Artist has her roots in area

Bodie Todeschi Hartman has her art on display at Raven House Gallery Enlargephoto

Jeanne Archambeault/Times

Bodie Todeschi Hartman has her art on display at Raven House Gallery

Bodie Todeschi Hartman, a fairly recent addition to the Raven House Gallery, works in pastels. Most of what she does has a Native American feel to it, or depicts a Native American person. Western themed pictures of cowgirls and horses can also be seen throughout her work.

A pastel stick, or crayon, is a color that has pigment and binder in it. The stick itself looks a lot like chalk.

“I love working with them because they’re very forgiving,” Hartman said. She does her paintings on acid-free linen paper, which gives it an even softer look.

She might work on 2 or 3 projects at one time, giving her lots of variation. Most of what she paints is faces and people in varying poses. That way, the light that is shining on something is very important, she said.

She uses a pastel pencil to draw things out first.

Hartman studied painting in high school, then went on to study with Nancy Glazier, a wildlife artist, and Jack Hines, who paints a lot of Native American and wildlife subjects.

Her family has been part of this area for many years. Her grandfather came from Italy and sold farm supplies in Rico and Silverton. Her Uncle Joe Todeschi, her father’s brother, lived in Silverton, and passed away in Nov. 2011. “He was the oldest living permanent resident in Silverton,” she said.

Pastels have been Hartman’s passion since 5th grade. “They’re nice because you can put them away for a while — years, even — and when I bring them back out, I can start working on them again…”

Hartman also studied art under Stanton Englehart, who was a professor at Fort Lewis College when she was a student there.

So she loves to learn from other artists, of which there are many in this area. Hartman also learns by showing her art and getting critiques from other artists and art lovers.

“My mom was Indian and my dad was Italian,” she said. “I have many Native American friends and I just love to paint them.”

Her inspiration came from a friend who lives in the Taos Pueblo. “It just made me wake up ... it brought something out in me spiritually.”

Hartman is enjoying her time in Mancos. “The people here have been great ... very friendly.”