Painting is an activity Mary Pat Ettinger and Israel Holloway would do regardless of any monetary gain or recognition. However, either of those things also wouldn’t make the endeavor less enjoyable for them.
The two Craig dabbers recently were accepted into Art Steamboat, a contest that's part of the Steamboat All Arts Festival in mid-August.
With only 30 artists selected out of hundreds of hopefuls from across five states, the honor is a pretty big one, Ettinger said.
Her “Little House at the Bottom of the Pass” portrays a quaint domicile near Rabbit Ears Pass, just outside Steamboat Springs. The location used to belong to the late Ella Murphy and was always full of flowers when its former resident lived there. Ettinger has painted a variation of the scene more than once.
“That particular site always attracted me because of the different light and shadows,” she said. “It was just a gorgeous conglomeration of garden flowers, and I found it so inspirational.”
Holloway, an art instructor at Colorado Northwestern Community College, has submitted pieces to multiple such contests. His “Resting at the Gates” features a young girl on horseback during a rodeo based on a photo he snapped at the Moffat County Fairgrounds.
“I was glad to get in somewhere local because a lot of my stuff represents the Yampa Valley,” he said. “I was shocked and humbled because there’s a lot of good artists out there.”
Another reason to be a little awestruck: The grand prize will be $10,000, which Holloway said is considerably higher than many of the other contests he’s entered.
The two artists will have their works on display in Steamboat for two weeks during events including First Friday Artwalk and Steamboat Wine Festival. Winners of Art Steamboat will be evaluated by guest judge Betsy Dillard Stroud and announced Aug. 15.
Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com.