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Barton's got talent
College faculty and staff exhibit at Shafer Gallery
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"Pioneer of the Plains," watercolor, is by Diane Engle, Barton's Director of Student Life.

Keyboard instructor and husband exhibit photographs in Barton's display cases

Barton Community College keyboard instructor Karole Erikson and her husband, Jay Miller, are exhibiting their photography in the display cases in Barton’s Fine Arts Building hallway just outside the Shafer Gallery.

The couple started photography as a hobby about four years ago when they joined the Central Kansas Photography Club and began taking photography and computer graphics courses at Barton. Barton art instructor Steve Dudek selected them to exhibit their work as part of a series of student exhibits in the display cases.

Both Karole and Jay describe their work as "digitally optimizing" their photographs. They use digital techniques to bring out the best of color and detail in their work.

Most often, they find their subjects through travel, nature and wildlife, they said. They find opportunities for photos in bird watching, which is another hobby of theirs. They like to travel in the Southwest, including Arizona, southern Colorado and Utah. Many of the photos in their exhibit have come from their excursions in these areas.

The couple continue to take part in the Central Kansas Photography Club. This year, Karole is treasurer and Jay is secretary of the club. Their work will be exhibited in the display cases for the next couple of months.

The Shafer Gallery showcases the talents of college employees in the Barton Community College Faculty and Staff Open Exhibition, opening this week. The gallery will host a reception for the exhibit and the artists from 1 to 3 p.m. today, Sept. 12.

Barton art instructor Bill Forst is acting as host for the reception preceding the arrival of the new Shafer Gallery director later this month. Forst said he is looking forward to recognizing the artists among the College’s faculty and staff.

Many of these Barton employees have been taking art courses at the College. Some are new to the classes; others have been studying art and honing their artistic skills at Barton for several years. Forst and fellow Barton art instructor Steve Dudek are also participating in the show.

Artists featured in the exhibit are Dean of Academics Dr. Rick Abel, exhibiting a ceramic self-portrait; custodian Veronica Brown, painting on wood, "Deb’s Beach"; mail clerk Steve Carney, ceramics, "Desert Influence" and "Song From Black Mountain"; custodian Patricia Demel and husband, Raymond, jewelry, "Red Rose Petal Rosary" and "Red Necklace and Rose Petal Bracelet"; art instructor Steve Dudek, photographs, "Jason" and "Sally’s Motion"; director of student life Diane Engle, watercolor, "Pioneer of the Plains," and photograph, "Bridge to No Where"; keyboard instructor Karole Erikson, photographs, "Cheyenne Bottom Blues" and "Hay Bales at Sunrise"; art instructor Bill Forst, medium and large blue vases; speech and debate instructor Kenny Hopkinson, stoneware and an oil pastel painting; bookstore manager Connie Kerns, oil painting, "Iris on Black" and "Colorado Humming Bird"; video and multimedia specialist Julie Munden, photograph, "O-R-E-O Potty Training"; and custodian Cathy Ruppe, ceramics, "Fish."

Coinciding with Barton’s Faculty and Staff Open Exhibition is a display of photographs by keyboard instructor Karole Erikson and her husband, Jay Miller, in the Fine Arts Building display cases in the hallway adjacent to the Shafer Gallery.

All Shafer Gallery exhibits are presented in part by the Kansas Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts.