Meet the Artists of Vantage Point...
Donna Bills, stone collector and wire wrangler, has been making Jewelry of one type or another since the 1990’s. She began her business, DJ’s Whimsy, offering handmade, unique designs to the public in 2013. She intended to, primarily, produce beaded necklaces with unusual materials, especially natural stones and minerals. By 2014, however, she discovered wire wrapping as a way to make a pendant out of almost anything. She discovered a long-buried passion for shaping wire that she hadn’t pursued since making pipe cleaner people as a child. Then she decided a little hammering was quite satisfying, too....
Still on an artistic journey, Donna, believes that jewelry is a wearable sculpture that should include the wearer in the presentation. She is always searching for an elusive sense of harmony and enjoys arranging the objects involved; wire, beads, cabochons etc. Into a whole that produces the right “music” in her mind.
She enjoys working with copper and silver. She likes to think of copper as a “living” material that is meant to age, patina, change and interact with the body. Thus, she does not seal her pieces. She uses Sterling, Argentium Sterling and fine silver in her silver designs. Many items made in copper can be made in silver upon request. The cabochons she uses are often one-of-a-kind artisanal stones shaped by her favorite lapidary artists.
Donna lives in Gainesville,Texas with her husband, Jack, and her animal friends; Beau and Tiger.
:: DJ's Whimsy
:: Instagram:: @dj345
:: Facebook:: DJ’s Whimsy
Katie has always had an interest in drawing and painting since childhood. Her interest in art and desire to help people in need led her to a profession in orthotics and prosthetics, where she has had an outlet to create art in designing and fabricating braces and prosthetic limbs for people. Though working in the medical profession, she maintained a focus in continuing to develop her art through the years. She focuses on mural painting, both indoor and outdoor, which is her outlet to work on a large scale. On a small scale, she works mostly in acrylics.
She likes to experiment with different ideas and techniques, with varied subjects. Her work is inspired by her life experiences and passions. "I feel that I let my art speak for my true self. Though a soft-spoken introvert, my work is often represented in bold colors, depictions with symbolism and overarching themes of inspiration and empowerment. My fascination with art is that it is never wrong---it is my expression and how I interpret things---in a world that so often feels black and white, that comforts me and allows me to deliver a message of love and inspiration to the world."
In 2021, Katie opened Vantage Point Art Gallery with a vision to provide local artists like herself a space to display their art, enliven the downtown Gainesville art scene and create a place of community for creatives.
:: Katie Brinkley Art
:: Website:: kbrinkleyart.com
:: Instagram:: @kbrinkleyart
:: Facebook:: @kbrinkleyart
Dorothy credits her mother for her love of many art mediums and encouraging her art adventures. In 2004, Dorothy started making Lampwork beads, using a torch to shape beads by layering, blending and manipulating molten glass rods into beads for her jewelry. Additionally, she became interested in wire weaving and has incorporated this with her glass jewelry. Her jewelry techniques have also expanded to using flame painting copper, using pure copper and a torch to add color to copper shape in her pieces.
Dorothy is thankful for her very supportive husband, family members and friends whose support make her jewelry art creations possible. She also helps support the Beads of Courage program as a way to give back through her art medium of choice.
"I paint with Paper" Artist Joe Conner studied graphic design, advertising, illustration and typography in England. In 1990, she won the coveted Iggesund Paperboard Silver Tree Award. Since moving to the states, Joe has continued her epic career as a graphic artist and web designer. But as a career artist, she has shown her award winning detailed collages throughout the DFW area. Her work has been well received. Her work ranges from the whimsical to the thought-provoking. From serene to the attention-seeker!
:: Joe Conner Designs
:: Website:: joeconnerdesigns.com
:: Instagram:: @joeconnerart
:: Facebook:: @JoeConnerDesigns
Jim's a native Texan who grew up roaming around the red hills of Palestine, Texas. His interest in art was sparked by viewing a film strip, while in the second grade, about native American sand painting in the desert Southwest.
Jim moved to Gainesville from Dallas in 1991 and continues to enjoy making his home in this community. Jim is active in the Gainesville Area Visual Arts (GAVA) group.
Jim is a self-taught artist and enjoys painting in both oils and acrylics. He paints in three very different formats; stylized pointillism, subjective geometric representation and pure abstract. Jim firmly believes the true essence of art is in the creative process, not the end product. Thus, his sentiment, "art is a verb".
Donna Felkner has been doing arts & crafts since high school, so her knowledge comes from a lifetime of experience and experiments. The early years were spent in a variety of fiber arts and tooling leather.
In 1984, she took a stained glass class and was soon making windows, doors and sidelights, lampshades and other 3D forms, but it was her Kaleidoscopes that gave her the greatest lessons in color, form, symmetry, order and chaos. She learned how to balance them all and how these elements interacted with each other. It was when she decided to make her 'scopes' completely from scratch, instead of using broken glass and hobby store beads in the object chambers, that launched her into lampwork. A lampwork class taught her to make her bobbles. She realized it was more fun to just make the beads, and in 2001 her lampwork and jewelry careers was born.
:: CG Beads
:: Website:: cgbeads.com
:: Instagram:: cgbeads_donnafelkner
Stacie Forest began her pottery addiction just a few years ago. While taking a community center class, she was always trying to go beyond the simple projects her teacher gave, although not always with the best results. Her teacher challenged her to try the pottery wheel, and that solidified her love for clay. She loves to try new forms on the wheel, and is known, as well, for her whimsical sculpture; from wacky birds to chubby ladies.
She graduated with a degree in Radio/TV/Film from the University of North Texas, but her minor was Photography and she has spent most of her artistic life taking photos and video; particularly sports. But now, pottery is the artistic outlet she didn’t know she needed.
Stacie lives in Denton, Texas. Her grown children and husband are tremendous supporters of Stacie selling her ceramics because their homes are already too full of her creations.
:: Forest Fired Ceramics
:: Website:: ForestFired.com
:: Instagram:: @Forest_Fired
"When I look at all the wonderful things God has created, I think wow, If only I could capture all the beauty He has given us in a painting."
Cheryl Brown Haas was born in Abilene, raised in a little community called Neinda and went to school in Hamlin. During her 8th grade year, she was introduced to art through her teacher, Mrs. Griggs, which started her on a path of continued growth, knowledge and a desire to put her feelings on canvas.
"God gave me this ability, so I need to use it and share with others."
As life changed and moves were made to Odessa in West Texas after I married, I met Kathy, my art teacher. She had studied under well known artists in New Mexico, where she got her degree. She shared her knowledge and love of art with her students, giving us the excitement of learning something new that benefited us tremendously. On several occasions, I had the privilege of going to the Albuquerque Pastel Convention and witness and study under some great pastel artists. Recently, I had the honor to take a course from one of them, Desmond O’Hagan which was so inspiring, since I had not really painted since my husband passed away in 2015.
Carolyn lives in Lake Kiowa, Texas. She began painting in 2007, taking inspiration from artist Lucille Harper Baker, her mother-in-law. She took her first watercolor lesson in 2007 at Mauna Lani Resort in Hawaii from artist Lisa Bunge. Returning to Texas, she enrolled at a community college in Dallas taking watercolor and drawing classes. She also took classes from individual artists at the Artist Showplace in Richardson, trying to find her style. She feels that she achieved that on the island of Maui when she began taking classes from Kathrine Alexander.
Carolyn loves florals and paints from photographs that she takes on location. Recently, she has started painting animals and landscapes. She belongs to the Visual Arts Society of Texas and has signature status with the Southwestern Watercolor Society and Texas Watercolor Society.
Many artists capture their environment and bring it to life. Carol Henry has surrounded herself with beautiful animals and she breathes life into them with every stroke of her brush. Carol's keen eye for detail and grasp of what inspires has allowed her to breed several champion Quarter horses that drive much of her work. She has applied these same skills to her powerful and sometimes intense paintings, as well as her often sublime pastoral efforts.
What Carol conveys in her work, like no other artist in her genre, is the true spirit of the horse, or any animal she may be rendering. This gift of bringing the multiple dimensions of a beautiful animal to a flat canvas is an inspiration to behold. In many of her equine depictions, gentle pastoral scenes relax the eye, with stunning beauty as the focus. While in her next work the horse leaps off the canvas, revealing muscles and movement.
Carol has received rave reviews for these action paintings that both take your breath away and leave you in awe. Carol states, “As an artist I hope to create art that inspires people on a daily basis. The horse seems to so vividly capture many of the inspirational elements of life. I simply try to reflect this on the canvas.” Not knowing for sure whether she had done this, Carol once heard one of her buyers say he wanted to look at a particular painting, every day for the rest of his life. Whether it was the beauty of the painting or its inspirational qualities, Carol knew she had succeeded.
:: Art By Karol
:: Website:: artbykarol.com
Monty is a self taught artist, primarily using acrylic and pastels. He has been painting for approximately 20 years, but has always had an interest in art and took classes in junior high through college.
"I like to paint subjects that are simple or tell a story."
Monty's art has been featured in local events, and he has done commissioned paintings as well. He considers an important accomplishment in his art career the fact that he has encouraged three different people to start painting after seeing his work and talking with him.
Known for a love of all things natural and native, Pam Ingham's impressionistic style reflects what she sees and feels around her. Whether it's a day at the lake, a day with the animals or just a day messing around with colorful fabric and paint, the idea is to create something which may elicit a response on some level- art is to be enjoyed and fun. A portion of any sale goes to animal rescue groups.
:: Pam Ingham Art
:: Website:: paminghamart.com
Kimberly Morrow is originally from Massachusetts but now based in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. She strives to provide beauty through art for all her patrons. Kimberly finds each new painting provides its own learning experience, and she will never be done learning something new.
She received her BFA from UMass Dartmouth. For several years, she worked in Boston as a medical illustrator. In 1997, she moved to Texas and obtained her Post-Baccalaureate teaching certification from UNT and has been teaching Art in Texas for 14+ years. She is very active in the local art community and participates in many artist organizations in and around DFW.
:: Kimberly Morrow Art & Design
:: Website:: kimberlymorrowfineart.com
:: Instagram:: @kimberlymorrow.art.design
:: Facebook:: @kimberlymorrow.art.design
Jeffrey Rolinc has been a photographer for the past 40+ years. His photography hobby began with Canon film cameras and grew from there to his current Sony digital cameras. Jeffrey considers his work as a computer service engineer for Microsoft to be the left-brain, and his photography hobby supplies the right.
Jeffrey's passion is packing up his gear and heading out to explore God’s country. Much of his work is nature, landscape, animals, or whatever else interesting he comes across.
"I find great joy in being able to shoot and display what and how I see things – using my skills to provide my perspective on life. Birds, fish, and all types of crawly, creeping, hopping, animals are fair game. From spectacular sunrises to even more stunning sunsets, to night stars and milky way panoramas, I never run out of material for my imagination."
:: JRolinc Photography
:: Website:: jrolinc.com
:: Instagram:: @jrolinc
"Whether visual or written, my interest in the arts has continuously centered on creativity. My work reflects my growth both artistically and intrinsically through the inquiring treatment of acrylic paint as well as mixed media associated with photography and sculpture. As a self-described late bloomer, my inspiration stems from an experimental process that has taken place over my lifetime, and by and large through the process of trial and error. As an experimental artist, my aesthetic objective is aimed at presenting visual perceptions that are often imprecise: inspired by procedures that are often tentative and incremental. Painting is a process of searching, in which I attempt to discover the image in the course of its making. I have continuously as well as deliberately strived to advance my expertise over the course of time."
Christie Sasser is a watercolor artist and art educator. She graduated from the University of North Texas with a Fine Arts degree and a minor in Education. Born and raised in Fort Worth, she and her family moved to Callisburg in 2017. Since then, she has created an online presence through Brush and Letter Studio. This is where she shares her love and knowledge of watercolors with young and old alike. She uses her talent to paint what she sees around her; from the animals to beautiful flowers that grow here in Texas, but more specifically her farm life.
:: Brush and Letter Studio
:: Website:: brushandletterstudio.com
:: Instagram:: @brushandletterstudio
:: Facebook:: @brushandletterstudio
After a long and varied series of "day jobs", Gainesville native Laurie Sawyer has, in retirement, pursued her life-long ambition to paint pictures someone else might want.
"I credit great teachers at Gainesville High, UNT, and University of Texas for encouraging me to do art. Then I was lucky enough to learn techniques for painting in a style I can call my own. Nocona's Larry Lemons really helped me with basics. A recent workshop in portraiture has given me courage to try human subjects. I have also victimized dozens of pets."
Sheila started painting while in college by taking oil painting classes, though she feels that she has always had an interest in art since childhood. Her early memories of painting are the paint by number pictures that her mother got for her. After getting married and raising four children, Sheila returned to college to finish her degree in history and English. During this time she took painting classes in tole painting and water colors. Recently she has begun painting in acrylics and received an honorable mention award at an art shown in May 2021.
Carolyn L. Williams, aka, CLovePhotography was born in Dallas, Texas and has now lived most of her life in Denton County. She has loved taking photos all her life. When she was 13, her parents gave her a little automatic Kodak camera, with the little cube flash, that would spin for the next shot! She would take photos of her family, friends, and her dog. In 7th grade, she had to write an essay about what profession she would like to pursue. Carolyn wrote about being an underwater photographer because she loves the ocean and sea life, and loved taking photos! Although that profession did not become a reality, her love for photography never stopped. She continued taking photos, with various cameras, of her children, pets, and vacations. Her love for nature and animals steered her into advancing her hobby with more advanced equipment and eventually becoming a photographer of people. A professional photographer career developed, from High School Seniors, to families and children, head shots, and pets.
"I love sharing photos from my photo journeys that I take- from driving around the local country side and finding horses or cattle, to flowers in a field, to the local cities and taking photos of buildings. When someone asks me what I take photos of, I say, “People, Places, and Things!” Everything! And I love sharing my treasures with everyone!"
:: Instagram:: @c_love_photography