7th Annual Leaves & Petals Best in Show Winners – October 2021

Visit the 7th Annual Leaves & Petals Art Exhibition HERE.

Best in Show (Traditional) – Steve Kavalec – “Two Pots” – oil

Artist Biography

Steve was born in Spalding, Nebraska, in 1960. His career in art started when he landed his first commercial art job shortly after high school. Deciding to hone his skills in his chosen craft, he applied and was accepted to the Art Institute of Seattle. After completing his degree in Visual Communications, he moved back to his childhood home of Ft. Collins, Colorado. He spent the next twelve years working in various forms of Graphic Design and Print Media.

Always wanting to improve his skills, Steve found himself back in school at the Colorado Institute of Art where he received a degree in graphic design and graduated 1st in his class. He was soon designing web sites and applications. Over the next several years, Steve found that his true passion was exploring and experimenting in the field of fine art. Steve began studying oil painting at the Art Students League of Denver. The League was a good fit. It enabled Steve to quickly learn many techniques from both teaching-artists and students. With the constructive feedback, Steve’s painting skills quickly grew. One of his favorite sayings is, “I always learn something about art from everyone, whether they are an artist or not.”

Steve is currently living in Fort Collins, Colorado. He has been in several regional shows in Colorado and New Mexico. His artwork can be seen at https://www.stevekavalec.com/.

Artist Statement

Painting enables me to see and tell colorful and interesting stories. It allows me to take ordinary moments in time, filter them through my consciousness and create wonderful and unexpected images. I was born with a creative sole wanting to express itself. As long as I can remember, the creative process has always been magical to me. I paint for myself. When I paint; there are no thoughts, there are all my thoughts. There is just the painting process, my muse, and my inner child.

Best in Show (Photography & Digital) – Dave Lee – “Kissed by the Sun” – digital art

Dave Lee is a digital artist who creates artwork, using the latest computers and graphics software available on the market today. As a lifelong resident of Indiana, he has been creating art since his early years in Indianapolis.

As Dave experimented with various art-creation mediums over the years and enrolled in various art classes, he struggled to find a style and medium that would enhance his natural art abilities. His attempts to paint with watercolors, acrylics and oils ended with unprofessional work and unsatisfying results.

In the early 1990’s, he purchased his first personal computer to use in graphic design work. This was at a time when virtually no one owned a personal computer. Over the years, as his skills improved, Dave realized that today’s computers and software were the perfect tools for him to use as the new “brush and canvas” combination for digital art creation. With more than 23 years of computer experience, he uses these components to create popular, digital artwork with qualities that far surpass the art he created long ago.

Currently, Dave is inspired to create his digital art based mostly on nature, rural scenes and architecture, and he continues to experiment with different subjects and styles. Today, art creation is Dave’s passion and he feels blessed to have considerable time to devote to his artistic efforts.

 Dave’s work can be seen on his website.

Best in Show (3 Dimensional) – Victor Oriecuia – “Sacro Fiore” – carrara marble, bardiglio marble, iron

Victor Oriecuia, a Kingston Ontario stone sculptor with 20 years’ experience, is passionate about pursuing and preserving old-world sculpting traditions. Victor’s hand carved sculptures push the perceptions and limitations of marble, onyx, and other hard stones. He is drawn to the intimate nature and devotion required to render sculptures, and the unlimited potential of natural stone. Victor’s exquisite sculptures engage viewers with an art form that has remained virtually unchanged throughout human history.

Victor’s work can be seen at www.artistsincanada.com/oriecuia


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