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Thought-Provokers: San Tan Valley

Phoenix has always had an artistic soul. The culture and heritage of our city, like most great cities, owes a tremendous debt to the arts community. Supporting local art is something we care deeply about and we’d like to do everything we can to help the local arts community thrive. Unfortunately, too often media attention is monopolized by corporate interests and tabloid gossip – but culture doesn’t come from a focus on celebrity breakups it comes from a focus on the arts.

Below, you’ll find some incredible artists from in and around San Tan Valley that we hope you will check out, follow and support.

Marian Sommers

Mom told me “I painted my first mural at age two when I woke up from my nap and the wall needed a little something” Now seriously, like all artist, Marian says she was “born this way”. Marian Sommers was 17 when she first exhibited her work in the window of a local gallery. Read more>>

Paige Gangloff

Art has been a huge part of my life ever since I can remember. Growing up I was always inspired by my grandmother who is an incredible ceramics artist and painter. Every time I would visit her house I would walk into her studio and stare in awe at her beautiful handmade tiles and even paintings applied right on to the kitchen cabinets. Read more>>

James Mercer

I have a different attachment to photography then I do with design. With design I feel like it is something fabricated inside a computer, on a hard drive, made of a bunch of code and computer chips. A photo is bottling up a moment and place in history, and turning it into something that can be remembered and shared forever. Read more>>

Erika Greene

Over the next few years I really focused on becoming the best wedding and couple’s photographer that I could be. I’ve been able to really grow my brand which focuses on adventure and the outdoors which is something I am super passionate about. Read more>>

Tara Keator

I shot the wedding, didn’t puke, and I loved everything about it! It was my first paid wedding at the age of 17 and the rest was history. From that point forward I built my portfolio and have shot over 500 weddings at this point. I loved building my business, not for the money, but for the relationships and the memories. Read more>>

Nancy Nowak Utech

Some people are lucky enough to grow up knowing what their destiny is in life. Some of those are fortunate enough to follow their heart to that destiny. Artist Nancy Nowak Utech always knew she was an artist. Read more>>

Jan Kornegay Dappen, Jan Dappen

I am Blessed in talent, in love and best of all, my grandson Drewby takes his last Chemo this month after 2 and a half long years! It was a journey I would not wish on anyone, especially a child. He is now an Ambassador for “ Swim Across America” and a Rally Kid raising funds for Children Cancer. Read more>>

Rebecca Johnson

My photography journey, unexpectedly, began while walking the 1000 year old streets of main land China. I actually remember the exact moment the the creative spark caught onto a full fledged fire. Already living in China for 3 months, the government had shut down most of the internet, making communication with our families minimal. Read more>>

Diana Smith

My unique journey to becoming a professional photographer started with a general love for art at a young age. While I studied other professional fields, something always brought me back to photography.
I made the decision to pursue my dreams full-time shortly after my son was born. Read more>>

Mary Opat

“Quantum Leap” is the name I’ve given to one of my recent oil painting series. The moment when reality forms from scattered protons, electrons and neutrons to achieve clarity. That may be a good metaphor to describe my personal path to a career in art.  Read more>>


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