In the Studio with Ria Harboe
This Saturday we introduce you to artist Ria Harboe!
Ria lives on Lummi Island, Washington, and maintains a studio there as well as one in Bellingham, where she participates in Studio Tours and Gallery Walks.
How did you start making art?
I have been making art since childhood. I grew up in a rural community in the mountains above Palm Springs, CA where we had to entertain ourselves as kids. My mom encouraged me early on, I won ribbons for my art as a child, and my high school teachers told me I should continue practicing art beyond school. I went on to a Fine Arts degree at Chico State University, Ca. with an emphasis in ceramics.
Why do you create and what need does it satisfy?
Tough question as to why I create! I’m compelled to. The reason has evolved over the years. At this point, I don’t know what else to do with my working days but make art. It makes me happy on a normal day and preserves my sanity on my bad days.
What is your most important artist tool?
My most important tools are my eyes and my heart. Those are the conduit to my inspiration.
Is there something you can’t live without in your studio?
There is not just one thing I can’t live without in my studio, but the right brushes and my favorite color paints and my beautiful big easel are essential for me.
Creativity can be imaginative, inventive, and original. Understanding that creating artwork is a very personal choice; what inspires your creativity?
What inspires my creativity? Memories of my dad playing the piano, tapping into that deep place, and being totally in the moment. Beautiful, awe-inspiring places that take my breath away. And always shadows and light, shapes, and color.
Do you have a favorite medium, and if so, why is it your favorite?
Clay was my first love in college and will always be something I’d like to return to. But more and more I am enjoying painting, mainly with acrylics. I can work quickly and expressively. I work with a very simple palette of my favorite hue of red, blue and yellow, along with white. And mix those colors, often right on the canvas. I love the process and the end result is often not what I had planned!
WAST Studio Tour
September 3 – November 27, 2020
TOUR DATES: First two weeks of October you can visit artists’ studios by appointment only.
The Whatcom Artist Studio Tour is celebrating 26 years with an amazing group of 30 artists working in studios throughout Bellingham and Whatcom County. This exhibit at the Jansen Art Center showcases artwork from many of the artists participating in the 2020 virtual studio tour, our virtual tour will be available for viewing on our website through the end of the year.
Visit the Jansen Art Center to preview the work of the artists on tour and make your appointment to visit the studios of your favorite artists.
Visitors will have the opportunity to meet the artists and get a glimpse into their creative process. Many of the artists will offer demonstrations of the tools and processes they use to create!
Artist information and the 2020 Whatcom Artist Virtual Studio Tour are online: www.studiotour.net