Big Art Show at Humdinger's

Contributed by Martha Happs

“Fantastic” is the word flying around about the Valley Fine Arts Associations member Art Show at Humdingers Gourmet Pizza Co. in Palmer (173 S. Valley Way). The show is up and running until January 2, 2019.

Large and extra large original art work (4'x5') of varying subject matter makes a stunning backdrop, as you engage in the aroma of the stone fired pizzas. All your senses will be stimulated. These high quality paintings are from Valley and Anchorage artists, who are: Brenda Jaeger, Martha Happs, Michelle Cornelius, Patricia L. Jones, Rochelle Weaver and Tara Gildow.

Brenda Jaeger has taught art full-time at Pacific Northern Academy, Anchorage, Alaska since 1996. She has been awarded the BP teachers of Excellence Award. She has traveled to Japan three times, to study traditional handmade papermaking, and to Reggio
Emilia, Italy to observe traditional clay artists. Born and raised in Alaska, Brenda has enjoyed teaching art since 1974. Brenda has a B.A. in Art from Eastern Washington University, a Master of Arts in Teaching with a major in Drawing and Painting from Whitworth College, and a Masters in teaching degree from Washington State. She has also taught art through the graduate level, in Washington State and Alaska. Brenda is listed in “Who's Who in American Art” and is a working artist as well as teacher. Her work is in many permanent collections and can be seen locally, at the Georgia Blue Gallery in Anchorage.

Martha Happs and her young family packed up and drove to Alaska in 1981. They followed the mileposts to find gas stations and drove the Cassiar Highway, with the wolves running with them, in Canada. Hundreds of miles of dirt roads, and then the adventure began, the Last Frontier was a dream come true. Martha works mostly in acrylics, watercolors, and clay sculpture. Her passion right now is Prophetic Art. Martha majored in Art at the University of Alaska, in Anchorage and Mat-Su. She participates in internet workshops and small classes with her favorite artists. Martha is a past president of Valley Fine Arts Association (2014/2015) and a present active volunteer member.  Martha shows her current work each year at Vagabond Blues (July 2019), Humdinger's and the Garden and Art Faire in Palmer in July. You can find Martha on Facebook, at Martha Happs Fine Art, also on Fine Art America. 

Michelle Cornelius has a wide range of mediums she is accomplished in: graphite pencil, colored pencil, pen/ink, charcoal, soft pastel, oil pastel, acrylic, gouache, watercolor, alcohol inks and oils. She also teaches classes and workshops in these mediums. Michelle has been an award-winning artist though out the years. She creates a few commissioned works per year. Her passion in life is art and animals, and depicting Alaska's beautiful vistas and varied wildlife. She continues to take as many workshops as possible, saying, “there is always more to learn”.  Her advise to other artists: “learn to draw, practice drawing and draw what you love! Art will follow.” You can find Michelle on Facebook, at Michelle Cornelius Art or on

Patricia L. Jones has been an Alaskan since 1976. After raising her family and retiring from nursing, she has been able to concentrate on her love for art. She primarily works with oils in her home studio and finds it challenging. She has a diverse collection of themes for her paintings, because when something catches her eye, she must paint it. She continues to broaden her art knowledge with art books, attending various workshops with other artists and studying art history.  She loves trying out different techniques and being a member of Valley Fine Arts Association. She has shown her art at various locations in Alaska. 

Rochelle Weaver was born in Homer and raised in both Alaska and Hawaii. Her artist father put a paintbrush in her hand at age 4, and her love of tall ships began at age 8, when she saw a painting of Captain Cook with his ship the HMS Endeavour, in a hotel on the big island of Hawaii. She paints nautical scenes as well as local wildlife, and lives in Wasilla with her husband, three children, two dogs and seven tarantulas.

Tara Gildow is an Alaskan landscape painter, illustrator of strange things, teacher and mother of one imaginative daughter. She was born and raised in Anchorage, and was profoundly influenced by the lonely, rugged beauty that Alaska has to offer. Palmer Alaska has proven to be the perfect spot to live in and be inspired by. She has a BFA in painting from Pacific Northwest College of Art in Portland, Oregon, and has shown her work in various locations in Alaska and Oregon. She is available for commission work as well as teaching children painting and drawing.

Valley Fine Arts Association meets every first and third Friday at Mat-Su College from 2-6pm (rm. 212 FSM building) Come say hi! To join or find a calendar of events, go to: