JOHN DAY - Maggie Willis, a 1999 graduate of Grant Union High School, will present an art exhibit at Faith Mountain Art Gallery through the first part of July.
While at Grant Union, Willis took instruction from art teacher Bill Lewis. She later improved her skill and knowledge at a prestigious fine art college, primarily focusing on figurative work, drawing inspiration from the human body. She graduated in 2003 from Moore College of Art and Design, the only all-women art school in the nation, and was named valedictorian of her class. Her thesis work consisted mostly of oil paintings of self portraits and friends.
Willis majored in 2-D Fine Arts - painting, drawing and print making, and received a minor in 3-D Fine Arts, which includes sculpture and pottery.
"I have been involved in art as long as I can remember, and have always wanted to be an artist," said Willis. "It is my passion, my way of expressing myself and communicating to others in a language without words. I love all mediums and subject matter, and can never seem to find one that I love more than another. Most recently, I have been concentrating in oil painting as to hone in on my skills and understanding of it."
This fall, Willis will serve as Artist in Residence at Eastern Oregon schools, including Humbolt Elementary School. She seeks an art-related career and hopes to show her work in galleries nationwide.
"One day I would like to be a part of an art workshop center where I can teach art," said Willis.
Maggie is the daughter of Maryann Winters of John Day and Gerrish Willis of Salt Lake City, Utah.