July 14, 2016

New tables for workshops!

We are happy to announce our new tables that Adam made just for Willow!

If you are interested in hosting a workshop or discussion night let us know!

February 25, 2016

March Exhibit: Jay Carlton

We are excited about our March exhibit of resident artist Jay Carlton’s work. Since he moved into Willow he has been making some really powerful pieces centered around social issues in America. Each piece displays Jay’s view of a different subject in bright and bold colors layering acrylic, ink, and colored pencil. Here is Jay’s statement of the work:


Along with creating Children’s Art for the Apocalypse, I am the creator of a greeting card line called “Mr. Ferguson’s Greeting Cards”. Both the style and concepts of the cards are positive and the images express a childlike, hope filled playfulness. My intention with the cards was always to put a smile on someone’s face and help us remember the importance and priority of friends and family. Although I continue to believe and invest in the goodness of human nature, since becoming a father, I am also being more and more affected by what I perceive is a growing and frightening pattern of violence, hatred, and ignorance infiltrating our shrinking and fragile world.

Although the first piece in the series I created, titled “Wednesday”, was completed in January of 2016, the seeds inside Children’s Art for the Apocalypse were sown 4 or 5 years ago, about the time my son was born and about the time Trevon Martin was shot and killed while walking home from a convenience store. Even though the senseless killing of an innocent teenage boy by a paranoid grown man was tragic, what was more disturbing was that it was deemed acceptable and understandable in an American court of law. Like many, I was left speechless and bewildered, wondering who we were becoming as a society. Things have not gotten better. Since that time, there have been numerous unjustified killings by law enforcement officers, catastrophic scientific projections concerning global warming, countless mass shootings, real potential for financial collapse, and a political system that is completely out of control.

My belief the we love will conquer all as expressed through the whimsical imagery in Mr. Ferguson’s Greeting Cards has collided head-on into a seemingly lost world with an ominous, unpredictable, and violent future. Through Children’s Art for the Apocalypse am trying to make sense of the idea that life is good while simultaneously being devoured by a little voice in my head that whispers “This is not going to end well.”

January 28, 2016

February Guest Artist: Nicole Samples

For the month of February we will have the artwork of Nicole Samples on display at Willow Lane. Nicole’s work features images of animals and bugs that she creates using charcoal and oil paints made right here in Oregon. Better yet she frames all of her work herself so the piece is entirely hand crafted by herself. To find out more about Nicole and her process here is her bio. Make sure to stop by the studio on Last Saturday: January 30th from 6 to 9 pm and our Grand Opening: February 13th from 12 to 5 pm to see her work in person!


Nicole Samples, Fine Artist, Crafter and Custom Picture Framer currently works out of  Bend, Oregon. She studied Crafts, Fine Art and Art History at Center for Creative Studies in Detroit, Michigan also at Oregon State University, Corvallis and Cascade Campuses.

Current works consist of animal and pet portraits on canvas. The mixed media are a soft graphite, charcoal & oil paint with a walnut oil base. Starting with the graphite and charcoal the subject matter takes shape in grey scale at first. The second step is to add color and tint the canvas until a sharp bold statement is made; making marks to recreate the patterns in nature. The final stage is adding white tones and in most cases another pattern in the animals form and in turn apart of the composition of the canvas.

Each piece is an anthropomorphic view of the animal- trying to capture the individuality of each creature on this planet. By creating a portrait the artist in her own unique signature – is adding to the idea of how special and connected we all are in this time and place, especially to our pets.  Each painting is original from found or captured images on canvas stretched by the artists. The piece is also sealed and custom framed by the artist.

December 31, 2015

Bend LOVES the arts!

Within the month we opened our doors to the public we have seen the love from our local newspaper and from Bend’s local radio station KPOV.

David Jasper wrote a really nice article about all the amazing shared studio spaces happening in Bend. Artists really have a great opportunity to choose where they want to create their work and what type of vibe they want their work space to hold. Bend has some pretty industrial funky spaces to spaces that are newer or remodeled. Whatever work you create you can pick the space that most ties into what your work is all about.  You can read the article here.


Linda Spring invited us to the KPOV studio for an interview about Willow Lane. It was our first time doing any kind of interview where we were recorded. Usually we rely on heaving editing of our words to make us sound like we are at ease and one with our decisions and thought processes so this was a whole new ball game! Linda was great at getting us ready and making the interview a comfortable and fun experience. Tune in to The Point on Thursdays at 9 am to hear what’s new in the art community in Bend.

November 18, 2015

Why create in a shared space?

Shared studio spaces for artists and creative people are popping up everywhere. It’s not a new idea, but I think it’s a great idea. Going into a shared space can be scary after working alone for a long time. But once you’ve made the leap, it can be a rewarding experience.

When I started my jewelry company I was in a small spare bedroom in the back of my house. I loved it because it was a place to work, easy to get to, and I could go to work in my PJ’s.  As my company grew I had customers wanting to see my work space, or meet me at my “studio” to commission a one of a kind piece. I felt really unprofessional when they walked through my house that I quickly cleaned up to let them into a small dark space that was not a reflection of my work. It did not feel very “boss” like, and I didn’t want just anyone walking through my house either. After a while I also felt distant from my art community. I wanted to share my ideas before they became a reality, and I missed other people’s crazy ideas rubbing off on me, and inspiring me to make an awesome piece of jewelry. I was born and raised in Bend. I know how supportive this community is, and I felt that I needed to make a change in my business that would be healthy all around. So I joined and artist’s space!

I was so nervous about sharing a studio with other people. I knew these ladies were fantastic in many ways, but after working alone for a couple of years I loved my privacy and alone time. Both of which I really had way too much of. I’m not an extrovert by any means so this was a little radical feeling. I signed the lease and swallowed my fear. I would say looking back the biggest thing I had to get used to was creating a flow again.  Over time this ended up improving immensely. All my household distractions were gone, I had more time to focus on my work, and I really became more productive. I also noticed that being around three other really talented people drove my creativity in new ways, and my designs got better because of that. I could be social with the other artists if we were in a light work mood, or I could put my head down and work quietly if I had major deadlines. My feeling of being separate was gone, and I made new friends. Best of all my customers knew where they could find me, and loved stopping by to see what was new.

All of this to say being a part of a shared creative space is one of the best decisions I made.

Outline time:

  • Inclusion in community.
  • More public recognition.
  • Professional work space.
  • More and better customer interaction.
  • More opportunity to sell work.
  • A place to “go” to work.
  • Better productivity.
  • Inspiration.
  • Make new friends.
  • Make new customers.
  • Share ideas in business and life.
  • Get out of the house.
  • Be part of something really awesome.
October 26, 2015

Create your work at Willow Lane

My name is McKenzie and I invite you to join us at Willow Lane to create your work in a beautiful setting in the heart of Bend.

This is a great opportunity for artists to join a community of like minded creatives. This is your chance to get out of the house or secluded space or even expand to a larger space.

As an artist myself I worked at home for two years and finally I had enough of feeling uninspired working out of a spare bedroom by myself. After moving into a shared space in Tumalo I found that I was able to get back into a routine and that it wasn’t serving me to work alone especially after years of sharing ideas and inspiration with my fellow artists where I received my art training.

Artists have a habit of being passionate people. This passion makes us want to share our love of art and get a conversation started about what works and doesn’t work within our ideas. I think this is important to our creative process which is why shared studio spaces are popping up everywhere.

Willow Lane is a unique opportunity for Bend artists. Our building is 2,300 sqft. and it’s located in a prime spot. It’s hard to find a nice studio space in Bend that is close to tourist attractions, that offers a large amount of space with plenty of light and a parking spot. Believe me. I’ve looked around. We are biking distance from downtown, the west side and the old mill and the parkway exit is down the street.


If you love your work and you want to love where you create it join our studio.


P.S. Friendly pets are welcome too.