Jewel Gwaltney, a well known Tri-State photographer, will be the Guest Artist at the Alliance Art Gallery for the month of September. Her work has garnered many awards, including national recognition from the Hoyt Art Exhibition in New Castle, PA, the Mary S. Oakley Area Artists Best in Show Award and the City of Quincy Arts Award as an individual artist. She was featured as one of six artists on the Mississippi Valley Project through the Illinois Arts Council.
Nationally known for her creative, often eclectic compositions, Gwaltney has devoted over 30 years to her passion for photography. While she enjoys working in both color and black and white, she has a special love for black and white presentation. She began her exploration of photography in 1981 when her husband gave her one of his old cameras. She had explored drawing, painting and watercolor but soon found her artistic expression thru the medium of photography. Gwaltney has studied her art form extensively throughout the years, both locally at Quincy University and Culver-Stockton and in national workshops, building a reputation for artistic composition, color, and abstract flair.
A North Carolina native with a degree in nursing, Gwaltney says she likes to think outside the box. She often turns her photos upside down or on their side if it creates a better image. She is known for her interpretation of everyday objects, flowers and scenery from her travels. Often focusing on specific portions of a photo she creates new images born from her eye for detail and composition. She says she creates her art for herself but is so happy when someone else likes her work.
As times have changed toward digital cameras Gwaltney expanded from film and traditional darkroom processing to include digital cameras, added Digital Darkroom to her tools and enrolled in classes at Culver-Stockton in order to learn the new methods of her art. She says she loves to play with expanding her abilities and that there is always something to learn.
The exhibit of her work will open on Saturday, September 13, with a reception from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and will continue thru October 5.