Collector’s Choice: Cliff Spohn

Today’s feature is in honor of our Louisville Kentucky native the great champion Muhammed Ali, who was so close in spirit to the revered Malcolm X. They are inseparable brothers in spirit. Mohammed Ali’s funeral is today June 10, 2016 in Louisville. In honor of the determination to overcome oppression and seek justice for all, I present these works of powerful creativity today by a very great contemporary artist Cliff Spohn. Janis Kirstein.


Click on thumbnails to enlarge.


About Cliff Spohn, the Artist

I was born and raised in Oregon. From a young age I was always doodling (drawing), especially during class. I would draw hot rods, airplanes, girls, comic book heros and Mad magazine characters. I have always been an explorer or seeker of answers to things and ideas that fascinated me, which of course lead me right into the realms of artistic thinking. My exploring and ‘WHAT IF’ approach to art has had a definite roll in creating my eclectic style and still affects my work to this day.

A rather circuitous route through traveling, a war and working led me to Riverside California. There I attended jr. college and received an AA degree then transferred to San Jose State College where in I discovered the world of commercial art. In 1973 I received a BA degree in illustration and graphic design.

I have been a professional illustrator for 38 years, it became my vocation where my ‘WHAT IF’ art became my avocation but, because illustration has become almost nonexistent for an oldschooler like myself, the rolls are switching places.

I illustrated the first 10 or 15 Atari video game box covers and continued with other projects there. I also did Apple’s first one or two instruction booklet covers. I have created many posters, book covers, magazine covers, collectable prints, editorial art and privately commissioned paintings.

In 1986 my family and I moved to Connecticut to further my career as an illustrator but, as stated before, demand for my kind of illustration was and is slowly disappearing. Now I am in the process of trying to merge the two, realism (vocation) and abstract (avocation).

As one can see, my work is an amalgam of styles and interests influenced by other artist whom I have studied. I am but one voice in the choir of art’s paradigm, searching for and developing my art (identity) for the means to preform the solo performance.

That being said, the only thing I can say and say it in my eclectic ‘WHAT IF’ style is, “On with the show”…..
Cliff Spohn




Click on thumbnails to enlarge.

Today’s feature is in honor of our Louisville champion Muhammed Ali, who was so close in spirit to the revered Malcolm X.   Mohammed Ali’s funeral is today June 10, 2016.  In honor of the determination to overcome oppression and seek justice for all, I present these works of powerful creativity today.  Janis Kirstein.





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All images in this feature are courtesy of the artist, Cliff Spohn and are from the website Individual artwork copyrights are held by individual copyright holders.

Collector’s Choice: Patricia Strand


Dreamy, atmospheric works are created from my own photographs. When winter comes, the deciduous trees in the Northwest bare their branches.

Digital art works are created from my own photographs. I use various digital editing techniques, such as painting and textural enhancements.
Infrared Trees With Texture is a piece of digital artwork by Patricia Strand, March 11th, 2016. The digital art has colors ranging from battleship grey to white and incorporates tree, silhouette, and collage design themes.

Patricia Strand

Olympia, WA – United States
About Patricia Strand

Welcome to my art and images.

All prints and products are produced by Pixels.

(All images © Patricia Strand. All rights reserved. Copying and/or distributing without my permission is strictly prohibited.)



Blue Teal Leaf

Closeup of a leaf and raindrop in a Pacific Northwest forest. Image taken along the Watershed Park Trail in Olympia, Washington.

Mystery and magic permeate the images of Patricia Strand. The natural context of each art piece, whether digital, photographic, or painted reveals the quiet wonder of what is miraculously right with a world unmodified and unmarred  by human dominance and ego. 

The colors range from natural teals to flaming red and capture the variable combinations of stark contrast as well as subtle gradations found in nature. Her Waterdrops Series shows us the quiet reflections found in the contemplation of rain on foliage.

A startling beauty rises from the combinations of natural colors and textures saturated in glistening waterdrops.  Quiet is the key. Finding joy in everyday nature is the enlightenment.  Janis Kirstein










Wet Red Leaves – Waterdrops Series

One in a series of photographic works made by superimposing two photographs together. One image contains waterdrops, and the other is made of leaves showing vibrant fall colors of red and green. Blended together, they express the beauty of early Autumn in the Pacific Northwest, when rain starts to fall, and the leaves turn.







Be sure to sign up for the KIRSTEINFINEART website for more high quality material like today’s informative feature story. Just go to the bottom of this page, click the subscribe button, enter your name and email.




Images: Top left: Collage by Janis Kirstein, mixed media. Top right: Photograph  by Cindy Manero. Drawing below: “A Walk in the Park,” Digital image by Janis Kirstein

A Walk in the Park

Janis Kirstein

Today I saw a comment on a piece (shown above left)  about my art work that got me thinking how much I miss my summer walks in our local Cherokee Park.

Here’s the quote: “I see it as a walk in the park. Subject to interpretation, I’m sure….but very creative.” The comment was by fellow artist and new friend from Fine Art America, Cindy Manero She was speaking of my collage above left.


A walk in the park is just what is missing from life right now! How I miss tromping through the woods of our local park in Louisville, Ky., Cherokee Park, designed by Fredrick Law Olmstead. He is also the miraculous designer of New York City’s Central Park.

I was really interested to read that Law Olmstead, with all of his great design ability tragically suffered at the end of his life with Alzheimer’s and lost the abilities as is associated with that disease. No wonder my friend and I, who’s mother also suffers from Alzheimer’s, considered it an invigorating challenge to find our way in Cherokee Park every day. This was our final exam each day: If we could still find our way on all the looping organic paths that made up the very complex map of Cherokee Park, then we were still cognizant and adequately alert! –Out of the Woods, so to speak!
When Are Your Most Creative Moments? What can you do to cultivate more creative moments? Does the outdoors stimulate you? Make you feel connected to the universe? To all of nature? Place your comments below and let me know your most creative times, and what you were doing right before or during those times.

For an example, my husband often has great ideas when he is in the shower. Only trouble is, the bigger his ideas, the more hot water he uses, and I have to take my shower later. And no, I am not going to try a COLD shower to generate ideas!

One of the things I do that can often generate ideas is walking in the woods, or in the park. Oh now we’re back to that!

Once you break through the creative barrier, one idea leads to another leading to another. Being connected is important for generating ideas. Being connected to nature, to the universe, the right side connected to the left side of the brain. There are many brain entrainments on disc now that you can listen to to encourage changes in the brain for further connectivity between the left and right hemispheres of the brain. I am now trying one disk from Holosynch. The effects on my thought process has been notable with greater clarity of thought and connectivity of innovation connecting with logic.

I think I’ll keep listening. And walking. And blogging. See you next time.
Come see these images on our websites at

We Cry for Our Own

Love these insights from Paul plus Polemics Blog. Thank you Paul for your thoughts.

Poesy plus Polemics

(Originally posted June 2013)

the first time
I sat on sloped grass in the dusk
near the apex and cried
full out spasms
spontaneous reflex
irrupting the middle of me
ripping long dormant grief
from my unwounded organs
depleting flat wailing
rang harsh in my voids

I’ve always been moved
by similar sites
but this delta of gabbro
calls only to mine
they were each and all mine
my own muddled half-mad generation
these cold chiseled names
who were killed in my place
stood where I could have been
stepped where I could have run
when the bullets or shrapnel
cut their lives down

these cold chiseled names
were killed in my place
leaving life and the journey to me
and in traveling it
at the apex
I cried



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