Artist in Residence

Summit Arts Center

Summit Arts Center’s creativity stems from a desire to preserve history in Government Camp

written by Catie Joyce-Bulay photography by Daniel Stark Most people head to Mount Hood for the epic skiing and hiking, but there’s also a vibrant art community keeping traditions of craftsmanship alive. The story of Summit Arts Center, formerly known as Cascadia Center for Arts and Crafts, began in the 1930s when the cabins housing its studios were first built for U.S. Forest Service personnel. In 1936, construction began on nearby Timberline Lodge as a Works Progress Administration project, providing employment during the Great Depression. As the lodge flourished as a popular tourist destination and historic landmark, the original Forest Service cabins fell into disrepair. Fast forward more than sixty years—the cabins were slated for demolition for lack of funds to repair them. Enter Betsy Valian, a nearby Government Camp resident and glass artist who couldn’t bear to see such an important part of the region’s history disappear. It was…

Frank Makes features fun woodworking creations

written by Juliet Grable In one of Frank Makes’ most popular YouTube videos, a lawn chair seemingly assembles itself. Large slabs of Sequoia march across the lawn and file into the shop. A skill saw rips a board, sans operator. Wood chips pile up on the floor next to the drill press. Near the end, the pieces of the chair leap into position, and the wood clamps, having done their job, clamber down from the newly assembled chair and scamper across the floor. Both the film and the chair are the creations of Frank Howarth, a soft-spoken mad genius who lives in southwest Portland with his wife, Bonnie, and kids Claire and Calvin. His popular YouTube channel, Frank Makes, has nearly 500,000 subscribers. Howarth’s films document woodworking projects ranging from the practical to the whimsical. Some are items from the honey-do list—bookcases, kitchen drawer organizers— others, such as a turned…

Lisa Congdon is a Master at Creating Colorful Art

Lisa Congdon creates colorful, inclusive art written by Sheila G. Miller Good things come to those who wait. We had to wait until Portland fine artist Lisa Congdon was in her early 30s to even pick up a paintbrush. But today, her work is all over the place. If it’s melancholy you seek, keep moving— Congdon’s colorful work is full of hand-lettered statements like “You be you. I’ll be me” and “Eyes forward. Heart open.” There’s a bit of whimsy, a slightly youthful vibe and a ton of color. Her clients are diverse, from Martha Stewart Living to Harvard University, and her Etsy shop is thriving Congdon, 50, started out painting as a hobby. After working in education for twenty years and as a project manager for a nonprofit, she decided at age 40 to try to be a full-time, working artist. She’d never attended art school and was completely…

Estacada’s Artists Paint the Town

Art Climbs the Walls Estacada’s artists paint the town red…and yellow and purple and… written and photographed by Catie Joyce-Bulay You may not notice Estacada’s artists at first glance, in this a sleepy little pass-through town to get to recreation destinations in bordering Mount Hood National Forest. If you stop to stock up in the grocery store, you can’t help but notice a Native American tribe fishing Celilo Falls under the “Fresh Produce” sign. Then look across the street and huge mushrooms rise from the forest floor among apartment doors and a giant forager. On the wall next door, Chinese-Americans harvest ginseng, an important pre-World War I crop for the region. These are the murals of the Artback Artists Cooperative. Twenty-one in all, they are ubiquitous downtown and in surrounding parks, calling visitors to take notice of the rural town of 3,000’s surprisingly vibrant arts scene. I recently spent a…

Roger Nichols Is Still Making Iconic Music

Local Bend resident Roger Nichols is still making iconic music written by Holly Hutchins | photography by Joe Kline It started as a Crocker Bank TV commercial. It evolved into one of popular music’s most iconic songs, eventually voted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. “We’ve Only Just Begun,” made famous by Richard and Karen Carpenter in 1970, owes its origin to legendary songwriter and longtime Bend resident Roger Nichols. To date, this classic has played on the air more than 4 million times, earning the distinction of being one of the top fifty songs of the twentieth century. Over the years, Nichols’ music, co-written with Paul Williams, Tony Asher, Bill Lane and other notable lyricists, has been recorded by hundreds of artists worldwide, including Barbra Streisand, Three Dog Night, Barry Manilow, Paul Anka, Johnny Mathis and on and on. Nichols also composed commercial spots for a client list…

Portland Pin Ups Mike Long

Mike Long Creates Portland Pin-Ups

Mike Long is the owner of Portland Pin-Ups—the only studio in the Northwest specializing in classic 1950s-style pin-up shoots.

Allison Brown with Oregon Duck Bronze Sculpture

Alison Brown

As a college student at the University of Oregon, Alison Brown searched for a career that would be fulfilling. She knew she loved art, but didn’t think she could make a living sculpting. Then she discovered her calling was all over campus—in the form of Puddles the Duck, the university’s mascot.