About Amanda Houston

Artist Statement

Amanda Houston, Fine Artist

I am always drawn to the moments when the light is most dramatic, often at the edges of our days, when cast shadows lure me in for a closer look and the contrast of colors or moods are most intense. I strive for rhythm and depth in my work, for edges that are lost and found and for textural surface qualities, regardless of my medium. I’m primarily a pastel painter that dabbles in oils but enjoy innovating with the medium, as I am doing with my pastel drawings on copper.

Painting is just as much about the journey as it is the finished piece. I love creating new things so painting is a pure joy, yet each piece brings its own set of challenges and frustrations to work through, pushing me to grow and learn. My voice is constantly evolving and the more I paint, the more I realize how much there is still to learn. I’m striving for my ten thousand hours, constantly pushing myself to loosen up, try new things and surrender to the process.


Growing up on three continents, Amanda has been inspired by much of the world. She now lives on 30 breath-taking acres in Cornelius, O.R. capturing the beauty of the landscapes that surround her.

As a child living in Africa and Saudi Arabia, she remembers watching her mother paint oil landscapes as a hobby. Both her parents were educators and encouraged her to follow her creative passion. Amanda was educated in New England and holds a B.S. in Apparel Design & Merchandising from University of Vermont and a graduate degree in Textile Design from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City. She was L.L. Bean’s first apparel designer in the 80’s, Nike’s first Apparel Innovation Director in the 90’s and then helped launch Nike’s first e-commerce business (www.Niketown.com) during the dot-com boom.

After 17 years of traveling, designing and merchandising sports apparel for big global brands, she found she was creating less and managing more. “Eventually the only colored pens on my desk were highlighters for reading financial reports and market research trends. I always knew that I would paint someday, but I didn’t want to wait until I was 65 to start.” She is now allowing the time for the artist in her to finally come out.

She and her husband have renovated an old historic hunting lodge 30 minutes west of Portland on a 32 acre estate , which has consumed much of her creative energy when she isn’t tending after her two sons, her animals or the endless gardens that surround their home. As a retired competitive triathlete, she still loves to run, cycle, practice yoga, and swim, but also enjoys cooking, traveling and entertaining. She splits her time between Cornelius, Oregon and the San Juan Islands and squeezes painting time in whenever she can. She is  IAPS Master Circle Member, a Signature member of the NW Pastel Society and the American Women Artists and is a continuing member of PSA and the American Impressionist Society. Her work is published with Editions Limited, Inc. She is represented by Giacobbe-Fritz Gallery in Santa Fe, NM, Cole Gallery in Edmonds, WA, Scott Milo Gallery in Anacortes, WA, Clearwater Gallery in Sisters, OR and  American Art Company in Tacoma, WA, and Attic Gallery in Camas, WA. She also outfits Penner Ash Winery and Colene Clemens Vineyards in Newberg, OR with custom vineyard scenes and participates in outdoor art festivals in CA and OR. She teaches regional classes and workshops.

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