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The art students of Central Michigan University displayed their talent at the gallery by the UC last month. It was quite the event when I arrived that Saturday afternoon for the reception. The main room and the sideshow were packed with people, plus when you crossed the hallway connecting the two rooms, you had to walk closely along the wall to leave space for people to pass (bit inconvenient since one of the snack bars stood there, too). I saw both students and folks of old and very young age. It was thrilling having little boys and girls observing the paintings and the sculptures, because I think it’s so important for them to see life beyond cartoon network and video games and plastic toys.


“American Psycho” by Taylor Wattles


“The Factory” by Kate Mielens


“Boboli Gardens” by Kate Mielens

I’m curious to know whether the artist looked at a photograph or drew from real life or mustered the image by pure imagination. The details are both amusingly sloppy and elegant.


painting by Katy McAllister (I shamefully didn’t write down the title for this one; I think it was along the lines: “The Last Shrine of the Fallen Empire.”)

This is a painting by my friend Katy, which I really love. As someone who knows her good taste for romance and who has read some of her writing, it comes as no surprise that she created something resembling a world that has long passed.

I particularly like the fog hovering throughout the landscape and how beautiful the water looks. I know from experience that drawing or painting water is on of the hardest things to recreate.


“Dusk” by Larissa Parker and Chrissy Waggoner

Honestly want to find the artist and buy this deer painting from them (to hang in the living room of my future apartment). It’s amazing!


“Natasha” by Janna VanderBand


In addition to my personal favorite paintings, I took pictures of some 3-dimensional art work.

Nowadays, it feels as though older photographs are art within themselves. These are of course creations of this modern world, but the message stands, I believe.


“Mitzi” by Nikolai Westgare


“Mitzi” by Nikolai Westgare (part 2)

I spent a good whole minute staring at this amusing Viking book, or whatever I should call it. I want to touch the pages really badly, but there was no sign granting me permission to touch or move the art so there I remained still, scared that the gallery police would cuff me and drag me outside if I caved. Then another admirer of the weird stuff snapped some pictures and stood there with me for a moment, staring as well. We made a pact to touch the pages together, which we did, and we laughed and we scurried from the crime scene.


“Trudge” by Kathryn Hoffman


“Natasha” by Janna VanderBand

Not sure what to say about this one other than that it’s frightening and intriguing.

Comment from artist VanderBand: The painting is a social action piece meant to draw attention to human trafficking and the sex trade.

I hope you enjoyed this slideshow. However, nothing beats the real experience. I advise you taking the initiative and visiting a gallery or museum, because the atmosphere, no matter which kind of art, does such a great job in removing a person from daily ordinance of work and schedules and shores.