December 1, 2009 to January 11, 2010: Skyler Ross and Jessica Spear

December 1, 2009

The Finlandia University Reflection Gallery will host a dual exhibit from December 1, 2009 to January 11, 2010, featuring the paintings of Jessica Spear and photographs by Skyler Ross.

An opening reception and artist talks will take place Thursday, December 3, 12:00 to 1:00 p.m., at the Reflection Gallery. The reception is open to the public; refreshments will be served.

Skyler Ross, a Graphic Design major in the Finlandia University International School of Art & Design, uses Photoshop 7.0 to digitally alter photographs. In his photographs, he hopes to “capture the natural elements of everyday life… take the ordinary and give them vitamins.”

Jessica Spear, a junior-level Finlandia Studio Arts student, uses color, texture, and collage to create large scale paintings overflowing with color and texture. Spear is involved in the local art community and works at the Copper Country Community Arts Center as a gallery helper.

“My work is mostly about my love of color, line, and collage and how these work (or don’t work) together,” Spear explains. “Spontaneity plays a huge role in my art. Paint splashes and brush strokes are often the result of letting the paint do what it wants to do.”

Spear’s fantastic use of color sprung from an experience in eighth grade. She explains, “the first time I saw ‘Green Marilyn’ [by Andy Warhol], I was hooked on that green or shades of green.” She says she also enjoys using variations of purple, since purple is “the color of perfect spirituality and creativity.”

Spear notes, “I am continuously inspired as I learn about different artists, their techniques and philosophies. I think art is a window for people to look into that provides vital information for understanding each other, our culture, and ourselves.”

Skyler Ross enjoys manipulating what already exists, even if it is just taking a blue and making it a brighter, more saturated blue. He notes that he enjoys using bright saturated colors or very dark muted colors.

Through his work, Ross “wants the art to make you ask yourself questions. Whether it is asking yourself about your own life or just questioning life itself. It’s about emotion behind or what is in the photo.”

“This show is about how there is always more to a subject than what you see,” he says, adding, “that there is a feeling or a presence within each experience.”

The Reflection Gallery is located on the second level of Finlandia’s Jutila Center campus, Hancock. For additional information, contact Phillip Faulkner, assistant professor of studio arts: intermedia, at (906) 487-7375 or

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