I’ve had a lot of fun with this painting. It’s the biggest oil I’ve done, 60″ x 48″ although that’s small in comparison to the scenics and murals I used to do – sometimes 30′ high. That was a different life and scenario though. I premixed color then from a palette of one gallon cans of acrylic paint. It did take me quite awhile after the mural phase of my life to adjust to painting small paintings like this one!

“Shades” is based on research gained from an artist’s rendezvous I attended last summer. My model is Jay Red Hawk, a Lakota Sioux from South Dakota. Jay is quite knowledgeable about the history of the plains Indians and their encounters with the white man over time.
He has been playing & making Siyotanka ( Northern Plains Courting Flutes) for 22 years that are traditionally hand carved. He has performed with those flutes in many venues, including the ’92 “Good Red Road / Sacred Hoop Concert; as a soloist with the MN Orchestra in ’95; and has recorded music for 20 documentaries, including “Dakota Exile” (PBS) which won a Grammy for sound.” He has also been in movies and documentaries, as has his horse Lady who is now 25 and just officially retired. Jay also is the Founder/Director of the Plains Horse Archery AssociationHe can be found on Facebook.

Posted in Figurative, Native American
6 comments on “Shades
  1. Eli Erlandson says:

    I love it!

  2. Ed Sanders says:


    This is absolutely fabulous !

    You knew I would like this—right ?

    Keep your brushes happy.

  3. Ann Malmlund says:

    Your best one yet ! What do the painted lines on the horse mean? Ann

  4. marsha Lehmann says:

    Love this painting Laurie, glad I’m on your email notification of updates..


    What rich colors and 3-D painting of horse and rider with
    umbrella and traditional clothing. I’ve seen other paintings of Indians (First Nations People) wearing sunglasses. Is this something that is part of a new tradition or just “folksy”?
    Keep up the good work.

  6. Jerry Izsak says:

    Wonderful painting and colors.I would name the horse lightning after the lines on his body

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Laurie Stevens

Current or Recent Events & Shows

National Oil & Acrylic Painters Society “Best of America Small Painting National Exhibition” at the Kirkland Gallery, Nashville, TN., April 30 – May26, 2018

Out West Art Show & Sale, March 14-17, 2018 at the Heritage Inn, Great Falls, Mt. I’m in Room 176!

Portrait Society of America 6×9:Limited Size, Unlimited Talent Mystery Art Sale, April 20, 2018 at the Art of the Portrait Conference in Washington, DC.

National Oil & Acrylic Painters Society Holiday Small Works Show, Nov. 13 – Dec. 30, 2017

Under a Vast Sky, the 2017 AWA Annual Master and Signature Members Show & National Juried Exhibition, at the Tucson Desert Art Museum, Oct 13 – Dec. 3, 2017

“Dissent” Show at Sparrow Gallery, Sacramento, CA. July 1 – August, 2017

“Gallery Night” at Frame of Reference Fine Art in Whitefish, MT.,July 6, 2017

Iron Horse Summer Art Social, Whitefish, MT. June 25, 2017

“First Strike Auction” March 17, 2017 C.M. Russell Museum

2016 – Portrait Society of American Members Only Competition Winner – Landscape Division

“Back to Basics” Painting Workshop in Big Sky, MT. – October 28-30, 2016

“2016 Annual AWA Member Show & National Juried Exhibition” – Sept. 23 to Nov. 14, 2016

“Summer Art Social” at Iron Horse, Whitefish, MT. – June 25, 2016

“Montana Painters Alliance Show” at the Hockaday Museum of Art in Kalispell, MT. June 30, 2016 – August 31, 2016.

I’m teaching a workshop called “Back to Basics: Considerations for Every Painter” at the C. M. Russell Museum in Great Falls, MT., April 29 – May 1, 2016

“Auction for the Arts” at Lone Mountain Ranch in Big Sky, MT. March 24, 2016

“Out West Art Show & Sale” at the Heritage Inn, Great Falls, MT. March 16-19, 2016

Guest Artist at Altamira Fine Art, Scottsdale, AZ., 2015

“Traveling the West Art Show & Sale” at Southwest Gallery, Dallas, TX. – October 23-24, 2015

“Boots Required!” at Bella Muse Gallery, Ogden, UT. – July 3 – August 31, 2015

“Summer Art Social” at Iron Horse, Whitefish, MT. – June 30, 2015

The Dana Gallery “Icons of the West” Show, May 15 – June 30,, 2015

The Russell Live Auction, Mansfield Convention Center, Great Falls, MT., Saturday, Mar. 21, 2015

Booth Western Art Museum “For the Love of Art Gala & Art Auction” – February 21, 2015

Altamira Fine Art “Art 2 Art Show”, Jackson, WY. – mid December, 2014 – January 1, 2015

Tom Gilleon & Laurie Stevens – 2 person show hosted by Altamira Gallery of Jackson, WY. and Creighton Block Gallery of Big Sky, MT., July1 – 18, 2014

National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum “Small Works, Great Wonders” Show, Oklahoma City, OK. – Nov. 15 – Dec. 1, 2013

About Me

Stevens’ work reflects the small daily wonders of the land she calls home: the first crocus of spring, the resilient beauty of the plains, or that special sense of hope and possibility that is only found in the West. Stevens is also interested in regional history, particularly the interactions of Native Americans and white settlers during the Reservation Period. Many of her paintings are an exploration of this dynamic and a meditation on the “taming of the West.” From Billings, MT, Laurie began her career as an artist in Los Angeles where she spent 12 years working for the entertainment industry as a scenic artist and muralist for television, theme park, theater and movie productions. She spent time as a member of the Walt Disney Imagineering team, lending her talents to many Disney theme park projects worldwide. She also did some set design, illustration, and matte paintings for several animated childrens’ movies. In the 1980’s Stevens returned to her native Montana, first to the mountains near the Scapegoat Wilderness and then to the ranch near Great Falls where she currently lives and works.


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