Shelley's adventures in art began at an early age when she decided at the age of 14 to be an art teacher. Originally from Ohio, she earned a BFA in drawing and painting from Bowling Green State University and then an MA in visual arts education from The University of Northern Colorado while teaching in the public schools. Her arts and leadership training along with experiences as a 25 year veteran art educator, arts coordinator, and curriculum specialist allowed her to learn from some extraordinary artists and teachers such as Phillip Pearlstein, Joseph Magnani, Diana Attie, Jerry Uelsmann, Thomas Hilty, Phillip Wigg, Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, and Faith Ringgold. 

Shelley lives and works in Denver, Colorado .

2019 Events:

*Pastel Society of New Mexico National Show, Sorrel Sky Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

*15th Annual Mile High National Pastel Show, Curtis Center for the Arts, Denver, CO

*Red, Exhibition at The Framed Image, Denver, CO

*Green, Exhibition at The Framed Image, Denver, CO

*Plein Air Artists of Colorado National Exhibition, Studio 8369, Grand Lake, Colorado

*North Lake Tahoe Plein Air Festival, Lake Tahoe, California, June 24-29

*Estes Valley Plein Air, Art Center of Estes Park, Colorado, August 10-24

*Pastel Society of Colorado National Juried Online Exhibition, Chroma, Aug 16-Oct 16: Best of Show

*Central City Plein Air Festival, Central City, Colorado, Sept 27-29: 3rd Place

*54th Annual Own an Original: Destination, Littleton Museum, Littleton, CO, Nov 22-Dec 29

*Winter's Beauty, R Gallery Fine Arts, Boulder, CO, Dec 10-Jan 12,2020 

2018 Events:

*Santa Fe Plein Air Festival, Sorrel Sky Gallery, Santa Fe NM

*14 Annual Mile High National Pastel Exhibition, Pace Center, Parker Colorado

*Creative Capitol Exhibition, CO State Capitol, Denver, CO

*In Plein Site Plein Air Festival, JEFFCO Community Center, Colorado

*Central City Plein Air Festival, CC Opera & Gilpin Arts Assoc Gallery, Colorado: Artists’ Choice Award

*Plein Air Artists of Colorado National Exhibition, Sorrel Sky Gallery, Durango, CO: Honorable Mention

*Pastel Society of North Carolina National Online Pastel Exhibition

*Winter is Coming, exhibition at The Framed Image, Denver, CO

2017 Events:

*Greeley National Art Show, Union Colony Civic Center, Greeley, Colorado

*Arizona Pastel Artists Open Juried National Show, Sedona Arts Center, Sedona, AZ

*Boulder Plein Air Festival, Boulder, CO

*13th Annual Mile High National Pastel Exhibition, Littleton Museum, Littleton Colorado

*2017 PSC Signature Show, Evergreen Art Center, Evergreen, CO

*Plein Air Artists of Colorado National Exhibition, Mary Williams Gallery, Boulder, CO

*Plein Air Painters of New Mexico Juried Show, Sorrel Sky Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

*Pastel Society of Colorado Members Exhibition: Rocky Mtn College of Art, Denver

*Pastel Society of Colorado National Online Exhibition: Honorable Mention

*Pikes Peak Pastel Society National Show, Colorado Springs, CO

2016 Events:

*Santa Fe Plein Air Festival, InArt Gallery, Santa Fe, NM (Juried) - June 3-10

*In Plein Sight, Art in Open Air for Jeffco Open Spaces, Golden, CO (Juried), Oct. 3-9

*Plein Air Artists of Colorado Juried Show, Mary Williams Gallery, Boulder

*12th Annual Mile High International Pastel Exhibition, DPL, Vida Ellison Gallery, Denver

*Pastel Society of Colorado Members Show, Rocky Mountain College of Art, Denver

2015 Events:

*Plein Air Painters of New Mexico Juried Show, Santa Fe Art Collector Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

*Colorado Plein Air Festival Juried Show, DPL, Vida Ellison Gallery

*Mile High International Pastel Exhibition, DPL, Vida Ellison Gallery: 3rd Place

*Colorado En Plein Air, Center for the Arts Evergreen

2014 Events:

*Colorado Plein Air Festival Juried Show, Denver Public Library, Vida Ellison Gallery

*Pikes Peak Busts Exhibition, Boulder Street Gallery, Colorado Springs

*All Colorado Show, Depot Art Center and Gallery, Littleton, CO: People's Choice

*Pastel Society of Colorado Show, Around the Corner Gallery, Montrose, CO: Honorable Mention


ArtSource Colorado

Art Student's League of Denver

Colorado Art Education Association

Colorado Plein Air Arts Festival

Denver Art Museum

Pastel Society of Colorado

Plein Air Artists of Colorado

Plein Air Painters of New Mexico

Pastel Society of New Mexico


From the start my work has been inspired by the architectural landscape most recently in Colorado and New Mexico, but I strive to infuse an atmosphere of spirituality in all the works that reflects a sense of place. The interplay of the hard edge of architecture balanced with the random forms of nature allow a connection to be drawn with the paint in a very intuitive manner. Additionally, inspiration is drawn from Abstract Expressionist artists such as Willem de Kooning along with a Fauvist use of color which are evident in the paintings. You can see the visual references in the spontaneous brush strokes of each artwork no matter what the media. Although I have work in oils, I currently use water media, and pastels primarily. 

The figurative works are more intimately expressionistic with images that move in and out of the negative space. Some of them invoke a sense of mystery and others use the same techniques as the architectural pieces to play against brush strokes and edges.

Plein Air Painting has always been an interest and allows me to spontaneously create works out in nature. The bulk of this work has been done in New Mexico and Colorado, but my travels abroad also provide inspirational subjects. Currently I work in pastels while working in plein air. 

Crested Butte Meadow



I spent the bulk of my career teaching secondary and post secondary art, offering staff development classes, managing an art department, and serving in leadership positions for the Cherry Creek School District, Colorado Art Education Association, National Art Education Association, ArtSource Colorado, and the Art Students League of Denver. As a result of these experiences I offer my skills to arts educational organizations who seek trainers for their personnel both in leadership and teaching strategies. I specialize in 4MAT curriculum planning, facilitation, and organizational development, and can set up graduate credit through Adams State University for studio and other art educational classes or workshops. I am able to customize my rates to fit the needs of my clients. Please contact me for more information.