Valerie Anne Thomson is an accomplished acrylic and oil on canvas artist, whose talents have been appreciated by numerous customers, art students and her many close friends. She has been dedicated to this profession since the age of three when her mother gave her a box of crayons and drawing paper. When asked, “Why are you an Abstract Expressionist Artist?” She responds, “It’s less traditional and it represents emotion, in a more free format, utilizing composition, color and shape.”
Her life began, along the shores of Lake Charlevoix, one of Michigan’s largest inland lakes, which is connected to Lake Michigan. The four seasons, scenery and colors are so full of life, endless imaginations can inspire any artist. Perhaps, this is a primary reason why Valerie chose her path, after living amongst such beautiful Northern Michigan sites, fall colors, winter wonderland and spring blooming into summer sunsets.
At age seven, Valerie started attending organized art lessons from world-renowned artist, Carol Wald (1935-2000) whose art is on display at The National Gallery of Art, Minnesota Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution and Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum. Valerie recalls, the joy of Ms. Walds’ instructions and stands out, as a foundation of Valerie’s creativity. In High School, Valerie also worked on banners for sporting events and floats for many school parades.
Valerie attended Kendall College of Art and Design in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where she earned her degree, with a Major in Illustration and Minor in Advertising. Kendall College, is an extremely competitive learning environment, but where Valerie, truly learned how to timely complete assignments. Kendall College, is one of the top ten art and design schools in America.
After college she worked as an Illustrator and Package Designer for an advertising art studio in Mishawaka, Indiana. She worked on a number of national packaging designs, including, Alka Seltzer and Bugs Bunny Vitamins. She moved to Dallas, Texas where she created amusement park maps for Six Flags and others, at a nationally recognized map design firm. She also worked for a large advertising agency on projects such as, Xerox Corporation, generating sales presentation brochures and pamphlets.
She moved back to Northwest Michigan to raise her two girls and begin her life as a fine art artist. She started painting Impressionistic landscape scenes in oil. Where better, than in Northwest Michigan, where she grew up and had so many visions of natural light transcending upon water and landscapes. She started painting in a Gallery on Main Street in Harbor Springs, Michigan. Each piece created, quickly sold. She set up booths annually at the famed Harbor Springs Art Fair (12 years). Further, she has presented original works of art, in several other galleries, fairs and private showings, including, The New York Art Expo. Her work is displayed in institutional, corporate and country club venues. She then, ventured across Little Traverse Bay, to Bay Harbor and set up a booth where she continued to create art, selling each piece.
In 1999 she opened Valerie Studio & Fine Art Gallery in the Gaslight District in Petoskey, Michigan. She painted hundreds of creations. Her gallery sold everything from from oil on canvas to giclee’ prints, post cards, tea bags (with her images thereon) and seasonal greeting cards. She only displayed and sold original and prints of her own creation. Valerie each year, donated several original pieces to fundraising events, which generated thousands of dollars for numerous charitable causes. She received several awards, including, The Best Gallery in Northwest Michigan (3 times). Valerie created art for the covers of the local Phone Guide, Dining Guide and local magazines and the covers of many other seasonal marketing booklets. She also taught several private lessons, of oil on canvas, to adorning customers, helping each student (from 12-85 years of age) learn to create art in a relaxed art-full environment, in her studio and gallery. Occasionally, while working and living in Northwest Michigan, Valerie would create abstract pieces, welcomed by many, and once again, selling each such creation.
Valerie now opened her gallery and studio on the second floor in newly built Jewel building, on Main Street in Sarasota.
Commission work is welcomed by Valerie.
Please consider to enjoy one of her creations in your home, office, restaurant or shop.
Valerie Studio & Gallery:
1301 Main Street
Sarasota, FL 34236