Dave Ulmen

Dave Ulmen

Spokane woodworker Dave Ulmen focuses upon, crafting cheese, sushi, and cutting boards, as well as coasters, Lazy Susans, and wine waves from laminated hardwood in his Spokane shop. Working with his wife Liz, Ulmen has built a thriving business from what started out as the extension of a lifelong interest.

“I’ve been a tool guy since I was a little kid hanging out in my grandpa’s shop,” Ulmen explains. “After both my parents passed, I had a small estate fund remaining. Since tools had always been important in my family, it seemed a fitting investment.

“When I saw what I could accomplish with a few good tools, I was hooked. My adult kids kept encouraging me to offer some work for sale, which got the ball rolling.”

Dave Ulmen

Keith Rislove

Keith Rislove

Life without art is incomplete, and just tucking it in alongside the “important” subjects — science, technology, engineering, and math and saying this adds STEAM to the mix — isn’t enough. Being an artist demands as much time, focus, intelligence, and determination as being a rocket scientist — whatever a rocket scientist is — and many people who consider themselves artists pursue this path even in the midst of doing something else to make a living. The very fortunate ones find a career involved with art, honing skills and abilities throughout their lives.

Keith Rislove is one of these people, a lifetime artist who actually started out to be a baseball player, and credits his experience in the Korean War for his eventual career choice.

“When I was in high school, I studied art, and I also played all the sports — after graduation I received two offers from major league teams,” Rislove, a wildlife acrylic painter from Salem, OR, says. Like many young men of the early 1950s, he found his plans rearranged for him, and a few months after high school was in the Air Force. During his three years in the military, he was assigned to work with an event coordinator doing graphic arts, and when that event coordinator left, found himself with the job.

Keith Rislove

Sheryl Parsons

Sheryl Parsons

Sheryl Parsons is an extremely unique and gifted artist. Parsons specializes in making fun, happy, holiday gourd art. She spreads the Christmas spirit around all year long with her wonderful creations. In addition to working with the gourd, Parsons innovates with repurposed materials, one of her favorite projects involving burnt out light bulbs or discarded glass bottles, which she covers in clay to become Santa, a snowman, or a Halloween-themed piece.

She lives in Wallowa, OR where she finds inspiration for her holiday folk art.

Sheryl Parsons

Debbie Lind

Debbie Lind

Debbie Lind is an incredibly gifted artist. Not only does she know when to use the right colors, she also provides the viewer with an extremely unique subject matter. Lind specializes in fractal art, which is a form of algorithmic art created by calculating fractal objects and representing the calculation results as still images.

“Fractals are a repeated shape that I didn’t give much thought to until I discovered them when reading a book about shapes to kindergartners visiting our public library where I’m the library director,” says photographer Debbie Lind of Wallowa, OR.

“I read to them about shapes like circles, triangles, squares and all the basic shapes we know, but when I read to them about fractals, a light went off and I thought right then, ‘How can I use fractal art in my photography?'”

Lind’s first experiment with fractalization involved her photographic image of a red tulip with rain drops on it. She began playing about with the shape, intending to create a conch-like snail shell from the repeating tulip blossoms, but “it wasn’t meant to be.

“What I created instead was a butterfly wing. From that I created a butterfly I named ‘Butterfly Blooms.’ I entered it in my first professional art show and won a blue ribbon.” (As an added bonus, a monetary prize accompanied the ribbon, a fact Lind says came as a complete, but welcome, surprise.)

Debbie Lind

Joyce Anderson

Joyce Anderson

Joyce Anderson has been painting on watercolor for many years. Watercolors became her primary pursuit because she liked the fact that they could meander in a direction she hadn’t intended.

Due to painting, not a day goes by that Joyce doesn’t observe a subject that could become a painting.  The interplay of colors in clouds, the effect of light or lack of, or the patterns of nature.  Painting allows her to appreciate the “eye candy” around each of us.  Joyce’s favorite aspect of watercolors as a media is the luminous layering of color.   Watercolors are transparent and any color underneath will influence the color laid on top.  That can also be an aspect to consider, since layering a combination of red on top of blue on top of yellow will ultimately produce neutral grays or browns.  

Joyce Anderson

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Timber Bronze 53

Timber Bronze 53

Garrett and Beth Lowe are the owners of Timber Bronze 53 in Wallowa, Oregon. They hand craft solid, cast-bronze hardware and decorative accessories for log, timber frame, and other rustic home. They also presently are developing a line of farmhouse and rustic chic decor for a growing market.

Timber Bronze 53 has all different kinds of doorbells, knobs, pulls, hangers. Each item is unique, and will add a rustic charm to your home!

farm pig farmstead home decor timberbronze wallowa

Jerry Poindexter

Jerry Poindexter

Jerry Poindexter

Exquisitely carved and perfectly detailed, the bird carvings of wood sculptor Jerry Poindexter look as if they are ready to take flight or burst into song. Poindexter, who has been carving birds for more than 20 years, gravitated toward the subject matter because of the birds’ sense of movement, as well as their colorful plumage.

Hours spent studying skins – preserved birds that are often kept in university or academic collections – has given Poindexter a keen eye for the physical attributes of birds – their plumage, coloration, size, and proportions. Poindexter draws upon his expertise in bird anatomy when he judges carving shows, and is a frequent juror at the Columbia Flyway Wildlife Show, an international exhibition held annually in Vancouver, WA.

Mary Calanche

Mary Calanche

Beading artist Mary Calanche of Dayton, whose studio is in such a shed, doesn’t have the answer, but she does know this:

“It’s stuffed full!”

Insulated, wired, and lighted, Calanche’s unique workroom is a place for intense concentration, meticulous attention to detail, and now and then, judicious use of the vacuum with a nylon stocking over the nozzle — one of the best ways to remedy the calamity of a flipped tray of tiny, tiny beads.

“If you haven’t ever dropped beads, then you’re just getting started into the craft,” Calanche, who has been creating beaded jewelry and other items for 25 years, says.

Under the business name, This n That, Calanche fashions earrings, necklaces, and bracelets using a variety of techniques: stringing beads onto wire or thread, weaving, wirework (which involves coiling, looping, and twisting wire that holds the beads), and bead embroidery (using a needle and thread to attach beads to a surface like fabric, suede or leather). She also experiments with finger weaving, metal work, and kumihimo, a Japanese technique of braiding silk strands to create colored cords.

“This is why I chose This n That as my name!”

Calanche started her foray into beading shortly after marrying her husband, GrayEagle. Watching him do projects for his dance regalia, Calanche decided to give it a try, with her first project being a flat, beaded rose. It remains a favorite piece because of its leather backing, which came from the last deer her father shot.

“It took a long time for me to finish,” Calanche remembers. But from that point, she was unstoppable, poring through books and magazines for project ideas and teaching techniques. There is no end to potential projects, Calanche says.

“New beads of every shape, size, and color come out constantly,” she explains. “You can take an old pattern and change it up. Or you see a new project and change it into something of your own.” Sometimes, if enough time and learning curve has gone by, she revisits something that was once impossibly difficult and discovers that, somehow, it’s not so impossible anymore.

To read more about Mary Calanche, visit our blog here

Mary Calanche

LuAnn Ostergaard

LuAnn Ostergaard

LuAnn Ostergaard is an award winning artist and photographer who works with photo-based digital imaging as her primary medium.

LuAnn’s work crosses the lines between photography and painting and she displays knowledge of painterly composition and color theory.  She considers herself a ‘painter of light’, using captured light photons rather than paint pigments to create her work, which are many times mistaken for ‘paintings’.  She works from the heart to create images that are poetic and evocative, and her mysterious and magical images go beyond reality or surrealism.

She is most interested in rusty, oxidized metal and other weathered surfaces as subjects of her photos. She sometimes combines more than one image to create stunning landscapes images and interesting abstract compositions.  “Very few would see the potential of a shot as you see it and the fact that you do, singles you out as far more than an ordinary photographer” UK Ranger states.

She prints her work in the studio using archival pigment inks on fine art cotton fiber paper.  The prints are mounted to custom made cradle back frames and print surfaces are hand textured with clear acrylic medium for beautiful and UV protective finish.

Her work hangs in many corporate environments and fine homes across the U.S and beyond.

LuAnn Ostergaard is a full time artist and lives and works in Kennewick, WA.

LuAnn Ostergaard

Wilburton Pottery

Wilburton Pottery

Wilburton Pottery

It’s difficult to see how 14th century Chinese history and the 21st century design of printed circuit boards relate to a successful business of creating hand-carved garden tiles. Difficult, however, is not impossible.

For Bob Jewett, the potter and painter half of Wilburton Pottery of Bellevue, WA, it’s all part of a rich life history, one that started out with two masters degrees and the pursuit of a PhD.

“Bob stayed in college until he was 35,” says Iris Jewett, the other half of the marriage and the business (she’s the glazer). “He was getting his PhD when he was advised there was no hope in getting a teaching position.

“This was in the 1970s and there was little interest in Chinese history, especially the Ming dynasty.”

So Bob did a 360 and started designing those printed circuit boards, originally working for large corporations in Los Angeles until moving to Seattle where the couple started their own business there. And while business was successful, something was missing, and Iris suspected what it could be.

“I suggested to Bob that he needed an artistic outlet, and he started taking ceramic classes at Bellevue Community College.” Iris remembers. “An inability to throw pots led him to hand build garden pots.”

So build garden pots, Bob did. Because the couple is avid about gardening (“fanatical, actually,” Iris says), Bob developed a method to make pottery that could be left  outside all year round, something that was not common at the time. He also focused on carving intricate designs in the pottery. In 1993, when the couple participated in the Bellevue Arts Fair with their wares, Wilburton Pottery officially launched.