.
Jennifer takes her work one step beyond by adding layer upon layer of colored ink, in a dry-brush technique, then re-scratching that surface. She mixes the cyan, magenta, yellow and black inks to arrive at custom color blends. Each of her custom scratch art images requires at least a hundred hours’ work. When she is satisfied with the final image, she coats the surface, resulting in a work of art that is beautiful in its own right. Custom framing finalizes the piece.
Her work has won awards at the Sisters Library Community Show (People’s Choice – twice!) and at the Episcopal Church Country Fair (Best of Show – Mixed Media). She has a website and a Facebook page .
Jennifer often takes a theme and explores it deeply. She recently completed “A Confluence of Eagles” (seven images). After a display in the Sisters Library, they flew into Sisters Gallery, where they are proudly perched.
She also creates custom scratch portraits of your best pet friend – dog, cat, bird, even a pet pig! Jennifer will consult with you to create a memorable portrait that will be cherished forever. Be sure to check out her scratch portrait of Sisters Gallery's own "shop dog," Logan. "Why, it looks just like him!" people exclaim.
Dennis McGregor the artist, or singer-songwriter, or author – one and the same.
As song-writer, Dennis started in the 1970s with the original acid-swing group, Natty Bumppo. His electric violin and wacky songs were a key element of their uniquely exciting style. They were immediately discovered at L.A.'s Troubador and were soon opening for acts like Cheech & Chong, Jimmy Buffett, The Dirt Band and others. Every major studio in L.A. brought them in to record demos, but no one could figure out how to market their "off the wall" sound in the disco era.
As artist, Dennis spent a decade developing his unique illustrative style, eventually earning a national reputation for outstanding work. Then, in 2004, Oregon Public Broadcasting showed up to document his songs and paintings for Oregon Art Beat. The rest is history, making music and painting collectable art for more than 20 years. Locally, his work is legendary.
As author, Dennis' thoughts of covered wagons, the Oregon Trail, and quilts were realized in his first children’s book, Dream Again, released in 2013.
Dennis was the featured artist at Sisters Gallery and Frame Shop in September 2014 – a show which included the original paintings “All the Town’s A Stage,” and “Buck” – 2014 Sisters Folk Festival Posters. Many of his original paintings are now available in the Gallery, along with small prints and his book, "Dream Again."
Currently, Dennis is hard at work painting the next round of commemorative posters for the 20th Annual Sisters Folk Festival, 40th Annual Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show, 75th Annual Sisters Rodeo. What a guy!
You can see more of his music and art work at his website.
Leotie Richards became enamored with textiles while working as an Art Director for Cost Plus World Market. After 20 years designing graphics and textiles for retail stores, she retired to Sisters, Oregon and began applying her design skills to art quilting. Studying intensly for two years in various workshops, she became skilled with various fabrication techniqes and began to experience a high degree of satisfaction in her creative process with textiles.
Leotie is currently designing and fabricating a series of textile bowls that are not functional, but purely decorative. She integrates rich colors and intriguing patterns with imagery from nature and various cultures. She accentuates her designs with various surface design techniques such as thread painting and block prints. As her works progresses, she intends to include hand-dyed and painted fabrics.
She continues to study techniques and history, and is now working on a series of quilts that incorporate portraits of people she admires. She is also the Northwest Regional Co-representative for Studio Art Quilt Associates (saqa.com) and has been active in several quilt guilds in Central Oregon.
As a contract journalist with Life Magazine, I had access to many well known fine art photographers in the 1960s. It didn't take long for me to fall in love with the art form. My early work quickly attracted the attention of many of the professioinals I knew. Encouragement led to more work and eventually my work was shown galleries alongside greats like Wynn Bullock, Ansel Adams, and many others.
When Life Magazine published its last issue in 1971, my creative life got rearranged. Although I still had a deep passion for photography, the practice began to slip away from me as demand on my time was in other directions. I eventually drifted to a career in business as a corporate executive and later as a design and communication principal in one of the nation's largest design and identity agencies. My life was still centered on creative work, but more commercial in nature.
Fast forward 35 years, and I was finally able to reconnect with my deepest passion. Art galleries and exhibits became my second home once again. Then in 2010, I relocated to a Sisters, Oregon as manager of Sisters Gallery & Frame Shop. So far, my creative work and the gallery have been a great match. You can see more of my recent work here.
Pat Siegner lives with her husband on a cattle ranch in Southeastern Oregon. Her paintings are about her life there. She fell in love with big skies and wide open landscapes with patterns and shapes in the hills cast by the natural light. She took in vivid sunrises and sunsets during family horseback rides through the hills.
But in 1987, while moving cattle on their ranch, Pat had a terrible accident on horseback. She sustained a C-5, C-6 spinal injury. After seven months of physical therapy, Pat was able to walk again with the aid of a walker and regained 50 percent of the use of her hands.
Gradually she tried to paint again, but had trouble using a brush, so she turned to photography. So she launched a line of postcards, and taught art to delinquent boys. Within four years, a local gallery owner prompted her to paint again. So, she started with watercolor crayons because she could handle them better than a brush and worked them in combination with a pen.
These new works were manageable and flowed gracefully from her heart. She began to feel whole again as an artist. Pat was drawn to bright vivid colors for her new paintings. These best depicted the rhythmical shapes and patterns she saw in the mountains, surrounded by big skies. These simple elements in her home environment continue to speak to her and inspire her landscapes. Sometimes when she looks at the hills she can see the trees dancing.
Professional horse trainer and artist Kimry Jelen demonstrates an intimate understanding of her subjects. Her contemporary style flows freely from abstract to representational. She uses playful perspectives, deep textures and bold, surprising colors to express passion in her art. For those who know and love her work, the artist Kimry Jelen is synonymous with horses. But Kimry also paints dogs, cats, bunny rabbits, lots of other critters, and landscapes.
She says: "My art is an opportunity to share with others what nature shares with me. Every creation is a celebration of life, whether an aspen grove, the power of horses, or an animal's sense of humor! I receive so much joy from interpreting my love of nature with paint, brush and palette knife."
Kimry's art is influenced by the places she has lived and traveled. She worked for ranches in the Rocky Mountains of Montana and New Mexico. She's walked with primates on safari in Africa and rode horses in the classical arenas of Portugal and Spain.
Inspiration from these places can be seen in her use of space, unique texture and remarkable color combinations. This native Oregonian's work has found its way into private collections across the United States and the continents she's visited.
In 2014, Kimry was invited to show her artwork as part of the World Equestrian Games in France. She was the only American, and one of just six artists invited to participate. She raised the money to ship more than 40 pieces of art to Caen, France, where during the Games, it was viewed by more than half-a-million people. That international exposure has led to other exhibitions and garnered several commissions.
One of these commissions is a six-by-eight-foot painting of a horse, which hangs in the Lakeside Bistro at Black Butte Ranch.Kimry's original work, giclee prints, and note cards are available at Sisters Gallery and Frame Shop. You can see more of her work on her website, here.
Caroline Stratton Crow
I have lived in the Sisters, Or. area for about 25 years beginning in the 1970's. I left for about ten years for upstate New York and Pa. where I returned to school and had my two children, now adults living in the area. My professional career was as a psychotherapist working with couples, families and individuals. I am an avid horse person and was able to use horses in my therapy, being trained in equine assisted psychotherapy. I have also been a regular yoga practitioner for 35 years and at one point taught classes.
My journey to psychology was as an astrologer. I am now mainly retired and am able to explore the world of creating through paints and other mediums. I draw my inspiration mainly from the natural world, my spiritual explorations and my horses. As a therapist, astrologer, and artist, the world of symbols plays an important role. Each of us is truly a creator with each breath.
Visit Caroline's website here. You can also read her directly by email here.
Jodi Schneider has more than 15 years' experience teaching art. She grew up as a nature lover in New Jersey, which has continued to inspire her life interests. Watercolor is her preferred medium, because she enjoys its softness. She tends to paint in layers and use very fine brushes for feathers and fur. Jodi takes her time on each painting, to reveal each individual's personality and expressions, which usually start in the eyes.
Jodi also has a passion for photography, which started about 12 years ago when she decided to buy a digital camera to capture images of wildlife, which she uses as a basis for her watercolor paintings.
From an early age, Jodi has had a passion for pets. One of her first jobs was as a veterinary assistant. Now she writes the popular Pet Column for the Nugget Newspaper, and does pet portraits for private clients.
Jodi lived in Southern Californi for 26 years, and belonged to the Pomona Art Association. She now lives in Sisters, where photo opportunities are endless. She teaches watercolor to children and adults through Sisters Park and Recreation and private classes.
Please visit her Facebook page to learn more about Jodi and her art.
Setting up the easel in nature, contemplating a painting, exploring the sights, sounds and scents, while getting into the “zone”. This is the painter Norma Holmes’ great escape. Will the focus be on the land escape, floral escape, water escape, or city escape? How does one interpret the silence of the High Desert, the sound of smooth water, the brilliance of Indian Paintbrush? It is all about painting on location, escaping into the “zone”. Back in the studio, the memories accompany Norma as the great escape into the painting is recreated.
“I was born in Carmel, California. I recall at a very young age, sleeping on a daybed in my Grandparents dining room. I was surrounded by paintings hanging on the dark paneling. The paintings were all painted by my Grandpa, Augustus Pixley.
Later in life, my Mother related to me how her family spent their summers in Cascadia, Oregon. Grandpa would paint for the entire summer on the Santiam River. Upon returning to the Monterey Peninsula he would resume his successful trade as a painting contractor, well known for his creativity with color.
In 1991, I too packed up my easel and headed for the Northwest, settling in Sisters, Oregon to paint the grandeur and beauty of the High Desert.”
Holmes is a Signature Member of the Northwest Pastel Society and a juried member of the Pastel Society of America. Other affiliations include the American Women Artists and the American Impressionist Society.
Her talent has been highlighted in many publications including American Art Collector 2013, Southwest Art 2011, and many times in The Pastel Journal. The Central Oregon media has published Norma’s story in the Arts and Entertainment Magazine, The Bend Bulletin, and the Sisters Nugget News.
To learn more about Norma, her work and upcoming events, we encourage you to visit her website.