Story & Photos – Joseph Boyle
On Tuesday, August 6, 2013 at 6:00 p.m. I attended another of Barista Edra Zook’s Art Nights at the Starbucks Community Art Wall.
Edra’s guest artist was Ms. Gail Janes. You can view some of her art pieces on the Starbucks Community Art Wall at the Towne Center Starbucks located at 6040 Main St SW, Lakewood, Washington 98499.
After viewing Gail’s art, I got a chance to visit with her.
When Gail was 4 years old, she discovered her love of art. Gail dreamed of becoming a successful and famous artist. Of course her first art featured crayon work.
During first grade her two favorite words were color and draw.
While attending sixth grade, she took private art lessons from a wonderful 83 year old woman named Maud Sutton. Ms. Sutton not only taught art, but also covered the topics of literature and history. Ms. Sutton connected the three topics, art, literature and history. For Gail, Ms. Sutton was a wonderful mentor. Gail’s focus with Ms. Sutton was oil painting.
Ms. Sutton, who had taught college level art classes at Spokane University, was well qualified to teach Gail what she wanted to learn.
As Gail moved forward in her quest to become a successful and famous artist, she attended Whitworth University ultimately becoming an art teacher for Tacoma Public Schools, a career position she held for 9 years.
Tacoma Art Museum enticed her to join museum staff as Head of Education. She served the museum for about 12 years.
Gail’s next post was teaching art to kids and adults at the Metropolitan Park District and the University Place Park District.
Gail told me she thoroughly enjoys teaching, but around 1990 decided that she wanted to concentrate on her own studio work. She set up her art studio by taking over a room in her home.
Gail can be likened to an art telecommuter. The great thing about working on art at home is you can work on a piece and then walk away to give it a rest. Gail can then return later and not even work on the piece, but rather stare at the piece in progress. Gail told me she might stare at a piece for 15 to 20 minutes, thinking, thinking, thinking. To her, 50% of the art creation process is mental. Thinking is a key component. Using her paint brush is actually a small fraction of the art creation process.
Originally her main thrust involved acrylics. She then moved to collaging, which is technically layering paper on paper. Gail upped the anti by morphing collaging into assemblage, which is layering objects such as butterfly wings, rusty nails, porcupine quills onto her paper based art foundation.
All of that led to her idea of 3-dimensional art.
Next comes mixed media, which might include color pencil, ink and oil pastels.
Gail gave us an art demonstration at Starbucks. A crowd formed around her to watch Gail create art before our very eyes.
Gail belongs to an art club called Pacific Gallery Artists (PGA) which was founded in 1946. Check out PGA’s website www.pacificgalleryartists.org. You will be able to see previews of various artists work, including Gail’s.
Gail started out with a dream to become a successful and famous artist. While she has not become a famous artist, she has become a successful artist. It is my hope that my article will get her a little closer to the famous part. I should remind you that the best time to purchase art from a famous artists is before the artist becomes famous.
I will include some photos of her work in this article. Gail’s prices for each piece range between $40 – $1,000 with most in the $300 / $350 range.
Gail can be reached at 253-564-1150 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can view Gail’s art at Starbucks through the entire month of August.