Arts Spotlight Evening: Chesley Lewis and Shelby Gunter Blackner – cialisdfr
Arts Spotlight Evening: Chesley Lewis and Shelby Gunter Blackner
Arts Spotlight Evening: Chesley Lewis and Shelby Gunter Blackner

This year’s Night of the Arts, sponsored by the Nell J. Redfield Hospital Foundation, will feature two young artists who have given back their talents to benefit their hometown. Arts Night will be on Thursday, April 4th from 6:00pm – 8:30pm in the Event Center. Admission is free for this event, which provides an opportunity to view artwork by some of Oneida County’s outstanding artists, including Chesley Lewis and Shelby Gunter Blackner.

Chesley Lewis

Chesley Lewis grew up in Malad and returned six years ago. He began creating wood works while attending a high school woodworking class taught by Larry Nalder. He honed his craft while working in home construction with two men he considers his mentors: Don Hubbard and Tim Gauthier.

Chelsea says she enjoys the quick gratification of creating decorative items, such as tree ornaments, home decor, door and yard signs, fridge magnets, shelves and decorative organizers. He created little love spoons in many different designs for the Malad Valley Welsh Festival. He also designs and creates toys. From a practical standpoint, he says it’s nice not to have to
buy everything

The connection between technology and woodworking is intriguing to Chesley. He uses laser technology to design his pieces as 3-D models, often his own creations after browsing online sites for ideas. Then the challenge of customizing pieces to meet his and his customers’ satisfaction is exciting.

Chesley’s home company is BAD Signs, the initials standing for the middle names of his three children. His wife Carly often helps him finish his works. Chesley is a professional pilot and after working as a crop sweeper for several years now works as an EMS pilot. He loves all things outdoors including hiking, camping, fishing and hunting.

Shelby Gunter Blackner

Shelby Gunter Blackner was born and raised here in Oneida County, the oldest daughter of Scott and Elaine Gunter. She graduated from Malad High School in 2010 and attended Utah State University for several semesters. Shelby met her husband while living in Logan, and they were married in 2012. After a short stint in Montana, the couple returned to Utah, where they had their first son, Charlie. They eventually decide to move to Malad to be closer to Shelby’s parents and sisters. They soon saw the birth of their second son, Jack. Shelby explains that she loves living in such a friendly community.

She will be presenting her watercolor works at this year’s fundraiser Arts Night. Shelby is a self-taught artist who has been painting for almost 5 years. She specializes in custom family portraits and enjoys sharing her talent with others, especially during times of hardship. She really likes being able to combine people together from different photos and make one cohesive picture with them all together. It is often a great opportunity to take a family photo when there is no original with everyone

Shelby began by “painting my own family and friends, and then as I gained skill I began accepting commissions from others to do their family portraits in watercolor paintings as well. I recently started practicing digital art, turning candid photos into lasting memories that can be shared with others. I also occasionally do architectural drawings, such as homes or temples.

One of her favorite paintings was a watercolor she did for a childhood friend. The two had been friends most of their lives, “and her grandfather owned Albert’s Service. After he passed away, I painted his workshop for her and her family as a gift. The Ekstrom family then requested that a digital copy of the work be placed in Albert’s casket. I felt extremely humbled to be asked to contribute to his final resting place. The painting has since been done in work shirts for the family business.’

Shelby is a current receptionist at the Oneida County Clinic. She works as a receptionist during the week while her boys are at school. “I’ve been working there for almost two years now and I’ve really enjoyed getting to know all the wonderful people who work at the clinic and hospital. They are knowledgeable and warm-hearted people who work hard to serve our beloved community,” she says.

Shelby concludes, “I am deeply honored and surprised to be invited to be a part of this annual art exhibition. It’s an honor to be surrounded by other spectacular artists and their professions. I hope to continue to develop my artistic abilities. I am especially grateful to my husband Joel and his constant support and praise. Without you, I would never have had the courage to try something new. You are my favorite!”

Other artists who will be showing their work at this year’s Art Night include Jerry Camp (oil painting), Alison Eliason (photography) and Oneida Quilters (fabric). Artwork by 4th and 5th grade classes from Malad Elementary School and by students from Malad Middle and High School will also be displayed. Popcorn treats will be provided by Malad Culinary Arts High School students.

In addition to enjoying beautiful and unusual artwork, attendees will be able to bid on baskets donated by local businesses, organizations and families. The silent and live auctions will provide opportunities for people to win artwork, field trips, restaurant coupons, household items, vehicle accessories, decorations, garden supplies and other useful and unique gifts for themselves or others. All proceeds from the auction will be used to renovate patient rooms and purchase equipment for Nell J. Redfield Memorial Hospital.

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