New Show Coming Sunday Oct 22! “Nevermore”

Nevermore Exhibit Flyer

Come on out and see what our artists have to offer this Halloween at our newest show “Nevermore”. “Nevermore” is a show inspired by the iconic work, “The Raven” by Edgar Allan Poe. We will have information about the famous author and what inspired his work as well as one of a kind original, paintings, mixed media, drawings, and photography inspired by this famous poem and all things spooky for this Halloween. The exhibit will run through mid November when we will begin to transition to our Winter Show “Home for the Holidays”. Hope to see you soon!



From Boots to Arts



Congratulations to Tana and Tommy Davis on the opening of Prairie Horizons Studio for the Creative Arts!

I first met 1SG(R) Tommy Davis in September of 2016, when he was attending Boots To Business at Fort Riley. At the time, Tommy was getting ready to retire after 21 years in the army.

Tommy and his wife Tana had recently purchased an historic building in Chapman, KS with the dream of opening a business that would make a positive contribution to the small community while also connecting with Tana’s zeal for creative arts. The exact details of what the business was going to be, however, needed to worked out. After Boots To Business, Tommy, Tana and I met to discuss their goals for the business and to review their business plan.

Tana is a professional illustrator and painter, but is passionate about teaching and has a master’s degree in education…

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The Theory of Creativity

I have been forming a theory. I think I am going to call it my Theory of Creativity. Einstein once said ““I am enough of the artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.”
I would go as far to say that Imagination is actually not just more important but it is essential to knowledge. Through our imagination, and intuition we form visions in our minds of possibilities, possibilities in art, possibilities in music, in philosophy, in science, in math, and in our entire understanding in every possble way of the world and universe around us. Naturally we seek to turn those visions into forms of reality. This whole process is called CREATIVITY.
So it hurts my heart when I hear anyone at any age say “I am just not very creative”. They might as well say “I am not very human.” or “I have the mental capacity of a rock.” And I wonder at what point did any human being decide to say of themselve that they are not creative. I believe it began not because of a lack of potential, but because of a lack of nuture. Their natural Imagination has not been nutured and valued and so they have come to believe that they are not capable of a essectial part of being a human being.
Creativity is more than the ability to draw a pretty picture or compose a peice of music. Its the ability to see a vision of something greater than you have and then turn that vision into a reality.
If you want my opinion about what is wrong with our education system it is that we try to teach our children to be knowledgeable without first teaching them how to nuture their imagination. But its like trying to teach a butterfly to fly while its still a catapillar. You might be able to teach it the concept of flight and how aero-dynamics and wing structure create lift, but unless it actually HAS wings… its only going to be able to crawl… not fly. Thats what knowledge is without imagination.
You can not be a butterfly without wings. You might have every encyclopedia in the world memorized but without the imagination and vision to make use of that knowledge, or the confidence and will to exercise that knowledge and focus it in a creative way then it will amout to nothing. 
This is why the creative arts should be not just a side note in American education system. Art and music and drama and creative writing should not just be things that you might take a class in someday if your schedule permits. They should be lifelong pursuits. The creative arts nurture our imagination, and imagination leads to vision which leads to creation.
For instance, an art project teaches a person to first use their imagination to form a vision which they then turn into a visual reality. This artsistic experience floods over into every aspect of their life. They learn that they have the power to turn their visions into realities. Whatever they choose to do in life, the lessons they learn through the creative arts will help them have the confindence to believe that they can turn vision into reality, and being taught to complete an artistic objective disciplines us to complete objectives in life and work. Through the creative arts we learn that we can.
Does this mean that every person has to be a painter or musician of craftsperson of any kind? No, but it means that we should teach our children to utilize their imagination and generate creativity. The visual, musical, theatre and literary arts are only a few tools that we can use to do this.
There are other tools. Building blocks is one of the first that children learn to utilize. Putting together model cars and other figures then painting them and displaying them, these too are creative arts. Anything that requires the use of creative vision to result in a physical reality could be considered a creative art.
This is why it hurts so much to here someone say that they are not creative. It is a vicious lie that they have learn to tell themselves because they have not been taught the importance of nuturing their own imaginations.

Instructors Needed!

We are currently looking for instructors in dance, and piano, guitar and for voice lessons! We would also be interested in finding someone to run an acting clinic or class and a creative writing or poetry class. If you have any teaching experience in these disciplines and would like to have a really fiun place to work then please let us know! We are looking forward to hearing from you!!!!

Summer Classes Coming Soon!

Here is a short list of some of the summer classes and activities that we will be hosting at Prairie Horizons Studio. This is not a complete list but should give everyone an idea of what is coming. Also please be ready to start registering for class at the end of this month. We will be hosting our summer registration during the week of the 22nd. Feel free to stop in from 1 to 7pm to sign up for our classes and clubs. Also please comment on what classes you would be interested in and what times work best for you. We will do ouur best to accomodate all schedules. Most classes will last from 6 to 8 weeks.

Our first group of classes will be aimed at teaching students of all ages how to mix and use color in art. Did you know that almost every color in our world comes from the mixture of 5 basic pigments? Thats right Red, Yellow, Blue, White and sometimes Black. I say sometimes black because in truth even black can come from mixing all the primary colors together in the right quantity. I consider the understanding of color theory to be primary to the developement of the artist and a essential part of developing and growing creativity in students of all ages. Therefore I am beginning our first series of classes with the exploration of color.

“Little Bits Art” ages 3-5  This is a class for the youngest artists. Each class will last just a half an hour and consist of one project that little hands can really get into. We will explore a little bit of fun color theory, a little bit of sculpture and a little bit of pastels and paints. Please be sure that students have appropriate play clothes. All materials used will be kid friendly and safe. Day and time as well as cost for classes and material fees TBA…

“Budding Artists” ages 5-8 This will be a 45 min class for students with a little more skill and hand-eye coordination . As in the Little Bits class we will explore a variety of artistic media but at a higher skill level. Projects will consist of painting with water colors and kid safe acrylics or tempera paints. We will also do some paper mache and work with air dry clays as well as explore with pastels, colored pencils and chalk. Day and time as well as cost for classes and material fees TBA…

“Paints to Pastels” Ages 8-13 In this class we will explore the use of color in art and the different types of media that artists use to convey color in art. There will be an emphasis on how to mix color and combine color in a variety of media including acrylic paints, water color paints, oil pastels, colored pencils, and chalk.

“Color Theory for Teens and Adults” Ages 13 to 103 Here we will explore colors and color theory and how various artists and art movements have deployed the use of color in their paintings to evoke emotion, and content. Advanced color mixing techniques will be explored using acrylic and other wet media. Students will be encouraged to create art using colors in a significant and meaningful way and to explore how artists past and present have used color to define their art and its meaning.


Our second group of classes will focus on the skill of drawing what you see. The ability to depict the world around you with pencil and paper is an important tool in art. It can be a art form in and of itself and a way to convey your ideas of other art that you wish to create. 

Elementary Drawing ages 8-13 I do not offer drawing classes before age 8 because drawing requires focus and the ability to concentrate which many children before the age of 8 are not ready for. This is a class for the serious young artist that can focus for at least an hour upon a project. We will learn drawing exercises to help us draw what we see at the beginning of each class and then move on to projects that will help us learn to shade, create texture and utilize patterns in art.

Intro to Drawing for teens and adults 13 – adult This class is a introductory class for teens and adults. I will begin with the same princibles as I teach in my Elementary Drawing class but the projects will require greater effort and concentration. Classes will begin and finish with a self portrait and will focus upon learning to use the right side of the brain. We will also begin to explore perspective and how to create a realistic sense of space.

This class is a pre-requisite for classes in drawing people, and advanced drawing. If a student can prove proficiency in drawing techniques then they may opt out of Intro to drawing but it is suggested as a good refresher class even for experienced artists.


Other possible art related classes for later in the summer or early fall:

Face painting and special effects workshops

Advanced Drawing, Watercolor, Landscape Painting, Illustration, Design Basics, Sculpture, Dry color media (colored pencils, chalk pastels, oil pastels)

Decorative and Toll Painting Classes

And MANY more!


Clubs and activities we hope to sponsor!

Master builders (Lego style block building club) – Not every child loves to draw or paint, but all children have the desire to create. Some express this desire through building with blocks! If you are a Master Builder and want the chance to show off your skill then we would like to offer to host a club just for you where you can bring in your latest lego type block creations to show off or to swap blocks that you need for a specific project then we want to provide you with a place to do just that. For $10 a month for club fees you can come and use our historic building for your lego building needs. Club meeting times TBA. Parents welcomed and encouraged to participate with kids.

Model Builders Club- If you love to put together models of plains, or cars or whatever but have trouble finding the time to do so or are struggling with a particularly difficult part or are looking for tips on how to render details on models then this is the club for you. Model building technicians will be available to assist you in putting together your models and creating realistic painted effects on your models. Club fees will be $20 per month and will include paid technicians and use of on site brushes and paints as well as support and advice of fellow members.


These are just a few of the classes and clubs that we will soon be offering! Please stay tuned to see what else we come up with AND let us know of classes that you are most interested either posted or not yet posted. 






















Coming Up!

I’ve been a little bit under the weather lately but am finally getting around to posting our upcoming events. First of all we will be hosting Swan Amity Sheridan’s Show. Swan is a fiber quilt artist who will be having a quilt show here at Prairie Horizons on May 22nd. Come and see all her new and old and best favorites. Swan has been quilting for years and really has extraordinary designs. She is truly a artist! 18308927_10208911458249227_929121508_n


Our WiFi is now up and running and we have been working on several small projects over the past week. There are a couple new couches and one more on the way. We will be continuing to work on projects and you will likely see Tommy working from time to time on his homework for college. If we are here, please feel free to stop in.

I was asked about access for our friends with limitations on their mobility. There are still plans for that to happen, and it looks like the middle door will be the one with the access when we can get a ramp put in. We have to find someone to do the work, or get the time free to figure it out ourselves. Either is possible as we shift our focus to working on the exterior of the building this summer.

There is certainly still a lot to do, and it is a long term project. We hope that you are able to see improvements as we continue in our labor of love.

Open House Exhaustion!

Whew! Our open house was a great success. We had a steady stream of participants throughout the day. I have to give a big shout out to all our artists that exhibited with us and I want to assure them that come sickness, health or flooding we will be open again this coming week.

After all the hectic preperation of the week previous to the 22nd of April I found myself pretty run down as did Tommy. Apparently we are both not as young as we used to be. I have a rotten cold and sore throat and its making me crazy to not be able get to the studio to work. But I seem to be getting better so we will be back around tomorrow and open for sure on Tues and Thursdays from this point on. As of the end of May we will be open full time as promised.

Good News is that as of tomorrow we SHOULD have free wifi up and running in the studio… so stop on by and if you didnt get to see our open house this is the week to make up for it! Our current exhibit will be on display until the end of the month and maybe for sometime after and as always grab a cup of tea and coffee and leave a small donation for our scholarship fund.

AND… This Sat is our first painting party! YEAH!