Meet the Team
I work in acrylic paint for its flexibility, layering properties, and fast drying time. Creating a piece and finding its potential is exciting to me. My goal is to always give a piece life, give it soul. A majority of my work’s soul is represented by color and lots of it! Art can be healing, sentimental, and loving, but most of all, it should be available. I want my art out there, enjoyed, and shared. My work has floated around the style of Alphones Mucha and Andy Warhol. These two characters, with completely different styles, inspire me to push the limits in my work. Practicing realism for commissioned portraits is also enjoyable to me. I teeter on many different mediums of art, but my heart song is acrylic. All in all, the range of work I do is sometimes hard to describe, but it’s definitely colorful!
Stefanie Littlewood is an acrylic painter and captures the beauty in the desolation and despair that we experience. Her process of creating and completing a piece of art is an emotional outlet and release. Her goal as a painter and an artist is to teach how to take those emotions and set them free in a painting. She favors abstract, realism, harsh shadows, shading, and black and white. Being skillful enough to paint and teach others to paint is rewarding for her. Seeing her students expressing themselves and having a healthy outlet through their artwork is priceless.
Isaac Russell, Business Relations
I am an artist and artisan originally from San Diego. I moved to Yuma in 2002, and will forever, now, call it home. I tend to make art, sculptures and paintings, mostly, which is highly representational in nature. I only make a few pieces a year, though. I have engaged in the odd bit of performance art over the years… The literary arts have captivated me since early childhood. Poetry has been an active thing in my life since high school – reading, writing, and performing. Littlewood Fine Art & Community Co-Op will be the new home to many of my pursuits: canvas stretching, framing, painting, sculpting, building, and, of course, spoken word events. I believe that art in education is essential. By way of background, I have a BA in Philosophy from UC Berkeley, a couple of English teaching credentials (I lived and taught collegiate English and ESL in Poland for the British Council for three years), two contactor licenses (lapsed), and am a licensed minister. My ‘real’ job is with the DoD as a researcher and analyst. Roots Reggae? Mek we dweet! I live on a small, organic farm on the edge of Yuma called ‘The Jungle’ with my amazing wife, the artist Lia Littlewood. I am truly the luckiest man on earth.
“Luckless Monster, yeah thats me,” exclaims a raspy voice, the performance artist Jesus Yarrito as he recites material from his self- written, self-described ‘rap opera’, which draws its influence from various artists and themes from the past - to re-interpret what may be done by a music recording artist including Charlie Chaplain, Jim Morrison, and Marilyn Manson. It’s juxtaposed with trap beats and pirate-themed lyrics which lay heavy on doing what you want, when you want, how you want, with whom you want, and not giving a second thought about what lines may be crossed, nor what toes may have been stepped on. On his voyage to the stage, to challenge men who think themselves men and the people whom they claim to love and protect. “Luckless Monster is a great character to play” -Jesus Yarrito
As a third-generation Artist, I cannot recall a time in my life where I was not surrounded by ingenuity and imaginative people. I remember hiding under the work tables in the studio of my Mother’s College, with my paints and crayons in hand, as a child; I did a lot of dumpster diving to find hidden treasures for my Moms work. I can honestly say that it was creativity, and that self-expression that saw me through my own childhood. Bringing Art to children is very near and dear to my own heart, something that I implement with my own children, and soon within the Yuma Community.
The body of my work is mainly acrylic with some mixed media attributes. However, it is safe to say that my heart lies with mixed media, and more of those media elements can be expected from me in the future.
As an artist, I find the painful, and often uncomfortable topics the most interesting. Chronic illnesses especially, such as, mental illness, and degenerative illnesses. There is such a stigma surrounding mental health, when there really does not have to be. As a person who has been surrounded by such illnesses all my life I am humbled to start that dialogue within my work. As I have said many times, Art, I believe is about the Human experience. I was here and this is how I felt about it.
Denise Vaughn (DEVON GRIM)
"What I'm doing isn't a hobby, its a calling. Either, I paint or descend into madness, and even then, I'd paint my psychosis."
My overall vision is finding the beauty in a, standardly, uncomfortable idea, thought, or image. Social issues people tend to avoid. The thought of being tortured and death are some of my favorites. I don't want the viewer to be captivated, but conflicted and curious.
The first time I went to a museum significantly changed my frame of mind, from wanting to draw cartoons, to wanting to paint. The Museum of Fine Arts Boston had a Van Gogh exhibit when I was ten years old. I remember everything about that day right down to the pretzel I ate after we left. A huge puzzle piece plopped into place that day, and I began to practice, and all my classes revolved around drawing and painting.
You have to be fearless, so much of my creativity comes out of my experiences. I'm constantly trying new things, pushing my boundaries, and by extension, my loved ones as well. Music drives me as well. I have multiple drawings and paintings inspired by songs that have gotten stuck in my head. Anything could be a source of inspiration, every person could be translated to canvas. If an artist loves you, be thankful, but also know we will put that love into a form for the world to see.
I have to draw or else the noise just grows in my head. Pen to paper even if nothing but a mess comes out, its still a reprieve from the noise.
I am a mixed media artist and photographer. Why do both? I’m glad you asked. My photography often feeds inspiration to my art and my art gives me new ways to look at my photography. They exist together and I couldn’t do one without the other. I also have a 15 year career as an IT professional and I am a mom to a great bunch of kids and I am also a proud Air Force wife to an amazing man.
Having fun while photographing humanity and life has given me an appreciation to slow down and really take in the world. In a crazy busy world how often do we get to really notice how many different colors reflect off of a face or how shadows can change throughout the day? As a quiet child with a story I kept my art hidden and it was my place to express myself. It was a bond that my brother and I shared and it served a very precious purpose in my childhood. When my husband I married four years ago he pushed me to grow and improve and get out there and it has been an incredible adventure. I found that I completely adore teaching and coaching others into creating something they are proud to display. Any of my clients or students can tell you that I love to have fun and make some artsy magic. My hope and vision for the future is to continue to create and bring the love for art to my own children and every human that I come into contact with.
Private lessons available: Oils, Acrylic, Colored Pencil, Mixed Media, Photography, Graphite