Day 294: Karlene Voepel

Though born and raised in Missouri, at heart Karlene Voepel always longed for the Southwest.  (It must have been all the cowboy and Indian movies!)  Karlene’s education was in painting, at Stephens College and Washington University School of Fine Arts in Missouri, where she received a full-tuition scholarship in painting.   Later she studied Commercial Art at Meramec Community College, enabling a 7-year career in commercial art and fashion illustration in St. Louis and Louisville, Kentucky.  Breaking away from the norm, Karlene and her potter-husband headed for the mountains and deserts of New Mexico.  There they “lived the dream” in their little adobe house.  Karlene decorated Monte’s pottery and raised a daughter, as well as chickens, goats and horses.  No TV, no phone, no microwave!

Jump to 2018, Karlene now lives near Sedona, Arizona.  There she can be seen perched high atop a red rock, clutching her pastel paper from the wind, with a big box of pastel pencils spewed all over the ground.  Some tourists photograph her as part of the ambiance.  Once she unwittingly chose to sit right in the middle of a bike path on the trail.  Lost in the creative process, she looked up to see 10 bicyclists surrounding her.  “Can you put me in your picture”, one of them said.

Here are some of Karlene Voepel’s plein air pastels of Sedona, Arizona, for you to enjoy.

Also, available on note cards at:

Pastels, paintings and claywork available at: 

Sedona Red Rocks
Scan_20180209 (2)
Gibraltar Rock
Scan_20180327 (1)
“Two Nuns”
Scan_20180311 (3)
Lee Mountain
Scan_20180407 (2)
Bell Rock


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