Archives for Landscape

Nature and the Human Soul

In some ways, personally and professionally, Sally Vannoy’s life might seem like a fairytale. She married the man of her dreams in a beautiful setting in Glacier National Park, was accepted into the Society of Animal Artists as a Signature Member on her first attempt, and has seen her works hang beside original Charles M. Russell paintings at the famous Triple Creek Ranch. As in many classic stories, however, the heroine had to leave her comfort zone in order to reach her potential. “I had the most amazing childhood and family life growing up,” says Vannoy, who grew up with
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Beauty Abounds

Three years ago, artist Howard Friedland and his wife Susan Blackwood—also an artist—moved from Bozeman, Montana to Bella Vista, Arkansas. The couple had lived in Bozeman since getting married in 1998 and loved everything about it—especially the spacious studio they shared in their home there. But they had grown weary of the heavy snowfalls that often extended into April and May and of the smoke from Western forest fires that made plein air painting a challenge during the summer months. When they visited Jeff Legg, an artist friend, at his home in the Ozarks, they realized that relocating to Arkansas
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The Studio of John Fawcett

In late May, after a four-day drive from their home near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, John and Elizabeth Fawcett happily drove through the gates to their home in Clark, Colorado. It’s an annual event that includes pulling a large horse trailer occupied by the couple’s two horses and all of Fawcett’s paint supplies. “We looked like the Beverly Hillbillies,” he says with a laugh. Located on a 52-acre ranch the Fawcetts named Double LL—which Fawcett says stands for Lucky (me) and Lizzie (Elizabeth)—the property is 25 miles north of Steamboat Springs. Willow Creek runs through the ranch and attracts deer and elk,
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An Artist on a Mission

As a young child, Joe Kronenberg drew voraciously. Today, as an adult, he is an artist on a mission. “As an artist in the 21st century, I strive to create paintings that embody the aesthetic and objective standards of the 19th century European academic art world,” he says. It’s a style he believes has been lost in an instant-gratification world. Growing up in the Pacific Northwest, Kronenberg filled his room—as well as the rest of the house—with realistic artwork of the area’s grandeur. In his mind, it was just a matter of time before he would become an artist. That
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Anything is Possible

“It’s incredible how magical the desert is when you go with the intention of self-reflection,” says Colorado artist Anna Rose Bain, who began a tradition of taking solo trips to the California desert when she was struggling with severe adrenal fatigue just before the start of COVID. “I found that I was getting burnt out at least twice a year, to a point where it was affecting my health and my relationships,” says Bain, who balances painting with raising two young children and practicing CrossFit, a high-intensity fitness program. “I started going to the desert to recharge and meditate and
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“I Paint What I Love”

The vibrant images of Douglas Aagard’s landscapes radiate a joy that conveys his love for everything from flaming red and gold leaves in the fall to the azure blue of a meandering stream to the lushness of a mountain valley. He loves it all and captures it brilliantly. The 54-year-old artist was born in Utah but grew up near Corvallis, Montana, in the shadow of the Bitterroot Mountains. “Evenings were my favorite time of day because I could watch the changing colors of the valley as the sun set behind the mountains,” he says. During summers at his grandparents’ sheep
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Disco Drove Him to Art

Ask Oklahoma City-based oil painter Kenny McKenna what kick-started his career, and he will tell you, in all seriousness, that it was disco. “This is a true story,” he says with a laugh. “It sounds ridiculous, but it’s true. As much as I dislike disco, I can thank it for what I’m doing today for a living.” It does sound ridiculous, and it is a true story. McKenna, an accomplished musician who has been playing in various bands since he was in junior high school, was living in Phoenix, Arizona, and playing six nights a week with a successful local
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The Studio of Ed Mell

For more than four decades, Arizona-based painter, Ed Mell, has charmed the public with his vibrant images of the Sonoran Desert and the Colorado Plateau. The beauty and veracity of his paintings give testimony to his love of his native surroundings. Born in Phoenix, Arizona, Mell grew up in what was then just a small desert oasis, leaving when he enrolled in the Art Center School of Design in Los Angeles, California. After completing his courses in 1967, he accepted a position with a large advertising firm in New York City. A year later, he and a friend started their
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Beauty Past and Present

“I’m 76, and I’m going to paint what I damn well please.” So says Rock Newcomb, laughing heartily as he does so. In fact, he laughs freely and often during the interview for this article. With a successful teaching career behind him and more than 30 years as a successful artist, he’s earned the right to say what he wants—and to paint what he wants. There is no niche for Newcomb’s art, and that’s exactly how he—and his collectors—like it. He’s earned national and international acclaim for his paintings of subjects that range from wildlife, landscapes and ruins, to cowboys,
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‘I’m Just A Vessel’

Nathan Solano took the long way to becoming an artist. He spent years working in restaurants, shooting photos, and working in graphic design before finally settling down as an artist when he was 40. And, for the past 30 years, that’s what he’s been. From his studio on the second floor of an historic building in downtown Pueblo, Colorado, Solano paints Western landscapes, cowboys, and Native Americans—and sometimes the simple scenes that unfold on the streets below his windows. He recently took a break from painting to talk about the path he took to get to where he is now—and
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