Artist Jane Kalmbach has involved several members of her family in the display featured in the Minot Public Library through the end of May.
Her pastel collection of some 24 pieces includes portraits of her son and her dog, and the bookmarks she put together with her daughter.
"For those we took old ivory piano keys and repurposed them by painting and beading them," Kalmbach said.
Terry J. Aman/MDN - - A piece Kenmare artist Jane Kalmbach painted on a piece of birch bark.
Terry J. Aman/MDN - - Kenmare artist Jane Kalmbach’s painting “Keeping Watch.”
Most of the works in her exhibit are pastels, but she also has a charcoal of her black lab and a painting on a buffalo skull, along with a few colored pencils and acrylic mixed media.
"I got interested in colored pencils recently, and that's what I'll probably be teaching at a workshop I'm doing in Minnesota," she said.
"I also have a birch bark piece in the library," she said. "There was a birch tree that was hit by lightning during a storm and all the bark was blown off, so I painted Canadian honkers on it."
Kalmbach is a private piano tutor, but started about seven years ago working on dog portraits. She does a lot of commissions for other dog owners and has worked extensively with both the North Dakota Council of the Arts teaching in schools and with the North Dakota Game and Fish Department on its duck stamp contest.
"I do a lot of commissions, leaning toward labs, because that's what I have, but really any kind of dog you can imagine," she said. "I can't even think how many different breeds I've done.
"It's kind of funny," she added "if I'm sitting at home with my lab at my feet and can't get the eyes quite right, I just look down and she looks up at me with just the expression I need at that moment. It's great."