Welcome to my website! The photo above was taken in my "front yard" (really the west pasture), which looks out onto the canyon cutting through these Horseshoe Hills by the mighty Missouri River, less than a mile from my home and studio. What you can't see from this view are the railroad tracks that hug the river. It's from this vantage point that I see much of the fabulous freight train graffiti that inspires my unique Iron Horse paintings. I think it's just heaven on Earth, and I am very, very grateful for my life here.
So, why do I do what I do?
I've truly always loved everything about horses, yet I don't want to be just another woman equine artist. And I've had a love affair with sign-making for years, too. "Iron Horses" are my combination of both of these passions. I see strength and beauty in the focused athleticism of working ranch and rodeo horses, as well as in the vibrant colors and design of graffiti as two beautiful, but very divergent art forms. Graffiti artists each have their own "tag" - mine is “PEARL” to convey irritation as the impetus for change, growth, and enlightenment. I like to think of this unique embodiment of strength + beauty = "More Grit, More Pearl"; I want MORE strength and MORE beauty in my Life - this feels like an abundance mindset - instead of the traditional scarcity one, "no grit, no pearl".
Iron Horses are meant to spark conversations about our own strength and beauty. When we share our life stories, we discover surprising intersections, even among strangers, that create new, exciting bonds. That's certainly been true when I show this work; the resulting conversations feel expansive with newly-realized potential.
The images I choose of horses and graffiti thrill me. They're closely cropped to create a visual tension along the edges of each piece. I've learned that this tight focus also serves to ground me in this wide open country I call home. Additionally, I must deeply and viscerally feel each horse's feat of athletic prowess as well as the graffiti's expressive lines and bright contrasts - the dramatic energy of the horse and graffiti combined - to stay engaged throughout its creation. This art feels like the rugged power and enduring grace of our urban and rural cultures.
Along with being an Associate Member of Oil Painters of America (OPA), American Women Artists (AWA), and an Academecian at Mondial Art Academia in Aimargues, France, I've been lucky enough to attend workshops with landscape artist Frank Serrano, Native American artist Kevin Red Star, landscape artist Greg Scheibel, wildlife artist Shannon Troxler, to study portrait painting with Susan Blackwood's Jade Street Portrait Painters, and to intern with acclaimed Native American artist DG House. In addition to my art practice, I've been a certified Coach and Artist for the Montana Arts Council's "Montana Artrepreneur Program", a workforce development program designed to help Montana's artists develop a sustainable business in art, from 2013 - present.
My art can be found at Toucan Gallery in Billings MT, online at Mondial Art Academia and Artwork Archive, and on Facebook and Instagram @PearlSnapStudio.
2018 Light Space Time Online Gallery 555 Exhibition Special Merit Category for and Excellence Award — Jupiter FL
2017 First Runner-up Red Ants Pants Music Festival Art — White Sulphur Springs MT
2015 Emerging Artist Booth Award, 65th Annual Art Fair Jackson Hole Juried Competition — Jackson WY
2015 WaterWorks Art Museum 36th Annual National Juried Exhibit: Tour of Excellence — Eastern MT
2015 WaterWorks Art Museum 36th Annual National Juried Exhibit Richeson Award/Honorable Mention — Miles City MT
2008 National Pronghorn Antelope Museum Permanent Collection — Rawlins WY
2006 The Trail of Painted Ponies “The Native Art of Horse Painting” National Competition Southwest Art Magazine Award of Excellence/Best of Show — Scottsdale AZ
2018 Parsing Sign and Image National Exhibition (Juried) | Art League Rhode Island — Providence RI
2018 Black White Metallic Exhibition (Juried) | Artless Bastard Gallery — West De Pere WI
2018 Cultural Diversity Show (Juried) | Art at the Center — Overland Park KS
2018 Bozeman Creates Exhibition (Juried) | Waterworks Art Museum — Miles City MT
2018 Farm to Table Show (Juried) | Moss Mansion — Billings MT
2018 555 Exhibition | Light Space and Time Online Art Gallery (Juried)
2017 Dog and Pony Show (Juried) | Core New Art Space — Denver CO
2017 Solo Exhibition — Katabatic Brewing Company, Livingston MT
2016 Solo Exhibition — Corx Wine Bar, Bozeman MT
2016 Solo Exhibition — The Atrium Gallery/Bozeman Public Library Foundation, Bozeman MT
2016 Artist in Residence/Solo Exhibition — Bank of Bozeman, Bozeman MT
2015 Art Across MT: Signature Work by Montana’s Artrepreneurs (Juried) — Waterworks Art Museum, Miles City MT
2015 Solo Exhibitions — Cafe M (3 locations), Bozeman MT
2015 36th Annual National Juried Exhibit — WaterWorks Art Museum, Miles City MT
2014 Solo Exhibition — Belgrade Community Library, Belgrade MT
2014 Montana Artists: Innovators, Inventors and Entrepreneurs (Juried) — Hockaday Art Museum, Kalispell MT
2013 Featured Artist/Solo Exhibition — The Depot Gallery/Carbon County Art Guild, Red Lodge MT
2015 Frank Serrano Workshop — Bozeman MT
2015 Kevin Red Star Workshop — Red Lodge MT
2015 Susan Blackwood's Jade Street Portrait Painters — Bozeman MT
2014 Montana Arts Council Montana Artrepreneur Program MAP Coach Certification — Helena MT
2014 Montana Arts Council Montana Artrepreneur Program Certificate of Market Readiness — Helena MT
2014 MAP Internship with Native American Artist DG House — Ennis MT
2014 Teton Raptor Center Avian Art Workshop with Avian Artist Shannon Troxler — Wilson WY
2013 MAP Mentorship with Landscape Artist Greg Scheibel — Three Forks MT
1980 Bachelor of Fine Art, Concentration in Studio Art: Drawing & Painting — University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati OH
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LET'S BE FRIENDS!
"More Grit, More Pearl!"