Monday, August 30, 2010

Becky Barker Story

Becky Barker Story: "


 From The Bugle

Aug.27,2010

 


 


Becky Barker enjoys


painting people,


cherished pets and


indigenous rocks


 


by

Sara Schick el

sschickel

@thebuglenews.com

“Art is everywhere,” said Becky Barker of rural


Chatsworth.


Barker is a portrait artist whose work graces the walls


of homes throughout the United States.


Her lifelong interest in art developed into serious


study and ultimately her own business.


“After my first child was born and he got older, I


started taking home-study classes,” she said.


She and her husband Rusty have been married 38


years and have four children, three of whom are living,


and four grandchildren.


The couple resides on her husband’s family farm, less


than two miles from the home she lived in as a child.


Barker began her Rainbow Trail Studio about 10 years


ago and balances her art along with her position as a paraprofessional


for the Prairie Central School District.


Jean Ertel of Gibson City commissioned Barker to


paint seven portraits over the years.


“I had my parents done. She made [a portrait] of my


husband’s parents for a Christmas gift,” Ertel explained.


“She just does a really good job. She never knows what


I’m going to throw at her,” laughed Ertel.


Rather than arranging for special sittings with her


subjects, Barker receives pictures of the person she is


going to paint.


This system works well as many of her clients are not


from the area and may even be from other states.


She has completed work for people in California,


Indiana, Florida, Colorado and Mexico.


In addition to portraits of people, Barker creates special


projects of beloved animals.


Often times, she is asked to paint pets that have


passed away.


While some of her paintings remain true to the photographs


they come from, Barker is sometimes asked


to combine several subjects from different photos into


one portrait.


“I love doing the skin tones, hair color and eyes,”


Barker admitted.


She was commissioned to paint a portrait of a mother


with her two children.


The son passed away and the mother wanted a portrait


of the family together.


Barker was supplied


with various photographs


of the family members.


She managed to adjust


the size, lighting, and


clothing so the newly created


portrait looked as if


the family members were


posed especially for the


project.


The process is labor


intensive and it typically


takes her around 25 hours


to complete a portrait of


one person.


She added, “Along with


portraits, I also do rocks.”


The Rock-A-Baby creations


are intricate paintings


of animal on rocks.


“We live on a farm. A


lot of the rocks are indigenous


to the area which


means they came out of the


fields,” Barker explained.


In addition to painting,


Barker enjoys cooking,


sewing and reading.


She also has an interest in


Egyptology.


“I’m retiring in a couple


years, so [travel] is on my


list,” she said.


Egypt and Paris top the


list of places she plans to go.

"

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