Lori Snable has made a name for herself over the years for her night scenes. She has completed a series of pastel works showing San Francisco after dark.
One of them, "Night Waiter," took best-of-show honors for the Central California Art Association's Spring Art Show. She submitted three panels of a five-panel work showing different moments in the life of a waiter at a sidewalk cafe.
"I love this piece," said Snable, who divides her time between Modesto and Santa Fe, N.M. "It's the best I have. It's a culmination of a lot of things I've been doing."
The 6-foot-wide work is one of 155 pieces of art accepted for display from 264 submitted from the valley and beyond. Judging was done by award-winning artists Tony Natsoulas, Gretchen Ryan and Jim Piskoti, a former art professor at California State University, Stanislaus.
The show includes a mix of landscapes, portraits, abstract works and sculpture. Viewers are invited to vote for their favorite works — the one that gets the most votes will be given a People's Choice Award later this month.
Mistlin Gallery director Kadie Helton said the show represents a great variety of styles.
"It's not all traditional like I've seen in the past," she said.
Snable's best-of-show winner is in impressionistic style in her favorite earth tones palette of colors. She completed it about a year ago and said it's loosely based on a real restaurant in North Beach.
"It interests me, people in an intimate setting," Snable said. "It's very soothing and comfortable. It makes me want to be there."
Snable, 55, has won more than 100 awards, including this year's Stanislaus Arts Council Excellence in Arts award for visual arts, and is a member of the pastel societies of New Mexico, Colorado and the West Coast. She has taught art at Modesto's Sonoma School for 12 years.
She grew up in Orange County, the sixth of seven children, and always enjoyed drawing. She used to send her art to her oldest sister, who at that time was cloistered in a convent.
After graduating from high school, she set her art aside for a time and worked eight years as a radiologic technologist. She married radiologist Dr. Roy Snable and moved to Modesto 30 years ago, where the couple had two children.
Once the children were in elementary school, she started her first formal art training by attending classes with Dan Petersen at Modesto Junior College. She experimented with almost all media before she found her passion when her husband gave her a box of pastels for Christmas. Her interest increased once she took a pastel class with Doug Dawson in Santa Fe. She considers him her main mentor and takes a course with him once a year.
Snable has been spending more time in Santa Fe over the past 15 years. She and her husband now keep their main residence there.
"It's a town based on culture, art and history," Snable said. "It's a wonderful place for an artist to live."
Other award winners in the Spring Show:
ACRYLIC AND OIL: LANDSCAPE, SEASCAPE AND CITYSCAPE
1. Linda Abbott
2. Tyler Abshier
Honorable mentions: Laura Corben, Adrienne Allebe
ACRYLIC AND OIL: FIGURE, STILL LIFE AND NONOBJECTIVE
1. Jerry Reilly
2. Sally Ruddy
3. Eliseo Contreras
WATERCOLOR: LANDSCAPE, SEASCAPE AND CITYSCAPE
1. Dan Peterson
2. Ruth Morrow
3. Catherine Hall
HM: Greg Larson, Peterson, Anise Burns
WATERCOLOR: FIGURE, STILL LIFE AND NONOBJECTIVE
1. Kate Jackson
2-3. James Christiansen
MIXED MEDIA AND GRAPHICS
1. Lisa Sanders
2. Debra Amarante
3. Anna Barber
HM: Barber, Judith Cochran, Giano Pecchenino (2)
SCULPTURE, CERAMICS, POTTERY AND THREE-DIMENSIONAL
1. Stuart Swartz2. Christine Johnson3. Mark Knize
1. Linda Sawyer