Artists I admire and look to for inspiration:

Stephanie Huerta, who was my friend and neighbor, is a guiding light to me, even since her death in 2017 of a brain tumor. She was an accomplished sculptor and painter, a belly dancer, a fantastic mother, and a delightfully fun person. Stephanie demonstrated how to live life to the fullest and how to thrive as an artist. I frequently ask myself, "What would Stephanie do?"  Her work is as energetic, colorful, and beautiful as she was. Many of her works are still reproduced and sold through her website, and on Canyon Road in Santa Fe, which benefits her lovely husband and son. 

Dennis Hogan, who I worked for from 2014-2015, making hundreds (maybe thousands) of baby squash blossoms and turquoise earrings. During this valuable experience, I learned the importance of negative space in designing jewelry and the art of the perfect patina for Dennis's catalog work for Sundance Catalog and Peyote Bird.  Dennis Hogan's finer pieces are sold at the legendary Ortega's on the Plaza in Santa Fe, NM. 

William Rotsaert, a Belgian-American painter and artist, who I worked with making jewelry in Dennis Hogan's jewelry Studio.  William is a fantastical, whimsical artist and painter.  His works are delightfully energetic, bold, and colorful, and full to the brim with humor and joy. As a horse person, I am truly impressed with William's ability to paint horses so well, which is not an easy task for even the most accomplished artist. While working in Dennis's studio, I enjoyed when William would be the DJ, playing great music to silversmith to, everything from The Pogues to Townes Van Zandt.  I am an admirer of his talent as a musician and an artist and honored to be in the company of William and his wife, Mieke in their beautiful gallery, Art Is in Santa Fe, NM.

Richard Guzman, an accomplished plein air painter, and true renaissance man taught me oil painting in Santa Fe over several courses and encouraged me in my artistic and drawing abilities. He demonstrated to me that if the golden ratio is correct, even something usually considered ugly, like a propane tank in a field, could be beautiful if painted well. Many years ago, when he found out that I was making jewelry, he gave me a toolbox full of old jewelry making tools and some beautiful old turquoise and coral stones. I am forever grateful to him for recognizing my "hustle" and encouraging me to keep it up.  He is a frequent award winner at Santa Fe's annual Spanish Market and I am honored to be in his company as an artist at Art Is Gallery in Santa Fe, NM. 

Kit Carson is an artist and jeweler who I have admired since I was a kid. His drawing skills and humor are apparent in all his work, whether it be found object sculpture, lovely drawings, or jewelry featuring gemstones and turquoise and meticulous etching. My favorites of Kit Carson's works are his bracelets made from old license plates and skeleton horse jewelry. I hope to learn etching and casting so that my drawings may one day be incorporated into my pieces. 

Julie Bolene, painter and tattoo artist at Thunderbird Tattoo in LA, truly inspires me. I love her colorful and well-drawn work and hope to get tattooed by her one day. Julie's designs are bright and playful.  She even has flash available inspired by Beyonce's Cowboy Carter album. Julie Bolene's fun western traditional tattooing style inspired me to start my own sleeves both as a feminist act, and as an act of empowerment through art.  

Tracy Bear and Erin Atencio are the tattoo artists who created my tattoo sleeves, so far. Tracy Bear and Erin Atencio both work at Scrimshaw Tattoo in Fort Collins, Colorado. Both are absolutely amazing artists and it blows my mind that each time a tattoo artist works, they are doing a custom piece for each client. I consider tattooing a true act of creativity and care. 

Joan Slifka is another jewelry artist who I have admired since I was a kid. She was a pioneer of "Cowgirl Jewelry" and has been handmaking and designing pieces for over fifty years. Her work has beautiful, fun, colorful stones, hand-cut into amazing shapes, surrounded by hand stamped sterling silver. I love her double sided charm bracelets and choices of colors. Her rings are adjustable, and who doesn't love that? I always loved that many of her bracelets could be extended into necklaces and many of her pendants could also be pins, and you could exchange out the bails in different sizes to accommodate different thicknesses of beaded necklaces.  I admire Joan Slifka's consideration for the wearer in making jewelry that is not just beautiful, but also adaptable and practical. She still sells her works on Etsy

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