photo by Jim Cornelius
photo by Jim Cornelius
Norma Holmes is one of the luminaries of Sisters’ vibrant arts scene. Noted for her plein air paintings, Holmes is now engaged in bringing a book of her work to life.

The artist has launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund printing and distribution of “Land Escapes: A Painted Journey On Oregon’s East Side.” The book is completed; Holmes is seeking $21,517 in contributions to have the book printed and distributed. The all-or-nothing Kickstarter campaign closes on June 2.

In a Kickstarter campaign, supporters contribute at a variety of levels and receive rewards based on what tier their contribution falls within. Such “crowdfunding” has supported numerous art, literary and musical projects in Sisters in recent years.

The creation of the book evolved over a period of 13 years, Holmes told The Nugget.

“I was doing a lot of painting and traveling on the East Side,” she said. “I was sitting on Steens Mountain looking at Basque Meadow and this idea came to me: People need to see this.”

Holmes said that, while the book will be of display quality that would make a great coffee table book, “my idea was that people would take this and travel with it.”

“Land Escapes is conceived to be an exquisite travel guide to the natural and cultural landmarks of Oregon’s eastern regions. Many of the sites will be familiar to folks in Central Oregon.

“It is 8x8, will have a sturdy soft cover with glossy UV coating and a 7.5 flap,” Homes explained. “There are 192 pages with original art, including five hand-painted maps, so that you may follow my journey to the painting sites, restaurants, and lodging.”

Holmes paints on-site.

“Every painting starts with a pencil rendering and notes,” she said.

Supporters can view a sample of the work on the Kickstarter page at https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/normaholmes/land-escapes.

Holmes is printing the book in Arizona, seeking the best reproduction of the subtle colors that she can get. She plans to be at the press as the book comes off.

“Printing a painting is not the same as looking at a painting,” she said. “It’s coming along really well.”

Holmes has been a contributor to the My Own Two Hands Art Auction in support of Sisters Folk Festival’s programs for the past 14 years.

“I just really appreciate the arts education the kids are receiving,” she said. “In music and visual arts… it’s something I would have liked to have had when I was young, so I wanted to contribute, to support it.”

Holmes has, herself felt the support of Sisters.

“This community has been so supportive,” she said.

Holmes expressed particular appreciation for the encouragement she received from writer and teacher Sue Stafford in a class she took.

“She really encouraged me to keep going and so did people in the writing class,” Holmes said. “She was really instrumental in saying, ‘You can do this, Norma!’”