The theme for this month’s First Friday Celebration at the Blue Goose Gallery of Artists is “The Mountains are Calling,” denoting how when people drive up to the mountains, they feel their stress levels fall dramatically and they can breathe and relax. Come to the gallery Sept. 6, from 4 to 7 p.m., to celebrate First Friday.
Featured artists are photographer David Sigel, colored pencil illustrator Barbara Anne Ramsey, pine needle baskets/gourds creator Lynda Alberico and segmented woodcrafter John Cox.
Artists will share demos with guests, who can enjoy refreshments at the event as well as win door prizes.
For dates on upcoming art classes, stop by the Blue Goose at 607 Main St. in Chester to see a list of classes offered and to register, or call the gallery at 258-2600 during regular business hours Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
“Art is an inspiring influence in our lives,” noted gallery co-founder Deb Groesser, encouraging the public to “take home a piece of art to remind you of this special place!”
Quoting Elliott Erwitt, an American documentary photographer known for his candid black and white photos, photographer David Sigel said, “Photography is the art of observation. It has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.”
Sigel recalled camping trips in his youth with his family, where he “always liked to meander up stream on my own to find the best spots to cast, mesmerized by the play of light and shadow and the reflections of the trees on the water.”
At the age of 21, “I took a beginning photo class at Butte College and it very quickly became a consuming passion, with a camera and tripod replacing my fishing pole and reel. … The years of wandering streams enhanced my appreciation of nature and my eye for composition.”
He continued, “I am so thankful to have been able to be a part of the Blue Goose Gallery of Artists, and am amazed at the growth of the gallery as well as my own creativity.”
Barbara Anne Ramsey
One of the new artists at the Blue Goose Gallery of Artists, Barbara Anne Ramsey likes to focus on colored pencil work, and also teaches classes in drawing and colored pencil at the gallery.
Born in Susanville, she spent her formative years growing up in the ranching country of Northern California before her family moved to Paradise during her early teenage years.
After the Camp Fire took her home in Paradise she and her family moved to Lake Almanor.
Ramsey has spent the past 35 years as a professional artist, participating in many juried shows and winning several awards over the years.
She also has much of her artwork in private and corporate collections.
“My love of nature and horses and the western way of life will keep me drawing and painting as long as I can,” she said.
Pine needle basket artisan Lynda Alberico has been a crafter for most of her life, she said, trying a variety of mediums like “tole” painting, gourd art, and decorative painting while enrolled in college.
“In 2004 I had the opportunity to go John Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, North Carolina, where I had the good fortune to learn how to make pine needle baskets, and before long I was hooked!”
Alberico confided that she “Never knows how my baskets are going to turn out — they just ‘create themselves’ — as I go along.”
In addition to enjoying creating a variety of other art projects in other mediums, “My first love is making pine needle baskets; they come deep down from my soul.”
“I have always had a fascination with woodworking and became more entranced with the process as I edged toward retirement,” John Cox shared. “In fact a few years before I retired, I ran across a sale on a wood turning lathe that I had always longed for.”
Without an abundance of hardwoods in our immediate region, “I searched elsewhere for inexpensive materials for turning. That is when I became interested in segmented creations, and began studying books and online for instruction to help me develop my own techniques for my wood creations,” enhancing his use of my math and visualization skills.
He said he especially enjoys working with exotic hardwoods, putting together woods of unusual color and texture to create visually pleasing objects and to experiment with increasingly complicated designs.
“There’s nothing like the feel and look of a well-finished piece of wood.”