Jen Smith is a Columbia River Gorge based charcoal artist. Her subject matter is directly inspired by the natural world and growing up in the Bighorn Basin of Northern Wyoming 90 miles east of Yellowstone National Park.
Jen works on custom wood panels built by her husband Eli that she often applies white paint to and then sands off to let the wood grain show through. Her subjects are showcased almost exclusively on this background. She also will occasionally work directly on the wood surface. Most of her work is black and white and very bold and contrasting with color only occasionally finding its way in. Ravens, wild horses, wolves, skulls, nests, and feathers are just a small sampling of the subjects she depicts.
Jen received her Associate of Arts degree from NWC in Powell, Wyoming and continued on to get her BFA in drawing from MSU Bozeman, Montana. Jen’s inspiration was forged deeply by growing up in the badlands and Rocky Mountains of her home state.
Jen resides in the little river town of Stevenson, WA and is considered to be one of the top up and coming artists in the region. Jen has most recently been selected to be a part of the “Western Visions” annual fundraiser for the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson Hole, Wyoming boasting some of the top living wildlife artists in the country.
“When I draw I push for getting a strong response to the subject that I am showcasing. Through drawing in charcoal I get the sharp contrasts and softness that really describe the natural world. My hope is that my audience is captivated and transfixed the way I am with the natural world around me.”