Big Brothers and Sisters Quick Finish FundraiserElloie at the Quick Finish fundraiser for Big Brothers and Sisters

As a painter I am attracted to visual drama.  By constantly observing my surroundings, attending to what catches my eye  –  the mood created by a storm on the landscape or the serenity of light playing on the water, sometimes just the composition within a flower – I am searching for what may inspire a painting.  The process of painting is an attempt to recreate a unique moment in time by representing its’ illusion in paint with texture, value, contrast and color.  When I succeed with creating this illusion, of transforming a piece of life into a painting, I am sharing a moment of personal inspiration with the viewer

My earliest art memories are of drawing disney cartoons and lots of horses.  I never outgrew my passion for art or for horses and they both dominate the life style I live today. In 1980 I fell in love with western Montana and made the move to my present home/studio in the spectacular Bitterroot Valley which I share it with several arabian horses.  I am surrounded every day with incredible scenery to paint.

I grew up in southern California and began weekly painting classes around the age of 8 or 9 where I was first introduced to pastel and oil painting. Art studies continued through high school and became my major at several colleges including Riverside City College; Cal. Poly-Pomona where I majored in both art and horse production; CA State U.- San Diego, where I received a Bachelor degree in Art; and Palomar College. My fascination with all art, especially during college studies, motivated me to explore many different mediums. I designed and constructed pieces of hardwood furniture, sculpted in clay, plaster, plexiglas, and bronze, and learned to blow hot glass. Following college studies I worked many years as a production potter. Painting mediums I have worked in include watercolor, acrylic, pastel and airbrush and I credit an ongoing interest in photography and darkroom work with helping to develop my eye for composing the subject matter I try to paint.

After moving to Montana, I continued to study painting techniques with several wonderful artists including Richard McKinley, Delbert Gish, Carolyn Anderson, Judy Wagner and others. In 2004 I was honored to be selected to receive a tuition scholarship from the Pastel Society of America to paint with master pastellist and oil painter, Albert Handell. I have been a signature member of the Montana Watercolor Society, and am a signature member of the Pastel Society of the Northern Rockies. My art has been included in regional and national juried and invitational shows since 1972.

Selected Exhibition Highlights:

2014, 2011  “Icons of the West” National Juried Exhibition, Dana Gallery, Missoula, MT

2012 “Jack Richeson Gatorboard Challenge” Online competition – 2nd Place Award
2011 Featured Artist Exhibition, River’s Mist Gallery, Stevensville, MT
2010 Solo Exhibition, The Frame Shop and Gallery, Hamilton, MT
2008 “Pastel Extravaganza” national juried exhibition, Loveland, Co – Best of Show and
Honorable Mention Awards
2007 “Montana Interpretations” juried exhibit, Butte, MT – Best of Class Award
2003 “Pastel Society of New Mexico National Juried Show” – Albuquerque, NM
2002 “Pastel Society of Oregon Biannual National Juried Show – Medford, OR
2002 “Montana Interpretations” juried exhibit, Butte, MT – 2nd Place Award
1991 “44MAX” juried Exhibition – Eugene, OR
1990 “ Watermedia ‘90 National Juried Exhibition – Missoula Museum of the Arts, Missoula, MT
1989 “The Montana Art Exchange” Oaxaca Exhibit Invitational – State Museum,
Oaxaca, Mexico
1988 “Watermedia ’88 National Juried Exhibiton – Museum of the Rockies, Bozeman, MT
1989 “Montana Women’s Centennial Art Survey Exhibition 1889-1989 100 Years of Women’s Art” – 2 year tour of Montana
1987 ”Emergent Visions” national juried exhibit – University of Wisconsin Fine Arts Gallery
1986 “Miniature Masterpieces” Invitational – Leslie Levy Gallery, Scottsdale, AZ
1984 “Contemporary Realism National Juried Competition”, Scottsdale, AZ – Prize Winner
1980 “Focus” – The California Museum of Science and Industry, Los Angeles, CA
1978 “Classic Conveyances” Invitational Exhibit, Laguna Beach, CA
1978 “California-Hawaii Biennial Juried Exhibition” San DIego, CA – Best of Show Award
1972 “Southern California All Media Juried Exhibition” San DIego, CA – First Prize, Sculpture Division