SHIRLEY BALES FINE ART

The Prairie Collection

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MY JOURNEY

Prairie Spring

Evening and the flat land,
Rich and sombre and always silent;
The miles of fresh-plowed soil,
Heavy and black, full of strength and harshness;
The growing wheat, the growing weeds,
The toiling horses, the tired men;
The long empty roads,
Sullen fires of sunset, fading,
The eternal, unresponsive sky.
Against all this, Youth,
Flaming like the wild roses,
Singing like the larks over the plowed fields,
Flashing like a star out of the twilight;
Youth with its insupportable sweetness,
Its fierce necessity,
Its sharp desire,
Singing and singing,
Out of the lips of silence,
Out of the earthy dusk.
-Willa Cather

Shirley Bales, artist

Hi there! I'm Shirley. I am a multi-generational painter. While I was practically born with a paintbrush in hand, I formally studied fine art under an accomplished forensic portrait artist and other notable illustrators in the 1990's. My favorite thing to do is paint outside. I have attended workshops by acclaimed plein air painters, and exclusively painted outside for over 15 years to develop my unique color sensibility. I learned most of my technical knowledge from the Cennini Forum, comprised of forerunners of the Classical Realism Movement. I have participated in multiple group and solo shows winning multiple awards and accolades over the years. My work resides in thousands of private collections nationwide, and I am so grateful. I am now a resident of Colorado Springs, and someday soon I hope to take the show on the road in my new RV and paint Colorado and beyond. Please come along for the ride. Read more about my journey below.

"I have always felt there are layers to life"

That one color is not sufficient to express a passage in a painting. Life is nuanced, complicated and surprising. Painting should be a reflection of life. This is the world view that informs my painting process. I am fluent in mixed media, and believe that variety in paint, as in life, is a wonderfully rich experience. Ideally layering thick, thin, opaque, dry, fluid, transparent and everything in between should all work together to make a stronger whole. Hundreds of strokes viewed as one from a distance. However, up close, they are as individual as we are, and each stroke has its place, and is beautiful.

Shirley Bales, artist

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Testimonials of my Collectors

I absolutely love this print! Shirley was so helpful with questions I had as well. Bought it and two others for a set of three and I’m in love!
Alyssa
Collector
I sent this to my Mom for Christmas, and the seller was wonderful about sending a sweet note with the pic. Incredibly beautiful artwork!
Denise
Collector
I reached out to Shirley inquiring if she could do a specific picture and ship it within a few days as a special gift for a friend. She replied right away and committed to completing it in time, and even consulted me on modifications of the picture. It turned out perfect and better than I imagined! My friend loved it. Thank you Shirley! I highly recommend her for any custom paintings.
Kelsey
Collector
So amazing! The artwork is gorgeous and the item packaging was perfect. It shipped super quick and really can’t say enough nice things about this purchase. Thank you!
Meg
Collector
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SHIRLEY BALES FINE ART

Frequently asked questions

  1. 1. How do I buy an original?

    My originals are released to my email list first, then will be available on my website under the shop tab. Or on my home page "by collection" or  "available original art."  Join my email list below for exclusive first access to new art, studio news and information on upcoming events.
  2. 2. How will my product be shippied?

    All artwork is wrapped, padded extremely well, and sent in a well-fitting sturdy cardboard box. Prints may be shipped directly from SHIRLEY BALES FINE ART or may be shipped from my printing partner that specializes in fine art printing. All prints are handled with the utmost care; sealed in protective plastic and wrapped well and shipped via UPS Ground (usually arrives within 1-3 days within the US).  Most artwork will ship via UPS, includes tracking. and will arrive within 2-4 days (domestic) from time of shipping. International shipments will be sent via UPS or other carrier.  Artwork larger than 50 inches is sent un-stretched and rolled safely in a sturdy tube.  A local framer should be able to mount your art on stretcher bars and frame it to your preference. Should you need any help or advice regarding hanging and framing, don't hesitate to contact me at info@shirleybalesfineart.com.  If you prefer to ship your large painting fully stretched we will use a freight service to expertly handle the painting and deliver it right to your living room ($300-500). International Shipments: Shipping costs are calculated at checkout based on package weight and distance. If there is any discrepancy -/+ we will let you know via email.  International packages are a bit outside of my control. Border fees, duties, and handling fees may be charged by other countries and tracking may be limited. Shipping costs cover fees, packaging supplies, time, labor, and storage.
  3. 3. What is your Return Policy?

    Every order, commission, and sale is handled with care and as much clarity and transparency as possible.  My goal is for you to be completely thrilled with your purchase! Please take the time to read descriptions carefully and the check colors on multiple screens if you are concerned about color variations.  I try my best to represent the colors and tones in my work honestly and clearly. If for some reason your new art doesn't work for you or your space, no problem! I accept returns within 30 days in original condition with return shipping paid for by the buyer. For more information visit my policy page  click here
  4. 4. What are giclée prints?

    Reproductions printed in studio or by my printing partner, are Giclee reproductions created using a fine art printer, on quality fine art paper or canvas, with wide range of inks that if properly cared for, kept dry and out of direct sunlight, should last up to 100+ years. Giclee reproductions are made to order and typically take 6-10 days in production before shipping.

The Prairie Collection

Coming Soon!

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by SHIRLEY BALES FINE ART

In an Instant, Everything Changed

It was a sunny day when we made our way to the annual Plein Air Artists Colorado Paint Out in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. As we pulled up to our campsite after a long drive, tents and gear in tow, we arrived at our campsite to learn our fire pit was surrounded by nearly a foot of water. It was a confusing scenario, as the weather had been perfect on the drive in? In hindsight, it was an ominous nod to events to come. We decided to move our campsite to higher ground. An act that would eventually make us—the last tent standing. The next day, after an exhausting (yet glorious) day battling bugs and sun while painting outside—we settled into camp to prepare dinner in our brand new REI screen house. It was then that I noticed small clouds forming in the distance. I had a passing thought "maybe a storm is brewing?" Then without notice, the wind picked up to 60 miles per hour. We held on to the screen house for dear life as it nearly flew away with us along with it! Then the stinging rain started . . . We were completely exposed to the elements and at nature's mercy. This battle persisted for over half an hour, and at the end of it, we were the last tent standing. Wet and exhausted, that was the day I decided to buy an RV . . .