Returning April 12th

UBTech’s Scholarship Art Auction returns to our Vernal campus on April 12th 2024. RSVP below, or click the donate button if you cannot attend but would still like to make a contribution.

It’s your community. Your Uintah Basin. You made all the difference in the world for artists and students alike.

The Artists

Vanessa Barboza

I’m Vanessa! I’m based in Vernal UT and my favorite photography to create is. Landscape, Wildlife, and Portraits. But I really do love any kind of photography!
I attribute my unique/ eccentric style to my beloved home town of Moab, UT. But I really love living in Vernal, the variety of landscapes and wildlife is a constant inspiration. Capturing a moment with my camera that might otherwise be missed is one of the best rewards! I Love making beautiful photo’s and find great joy in capturing the beauty of the unexpected. Everything has beauty, you just have to find it!

Trista Merrell

Trista Merrell is a vivid color artist. Born and raised here in the beautiful Uintah Basin. She enjoys spending time with her family outdoors. Her artwork primarily focuses on animals and nature. Trista’s medium of choice is acrylic, but she appreciates learning new and old techniques of all art styles and mediums. She is inspired by the natural world and all of its living things. Trista loves color and textures and takes joy in creating vibrant compositions with bold contrast. She holds the belief that we are all born with the ability to be the creator of something. She hopes to inspire others to explore their creativity and share their art.

Sherril B. Porter

Art is in my genes. I am the Son of Elbert H. Porter, famous dinosaur sculptor. I studied art in high school and minored in art in college. For a short time, I owned a sign shop. My profession was Lab. Tech. at industrial facilities. Now that I am retired, I plan on doing my passion which is Art and in particular, oil painting and watercolor. Presently my interests are painting wildlife, landscapes, still life, etc.

A landscape always looks better with a human or animal figure. Buildings and structures also add interest. Often, I will usually take some time to study a subject before painting. I will get an idea and then research it with reference images from the internet or my own photos. I will sketch it out and write notes as how I want to proceed. The focal points, such as figures will be sketched out several times before deciding on a pose. I can take days before deciding on a painting. Other times I will just pick up a brush and paint. I also like to paint in nature with plein air technique. I like doing a lot of different things. I even do wet on wet style, similar to Bob Ross. Painting is to me at times almost magical or a gift.

Robin O’Crowley

The Uintah Basin is Robin’s home and has been for over 30 years – she and her husband love it here. She has been painting in different mediums over the years while their children were growing up. Time spent came and went as things do when you are raising a family. About 6 years ago she started taking watercolor classes online – learning botanical art – which is her favorite. She keeps on learning and challenging herself to try new things in the world of art. She has recently painted with textures and worked on glass art. Robin loves serving others and loves being part of the UBVA team. She is a painter and board member.

Bonnie Jensen

Bonnie Jensen is an American Contemporary Artist, born and raised in Buffalo, NY where she spent her career as a Fine Art Restorer and Gallery owner, restoring pieces for Collectors, Antique Dealers and Museums. This taught her many styles and techniques. During this time, she also worked on her own personal style. Most of her pieces were commissions of horses and or figurative works.
Her originals are admired and collected widely by Equine Professionals, Business Leaders, Entertainers and Art Collectors. Her work can be found in Private Collections, Corporate Offices, and Fine Dining Establishments. Her work has influenced and inspired many artists today. Creating art that shines a light on the human heart.

Lori Burchinal

Utah based artist Lori D. Burchinal, is deeply dedicated to her art. Through her artistic journey, she has had the chance to learn from professional artists and fellow art enthusiasts. One of her experiences took her to the Florence Classical Academy of Art in Italy, where her nine-month stay was unfortunately shortened by the Covid-19 outbreak. Lori’s artwork has been showcased in various exhibitions, earning her accolades and awards such as the prestigious David Gale award from the Western Federation of Watercolor Society. She has also achieved Signature Member Status with the Utah Watercolor Society. Currently, Lori has the honor of being mentored by A.D. Shaw. In the upcoming summer, she plans to enjoy painting Plein Air and fishing with loved ones. Her greatest joy is to share her appreciation for the beauty of our world with you.

Jeanne Newman

Jeanne loves to paint western landscapes, either on location or in the studio, using a variety of media; sometimes portraying wildlife. Her first love was to draw and paint animals, especially pet portraits.She is one of two curators of UBVA’s ongoing exhibits at Uintah County Heritage Museum and her work is featured among the work of others at the Innovation Hub. Gallery representation includes Gallery 25 in Ogden, Utah, Stephen Sandau’s Gallery in Vernal, the Upstairs Gallery and Ashleigh Christie’s in Meeker, Colorado. In summer 2022 she completed the painting of two 8-foot-long cast aluminum dinosaurs to be placed in downtown Vernal. The first one features Split Mountain on one side, and Steamboat Rock on the other. The second one portrays Moonshine Arch, inside and out. Jeanne believes it is our calling as artists to share our vision of the beauty in life. She is honored to participate in this auction, to help students fund their education.

Lisa Labrum

Lisa Labrum was raised in Lyman, Wyoming, and relocated to Vernal in 1987, where she has embraced life in the basin. About three years ago, she started exploring watercolor painting in classes led by Lori Burchinal and has since developed a deep passion for this art form. While she keeps a few pieces for herself, she mainly enjoys creating paintings for her loved ones or contributing to charitable organizations and fundraising auctions.

Stephen Sandau  

Stephen Sandau is a photographer residing in the Uintah Basin, Utah. He is the owner of the Sandau Fine Art Gallery located at 461 W. 200 S., in Vernal. He enjoys chasing the early morning light which brings life and depth to photography. He loves hiking with his wife, spending time with his four children and their spouses and playing with the grandchildren.  

Nicolette Nelson

Nicolette Nelson is from Northern California. The first time she got interested in photography was when she was around 17 years old.  Her favorite things to photograph are flowers, landscapes, wildlife & Old Ranches.  Nicolette hopes you enjoy the creation of God’s beautiful world in her photography.  She loves to garden in the summer and paint in the winter. Her work centers on the things she loves most: the Savior and botanicals.

Deena Millecam

Deena Millecam, along with her husband John Millecam, lived and raised their family in Vernal. She now lives in St George. Deena has had the opportunity to know and learn the technique of watercolor and oil from artists such as David Arnsbrach, Chris Manwaring, Lori Burchinal and many others. Deena graduated in education and was involved in the Uintah School District for many years. She now exhibits her watercolor and oil paintings in several galleries. Her love of teaching art gives her the opportunity to share what she has learned with others.

Jennifer Bell

Jennifer is from Logan, Utah, where she graduated from Utah State. She met her husband Rick Bell while attending USU and moved to Vernal. She didn’t finish my schooling until after 6 babies came to join the family. In 1988 she went to work for Uintah School District.   Then, in 2001, all the kids were out of the nest, so she went back to school to complete a master’s degree. She taught mostly 1st grade for 31 years. Now retired, she has a little more time.   Jennifer has always liked art! And a year ago started taking watercolor classes from Lori Burchinal and a few other artists. She also likes to do pencil drawings. She is a co-owner of Boot Hill Farms and Foods, including an on-farm store where they sell meats, raw milk, eggs, and other fresh agricultural products. 

Janeal Wilson

An Artist since the age of eight, Janeal has taken countless workshops and classes; and later attended both Dixie College and Weber State College in the Bachelor of Fine Arts program. She is endorsed by the Utah Division of Arts and Museums as a Creative Aging Arts program instructor. She teaches private art lessons to all ages. Recently she taught an online Zoom class, Beginning Acrylic Painting, through the Creative Aging Program in partnership with the Jewish Center in Salt Lake City. She’s had the opportunity to be a Visual Arts judge for Davis High School and Naples Elementary for the Reflections contest; has taught Art at Hillcrest High School as a co – instructor under the Para-educator grant program. Janeal works in many genres of art. She specializes in the exciting genre of tactile art. A newer art form which involves the viewer in the experience by allowing the individual to actually touch the artwork. This form of art is opening the world of art to those who are low vision or blind, by allowing them to view the artwork through the sense of touch.

Chris Manwaring

As a young boy growing up in the Seattle suburbs during the 1980s, Chris Manwaring would hop on his bike and pedal out for the day, never knowing what adventures he’d find around each bend. These days, the Vernal, UT, artist approaches his expressive paintings in much the same way—with boundless curiosity and a fascination for the unknown. Manwaring’s adventures in painting began when his grandmother gave him a set of oils on his 12th birthday. His family relocated to Utah a year later, where his talent took root in the rural surroundings. As a high school sophomore, one of his paintings was juried into Utah’s all-state art show, an uncommon feat. His artwork caught the eye of renowned regional landscape painter VaLoy Eaton. Manwaring enthuses that Eaton changed his life. Eaton introduced him to the great masters and the possibility of creating a life doing something he loves and enjoys. The young artist committed himself to painting exclusively from life for five years, which greatly influenced his creative path. Exhibition invitations and a degree from Utah State University set the course forward. Manwaring appreciates the texture and fluidity of oil. Chris is a two-time Art Renewal Center Salon finalist.

Brent Evans

Brent Evans is a native of Northern Utah. He studied art at Weber State University and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Brigham Young University. He has taught design at the University of Arkansas and Northwest Arkansas Community College. He was recently awarded a first-place ribbon in the Art of the West Show and had two pieces juried for exhibit in the state art competition exhibit at the Eccles Community Art Center. His paintings have been exhibited in Estes Park, Colorado, Park City, and numerous other arts festivals. Brent enjoys painting, hiking, camping and fishing. Anything that takes him tramping around in the wild country around his home, not only brings him joy, it also refuels his creative energy reserve. He has studied the impressionist movement and admires many of the mighty talents that dominated the period. He particularly enjoys the pathway that impressionism opens to viewers of his work to interpret what they feel as well as imagine within his canvasses. Brent lives in Jensen, Utah with his wife, Lorna.

Jim Atherton

Jim has always had family in the Uintah Basin, in the Deep Creek area. In late 2021, his family traded city living for the country and built a cabin home in Deep Creek Ranches near Lapoint. He has been involved in illustration and publishing for over 27 years. Painting in oils, his preferred medium, is one that he continues to explore and discover. The familiar landscapes and life in Deep Creek are Jim’s inspiration. Visiting Deep Creek throughout his childhood has increased his desire to infuse that joy in his paintings. His greatest hope is to share the beauty and love that he has for his home.

Cheryl Livingston-Young

Over the course of her life as an artist, with years of independent study, Cheryl is convinced the biggest influence in her work is living in the Rocky Mountains and the high deserts of Colorado and Utah where there is such an abundance of wildlife, landscape, and the Western lifestyle. Cheryl spent 2 weeks in Denali National Park, Preserve Alaska photographing the wilderness, and the wildlife for her painting references. Her work focuses on capturing the realistic with her wonderful method of glazing layers of oil colors. Cheryl was chosen as one of the demonstrating artists at the Utah Arts Festival. Cheryl was also invited to display her work at the Frederick Remington Art Museum in Ogdensburg, New York. Cheryl is a former member of American Women Artist, The Park City Professional Artists Association, Park City Utah, and the Frederick Remington Museum, Ogdenburg, New York.

Chris Casanova

Chris Casanova is a wildlife and nature photographer based in Vernal, Utah in the Uintah Basin. He’s been in the Uintah Basin for over 20 years and spends his free time exploring and photographing the mountains and wildlife Utah has to offer. Chris is a Photo Restoration specialist and a graduate of the New York Institute of Photography. After Discovering his passion of photography, Chris has put many hours into expanding his talent in all areas of the art, taking a special interest in photo restoration, and wildlife and nature fine art photography.