Based in Seattle, Washington, but Alaska-raised, I create drawings and paintings of some of our rarest and most elusive flora and fauna found in the Pacific Northwest.
My work is strongly connected to my earliest art education, which took place in a Native village called Brevig Mission in Northwest Alaska. There I was educated by Inupiaq carvers, painters and drawers who told me the stories behind every element of our natural world - and their influence on the Inupiaq culture - which would find their way into the artistic renderings. Close proximity to creatures and nature provided me with background knowledge in the natural sciences, knowing Native artists provided an example on storytelling through visual art, which I have followed over the years.
As a natural science artist and illustrator, I strive to bring elements of the wilderness into the viewer's every day. Whether the viewer finds a moment's escape from the commotion of city life in the flora and fauna depicted, or if the art elicits curiosity in the indigenous species found within the Pacific Northwest.
After nearly a decade as an academic, I decided to use my self-taught talents to change my career path. In 2016, I graduated from the Natural Science Illustration program at the University of Washington and have since started showing my art around the Pacific Northwest. I've also had the opportunity to take part in community beautification projects, such as nature- and wildlife-themed murals in the Seattle-area.
Gage Academy of Art acknowledges the Coast Salish Peoples as the original inhabitants of this area and connecting waterways. We understand the land that Gage occupies is unceded territory and that today many Indigenous peoples live here and without their stewardship, we would not have access to this space. We honor the Coast Salish Peoples’ sovereignty, rights to self-determination, culture and ways of life. Since time immemorial, Indigenous peoples have called this territory their sacred land. We commit to learning, educating others and repairing the legacy of historically harmful relationships between non-Native and Native peoples in King County. In doing so, we will be honest, and recognize the experiences of Native peoples to include genocide, forced relocation, forced assimilation, and land theft. We also acknowledge Native peoples are survivors, present in today’s world, thriving. We encourage everyone here today to ask themselves: what can I do to support Indigenous communities?
In an effort to be transparent, Gage is contemplating this call to action and re-working how to best support Indigenous communities.