GEORGE BAXTER - 1804-1867

Baxter is considered the inventor of multiple-color printing. While color printing had been practiced for many years, prints were mostly hand-colored, or printed with a limited range of colors. The Baxter Process, which he patented in 1835, involved a metal keyplate and up to 20 other blocks to apply each color in rich layers.

The keyplate was a major innovation, and gave the images a sharpness never seen before. He was a perfectionist in mixing his own inks, using the best papers, and getting perfect registration on a hand press to create miniature oil paintings. His works were the first to be published in full color.

WILSON A. BENTLEY - 1865-1931

Wilson A. Bentley was the son of Vermont farmers. Early on he showed a ravishing appetite for learning. When Bentley was 15, his mother gave him an old microscope. He began to explore his world close-up, and discovered the beauty of snow crystals. He painstakingly tried to sketch what he saw under the microscope, but was not pleased with the results. It occurred to him that through photography (still a new technology in 1884) he might be able to capture the beauty for future generations.

Through the influence of his mother, his father acquiesced and bought a $100 Eastman Kodak Bellows camera for his son. Bentley attached a microscope to the end of his camera, and through much trial and error in 1885 he became the first person to photograph a single snow crystal.

He photographed over 5,000 snow crystals in his lifetime, discovering that each was unique. Bentley is the one who first taught us that no two snowflakes are alike. He also photographed clouds, ice, raindrops, window frost, dew, and landscapes. Bentley was an impassioned artist who worked against many odds. The townspeople of Jericho, Vermont thought him “a bit cracked,”, but he kept on, eventually achieving world-wide fame; becoming known affectionately as "The Snowflake Man." During his lifetime, he published many articles about his work in magazines such as Monthly Weather Review, Popular Science, Popular Mechanics, National Geographic, Harper’s Monthly, The New York Times Magazine, and Scientific American.

He has also been featured in Smithsonian Magazine. In 1931, at 66 years old, he created the book Snow Crystals to share his life’s work with the world. It was published just a month before he died by McGraw-Hill Book Company, and has been reprinted by Dover Publications. It features 2453 Bentley photomicrographs.

Bentley said of his work: "Under the microscope, I found that snowflakes were miracles of beauty: and it seemed a shame that this beauty should not be seen and appreciated by others. Every crystal was a masterpiece of design and no one design was ever repeated. When a snowflake melted, that design was forever lost. Just that much beauty was gone, without leaving any record behind."

Hortus Eystettensis 1613

Johan Konrad von Gemmingen (1561-1612) was Prince-Bishop of Eichstatt, Germany. He had a magnificent garden planted at his Episcopal residence. This garden was one of the first of its kind, an inclusive display of shrubs and flowering plants from Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Americas. He commissioned Besler to do the Hortus Eystettensis prints to show his garden through the seasons. Many plants are illustrated life size. It took Besler 16 years and a number of engravers to create the folio-size copperplates for the edition of 300 books. It is considered one of the greatest botanical books ever printed.


Sherry Buckner is a Northwest artist making her home south of Olympia, Washington. Her work has spanned three decades. Her original pastel landscape paintings exist in many private and public art collections in Oregon and Washington. From 2008 she has produced limited edition silkscreen prints, which she exhibits primarily in Olympia and Seattle. Her prints have gained a worldwide audience through internet exposure. Additionally, Sherry has had a career teaching young artists. She has been on the Washington State Arts Commission Teaching Artist Roster for the last 9 years.

"I spend a lot of time outdoors and feel a strong relationship internally with nature. The beginning of most work is with a certain spark or connection with a place or a landscape. I feel that creating art is very healthy to my sense of self and to my sense of being. Many of my latest prints have been uniquely inspired being initiated a source of peace and oneness."

Learn more about Buckner and her work by visiting her website at

GEORGE CIARDI - Photographs

With striking color and pensive black and white, George Ciardi’s images invite the viewer to look more deeply at what we might consider the ordinary, and take note of things we might not have noticed ourselves. A self-taught photographer, Ciardi has been working in the medium for 27 years. He is currently focusing primarily on night photography. He tends to a traditional approach, using minimal equipment and working only with available light. A native of the Boston area with a blue-collar background, Ciardi has lived in numerous parts of the United States, has worked in a variety of factory settings, and, as he says, "consistently had a passionate love of the road."

Ciardi says of his work:

"Trips with no set destinations, rural and urban, provide me with inspiration as well as material. Interest and experience in filmmaking has also tempered my photography by changing the way I perceive the language of the frame. One of the compelling challenges of photography is translating three dimensions into two dimensions within a rectangle – and then taking the viewer through that form back into a three dimensional world."

Ciardi is currently working on two more projects:

“Elise Walking Away is a project that conveys the stamp a person leaves on a setting, however fleeting, and invites the viewer to become that person. The woman in the pictures is an icon, a person in a moment, experiencing the world slowly and more fully than is often common in our fast-paced world. Always dressed in similar clothes, Elise is an explorer, a representative, not any specific woman. By photographing her in environments that often seem incongruous to her attire, I am highlighting her character’s desire to implant herself through her mere presence in locations that are separated by their geography, architecture, and function. She might be in the desert or on a gritty city street—the setting becomes a part of her, and she a part of it. Elise is always dressed in black, her attire varies with weather and mood, and she is always shot from the side or rear, a figure connected with a place, any place. Is she passing judgment, or just passing through? Asking questions or unconcerned about answers? Never showing her face allows me to draw the viewer into the photograph: enter through Elise and see differently. Go into the picture with her or instead of her: what do you see?”

“The Common Man Project gets its name from the character that appears in all of these collages – a silhouette of man I photographed one wintery morning in Boston Common, following an ice storm. I call him the Common Man. He serves as a bit of an alter ego to myself; the observer, wandering through various scenarios and strange places, nearly unseen, adrift, but a part of the overall balance. The mood of these pieces is intended to vaguely evoke a part of the 20th century that has always fascinated me – World War II and the Cold War. They are combinations of my own photographs and drawings, as well as various pieces of the past found in old books, magazines, medical journals, encyclopedias and dictionaries.”

Learn more about Ciardi and his work by visiting his website at

WILLIAM CURTIS - 1746-1799
Curtis Botanical Magazine, 1787-present

William Curtis was born in Alton, Hampshire. He began his professional life as an apothecary, then turned his attention to botany and other natural history. At that time, botany was closely related to medicine, and Curtis held a position at the Kew Gardens. His first publication, the Flora Lodinensis, published in six volumes in 1777- 1798, was a pioneering work on urban nature, but was not financially successful.

In 1787, Curtis began publishing The Botanical Magazine, now known as Curtis’s Botanical Magazine. The magazine provided a way for general readers to learn botanical identification and information, illustrated by some of the finest botanical artists of the time. Sydenham Edwards did most of the illustration for the first volume. After an editorial dispute, Sydenham left to produce his own magazine, The Botanical Register. The very first plate was produced by James Sowerby. (Biographies for Edwards and Sowerby are also included on this page.) The first 30 volumes were illustrated with copper engravings that were hand-colored with watercolor; the coloring was done by up to 30 people.

When Curtis died, his friend John Sims became the next editor; he hired Matilda Smith as the next principal artist. Between 1878 and 1923 Smith drew over 2,300 plates for the magazine. She also became the first botanic artist at Kew Gardens. All of the magazines artists worked closely with botanists to produce the high quality illustrations, with exploded details, that make the magazine a valued resource for botanists, horticulturists, and gardeners.

The magazine is still published by Kew Gardens, making it one of the oldest continuously published botanical magazines in the world.

JOSE DICKHOFF - Woven Monotypes

Jose (Josie) Dickhoff was born in the Netherlands, where, as she says, her name "does not raise any eyebrows." For over 20 years, she has been living in St. Louis, Missouri, where she received her BFA from the School of Art at Washington University in St. Louis.

Dickhoff has been creating woven monotypes since 1992. Her works are part of several private and corporate collections, and on view in hospitals, banks, business buildings.

Dickhoff’s woven monotypes dance with layers of light and color. In her "Suite Soleil" pieces, the underlying structure of woven paper supports an explosion of color and texture, like the first days of summer that burst upon us, saturating our senses. Her "Romanesque" series was inspired by a visit to the National Museum of Art of Catalonia in Barcelona. In the worn layers of the murals and panels, she saw the passage of time, enjoying how these works gave impetus to modern interpretation, transcending generations.

Dickhoff says of her work: "Process and texture carry my work. Inspiration comes from textures that are captured in rubbings and combined into patterns through weaving. Subsequent layers re-invent the underlying patterns, creating depth and lusciousness of texture and color."

The Botanical Register

Sydenham Edwards became interested in botanical illustration at an early age; when he was 11 he copied plates from William Curtis’s Flora Londinensis for enjoyment. When Curtis was informed of this by a friend, Curtis had Edwards trained in both botany and botanical illustration. Edwards worked at a prodigious rate: between 1787 and 1815, he produced over 1,700 illustrations for Curtis’s Botanical Magazine. After a disagreement with John Sims, who was the second editor of the magazine, Edwards left the publication and created his own, the Botanical Register, in 1815.

Edwards also illustrated the Cynographica Britannica (1800), the New Botanic Garden (1805-7), and the New Flora Britannica (1812). He provided illustrations for encyclopedias such as Pantologia and Rees’s Cyclopaedia. He was a Fellow of the Linnean Society.

SAM HAMRICK - Linocuts

Sam Hamrick, a Seattle artist, creates linocut prints that show the medium at its finest: vibrant imagery with bold lines and simplicity of form. Each of Sam’s prints is a vignette of life that invites us to linger and explore its details. Many of his works focus on music, depicting musicians in a delightful variety of people, animals, and even skeletons.

To create a linocut, the artist starts by carving a design into a block of linoleum or similar material. Where the artist carves out a line or section of the block, the final print will show no color.

The linocut process produces prints with strong lines and forms. Hamrick’s work is outstanding for this – with the apparent simplicity of line and form, he creates a small world, tells a story, and often makes us smile. He prints both in black and white, which emphasizes the beauty of the lines, and in vibrant color, which requires creating a separate block for each color.

Hamrick’s work includes reduction prints, requiring masterful repeated carving of a single block. A reduction print is a complex form of a linocut print. The artist produces several print layers with only one block, and must carefully plan each layer ahead of time.

The artist first carves what will show as the first layer of the print, makes the prints, then carves the next layer, and prints from that. The process continues for each layer and each color for the final print. Keep in mind that, in linocut, what the artist cuts away on the block is what does not show in the print. It’s what is left that creates the print. So, if the artist carves away too much in any layer, then that part of the print will be lost.

The Naturalist's Library, 1833-1842

Sir William Jardine, a noted Scottish ichthyologist and ornithologist, produced The Naturalist’s Library, 40 volumes on birds, animals, fish, and insects. His intent was to make this type of book available and affordable to all interested in natural history, not just to the rich who could afford lavish large color plate books. Begun in 1833, the series became his life work.

Jardine gathered some of the finest naturalists of his day, including Edward Lear, Prideaux John Selby, and William Swainson., to work on the series. Several plates were engraved after naturalist masters such as John James Audubon, John Gould, and Maria Sybilla Merian. Jardine chose William H. Lizars as the engraver. The work is still one of the finest and most thorough studies of natural history. (See further information on Lizars in the bio below on this page.)

Jardine also studied botany and geology, and was a member of the Royal Society and the Royal Society of Edinburgh.

Leaders and Battle Scenes of the Civil War

The images used in Leslie’s Illustrated Weekly newspaper (and in other newspapers of the time such as Harper’s Weekly) were created from wood engravings carved specifically for this purpose. Thousands of wood engravings were created at the time for this type of journalism, because other technology to print photos in the quantities needed for news journals did not exist at the time.

But the wooden blocks dried and were cracked by the press, and unusable for further printing. When Mrs. Frank Leslie issued a collection of old engravings from the Illustrated Weekly in 1896, the photogravure process had been developed, and it was the process used in the Leaders and Battle Scenes of the Civil War.

RICHARD LEWIS - Photography

Richard Lewis was born in Houston, Texas, in 1956, and is currently living in Rockport, Washington. He has been working in photography and painting since 1986, and has taught at Cornish College of the Arts, the Photographic Center Northwest, and Seattle University. He also has been a Visiting Artist for the University of Washington Freshman Art Symposium, has team-taught “Writing and Photography” at Richard Hugo House, and a guest lecturer at the Seattle Art Museum.

Lewis has described his photography as an “ongoing amble through the world with a camera.” His work picks out details that make us look again, and look more deeply at what we are seeing. His photo overlaps select and blend rich color and detail, and draw the viewer in to see a story, a new view of the familiar, a different perspective.

We’ve previously had Lewis’s work in two shows, and are glad to carry his newer work now as a gallery artist.


William Home Lizars was an eminent Scottish engraver and painter. He was trained at the Trustee’s Academy of Edinburgh, and quickly acquired an excellent reputation for the quality of his work in many fields. In 1820, he began to focus almost exclusively on natural history, and engravings in this field are still considered some of the finest of the nineteenth century.

While Lizars is known for his work with John James Audubon, he is best known for his work with William Jardine as the engraver for the 40-volume The Naturalist’s Library. Lizars used steel plates for the Library, allowing him to create delicately engraved plates with exceptionally fine and accurate detail. Lizars worked with Jardine on the Library throughout its publication, from 1833 to 1842.

ERNEST LOTHAR - Drawings and Paintings

Ernest Lothar’s paintings, drawings, illustrations, and cartoons reflect the artist’s inventive spirit, wit, and unique use of line, tone, and color. His style developed in Vienna and shows influences from a life that included fleeing from Nazis in Austria, working as an illustrator in Italy and Switzerland, and teaching art in the Dominican Republic. His unique style is a wonderful melding of Art Deco, Expressionism, pre-Columbian, and Asian influences.

Born in Vienna in 1906 as Ernest Lothar Deutsch, Ernest Lothar began drawing at an early age and completed this formal training at the Vienna Academy of Arts & Crafts, 1922-1925. While making his living working in a factory in the late twenties, he began working as a freelance artist. He was soon doing art work full time, and became an illustrator for publishing houses in Austria, Poland, Italy and Switzerland.

As a freelance artist in Vienna, from 1926-1938, he also drew political cartoons for publications in Poland. In 1938, he fled from Nazi Austria to Italy, where he worked as a fashion illustrator until he had to move again, to Switzerland. There he worked as a book illustrator, painted in the Zurich studio of Hans Aeschbacher, and taught art to refugees in the work camps. When the war began, he was put to work in the Swiss military breaking stone for road building, or painting officers’ portraits when he was too ill for hard labor.

Lothar met his future wife, Marianne Kater, in Zurich. In 1940 he was granted an exit visa to the Dominican Republic as a tobacco farm laborer in a resettlement camp, and Marianne decided to join him. Under the protection of Swiss authorities, they traveled through Europe to New York and on to Ciudad Trujillo, the capital of the Dominican Republic. There they married and worked for a time as farm laborers to fulfill the exit visa obligations.

Lothar resumed painting and his talent was recognized by an appointment as Professor of Painting at the National Schools of Fine Art in Ciudad Trujillo until 1947. While there, he became part of a group of expatriate artists who called themselves “The Exiles.” His paintings and drawings of people and life in the Dominican Republic gained US recognition. With praise in the media and help from the Pan American Union, he came to live in the US in 1947. He had several shows in New York, Washington DC, and Los Angeles, exhibiting with artists such as Jean Miro, Adolph Gottlieb, Robert Motherwell, William Bazoites, Edward Hopper, Saul Steinberg and Andrew Wyeth. He taught art at the Hampton Institute for Fine Art until he retired in 1950.

In 1955, after a divorce, he married Helen Pepper, and moved to Arlington VA in 1956. He had developed multiple sclerosis and soon could no longer draw or paint. He died in 1961 at the age of 55.

In 1950, Leo Katz, then Art Department Chairman at Hampton Institute and later director of Atelier 17 in New York City, was greatly impressed with Lothar’s melding of the European modern “isms,” expressionism and surrealism, with the great achievements of pre-Columbian art: “…the inventive spirit and twentieth century consciousness are part of the inspirations in the paintings of Lothar, an almost rhythmically musical kind of organization of lines, tones, and colors in space.”

The Ladies' Flower Garden, 1807-1858

When Jane Loudon was orphaned at 17, she wrote a novel set in the 22nd century, “The Mummy,” under a male pen name. She met her husband John Loudon when he was intrigued by the book and asked to meet the author. John was an important 19th century horticultural writer and well-known gardener; Jane worked with him on his literary projects and began gardening with him. As her gardening knowledge and botanical illustration work grew, she become a horticultural authority herself. She was able to support herself with her work when John died early in their marriage.

Between 1807 and 1858, Jane published The Ladies’ Flower Garden, with an innovation in botanical illustration. Her illustrations grouped flowers of various kinds and species, like a gardener gathering a bouquet. She stopped writing novels, and published well-received garden books. Her Instructions in Gardening for Ladies sold 20,000 copies, an unusually large number for that time.


Stephen McMillan is a master of the aquatint technique. Each plate is hand drawn; there are no photographic processes involved. To achieve the level of delicate detail, he uses very fine brushes in the painting out process and etches the plate many times to get a full range of values. When he creates a multi-colored print, he creates a separate plate for each color.

McMillan was born in Berkeley, California, in 1949. He found his first inspiration for landscape in the sweeping view of San Francisco Bay he could see from the family home. Throughout his life, he has been inspired by the natural world, frequently being outdoors, moving in and through the landscape. The sense of renewal he finds there is what he shares in his work.

On his website, McMillan has details about his work, and excellent information about the aquatint process. Learn more about him and his work by visiting his website at

JIM MEYER - Woodcuts

Master woodcut artist Jim Meyer has been creating prints for the past 15 years. He started with commercial art, producing illustrations for advertising, design, and publishing purposes, and then moved into gallery work. He likes woodblock because, he says, "Woodblock prints are straight-forward, low-tech, and labor-intensive; they communicate in a direct, honest, and strong way."

Meyer creates both multi-block prints, carving a different block for each color, and reduction prints, repeatedly printing, cutting away, and overprinting using the same block. From the design process to the finished print, it takes Meyer about two weeks to produce a complete edition.

Meyer has shown his work in his home state of Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Washington state. He says of his work: "My aim is to make art that reflects the mystery and beauty of creation."

Learn more about Meyer and his work by visiting his website at

JOHN MOILANEN - Paintings and Etchings

Reviews of Moilanen’s work:
Matthew Kangas, The Seattle Times: "His dam paintings (a series of large-scale oils documenting the dams on the Columbia and Snake Rivers) not only document endangered structures, they also recall the Federal Art Projects of the 1930’s and the American Precisionist Painters of the same era. These are not illustrations, however, but are fully resolved aesthetic constructions with all the hallmarks of fine painting: color, line, composition and brushwork."

The Washington State History Museum: "Moilanen’s dynamic, brilliantly colored works show the power of the sea and of those who make their living on it. His paintings reflect on the local maritime history of our region."

John Moilanen, one of the finest Northwest artists, was born in Seattle in 1948. He has exhibited extensively for over 30 years, sharing his unique perspective on the Pacific Northwest maritime history, in the public collections of the Washington State Historical Society, the Washington State Arts Commission, the Seattle Arts Commission, Chelan and Grant Counties Utility Districts collections, Puget Sound Energy corporate collection, and Fisher Properties corporate collection. Moilanen also does work on commission, for individuals, businesses, or organizations.

Moilanen’s paintings have been exhibited at the Poriginal Gallery in Finland, the Ira Pinto Gallery in Annapolis, Maryland, the Whatcom County Museum of History and Art, the Maryhill Museum of Art, the Nordic Heritage Museum, and the Soap Lake Art Museum. He has been associated with Fine Impressions Gallery since 1995.

The Olympic Mountains, Puget Sound, and a great variety of ships and boats are recurring themes in Moilanen’s oils, sumi paintings, drawings, and etchings. His works show elements of realism, impressionism, and cubist influences. His inspired use of color makes the mountains, water, and ships glimmer with light.

John says of his work: "My paintings are designed to recast our perception of the present and the past of the Pacific Northwest. They are a true depiction of the static and dynamic forces which are a part of and interact with our environment, a true local tone which reflects our unique local landscape character. These are careful and calculated paintings, each with its own luminosity, continually challenging the viewer as new rhythms are discovered in the fleeting effects of light and color in nature."

We are pleased that Moilanen has recovered from his hand injuries and once again brings the magic of the Northwest landscape to life on canvas and paper.


The mezzotint artist arduously creates a matrix of perfect darkness. From this blackest shade of night, he works reductively to release form through light. His sleight of hand brings forth images from a blackness so saturated and so rich that it seems to hold the potential for all possible content. Chris Nowicki, an American artist who now lives in Poland and is a professor at the prestigious Academy of Fine Art in Wroclaw, has found an enduring passion for this demanding process. He has worked almost exclusively in the medium for over thirty years and has garnered international acclaim. His work has been shown in one-man shows in many countries, including South Korea, Brazil, Poland, Sweden, Germany, and the US.

Drawing from mythical lore and cultural icons from his travels through the US and Eastern Europe, Nowicki creates allegories which focus on the properties and meaning of time and personal history. His imagery often reflects the cultures where he has worked and includes diverse subjects ranging from locomotives, Polish streetcars, Alaskan waters, the raven, Pandora’s box, and a wealth of everyday objects. Nowicki entreats us to see that all things carry life energy if we’d only awaken our senses to understand it.

One vein of Nowicki’s work explores the genre of still life by imbuing everyday objects with animistic energy. Here, the mundane is transformed into a scene rife with the potential for magic and movement. A top spins to some hidden law of physics in a room bearing no human prescience. A shadowy crow pulls on the strings of a marionette. A fleet of toast playfully performs acrobatic feats in the air. Like a photographer, Nowicki has stilled one secretive moment in a continuum of time.

Nowicki’s most recent works, in his "Entropy" series, explore the concept of energy in a different way, portraying the effects of entropy as decay of large and powerful man-made machines. Locomotives, steam drills, and bulldozers no longer have their power; like all objects, they too are subject to gradual decay – inviting the viewer to ponder the end result of man-made power.

Nowicki studied in Ohio at the Toledo Museum of Art School of Design, where he learned all of the printmaking techniques from Professor Peter Elloian and made his first mezzotint. He received his BFA degree in 1973 from The University of Toledo, and his Masters Degree in Etching in 1977 at the University of Washington.

In 1990 Nowicki made his first trip to Poland, drawn by the fine printmaking there. He returned in 1991 to make Poland his home, and currently lives in the city of Wroclaw with his wife and son. Every summer since 1993, he has traveled to Haines, Alaska, to print Native American work, and has made over 100 editions at Alaska Indian Arts.

Nowicki says of his work: "I have taught all the techniques – litho, woodcut, linocut, collograph, etching, mezzotint, and serigraph – at one time or another. This allowed me quite a background of expertise to choose from when I decided to focus on mezzotint. It is really my favorite technique. It is pregnant with challenges and allows me complete freedom with my imagery."

ANNE PRATT - 1806-1893
The Flowering Plants, Grasses, Sedges and Ferns of Great Britain 1855-1866

Anne Pratt, born in Stroud, Kent, England, was one of the best-known botanical artists of the Victorian Age. She took to drawing as a child in poor health. Introduced to botany by Dr. Dods, a family friend, she decided to develop a career as an illustrator. She wrote 20 books which she illustrated with chromolithographs. Her greatest work was the 5-volume The Flowering Plants, Grasses, Sedges, and Ferns of Great Britain published from 1855-1866.

JEANNE REGAN - Serigraphs

Jeanne Regan’s multi-layered and multi-hued images draw the viewer in, inviting our eyes to move through the each element in the piece in a kind of dance.

Regan received a BFA in Painting from the Cleveland Institute of Art in 1975, and obtained teaching certification in Art Education K-12 from Cleveland State University in 1996. That same year, she was awarded an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Ohio Arts Council.

Regan has worked as a graphic artist in Bellevue, Washington and in Cleveland, Ohio. She has taught art classes and given workshops for children and adults in settings such as The Cleveland Institute of Art, Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland Public Schools, and with the Committee for Public Art. She currently teaches Middle School Art at Laurel School in Shaker Heights, Ohio.

Regan was the illustrator of Haiku Yearbook by Francis J. Smith, S.J., published in 1991 by Cobham and Hatherton Press.

Her prints have been shown in juried exhibitions and print invitationals at The Cleveland Museum of Art and the Mansfield Art Center. Some public collections that include her work are: Johnson & Johnson, Inc. of New Jersey, Kaiser Permanente Cleveland, The Cleveland Art Association, University Hospitals of Cleveland, and Cleveland’s University Print Club.

Regan says of her recent work: "Weather is often a metaphor for emotion." She uses images of everyday domestic and natural worlds, combined with disparate decorative elements to suggest a narrative.


April Richardson produces richly textured and layered monotypes full of light and color. She has created a process that draws the viewer into her work, and invites us to see things in new ways. Her work is a celebration of the beauty and wonder of natural forms, especially flowers.

Richardson has shown extensively in Washington, Oregon, and other western states and Canada over the past fifteen years. Her works are part of many corporate collections, including Kaiser Permanente; University of Washington Medical Center; Oregon University Health Sciences, Portland, OR; the Watertown Hotel, Seattle, WA; Westport Boat Company, Vancouver, BC. She frequently teaches and gives demonstrations. Richardson says of her work:

"Birth and death and everything in between. Continuity, repetition, adaptation to circumstance. Memory. What happens when light is limited or space is restricted, or there’s too much of a good thing. What was here yesterday. What will be here tomorrow. These thoughts intrigue me, and the observation of nature provides a physical way ponder them. "I combine drawing, painting, collage and printmaking to create large mixed media monotypes. I apply thin layers of ink and paper, scrape or tear it away, and then rebuild layer after layer to achieve complex depth and texture. Sometimes I press leaves or flowers directly into the surface. Maps, photographs, souvenirs and dreams may be completely buried, then revealed only by a hint of shadow or figure. I love the physical aspect of printmaking: mixing colors, placing the plate on the press, smoothing the blankets, turning the wheel, and peeling back the paper to reveal a new design."

To see more about Richardson and her work, visit her website at

NATALIE ST. MARTIN - prints, drawings, and watercolors

Natalie St Martin teaches painting and color theory at Seattle Pacific University. She earned her Master’s in Interdisciplinary Art from Goddard College and her BA in Creative Writing from the University of Washington.

St. Martin’s work shows rich color and finely detailed line. She says of her work: “Everything I make is either a portrait or a scene from a story. I love creating portraits of people, and yet even my drawings of trees and paintings of fruit are like portraits.” Look at her work on our website and you’ll see exactly what she means – you sense that you are getting to know the person, or the peach, or the tree, closely, in intimate detail.

St. Martin layers imagery “to tell personal, traditional, and fantastical stories, and to wrestle with theological questions.” She enjoys fine papers and fabrics, water-based media, and the drawn line.

Learn more about St. Martin at her blog,


Laurent Schkolnyk was born in Paris in 1953. He now lives in Nantes, where he practices medicine in addition to working in the arts. He attended both art and medical school in Paris, devoting himself as much as possible to both fields. He discovered the mezzotint process through reading about it in an arts magazine. He began his work in mezzotint on his own, using the printing press available at his school.

He began showing in 1978. In 1982, the French Bibliotheque Nationale purchased several of this works for their permanent print collection. His work has been shown in France, Belgium, Italy, Hungary, Thailand, and the United States. He has his own gallery in Nantes, where he shows both his own work and that of other artists.

Schkolnyk works in black and white, and with three-plate color prints to create his fanciful still-life prints. His works capture both the spontaneous moment and a world which hangs outside of time. Schkolnyk explains that his prints are directly related to his feelings. He also feels very close to music, particularly jazz and classical music. When he works on a subject, he often tries to find a piece of music that corresponds to what he feels, and works with that music as he creates.

To create a color mezzotint, Schkolnyk prepares plates for each color needed. On each plate, you can see the burnishing and scraping that will produce the areas of single or multiple colors. In the final printing, you can see how the colors combine to create the finished image.


Claude Bouret, curator of prints at the National Library of Paris, described Schkolnyk’s work this way:

"The mezzotint engraver hunts for shadows. He dives deeply in the darkness to bring out gleaming and thrilling visions. With his rocker, Laurent Schkolynk obstinately carves the copper for hours and hours, creating with his own hands this velvet dark, this original night which contains all the potential hues.

"Once the theme is chosen and the subject outlined in a few strokes, the adventure begins of hues patiently drawn out from his pure primary dark… there is always the same mysterious and spontaneous approach: first the soft caress of the burnisher picking essential shadows out of the mist, then the scraper enhancing the motif through vivid glimmers. The instinct of the painter, the obstinacy of the engraver."

You can see more information about Schkolnyk and his work on his website at

LOUISE SMITH - Botanical Art

Louise Smith comes to botanical art with a life-long love of plants nurtured during childhood botanizing forays in the high Sierras. She believes that art functions as a non-verbal language that translates something of the artist's interior world and it is this that allows communication across culture, subject matter, and through time.

Smith received a B.A. in Landscape Architecture from the University of California at Berkeley. She practiced in that field for ten years, before studying scientific illustration at California College of Arts and Crafts, and with Phyllis Wood at the University of Washington.

Clients include Kew Magazine, Simon and Schuster, Horticulture Magazine, Taunton Press, Magazine Group of Meredith Corporation, the U.S. Forest Service, the Washington Native Plant Society and Rodale Press.

She is represented in the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation collection and other institutional, corporate, and private collections. She has been invited to contribute to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden's Florilegium Society as well as the Filoli Florilegium.

She is the founding President of the Northwest Botanical Artists, a chapter of the American Society of Botanical Artists. You can see more information about Smith and her work on her website at

JAMES SOWERBY - 1757-1822
Sowerby's Botany, 1790-1814

James Sowerby, a naturalist and illustrator, studied at the Royal Academy. His first publication venture was illustrating William Curtis’s Flora Londinensis. Early volumes of Curtis’s Botanical Magazine include a number of Sowerby’s works.

Sowerby worked on huge projects. Among them was Sowerby’s Botany, a 36-volume work begun in 1790 and published over the next 24 years. It contained 2592 hand-colored illustrations. Sowerby’s work was distinguished by careful attention to descriptions, detailed drawings from specimens, and research. He wanted to reach an audience that was curious about gardening and the natural world, with attractive scientific illustration and affordable works. His work also became highly valued by researchers.

Sowerby also developed his own theory of color, and did work in fossils and in mineralogy.

MARTIN STABLER - Photographs

Stabler speaks of his work as a way of seeing, and indeed, his work draws us in to look more closely at seemingly ordinary things. With mastery of both color and black-and-white photography, Stabler produces beautiful images that are both subtle and strong.

Stabler says of his work: "The tag line on my web site pretty much sums it up: ’But there was in the world, so much to see that I felt one couldn't afford to be slack about.’ (From Jewel in the Crown, by Paul Scott) I've been taking pictures and writing since the early sixties--when I started with a $25 Kodak Retinette and a diary. My dad gave me a love of words, and my mom gave me an appreciation of beauty and light.

"Besides helping me to see, photography is a form of communication for me. Each day I e-mail a photograph to about 175 people in this country and abroad. This ‘Daily Sightings’ e-mail is a way for me to communicate, to stay in touch, to nudge me to keep taking pictures--although I rarely need nudging--and to share the beauty and mystery of the world.

"I hope you enjoy looking at my work."

You can see more of Stabler’s work and explore his way of seeing on his website at

DIANE STEEN - Watercolors

Diane Steen was born in Montana and grew up in Colorado. She attended the University of Colorado and received a degree with a double major in Fine Art and French. After several years traveling the world, working as a French teacher, she returned to the U.S. and went back to school to do a master’s degree. Upon completion at the University of Washington she wrote and edited environmental impact statements as well as comprehensive plans and stormwater management plans, and worked as an environmental planner in King County, Washington. Only recently did she begin doing watercolors.

By a quirk of fate in about 2004 she bought a little Windsor and Newton box set of paints. Fortunately,she says, it came with a foldout brochure on how to start: “First put down your lightest colors…..” Now she goes whenever she can to Seattle parks – or makes a trips north to the Skagit or Stillaguamish river valleys – or goes out to the Olympic Peninsula with a backpack of supplies and her bike.

Steen says about her process:
“I always hope for clouds and even the drama of a good storm. I usually do one or two pictures in the field, then end up writing notes all over them so that when I get back home I can do a better job. I also take a few photographs to help me remember.”

You can see more about Steen on her website at

JAY STEENSMA - 1941-1994

Jay Steensma was born in Moscow, Idaho, in 1941. In 1959, he moved to Seattle, to attend the University of Washington School of Art. He studied with professors such as Spencer Mosely and George Tsutakawa. While still a student, he won a prize at the Northwest Printmakers Annual and the Pacific Northwest Arts and Crafts Fair. After graduation he studied briefly with Morris Graves. He also worked briefly as a collections intern at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, then returned to Seattle in 1965 to teach at Cornish College of the Arts.

Steensma was plagued with manic-depressive illness for much of his adult life, but kept a frenetic work schedule, producing thousands of works with a variety of materials, often doing homage pieces inspired by the imagery of major Northwest artists (Anderson, Graves, Tobey, Callahan).

He was unable to exhibit between his first show at Francine Seders in 1976 and his Jackson Street show in 1985, but after that his reputation spread quickly. He participated in museum shows at the Seattle Art Museum, Whatcom Museum of History and Art, and the Cheny Cowles Memorial Museum. He also exhibited in galleries in Seattle, Chicago, San Diego, and Portland, Oregon. The Henry Art Gallery at the University of Washington held a memorial exhibition in 1995. Back


Helen Stewart is an artist, teacher, and storyteller, and you can see it all in her work. Enter her world through any of her images, and you enter a world that creates delight and invites contemplation of beautiful detail.

Raised in Berkeley, California, Stewart began studying art at a young age. In 1965, she married and moved to a sheep farm in northern British Columbia, Canada. The mother of five children, she now lives happily in Victoria.

A dedicated printmaker, Stewart uses drypoint, etching, aquatint, and colored pencil, producing multi-layered prints that are rich in line and color. Many of her images are also available in card form.

She also writes and illustrates children’s books, and has written an adult storybook based on the sheep farm where she lived. See more of Stewart’s work on her website at

The Temple of Flora 1797-1810

Thornton was a physician who quit practicing when he received a large inheritance. He used the money to pursue his passion of botany. This large folio series was to have seventy plates illustrating Linnaeus’ discoveries about the reproductive system of plants. It was an ambitious project that caused him financial ruin. There were only thirty-two plates completed, but it became one of the most famous of flower books. The images were created using aquatint, mezzotint, and engraving. They are unusual in that each flower is presented in a fantastic setting or landscape as proscribed by Thornton.

LOUIS VAN HOUTTE - 1810-1876
Flores des Serres et des Jardins de l’Europe, Ghent, Belgium, 1845-1883

Van Houtte was a Belgian Horticulturist associated with the Jardin Botanique de Brussels from 1836-1839. After an expedition to Brazil, he moved to Ghent, Belgium, where he founded the Ecole d’Horticulture and the journal Flore des serres et des Jardins de l’Europe with Charles Lemaire. Lemaire was a renowned artist who worked for Redoute in France.

Van Houtte owned Establishment Van Houtte, the most esteemed nursery on the continent in the mid 19th Century. He commissioned numerous teams of plant explorers to gather plants in Central and South America for propagation in this nursery, which covered 14 hectares and 50 greenhouses.

Phytanthoza Iconographica 1737-1745

Weinmann was an influential pharmacist and botanist who produced one of the most comprehensive sets of botanical images. His background as an apothecary is evident in the composition of the prints, which are both scientific and beautiful. He used mezzotint to achieve the subtle variations in flowers and leaves. In the Great Flower Book, Satchervall Sitwell refers to this set as a "pioneering work of botanical prints engraved to be inked in color."