Fantastic Four at Sedona Arts Center

The evening will be cool, the poets will be entertaining and the works of four outstanding artists will be exciting this First Friday September 4th at the Sedona Arts Center. Arrive at 4:00 pm for a delightful hour at Poets Corner in the Sculpture Garden and stay for the wine reception in the Fine Art Gallery. The Sedona Arts Center’s new September Exhibit, Nature’s Spirit, runs through September 30th, and features a wonderful mix of artists depicting the essence of nature through their unique mediums ~ Dorisanne Soyka (Gourd Art), Patricia Steele (Colored Pencils), Dawn Sutherland (Oils), and Shane McDermott (Photography).
Dorisanne Soyka was an executive secretary in Southern California for over 20 years before leaving the corporate world in 1993 to get in touch with her artistic soul. After experimenting in various media, she discovered gourds as an art form, which was an inspirational awakening. She was instantly caught up in a spiritual connection between gourds and nature and herself….a mystical connection that continues to appeal and inspire her today. Each gourd has a story to tell and guides Dorisanne in her choice of techniques to apply, whether it is painting, staining, wood burning, weaving, or all of the above! The results are whispered messages to the viewer from nature’s spirit.
Patricia Steele is a native of Michigan and moved to Arizona in the early 1970s to earn a Fine Arts Degree from Arizona State University. After working for many years as an advertising and commercial photographer, she turned her attention to nature and portrait photography. She began exploring national parks and wildlife refuges with her camera. In recent years, she has developed a passion for creating realistic and compelling likenesses of wildlife, such as bobcat, coyote, and Gambles quail – frequent visitors to her backyard in Scottsdale – always working in her favorite medium, colored pencils. Her drawings definitely have a voice of their own.
Dawn Sutherland grew up on a farm in northern Wisconsin where she developed a deep appreciation of the natural environment at an early age. A teacher and counselor most of her adult life, Dawn first began painting in 2001. Through dedicated study, she learned to communicate her love of the natural environment through oil painting. Dawn moved to Cottonwood in 2003 and has continued to refine her skills by taking classes with noted landscape painters. She particularly enjoys painting “en plein air” and is known for her exceptional ability to capture light within the shadows, providing the viewer with a sense of being in the space, and communicating the warmth and solidity of the rocks and landforms.

Shane is an award-winning nature photographer residing in Flagstaff, Arizona. His fascination with nature and particularly wildlife began at the early age of four – hours were spent drawing animals. His attraction and wonder for nature never diminished, however his means of expressing and sharing his love for it didn’t blossom until he discovered photography. The art of photographic conservation and education are now the primary driving force behind Shane’s creative visions. Through a unique combination of artistry, patience and an astonishing capacity to envision and capture the natural world on film, Shane’s images quickly attract the attention and imagination of all who view them.

Meet the artists one-on-one and enjoy free demonstrations throughout the month as each works in her medium of choice. Dorisanne ~ Sept 11th (1 to 4 pm); Patricia Steele ~ Sept 12th; 18th (11 am to 2pm); Dawn Sutherland ~ Sept 16th, 20th & 30th (1 to 3pm).
The First Friday event starts with poetry from 4:00 to 5:00pm followed by an artist reception from 5:00 to 8:00pm – no admission. Everyone is invited! It is a lovely way to spend the evening.
The Sedona Arts Center is located at the north end of Uptown Sedona, on the left just before entering Oak Creek Canyon. For more information, please call the Gallery at 928-282-3865, the Administrative Office 928-282-3809, or visit our Website at

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