Brushing up for the Fall Art Festival
Editor’s note: This is the first of two stories following two artists through the Glenwood Springs Art Guild’s 45th annual Fall Arts Festival, taking place Sept. 26-30 at the Ramada Inn in Glenwood Springs. The event, featuring paintings, pottery, sculpture and the popular bargain bin, is open to the public.Before long, Cynthia Thomas’ toughest competition might be her 86-year-old mother.”I expect one of these days Mom is going to be in the professional level and I’m going to be competing against her,” said Thomas, from her Glenwood Springs home art studio.This week, Thomas – a professional artist who specializes in watercolors and pastels – and her mother, Yvonne Hubbard, are putting the finishing touches on their artwork. They’re submitting multiple pieces each to the Glenwood Springs Art Guild’s 45th annual Fall Arts Festival, taking place Sept. 26-30 at the Ramada Inn in Glenwood Springs.”Painting is my main job – I sell my work,” Thomas said. “I’m in the professional artist division and let me tell you something, artists from across the country, those are my competition.”Thomas has pursued art as a profession for more than 30 years. Her work typically sells between $650-$850 per piece. Growing up one of six children in Oklahoma, she received constant encouragement from her mother, who set aside art for several decades to raise a large family.
“She furnished me with art supplies all my life,” Thomas said. “Art, it’s part of you. And if you don’t do it, it’s frustrating.”After her children – four boys and two girls – became adults, Hubbard revisited her natural creative talents.”We had a big house, and as the kids moved away, I turned the upstairs into a studio,” she said. “My children came first. Art was just a recreation for me.”In Oklahoma, Hubbard took watercolor painting classes at the local senior center. Her instructor quickly noticed her talent.”I was an artist as soon as I held a pencil in my hand,” she said. “He recognized that right away. He said, ‘Hey, you’re going to put me out of a job.'”In past Fall Art Festivals, Hubbard has won top honors in the amateur category.”Mom already won Reserve Grand Champion,” Thomas said.
The festival offers friendly competition between Art Guild members, who often help each other prepare for the annual show. The show is also a way for artists such as Thomas and Hubbard to sell their work.And winning isn’t always everything, Thomas said.”I can’t think about that,” she said. “Judges are just like anybody else. They have their opinions, and it comes down to what they like and what they don’t like. The ultimate reward is to sell.”Contact April Clark: 945-8515, ext. firstname.lastname@example.org
Post Independent, Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO
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