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MailTribune.com
  • Collage Course

    Skier and cyclist Suzy Stone draws inspiration for her art from the outdoors
  • Art is where you find it, and this winter you can find it in the ski lodge on Mount Ashland.
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    • Winter People
      Winter brings out the best in some people. Plenty of skiers, snowboarders and snowmobile riders wait eagerly for the first snow on Mount McLoughlin to signal their favorite season. This winter, the...
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      Winter People
      Winter brings out the best in some people. Plenty of skiers, snowboarders and snowmobile riders wait eagerly for the first snow on Mount McLoughlin to signal their favorite season. This winter, the Mail Tribune will talk with some of Southern Oregon's "winter people" about their favorite ways to enjoy the short, cold days between fall and spring. If you know someone who might make a good subject for these occasional stories, drop an email to Bill Kettler at bdkettler@gmail.com. Please include a few details explaining why that person would be interesting for readers, and a phone number to reach you.
  • Art is where you find it, and this winter you can find it in the ski lodge on Mount Ashland.
    Large collages of skiers and mountain bikers brighten the interior walls of the big, chalet-style building where skiers and snowboarders gather to warm up and grab a bite to eat or get a drink. They're the work of Ashland native Suzy Stone, 41, a painter by training, who turned to collage for psychic relief when she returned to school to study nursing.
    An avid skier and cyclist, Stone uses pieces of colored paper to create illusions of depth and light and shadow on a two-dimensional surface. A composition can include hundreds of pieces of carefully shaped paper, pieced together almost like a mosaic. Viewers often mistake the finished images for paintings at first glance, but a closer look reveals the real materials.
    "It's interesting how this whole collage thing started," Stone says. She earned a degree in art, but like so many others, had to earn a living outside the art world. She worked as a massage therapist for 15 years, and ran a flower shop in Ashland until the economy tanked.
    "It feels like I've had lots of careers," she says, "but I've always identified as an artist."
    Approaching middle age, she realized "it was time to get real" and learn a skill that would provide steady employment and a decent income. An interest in human anatomy led her to consider nursing, but she had never taken the science classes that are required to enroll in a nursing program. She returned to Southern Oregon University to complete the prerequisites for nursing school — anatomy, physiology, microbiology and a whole slew of demanding academic classes that were a world apart from her undergraduate art classes.
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