Category Archives: Member

Estelle Skoretz

estelle skoretz


10069 Standifer Gap Road
Ooltewah, TN 37363


Estelle has been painting since 1977. The award-winning artist found she had a little extra time on her hands after her children left home for college. Painting soon became a special outlet for her, a way to relax, and it changed the way she viewed the world. “Once I started painting,” she said, “I saw so much beauty in everything.”

As the wife of a pastor, she has traveled extensively, and has viewed many expressions of art in the U.S. and Europe.

She has presented her work in various venues around north Georgia, including Statesboro, Calhoun, Macon and Dalton. Although she has painted with watercolor, she prefers oils. Oils represent all of her exhibited work.

Born and raised in Alberta, Canada, she taught art in private schools on and off for the past 10 years. She was educated by talented European and American painters like Yolanda Davis and Beverly Patrick. Her subject is often still life, representing rustic, natural images, mountains, seascapes and florals – from Indians and horses, to fruit and table settings.

She dedicates so much of herself to her work, and admits that she often has trouble parting with paintings when sold.

Harry Cheruk

harry cheruk picture


6602 Harvestview Lane

Harrison, TN 37341


I was born and raised in upstate New York, the fifth of six children. I liked to draw. One of my first adventures in art was when I was in kindergarten. It was a walk through a house we rented, whereby I left my ‘mark,’ (with one of those very smelly, very permanent markers, which glided oh so freely); on several door jambs and a few walls too. The exhibit was impressive, and I was hooked. My brothers and sisters, however, (they had to help clean up), were not. My family warmed to it after I was restricted to pencils… on paper… away from the walls… and outside.

In high school, drawing was my ‘happy place,’ and it gave me pleasure to share it with others. During that time, I also found oils. In 1977, I graduated from high school and was awarded the Charles E. Burchfield scholarship in Art. I went on to studies at Dutchess Community College and SUNY New Paltz. I saw a broader range of media and styles. I was amazed at the possibilities while working in oils, along with crayon, pastel, and charcoal. I had the chance to also work in intaglio (acid etched, and engraved) and did some sculpture studies in plaster. It was fun to wrestle with the work!

From 1979 to 1981, I was also privileged to intern for the sculptor and illustrator, Arthur Lidov, giving me an up-close look at the work and discipline of the Artist.

After leaving school, in 1982, I married my best friend Penny, and we were blessed with our daughter, Lindsay. Soon after I decided to pursue a career in printing which was engaging, paid the bills, but didn’t provide much in the way of a creative outlet. In 1999, I accepted a position with a printing company here, and we relocated to Chattanooga.

During the twenty or so years since I had last touched a brush to canvas, Penny continued to encourage me to return to my painting. But, I seldom did. In 1992, I painted the backdrop to the baptistry at Grace Freewill Baptist Church in Louisa, VA. In 2004, I painted a mural in my grandson, Braden’s, nursery; and then another mural later that year for a local home in Ringgold, GA.

Last year, Penny and I prayed on it… It was time to create again and share. I am currently working on skyscapes in acrylics and mixed media. My work is on exhibit (“Mixed Media, Contemporary, and Abstract” April – June 2015) at Reflections Gallery, Lee Hwy. Chattanooga.

In April 2015, I was accepted as a member of the Civic Arts League, Inc., and look forward to participating in, and promoting its many endeavors.


Janice Kennedy

janice kennedy


158 Sabre Circle
Ringgold, GA 30736


Janice Kennedy of Ringgold, Georgia, has an analytical background. After receiving a Bachelor of Science in mathematics and physics, she came to Chattanooga from Athens, Alabama, to begin a career with TVA. It was only after retiring that she began experimenting with the arts. She has studied watercolor and acrylic painting as well as woodturning. She has exhibited at several venues including Reflections Gallery, Eastgate Town Centre, Creative Arts Guild, Planet Altered, Michael’s Fine Art, Ringgold Art and Frame Shop. Her artwork is in private collections throughout the United States and internationally. She has an online shop on Etsy. It can be accessed through

She is a member of  Civic Arts League, Inc., Mixed Media Inspired Artists (MMIA) and the North Georgia Sky Painters Society. She has served as president of the Civic Arts League and currently is the Exhibition Committee Chairperson for MMIA. She divides her art time between painting, wood turning, and experimenting with various forms of artistic expression. She has held membership in the Tri-State Woodturners Association, Tennessee Watercolor Society and the North Georgia Art Alliance.

Becoming involved in art has made her more observant of the wonders of our surroundings. The joy she derives from these revelations and from the joy of the creative process is reflected in her art.

Janice is exhibiting through October at Michael’s Fine Arts in Dalton, GA with the MMIA group in an exhibit called “Passages.”

Janice’s current artwork!

Bob Cobb

Bob Cobb

Gourd Artist

1414 Continental Drive, #605

Chattanooga, TN 37405

(423)265-5839, (423)309-6870

Bob was born in Kansas City, Kansas, and moved to Chattanooga in 1959. He stayed in Chattanooga for 10 years, then moved to other parts of the south, and then returned in 1975. He attended the University of Alabama at Birmingham as a pre-law major, and was president of the student body for two years.

Bob began painting, on and off, about 25 years ago. He raised three children, so found painting late at night, when the house was quiet, his only opportunity to be creative. However, he attended evening classes at college, while working a full time job, so there wasn’t much time to paint.

In 2004, Bob began working with gourds. He felt this 3-dimensional art form spoke to him so much more than traditional painting. A friend of Bob’s raised gourds on his farm. Therefore, he had an abundant supply of material to work with. Bob enjoys painting and carving the gourds, and finds his inspiration in nature. He affixes arrowheads, beads, feathers, and about anything he can find that will stick. The major part of his design work is utilizing wood burning and cutouts.

Bob has won numerous awards with his gourds. He became the treasurer for the Civic Arts League, in 2010, but has been a member for many years.

Irma Herzog



7854 Trout Lily Drive
Ooltewah, TN 37363
(423) 910-1081


Irma relocated to Ooltewah, Tennessee in 2010 from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She is a native, however, of New Orleans. She began working as a commercial artist right out of high school.

After raising a family, she began to paint as a hobby and enjoyed oils, watercolor, and pen and ink drawings. She studied watercolor in Arkansas, Texas, and Louisiana. Irma had the opportunity to study with a well-known Baton Rouge artist, Joe Yoder. He became a major influence on her style and love for art.

Irma has been a member of the Louisiana Art and Artist Guild and the Louisiana Watercolor Society. She has been accepted in the National River Road Show, and the Louisiana Watercolor Society All Member Show.

She has won numerous awards including grand prize, first place – Acadian Art Festival in Plaquemine, and first & fourth place in Gonzales Jambalaya Festival. She won an honorable mention at the L.A.A.G. Coffee Klatch Kaleidoscope in Louisiana. She had a painting published in the 50th year cover of the Yellow Pages – Gonzales Telephone Directory.

She and her husband, Ed, moved to Tennessee to be closer to their daughter, Kara, and grand children. She also has a son, Kirk, and family living in Niceville, Florida.

Irma joined the Civic Arts League in 2010. She is looking forward to the opportunity to show her work in this area, and helping the League as assistant art director. She is also a member of an en plein air group called, “The Outdoor Girls.”

Irma’s current artwork!

John M. Alvis

John M. Alvis


6413 Ridge Lake Road

Hixson, Tennessee 37343


  Art has always been a part of John’s life. His mother, May Bell Alvis, and his sister, Judy Alvis Parsons, were multi-media artisans in the Birmingham area. Both were mainly self-taught using natural abilities. John has studied under Joyce Meffert for several years. He has recently been accepted into membership in the Civic Arts League and the Regional Art Alliance and has begun displaying his oil paintings through both organizations.

John currently specializes in landscapes. His love for nature has led him to travel to numerous countries, U.S. national parks and monuments with his lovely and supportive wife of 49 years, Gail. They have two adult sons, Johnny and Allen.

He retired as Professor of Accounting from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. He spent 32 years in teaching higher education. He taught during his years of completing degrees at Jacksonville State University, the University of Alabama, and the University of Arkansas. He taught at the University of Kentucky before locating to the Hixson area.

John’s other interests include golf, music, landscaping, reading, and public service. He performs a combination of song and comedy for various senior groups and churches. He serves on the steering committee for the Friends of Hixson, as treasurer of the Friends of the North River Civic Center, and president of his Ridge Lake North Neighborhood Association.  He is known for the smile on his face and the song in his heart.  He enjoys a life blessed by God.

John’s current artwork!

Betty Hamilton

Betty Hamilton



830 Belvoir Hills Drive
Chattanooga, TN 37412


(423)622-9701 (home)
(423)394-0710 (cell)


Betty graduated with a BA degree in Psychology and Art from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. After retirement, Betty’s need to “create” has become a reality through further painting classes at UTC. She has attended painting seminars and small group sessions, and participated in painting classes at Chattanooga State. Her teacher at Chattanooga State, Mike Holsomback, encouraged her to explore the spontaneity of painting with a palette knife. She likes the freshness she is able to achieve when painting with a palette knife.

Betty enjoys the stimulation of painting in small groups or in her small home studio. Each day she is challenged to strengthen her personal painting style. Art influences on the development of her style include the Impressionists and the Expressionists. She believes that in painting – the essence is more important than the details.

“I enjoy many methods of painting. My desire is to continue to grow in painting with both new and old methods of painting, but my goal is to paint more abstractly. I want the viewer’s mind to bring something to the painting that will fill in the blanks to complete my painting.”

Betty is currently a member of the Civic Arts League, and a couple of book clubs.

Current artwork! by Betty Hamilton.

Bobbie Brooks Crow

Bobbie Brooks Crow

Collaborative Artist

                                                         February 3, 1931 –   March 4, 2017

Bobbie was born in Cleveland, TN, and lived in Chattanooga all of for her adult life. She earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in painting and sculpture from UTC in 1997, at the age of 67.

Her love of watching others draw, paint, and sculpt evolved into collaborating with the public on a grand scale with 10 x 25 foot canvases using acrylic house paint. Her prominent pieces have hung on the Walnut Street Bridge, UTC, and the bell tower of the Grace Episcopal Church. In past years, Bobbie has been artist-in-residence in numerous schools in Chattanooga and Georgia. Large collaborative pieces have been produced with students and the public’s participation. Sites include The Creative Discovery Museum, Miller Plaza, River Gallery Outdoor Festival, and the Catoosa County Library.

In order to encourage local artists, and to display their work, Bobbie founded the St. Catherine’s Artist Guild at Grace Episcopal Church. The Grace Episcopal Church is currently the meeting place of the Civic Arts League of which Bobbie was an active member and Co-chair-woman of the Membership Calling committee. She was also a member of the plein air group called “The Outdoor Girls.”

She continued to take classes each week with Morris Mitchell, former professor at Ringling School of Art in Sarasota, FL. Under his direction, she had been painting shapes in brilliant colors acrylic paints. However, that changed on April 27, 2011, when a tornado displaced her to her daughter’s home for months. Her mediums were watercolor, tissue paper collage, and crayons. Most recently, she had utilized Sharpies on paper. Using what she had learned from doing the acrylic paintings, she infused into her drawings shapes that helped her deal with her upside down world. While living with her family she had worked continuously dealing with emotions from the storm. She has work at Goose Creek Studios in Bedford, Virginia, and at the Reflections Gallery in Chattanooga.

Bobbie’s current artwork!

Carolyn Jo Cannon

Carolyn Jo Cannon


Hidden Creek Apts.

7710 East Brainerd Road #608

Chattanooga, TN  37421

 (423)987-7206 (cell)


I was born and raised in Chattanooga, TN.  I have a true love of life and the beauty in everything that surrounds us.  Art is my way of embracing what I see and sharing it with others.

I attempted my first painting in 1991.  Since that time, it has been a wonderful and most rewarding adventure.

I enjoy working with oils, pastels, acrylics, and watercolors.  I’ve enhanced my craft by attending various classes and workshops.  It has been my fortune to have painted with Sandra Washburn, Virginia Skipper, Norma Poulos, Buck Paulson, Dana Jester, Tom Jones, Gary Jenkins and several other wonderful artists.

I have been an active member in the Civic Arts League, Inc. for many years and have often served as its president.  I am also a founding member of an ‘en plein air’ group called, “The Outdoor Girls.”  My favorite subjects usually involve wild life, landscapes, and nature scenes.  I currently have artwork at the Ringgold Art & Frame Gallery in Ringgold, Georgia.

Artist statement:  Like many people, I feel art is the window to the soul.

Carolyn’s recent artwork!

Cynthia Elaine Pennington

cynthia pennington


536 South Crest Road

Chattanooga, TN 37404


Cynthia Elaine is an emotionally and spiritually insightful watercolor artist from Chattanooga, Tennessee. She captures the sensual and sublime, the sacred and profound, through expressive renderings that are often simple, close-up representations or abstract impressions employing unexpected colors and spiritual themes. Viewing art as a journey of self-expression, Cynthia reveals, “Art is the way I know myself and my Creator.” She experiences creativity as an act of worship, a belief developed as the daughter of a minister and further cultivated as a theological graduate herself from Emory University.

Rediscovering her childhood bliss, she quite literally waded into the water as an artist, taking her first watercolor class on the Beach of Ocracoke Island a decade ago. Like a thirsty brush, she continued absorbing knowledge under the tutelage of Betty Brown, John Campbell Folk School; Carroll Shoupe, Maryville College; Susie Holt, Knoxville Arts Center; Stacey Fletcher, University of Tennessee; and Karla Kincannon, Scarritt Bennett.

Cynthia has exhibited at the Knoxville Arts and Fine Crafts Center, John Campbell Folk School, Blount County Library, Hiwassee College, Healing Waters Center, Vine Street Market, St. Mark’s Gallery, Talus Restaurant at Lookout Mountain, and other churches and private residences. A graduate of the Holmberg Institute and a member of AVA, she served as the Artistic Director of the St. Andrews Arts Academy – a nonprofit arts education program for inner city children, taught for Art Creations, and has led numerous “Artist Way” groups and spiritual retreats.

Artist mission: “To be a vessel of grace, light of beauty, and artist of truth”