A California native and long time resident of Santa Cruz, California, Ed Smiley’s abstract paintings are characterized by vibrant colors and ambiguous imagery, evoking figures without committing to them. Ed’s work incorporates acrylic transfer of xerography, newspapers, maps, digitally modified images, digital printing, drawings pastels and other objects combined in various ways with acrylic mediums and paints. The implied movement in time rhythm and tone, paired with his use of color is poetic and elusive, creating multiple layers of meaning and implication. Ed says of his work, “I delight in subverting a line and turning it into a shape, turning a shape into an outline, and playing in the shifting in-between world where no one thing is purely one thing or unequivocally in front of another, seeking just that flow of endless energy.” He approaches painting with openness and curiosity, allowing the painting to lead him on a voyage of discovery. Ed’s work has been featured in numerous solo and group exhibitions over the years, including Santa Cruz Art League, Leeds Gallery, Pacific Grove Art Center, various First Friday venues, and Sebastopol Center for the Arts.
Topher McGovern hails from Boise, Idaho. He moved to Santa Cruz, California in 2000. Topher takes full advantage of the plentiful travel opportunities as a systems administrator to explore different cities from behind the lens. Topher uses the words "catharsis," "therapy" and "escape" when describing what draws him to photography. Photography is what gets him out of bed before the crack of dawn, searching the world for a great shot. Through the viewfinder, Topher discovers a new way of seeing and experiences the quotidian in a new light. The subject matter of his work is almost arbitrary, as long as it provides a hearty dose of technical challenge. He appreciates difficult shots, such as capturing reflections in water, and producing crisp lines while the world is in subtle motion during long exposures. Topher works with HDR (High Dynamic Range), which is a composite of several images taken of the same subject with varying lengths of exposure. Topher's work is printed on metal and metallic prints, giving his images a rich, luminous quality. He is known to photograph cityscapes, landscapes, seascapes, and various architectural details. A common element found throughout most of his work is expressive skies and reflective water.