Featured Artists

The Featured AAFC Artist section of the gallery is dedicated to those consignment artists that have gone above and beyond in their support of Academy Art & Frame Company. It is our way to give an extra "Thank You!" for their time and dedication.

Dan riddle

Dan was born and raised till the age of 12 in Muskegon Mich., until his family moved to Colorado.
He is a graduate of Mitchell HS, in Colorado Springs.

Dan started dabbling with watercolors, colored pencils and pastels as a hobby many years ago (Almost 40).

He now specializes now in watercolor mountain-scapes and is a Signature Member of Pikes Peak Watercolor Society.

Dan was the winner of "Best of Show" in the 2017 International Watermedia Show.

“While living in Colorado and Wyoming for the past 40 years I have strived to recreate the beauty I see in the Rocky Mountains in my paintings.”

Dan's watercolor paintings will be on display from April 7 to June 7, 2018. Meet Dan at the 3rd Friday Receptions on April 20 and May 18th, 4-8 pm.


McKenzee Kuhlman

McKenzee is a Pikes Peak Community College graduate with an Associates Degree in Studio Arts. She has been into the arts since she first learned to use crayons and pencils, now specializing in Prisma Colored Pencil, graphite and charcoal drawings. Most recently, she has started dabbling in woodworking.

McKenzee grew up in Scottsdale, Arizona, moving to Colorado Springs in 2000 to "escape from the giant cockroaches". McKenzee and her husband started Man's Best Pet Sitting in 2010 and absolutely love working with furry friends all day.

Please join us on March 16th and April 20th for our 3rd Friday Receptions 4-8 pm to meet the artist and the others with work on display. Stop by anytime Mon-Sat to see McKenzee's work until May 7th, 2018.

Michael Patti

"I retired from the practice of Pharmacy about 5 years ago and had practiced for 37 years. When I was living on Wahsatch Ave. in Colorado Springs, my next door neighbor, Alex Hamilton, was making a living from stained glass. One day I wandered over to his place and said "What are you doing?” Alex said "I cut the glass with a glass cutter; I grind the sharp edges with a grinder; I assemble the pieces on the pattern; after foiling them with copper foil, I solder everything together." This was all the instruction that he gave me and it served me well for the next 30 years. I gave most of my early efforts to my family. I was a member of the GAPPR (Glass Artists of the Pikes Peak Region) until they disbanded. I do stained glass because each piece offers m a challenge and it keeps my mind sharp. I have 4 wonderful children (adults now) Lisa, Michael, Phillip and Gabriel and 5 Grandsons-the twins from Lisa-Zachary and Cayden; Phin and Sabin from Michael and Melanie, and Antonio from Molly and Phillip. I enjoy watching Jeopardy and this also keeps my mind occupied.”

Mike's stained glass pieces will be on display from February 8, 2018 until April 7, 2018. You can meet Mike at the 3rd Friday Receptions on February 16th and March 16, 2018 4-8pm. Refreshments will be served.

Mark Westfall

Mark Westfall is an artist working in both 2D and 3D medias. His 2D works are mainly created with airbrush, spray paint and automotive paints. The metalic-ness of the automotive paints give a unique depth to the images under the right lights. His subject matter ranges from realism to abstract.

Mark's 3D works are created with the physics of kinetic motion in mind. His spinners are designed to continually spin with the help of a hidden fan. For much of his 3D pieces he uses computer parts and other found objects.

Mark is originally from Detroit, Michigan and moved to Colorado Springs many years ago. He started his work as an airbrush artist painting motorcycles and automobiles.

You can see Marks' work on display from January 7th to March 7th, 2018. Unfortunately, he will not be able to attend the Third Friday Receptions due to current health issues. He has asked to put a sale on his work of up to 50% off to help pay for his upcoming therapy.

Renee reiko campbell

"Art is on my mind from sunrise until I go to sleep. It's a passion that has grown stronger and deeper, I intend to be an artist for the rest of my life!

My motto is 'Love Art, Create Art, Share Art'. To know my work is in someone's home is the best joy to receive.

Thank you so much for viewing my art."

Renee works in many medias from photography to acrylics and often combines her medias to create colorful and unique works of art. Her work will display from December 7th to February 7th, 2018. You can meet Renee at the 3rd Friday Receptions on December 15th and January 19th, 4-8 pm.

Gallery represented since 2002
LIW Cargo gallery, Manitou Springs 2002-2008
Multiple Group art shows 2006-present
Juried shows @ Sangre de Cristo Art Center, 2014, 2015
Boulder Street Gallery 2010-2014
The Warehouse Restaurant, 2011-2015
Dreamcatchers Gallery 2014-present
Academy Frame and Art gallery 2008-present
Gold Hill Mesa 2014-2016
Juried show @ Buffalo Lodge Bicycle Resort 2016
Juried B&W photography show, Bell Photographic Studio, Denver 2015
Finalist ‘Best of Photography 2015’ International, published by Photographers Forum & Sigma Lens
Published book cover, 2015 Amazon Publishing Co, Seattle
Group show @ Plaza of the Rockies, CO Photography Learning Group 2016
Juried group photography exhibit, Qlick Gallery, Amsterdam 2017


Michael Malta

Michael is our November/December Featured AAFC Artist. His work will be on display until January 7th, 2018. You can meet Michael at the 3rd Friday Receptions on November 17 and December 15, 4-8pm.

Artist’s Statement

Michelangelo said the great danger is not that our hopes are too high and we will fail to reach them; it is that they are too low and we do. Creating art is a passion that I have grown up with and I continue to strive for excellence in my art. I am inspired by the great artists of the past and try to live up to the quality they have established. As I continue my art education, I am always looking for ways to improve, adjust, modify and change. Creating artwork is a forever-evolving path. I enjoy working in oils and bring life to an empty canvas. The saturation of colors and brush strokes that can be created in oils is amazing. I also work graphite and charcoal. Black and white charcoal drawings bring life to art when color may distract.


Born in Dunkirk, N.Y., Michael’s first real contact with art came early in life. At age five, his grandmother, whose works hung in the Buffalo, N.Y. Museum, would make him sit and watch as she painted. At the age of 13, after her death, he was given all of her equipment and within a week started painting and drawing. From that point on his talent gradually emerged. The standard high school art class is the only formal training that he has ever received and yet the young man won an art scholarship to college.
Instead of college, however, the young artist joined the United States Marine Corps, continuing a tradition started by his father many years before. While overseas, the young Marine was given the opportunity to display his art and made his first real sale as an artist. He had done charity work for Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA), was commissioned for various works and had his works presented as mementos to Major Generals on down throughout his 20 year career in the United States Marine Corp. Living in Colorado Springs, Colorado with his wife Barbara, Michael’s love for art has resurfaced. He continues to work full-time for HP while setting aside time each week for painting, drawing and research for his next piece of art. Although, his wife is usually a step ahead in identifying his next piece of artwork. Michael was accepted and currently pursuing a Masters in Fine Art from the Academy of Art University. What started out as a chore with his grandmother has turned into a labor of love and pleasure for him, his family and friends.

2012 Academy of Art University – Masters of Fine Art Program Exhibitions


2015 – STROKES OF GENIUS – Maryland Federation of Art (MFA) Circle Gallery, Juried Competition, Annapolis, MD

Honors and Awards

2015 – A Singular Creation (ASC), Featured Artist2015 – Fine Art America, Featured Artist2012 – Fine Art America, Featured Artist


Member of The Portrait Institute


Academy Art and Frame, Colorado Springs, CO
Artazia Gallery, Colorado Springs, CO
Fine Art America
Saatchi Art


2014 Art Journey Portraits and Figures – The Best of Contemporary Drawing in Graphite, Pastel and Colored Pencil book – ISBN13: 9781440336997, page 118-119.

2014 Strokes of Genius 6: Lights and Darks – The Best of Drawing – hardcover book – ISBN13: 9781440330391, page 46-

Joni Ware

"I grew up in Hollywood, California. Most of my formal art training took place in high school under an artist by the name of Mary Jo Koosmann. I always enjoyed drawing but my passion for art grew during my high school years and I would often go home from school to spend six or more hours in my bedroom painting.
Following high school, I married Jim, moved to Colorado and raised and homeschooled six children. Painting was not a priority during these busy years. When my youngest began public high school, I had a renewed desire, along with time to pursue my art.
I like to paint landscapes, animals and people in a realistic style. There is so much beauty in this world! I have barely begun to scratch the surface of what I want to portray. I love painting different aspects of sunlight- in the way it changes a landscape. Cows and sheep are also favorite subjects of mine.
My works have been shown in Colorado Springs, Colorado and Newport Beach, California."

Joni's work will be on display from October 7 through December 7, 2017. She will be joining us for the 3rd Friday Receptions on October 20 and November 17, 4-8pm.

Judith Mckay

"An Ohio gal arrived in Colorado Springs by circumnavigating the world with a bunch of curiosity, and a penchant for learning and exploring.

Her first art class was as a teenager taking an oil class that she thrived in. Then she moved and there was no time for being creative on canvas. Years later after moving several times, she became interested in learning about watercolor and so enrolled in weekend long studies. And then moving on, she was introduced to the fine art of calligraphy. After moving to Colorado Springs, acrylics showed up in her life. It was time to do more creating and having fun exploring that hidden artistic talent.

Photography has been a part of her life ever since she was given her Brownie camera as a child. And photography continues to speak to her in many ways. A photographer and poet continue to make their appearance. Curiosity to explore and learn is still alive and well as she continues her artistic expression."

Judith's work will be on display September 9- November 7th, 2017. You can meet the artist at the 3rd Friday Receptions on September 15th and October 20th, 4-8pm.


Cas Foste

Cas Foste is a photographic artist and print-maker dedicated to enhancing the visuals behind fine art photography and combining photography to her drawings. Her passion for art started when she was knee high with a 110 camera. At about 10 or 12 her grandfather gave her his Honeywell Pentax, her first SLR. In 2001, she started on the collegiate path and in 2006 graduated from Western State College in Gunnison, Colorado with her Bachelors of Fine Arts with an Emphasis in both Photography and Printmaking. After a short volunteer term at Ramana’s Garden, a children’s home and school in Rishikesh, India, Cas returned to Colorado. She currently lives in Colorado Springs with her dog.
Cas is currently the Curator and Custom Framer at Academy Art & Frame Company (AAFC). She helps to organize and promote the monthly art exhibitions as well as manage the art on consignment. Annual monthly shows include: two Photography Exhibits; Art Aloud showcasing artists and writers in recognition of National Poetry Month; “How Do You See God?”; and an International Miniature Exhibition. In 2012, Cas designed and developed the first self-published book of the exhibited work in “How Do You See God?”. 2017 will be the seventh year of the exhibition and the sixth year for the publication.
Cas has won numerous awards over the years, including 2nd, 3rd and Juror’s Choice Awards in the amateur division at the Colorado State Fair Fine Art Exhibition (CSFFAE). August 2014 was Cas’s fourth year to be accepted into the professional division of the CSFFAE. She also took 1st place in the printmaking division at the AAFC Juried Miniature Exhibition. And she has won and/or placed in many of the PDIS juried competitions. Solo exhibitions of her work have been on display at Academy Art & Frame Co., Manitou Art Center, Orchard Ovens Bakery, Sangre de Cristo Arts and Conference Center, and the Bridge Gallery Commons.
Cas is a member of the Pikes Peak Arts Council and 419 Make Art. Cas has been a member of PDIS since 2008 and in January 2013 she took over as President.
Her work will be on display through October 7th, 2017 and will be in attendance at the 3rd Friday Reception on Sept. 15th, 4-8pm.

Deborah King

Deborah King is a local watercolor and mixed media artist. Her work will be on display at AAFC from July 8 to September 7, 2017. Join us at the 3rd Friday Receptions on July 21 and August 18 to meet her and enjoy her work as well as the work in the rest of the gallery. Deborah also has a piece on display in the How Do You See God? 2017 exhibit.

"I moved to Colorado Springs from Nova Scotia in 1995 to marry my wonderful husband. We have a son and 2 cats. I have always had a deep desire to be creative and found my love of watercolors at a class taught by Lorraine Danzo at the Bemis School of art in 2005. I followed up with many workshops at her home studio. I have taken a workshop taught by Thomas Owen at the Conttonwood School of Art, an intro to Batik taught my Martha Kisling and a watercolor class taught by Robert Gray at the Tri Lakes Art Center. In 2014, I attended a workshop taught by Birgit O'Connor, another of my greatly admired artists. As a member of the Colorado Springs Art Guild I have shown my work in many juried show. I do love to paint wildlife and have done many pet portraits. Painting brings me great jjoy and even more to be able to share."

patsy muir ray

“Born on a California freeway with dancing shoes on, a camera in one hand, and a paintbrush in the other.” That is how Patsy has been known to describe herself. Yet she almost never danced, rarely took a picture until her first child was born, and never pursued art seriously until a few short years ago when her decades long undeveloped talent brilliantly burst forth.

In early 2013 she traveled across the country to attend a four-day portraits-in-pastels workshop, where her teacher kept asking her, “Are you sure you have never done this before?” And in less than a year she went from barely knowing what pastels were and wondering why pastel paintings are called paintings to an admired portrait artist.

Only two years later, two of her paintings were accepted into the 11th Annual Mile High International Pastel Exhibition in Denver where she became an award-winning artist with her painting, “In Daddy’s Safe Grip.” The following year her painting, “Burst of Heavenly Glory” was selected for the cover of "How Do You See God?"

Flowers — frame company in Colorado Springs, CO
Her innate passion for realistic excellence pushes her to paint strikingly beautiful depictions of nature, including God’s crowning creation, humanity. These passions are what propel her to immerse herself into her art even more than other past and present pursuits.
From childhood, her interests have been characterized by what she calls the supreme four “D’s” – drawing, dancing, decorating, and daydreaming, while at the same time doing everything in her power to avoid her “D” duties of dusting, dishes, and deciding. She has lost herself in homeschooling, Biblical and early American history, creation science, scrapbooking, photography, cake decorating, poetry, and writing. She is now becoming an accomplished ballroom dancer.
Patsy has enjoyed living in Colorado since 1994 and has made Colorado Springs her home since early 2001.

Patsy's work will be on display at Academy Art & Frame Company from June 7 to August 7, 2017 and will be in attendance for the 3rd Friday Receptions June 16th and July 21, from 4-8pm.

Ric Bascobert

"In my art, I often aim to blur the line between reality and abstraction. I like to challenge my perception of things, and you, the viewer, are thereby challenged as well. I am optimistic and playful, and my work tends to be as well. So please, dust off your imagination muscles while viewing my artwork. I hope you not only enjoy my paintings, but that you purchase every last one of them. My work has been proudly displayed in private and public collections throughout the world. Thank you for your interest."

Ric's work will be displayed from now until July 7th, 2017. You can meet him at the 3rd Friday Reception on May 19th, 4-8pm in conjunction with Audrey Gray's Earthscapes and the Military Appreciation Show Honor and Remember.
Flower Bed — frame company in Colorado Springs, CO

Vinda G. Robison

Vinda G Robison has dabbled in art and design since she was a young girl. She created her own clothing for years until 1990 when she made her first quilt. She started making art quilts in 1994, loves manipulating fabric and patterns and changing them to her whims. She paints on fabric for her quilts and loves making realistic images to fit her ideas. She has won several awards for her Art Quilts, with eight having been on national tours.
She started working with acrylic paints with her first Flight Aluminum butterfly in 2014 and loves that she has been able to make it work. In 2014, she started Doodling based on the Zentangle art format. Using Ink and Pencil she creates images filled in with whimsical patterns and designs using her imagination. In 2015 she won two awards in a judged show for two of her VinDoodle pieces. She continues to learn, teach, and create new treasures expressing her art in quilts and VinDoodle renderings.

You can see Vinda's amazing creations from April 12, 2017 until June 7, 2017. She will be in attendance for both the 3rd Friday Receptions in April/May

April 21, 4-8pm

May 19, 4-8pm

joe bishop- March/april

Joe Bishop is the Featured AAFC Artist for March and April. His exhibit will be on display March 11 to May 6, 2017 and he and Pat will be in attendance for the 3rd Friday Receptions March 17 and April 21, 4-8pm.

Joe was born in Portland, ME in 1982. He has always been in a wheelchair and unable to speak, due to a rare birth defect. In 2006 Joe discovered painting. He prefers oils because they are forgiving and rich. He paints with the help of adaptive equipment, such as a splint to help him hold his brushes, a windmill easel and a palette holder.

Painting has opened up a whole new world for Joe and has quickly become his passion. Because he is nonverbal, art allows him to voice his feelings, opinions and ideas and connect with his world. Painting also allows him to give something back to his community. Most of all, art gives Joe an identity; he is now Joe, the artist.

Joe loves color, textures, and opposite concepts and his paintings reflect his interests. He loves the outdoors and especially water. He finds inspiration from the world around him. Joe also uses the metaphor of “being trapped inside a bottle” in his art to describe his feelings about his disability. Joe has a studio at Cottonwood Center for the Arts and has earned a BFA from CSU Pueblo in 2014. He hopes to continue learning and growing as an artist, as well as a human being.
You can see more of his work at his studio and website:
Cottonwood Center for the Arts, studio 237

Dancing in Wheelchair — frame company in Colorado Springs, CO

Elane Graves- February/March

Bent Tree — frame company in Colorado Springs, CO
"Nature’s vibrant and infinite color palette inspire me the most. I am at peace outdoors, in the quiet of the wilderness or overlooking the grand landscape. It’s where I recharge and is essential to my soul. My work as an artist reflects this and my goal is to create beautiful, serene images for people to enjoy. Like most artists, I often compose images in my mind long before I ever find myself at the right location. And as I walk along a trail, suddenly it will hit me- that’s it, that’s the shot and I will sit there for as long as it takes to capture what’s in my mind. As a photographer, I don’t feel that one should be constrained to merely documenting the scene before them. I see the camera and post-processing software as tools to express my vision of the world that surrounds me."

Elane's work will be on display February 8 to April 7, 2017. She will be in attendance for both of the two 3rd Friday Receptions, February 17 and March 17, 4-8pm.

Rhonda van pelt- January/february

"I earned my bachelor’s degree in Art at the University of Southern Colorado, where I studied with professors including Lew Tilley, Ed Sajbel, Robert Wands and Orlin Helgoe. I returned to college a few years later to earn my bachelor's in Mass Communications.
Since then, I have been a graphic designer, copy editor, freelance writer and always, always an artist. Currently, that means taking photos, some of which I incorporate in hand-sewn quilts. My current day job: managing editor of the Pikes Peak Bulletin, Manitou Springs’ weekly newspaper, where I often write about art and photograph the people, places and events that make Manitou so unique.
My life goals include using my skills to bridge the two worlds of art and words. I try to do something creative every day."
Rhonda's work will be on display January 10th to March 7th, 2017. She will be in attendance for the 3rd Friday Artist Reception on February 17th, 2017.

Linda Case- December/January

Linda Case is a whirlwind supporter of Academy Art & Frame Company and considers herself an amateur photographer. Her work ranges in subject matter from flowers to cyclists to Pikes Peak. She is a member of Peak Digital Imaging Society helping president Cas Foste with organizing field trips and has two pieces displayed in the Black and White Exhibition. She is also a great friend and mentor to Kim Costello.

Linda is also a published author and her most recent book Bold Beliefs in Camouflage is for sale at AAFC. She is also one of the major players in organizing the Veteran's Day events throughout Colorado Springs.
Linda's work will be on display at AAFC until February 7th, 2017 and will likely be in attendance for the 3rd Friday Reception on January 20th.

Hot Air Balloon — frame company in Colorado Springs, CO

Darcy Lee marquis- November/December

"Writing about ones self is a challenge and is like trying to creat a self portrait with a dull pencil and a broken mirror. Here I will touch on just a few high points.

Recognizing my talent early, (and I suspect hoping for some Darcy-free time) my parents sent me to Bemis School of Art when I was quite young. There I was taught by a force of nature named Helen Owens. Ms. Owens was larger than life with a passion for art and a sparkling personality. I am still influenced and in awe of this lively lady.

My poor college timing still haunts me. . . I arrived at college in the middle of the non-objective and abstract period. My heart belonged to Charle Russel, Renior, and David. For four years I was a fish out of water, drawing squared on canvas and using rulers to make portraits while I dreamed of painting flesh like Ingres and fabrics like Holbein.

My teaching experience included college continuing education classes at places as diverse as Fort Lewis College in Durango, Hila Pueblo College, and in Globe, Arizona in Six Shooter Canyon (I kid you not). My husband's Gypsy blood took us to jobs on the Apache and Navajo reservations where I also taught and was influenced by the rich southwestern cultures.

My husband's death brought me back home to my family in Colorado Springs where I taught in public schools. During this time I began traveling with Joyce Webb and teaching through her classes for the Colorado School of Mines continuing education classes. I have been fortunate enough to make multiple trips in the great cities of Europe, and to teach and lead tours of the incredible museums of those cities. My degrees in art, history, speech and drama have given me an unique view of teaching and creating art."

Darcy Lee's exceptional artwork will be on display through out the months of November and December. She will be in attendance at the reception for each month, November 18 and December 16th, 4-8pm.

Lindsay Laxton-Nadeau- October/November

Lindsay was born and raised in Colorado Springs, CO and attended the Art Institute of Colorado in 2005/2006 emphasizing Photography. She has displayed her artwork in a number of galleries and restaurants.

In 2013, Lindsay entered the Colorado State Fair Fine Art Exhibit winning a special award from Steel City Gallery and has entered consecutively since. Photography was her first love, studying it in college but eventually moved into watercolor painting and stained glass. 3 years ago, she again stepped out of her box and started doing furniture sculptures and welding incorporating her 3D stained glass flowers, a concept she originated.

Lindsay's work will be on display throughout the months of October and November and she will be in attendance for both monthly receptions, October 21 and November 18, 2016 4-8pm.

Guy Moore- September/October

"From my earliest recollections I always had a love for all things photographic. My parents blessed me with Brownies, Polaroids, Instamatics, and later in my late teens I bought my first full-size SLR. Photography has been a gift to me in that I am quite ADD, and taking photographs has been a way of helping me slow down mentally and focus on the magic of the moment. There is a serenity and a sense of transcendence I find when engaged in photography that is only rivaled by fishing . I hope that at least some of the joy and peace I experience in my photography resonates with you when viewing my work."

A small portion of Moore's huge collection of photographic images will be on display at Academy Art & Frame Company from September 8th to November 9th. Moore will be in attendance during the October reception Imagination! All That's October! on Friday, October 21st, from 4-8pm.

As an extra bonus, Moore has decided to reduce his stock of unframed images so until November 9, 2016 every purchase is eligible to receive an 11x14 Guy Moore image of your choice, FREE. Ask for details!
Black and White House in the Winter — frame company in Colorado Springs, CO

Karen Simkiss- August/September

Karen will have her Polaroid manipulated photographic work on display at AAFC from August 10th to October 5th, 2016. She will be attending the HDYSG? reception on August 19 and would love to explore the ideas of her work with you! She also has an encaustic in the HDYSG? exhibit.

Karen has been painting and exhibiting her art work for the past thirty-five years. She has taught art for twenty-five years in many different arenas.Her students have ranged from pre-school to adults. She has been an instructor in public and private schools and taught private lessons in and around Colorado and Santa Fe, New Mexico. Presently Karen is teaching art and photography at St. Mary's High School in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

"I am interested in any medium that involves processes! This is how fell in love with Polaroid Photography.
In 1948, Edwin H. Land introduced the Polaroid Land Camera. The story goes he was walking with his daughter taking pictures and she wanted to know why she couldn't see the pictures right away. So, Land invented a camera that was based on traditional photography; however, it was the first instant print camera. Sometime after the invention a golfer was taking pictures whild out on the golf course. He shoved the photo into his pocket with some tees and when he got home the tees had marked the photo. The emulsion stayed soft enough to manipulate for up to 4 hours. While the golfer thought the photo was ruined, the artist grabbed onto this new process.
I don't know for sure if the golfer story is true but since I am a golfer and artist, I like to believe it is! When I learnt the process I did do my manipulations with a golf tee."
Karen Simkiss — frame company in Colorado Springs, CO

Carol Losinski Naylor- July/August 2016

Watercolor batik artist, Carol Losinski Naylor, specializes in creating exquisite paintings on various types of fiber paper using hot wax and watercolor. Carol has won many awards in local, national and international shows. She teaches the technique and is available to teach anywhere in the world. She is currently the President of the Pikes Peak Watercolor Society. Carol's work will be on display at Academy Art & Frame Company from July 11, 2016 to September 7, 2016. She will be a part of the Artist's Reception on July 15th, 2016 from 4-8pm.

Gregory Kelley- June/July 2016

I'm now a sixty-nine year old native of Colorado Springs and I am still deciding what to do with my life. My art career started when I was a mere three years old. My mom repainted my bedroom for me. It was a beautiful white color. I was inspired by this blank page. My medium of choice at that time was crayons with the emphasis on bright colors. My inspiration seems to have come from a Jackson Pollock painting. The work was exquisite, filled with multiple colors and many varied and abstract shapes. My mother laughed for a week. She repainted the walls. I spent months regretting the loss of my first masterpiece.

The startling beauty of this state is why I am an artist. I remember the crisp air when you are having a cup of coffee in the high mountains. Aspen, Telluride, Vail, Longs Peak, and Pikes Peak are all terrific to look at. I have watched wild horses run. I want to capture all that in paintings, with the emphasis on colorful and Colorado.

I have been a digital artist since 1997. I could finally get the control over color. Went to classes in high school, and later I went to Taos, New Mexico to study Southwestern style art and watercolor classes. The computer crashed a lot. I studied more. After years of work, I got it mostly right. I hope you enjoy my art. I hope it reminds you how beautiful the mountains are. I hope it reminds you what a great place Colorado is.

I am a self taught digital artist. I use Corel Painter most of the time, and Photoshop a little bit. When you use digital art, you can control the colors and the paint strokes. You don't have to clean your brushes. I was hooked.

I have sold paintings for almost two decades. I sold at The Great Indoors at both the Park Meadows Mall and at the Flatirons for five years. I was their number one Colorado artist, and averaged selling three to five paintings a week. I have paintings hanging in the Broadmoor Hotel, at the United States Air Force Academy, and numerous private homes.

I won first place in the digital painting category at the Colorado State Fair several years ago. There were 10,000 entries that year. I also won the People's Choice Award for the same painting in the same year. The State Fair people told me I got 5 times as many votes for People's Choice as the second place finisher. I entered a Vail Colorado Art Festival, and finished in the top five sellers with over 130 artists participating.

The Colorado Division of Wildlife used my trout paintings in one of their monthly magazines. I've been married for forty five years and I have two grown children. I am slowly recovering from the brain damage teenagers' cause. It's been a wonderful life and I am doing well.

Best Regards,
Gregory Kelley
DBA GregorPaintings.com

Gregory Kelley's work is now on display at Academy Art & Frame Company and will be displayed throughout the months of June and July. Come and meet Greg on Saturday, June 18th from 11am-4pm at the June Extravaganza! You can also check out his work on his website at www.gregorpaintings.com. For more information contact Academy Art & Frame Company at 719-265-6694!

Steve castle - May/June 2016

Watercolorist Steve Castle grew up in the rural snow country of upstate New York along the Mohawk River. The influence of this beautiful area, where the winter can often be six months long, is apparent in his nostalgic snow and country scenes.

He has been drawing and painting as long as he can remember. After college Steve entered the Air Force and one of his first assignments was in the beautiful city of San Antonio, TX where he displayed his watercolors in front of the Alamo and along the Riverwalk. In 1978 he moved to Colorado Springs, which he has called home ever since. The spirit of the west can now be seen in his watercolors. He is continually driving the back roads in search of that old ghost town, covered bridge, train, depot, barn or mill that waits to be painted.
Steve is a former president of the Randolph Art League in San Antonio and the Colorado Springs Art Guild. He has also been a member of the San Antonio Watercolor Group, Dayton Society of Painters and Sculptors and Pikes Peak Art Association.

Steve's watercolors have won numerous awards and can be found in collections throughout the country. They have been displayed in galleries in Texas, Ohio, Mississippi and Colorado where his winter landscapes have become his trademark. Steve has taken workshops from internationally recognized watercolorists but he continues to strive to maintain his own individualism and unique style in his watercolors.

Steve Castle's work is now on display at Academy Art & Frame Company. You can also check out his work on his website at www.stevecastlefineart.com. For more information contact Academy Art & Frame Company at 719-265-6694!