Marin Magazine Cover Contest
Choosing a winner out of 300 entries was difficult. Here are the top 12 finalists of Marin Magazine's cover contest.
Marin Magazine's 2014 Cover Contest Winner
Our 2014 winner was born in Connecticut, spent 18 years living in Marin and Sonoma, then returned to his adopted hometown of Claremont, a college town about 35 miles east of Los Angeles, with his wife, Jan, about three years ago, to be with his granddaughter and ailing mother. But, he says, “I miss Marin terribly.” It was in Marin that Faust started to show in galleries and develop his professional art career into something financially viable. “I’ve been able to do art as a career come hell or high water,” he says. “It’s always a roller coaster ride, but I’ve never looked back. I’ve always stayed afloat.” As a child, Faust showed an early interest in art that was encouraged by his parents. “I would bring art home from school and my parents loved the pieces and saved them,” he says. “They never made a big fuss about it, but they always made sure plenty of materials were available.” Once Faust hit high school, he knew art was what he wanted to do.
The painting you see here and on the cover features Faust’s self-described “subtle surrealism” and many of the ideas that define his work. “This sense of fragility is a recurring theme with me,” he says. “That bird is way up in the sky. Things are delicately balanced and could go horribly wrong.”
A life-changing incident some years back informed that viewpoint. “A friend, his pregnant wife, daughter and mother were vacationing in Italy when their car was hit by a truck carrying rocks — only the wife survived,” Faust says. “It shook me to the core that something so great could be taken away so fast.”
See Faust’s work at Gallery Bergelli in Larkspur all month long.
Our 12 Finalists
KIM VOGEE: For Kim Vogee, horses and art and just seem to go together. The photographer has loved both since childhood, and now they seem to fit everywhere in her life. She donates a photo shoot annually to the junior Novato Horsemen, her photography is seen in many horse magazines, and she and her family, owners of Marin Orthodontics, have four horses at their home in Novato’s Indian Valley. “It’s all about the light and how it has this amazing ability to transform the ordinary into the extraordinary,” she says. “This photograph came from a summer evening at Novato Horseman’s arena with the buckskin gelding, Dusty.”
BRYN CRAIG: A former advertising art director and art school graduate, San Rafael’s Bryn Craig, a previous cover contest finalist, always found time for painting, even at a young age when his parents transformed a den off their kitchen into a painting studio. “It was something I was really good at, maybe the only thing,” he says. He is known for painting many subjects, but his series of Larkspur images are so well known that they represent Marin in an almost iconic fashion. “I have painted downtown Larkspur dozens of times,” he says. “It hasn’t changed much: no McDonald’s, no Starbucks. It has been preserved very well; it hasn’t been spoiled.”
CHRISTIN COY: Born in Oslo, Norway, Christin Coy, also a previous cover contest finalist, was inspired by the country’s natural beauty as well as Scandinavian artists such as Edvard Munch. She got started in the arts at age 2 and at 13 immigrated with her family to Southern California. She eventually headed north to earn a fine art degree at UC Berkeley and found her way to San Anselmo, where she developed her classical realism and plein air style and became the founder and/or member of many influential art clubs. “I have always been very drawn to the beauty of the full moon,” she says. “Living in north Marin, I often see the full moon come up over the wetlands by the San Francisco Bay, a subject very reminiscent of the old Dutch landscape paintings that I have always admired.”
JEAN SANCHIRICO: The California landscape is a favorite focus for Jean Sanchirico, who likes to capture the color, shape and shadow of these scenes using chalk pastel. She is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, lives in Berkeley, and is the founder and owner of the Palisade Group, a successful Bay Area design firm. “Marin offers boundless visual beauty that inspires me. Embracing a landscape, such as the Coastal Trail near Pantoll trailhead, is about a captured impression,” she says. “I aim to condense feelings and moods that landscapes evoke with simple and broad strokes.”
FELIPE PASSALACQUA: A love of woodworking and carving inspired Felipe Passalacqua’s artistic side as he grew up in Chile. Later, a gift of a 35 mm camera received as he left home for an American university ignited a passion for photography that continues to this day. Now the Sausalito resident is never without his camera as he works on the Sausalito waterfront or hikes Mount Tamalpais. “The magic of San Francisco Bay compels me to reach for my camera, and I am always surprised by the ever-changing beauty of the bay and Marin County in general,” he says. “While I was hiking with my daughters, the colors, flickering light and stillness of the bay inspired me to take this photo.”
ELIZABETH GOREK: Growing up in Hong Kong and Canada in a family of artists, Elizabeth Gorek had a diverse palette of experiences to draw from. She paints in her barn studio in Ross or in the historic Sam the Butcher art space, where the public — including kids on the way home from school — are free to watch her work. “I aim to capture a moment wherever I can find one,” says Gorek, a former finalist. “For this paint ing I was drawn by the fact that a couple can be so close and yet so far away from each other.”
YVONNE GRAHAM: Yvonne Graham was born in Germany and moved to California in 2005, eventually settling in Marinwood, where she lives with her husband and two children. Although she got her start in art painting a mural in her school cafeteria in the eighth grade, it is in Marin where she has found unlimited inspiration. “My original painting in texture and acrylic, accented with broken mirrors, was inspired by my move to Marin County,” Graham says. “From the moment the car crossed the Golden Gate Bridge, I knew something special was happening — this was home.”
AUDREY KRAL: Audrey Kral got her start in the arts in the East Bay in 2002. Since then she’s moved to Mill Valley and seen her work displayed in collections in Italy, New York, Seattle and the Bay Area and on Maui. “This painting began at our Mill Valley housewarming party in 2013. On a blank canvas, guests wrote characteristics they wanted to let go of in their life,” she says. “As I washed the canvas with water to dissolve the words, the remaining color inspired the painting, with vibrant trees as a symbol of new growth.”
WILLIAM NEWSOME: Newsome started his art career by decorating his parents’ garage using his first Prang watercolor set and a 48-pack of Crayola crayons. Following this passion, he went on to earn a BFA in art and complete postgraduate studies in painting and art history. He and his family have lived in San Rafael for the last 20 years and he loves to digitally manipulate photographs to create art. “This particular piece was one of a series featuring the old restored Chevy truck parked outside Andy’s Local Market in San Rafael,” he says. “I’ve always been fascinated by classic cars, and this one seen in the morning light with big-sky clouds behind it was the perfect image.”
TIMOTHY HORN: Although Timothy Horn, a previous cover contest winner, graduated from the Cooper Union School of Art in New York City in 1984, graphic design was his first true artistic calling. When he moved to the Bay Area in 1992, he was immediately struck by the intensity of light and the variety of landscapes in the region and soon took up painting, which became his second calling. He now lives with his family in Fairfax and paints full time. “This painting is of a scene in West Marin where you come over a wooded hill and descend on a twisty road,” he says. “There are so many beautiful roads in Marin, but I’d put this view on my top 10 list.”
EMMELINE CRAIG: Born in France and raised in Provence, Emmeline Craig always knew she wanted to be an artist. She has shown and sold work since 1990 and lived in Bolinas since 2000. In 2012 she created Stinson Beach’s The Blissful Gallery to fit her vision of what a gallery should be and feel like — with the idea that positive art can heal the world. “This painting is a symbolic painting, based on a metaphysical concept featuring a portal set in a vast landscape in front of a body of water,” she says. “The weather appears to be different inside the stone a rch than around it. The eye is attracted by the clear weather inside the arch. It’s a point of focus.”
SNOWDON KINNEY: San Anselmo–based Snowdon Kinney loves to paint both realistic and abstract large-scale works. With a degree in fine art, she has worked as a graphic designer, but it is painting that most inspires her. She is influenced by David Hockney, Paul Cézanne, John Singer Sargent and Paul Gauguin and takes bits of inspiration from each. “This current series, Land/Sea/Sky, is inspired by the colors and atmosphere of Tahiti,” she says. “My abstract landscapes and seascapes are calm, contemplative works that echo the beauty of nature and elicit feelings of peace, relaxation and warmth.”