Jan M Rastall at Riverwalk Collective Gallery – Steamboat Springs


I was born in Missouri, the second of four children. My family moved to Colorado when I was four. I grew up in Arvada, one of the many suburbs of Denver. I moved to Fort Collins to attend Colorado State University (CSU) in 1975.  Over the course of my adulthood, I earned a Bachelor of Science in Sports Medicine (1979), an M.Ed. in Comunity and Adult Education (1989), and a second Bachelor degree in Fine Arts, Concentration – Painting (2017); all from CSU. I was a life-long learner, raised a family, and worked in a career for forty-five years in Fort Collins.

My creative drive began as a child. It was re-kindled when I was traveling in New Zealand in 1981.  I continued to sketch, using pen and ink, through-out other international travels in Nepal, India, Sri Lanka and Europe in the early 1980’s. I settled down to work and study the fine arts through the art department at CSU over the course of twenty-six years while I was employed by the University.  After I retired in 2012,  I decided to complete a second Bachelor Degree in Fine Arts. While earning my BFA, I was fortunate to study under art professors Erika Osborne, Patrice Sullivan and Tracey Stuckey. I now reside permanently, just up the hill, in the Fairview neighborhood of Steamboat Springs.

In the process of creating, I am opening myself to learning. If I am painting a landscape, I am looking and seeing into what constitutes the landscape – elements of the present and the past.  It is a process of seeking a deeper knowing.  My art incorporates a personal narrative about what inspires me.  It speaks to contemporary life. With each creation, I explore mark-making. I experiment with color. I investigate space. I engage in a process of letting go of outcomes to allow spontaneous energy to inform me.  I tiptoe into the garden of reverance to hint at the sacred.  I paint with oils because they allow me to investigate the texture of the medium in the mark-making process. I use a simple pallette because I enjoy discovering fresh color in the mixing process.

I enjoy painting en plein air for the immediacy of light and the natural forces in play. These constantly change, which challenges me as I work to interpret what I see. I use small panels (6″x 8″) when I paint en plein air. This allows me the option of hiking to an inspiring location.

My studio is where I explore juxtapositions of shape, color, and line that incorporate various contexts of landscape, objects, and imagination. It is also where I work on a larger scale.