Bend Oregon Artist |

Five of Our Favorite Bend Oregon Artists

The pacific northwest is a short flight up the coast from southern California and it is home to some gems of cities including Bend. It comes as no surprise that Bend–in all its natural glory–is the birthplace and home to many talented artists and creatives. This charming, quaint mountain town–nestled into the eastern edge of the Cascade Range along the Deschutes River–is full of wonder, beauty, and jaw-dropping scenery at every turn. The proximity to all things outdoors is one main draw from tourists and locals alike. 

Bend offers that small town feel with a sprinkle of hipster, is close to a ski resort, and has dozens of coffee shops and microbreweries for all the coffee snobs, digital nomads, and those who simply love a good craft beer. From hiking, biking, river rafting, skiing, snowboarding, and skating, to catching a concert at the outdoor local amphitheater, this place has an effortless ability to inspire souls from all walks of life.

The presence of art in Bend, Oregon––which makes this pretty city come to life–is overflowing, and Bend Oregon artists deserve to be praised! We will touch on some of the finest Bend-based artists to get a taste of what the diverse art culture in Bend is truly like.

Spring Break Jake, Painter, Illustrator and Muralist

One of the most notable Bend Oregon artists is Jacob Kenobi–or as many like to call him, Spring Break Jake. He uses art as both a vehicle to express and to heal. As an artist, muralist, and illustrator, Spring Break Jake Spring masterfully blends morbid, gothic motifs with a playful beachy, lax overtone. 

Ever since his youth, Jacob has been fortunate enough to explore tons of different mediums, allowing him to blossom as an artist and expressionist early on. Despite his mountain living lifestyle, Spring Break Jake draws much of his inspiration from seaside landscapes and coastal elements. In fact, his affinity for oceanic and tropical destinations became the birthplace for his whole style and art personality. The “Spring Break Jake” alter ego–which identifies him as an artist–emerged from this magnificent style of surf art painting, which some refer to as beach goth.

In his masterful works of art, you’ll see colorful palm trees blowing in the wind, blended with darker black sea-cliffs, skulls, and eerie figures. His art plays on the idea that death is inevitable, looming in the distance, so we must enjoy the beauty of what exists now and appreciate nature, as well as the simple things that make life vibrant. His talent for mixing dark and light, death and life, truly distinguishes him in the art space.

Lindsay Gilmore

Another notable Bend Oregon artist is Lindsay Gilmore, another gifted artist exposed to creation and expression from an early age. As a mountain biker, trail runner, skate skier, and cold beer lover, Lindsay may seem like your typical Bend local, but her artwork speaks volumes about the creative fire within her. She is a mother, wife, and adventure lover, inspired by the vibrancy, color palette, and breathtaking landscapes she has witnessed on her own adventures.

Some notable scenic paintings of hers include Alpenglow, Hood River, Meadow Camp, Blue Ridge Mountain ranges, and tons of other terrains, as well as colorful flowers, such as poppies and sunflowers. Her paintings perfectly capture picturesque imagery of the natural world, utilizing vivid pops of color that make anyone feel more appreciative for Mother Earth. Lindsay’s hope is to bring the splendor and magic of the natural world into the homes of other nature lovers, to help ignite joy and encourage others to get outside and soak up nature’s fine gifts.

Evan Namkung

Unlike the previous artists mentioned, Evan Namkung is a mural artist who did not grow up in an artistic background. While his life trajectory didn’t always sway to the direction of being a full-time artist, an unfortunate meniscus injury gave him more free time to express himself, which eventually led him to develop his art style. His M.O. is transforming uninteresting public spaces–such as fences and walls–into masterful creations that bring life to the ordinary.

Evan is known for graffiti-style murals that harness the power of bright colors like blues, oranges, yellows, and bright purple–using spray paint as his sole medium. His unique styles work to deconstruct images of different subjects in some way–often through shape or tone. He seeks to help viewers observe his work through the lens of intersecting shapes. His recent focus on wildlife and animals as subjects. You can catch Evan’s artwork all across Central Oregon, where he continues to transform dull walls and public spaces into much brighter and more inviting places to relish.

Michelle Schultz

Michelle Schultz sees life through a rainbow lens, and her art instantly makes a room beam with joy. As a mother, artist, and painter, Michelle creates a channel for the observer to connect to their own “self” on a deeper level through representing personal experiences within her own spiritual awakening. Her acrylic paintings boast vibrant, pastel colors and textures, featuring snakes, women’s faces, flowers, curves, and wavy patterns. Her shading, sunset colors, and utility of lots of rainbows helps distinguish her work.

Through her rainbow-colored pieces, Michelle seeks to explore feminine empowerment. Michelle’s paintings are a vehicle for viewers to recognize that there is hope in the midst of suffering. She is a firm believer that we can retrain our brains to see the world for what it is–raw, isolating, chaotic, scary, but most importantly–beautiful.

Miguel Edwards

Miguel Edwards is a Bend transplant, originally from New Mexico. He began his artistic career as a photographer, photographing the 90s psychedelic punk rock music scene. Fast-forward to 2004, he was commissioned to sculpt a steel sphere for Burning Man, which altered his career path. Now he is both a sculptor who specializes in glass and steel, with commissioned art installations all across the globe. 

Through his magnificent 3-dimensional steel sculptures and film-based works, Miguel explores new ways to discover beauty and the world as we know it. His art invites everyone to rediscover the curiosity we all had as children, to live in the present moment, and open doors to all the limitless possibilities we have. He attributes Bend and his quality of life here as a main source of inspiration for his current art installations.

As you can see, Bend Oregon artists come from all walks of life, using diverse mediums to help us appreciate the beauty all around us. Their unparalleled acts of creative expression help us perceive life through a new framework and artistic lens, helping open ourselves up to new ideas and possibilities. We hope this article inspires you to explore more art, and even create your own!