Imagine Northeast Iowa

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Painting Four-Legged Friends and Scenic Wonders - Rabecca Hennessey
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Painting Four-Legged Friends and Scenic Wonders - Rabecca Hennessey

The foliage of the river bluffs is always a sight to see in the autumn season. Across Clayton County, leaf-lookers, residents, and artists alike can be seen along the river dikes, scenic byway routes, and walking trails. Among those, one local artist, Rabecca Hennessey from Guttenberg, may be seen painting a river landscape, or a four-legged friend in the park. For many years, Hennessey has perfected her talent for oil painting and is especially known for her paintings of pets, children, and scenic landscapes. Hennessey has a studio and gallery space in Guttenberg, so people can see her work or join a studio workshop.

Rabecca’s career path has led her to Thrivent Financial, where she works as an office professional in marketing. In her free time, however, she likes to take her canvas to a quiet setting, and paint something that catches her eye along the riverbank. Guttenberg locals may be familiar with her paintings of four-legged friends and many have commissioned her for paintings of their own pets. For some happy customers, the finished product may bring a tear to their eye at the sight of their best friend forever remembered through oil and canvas.

Hennessey has also been commissioned by local businesses to paint murals, canvases, and other artistic masterpieces to fill a wall in their store front. Upon visiting local coffee shop, Kaffee 1858, you may notice a vibrant yellow mural with various sizes and shapes of coffee mugs. Sarah Pattison had commissioned Hennessey to paint the large accent piece, and when guests walk into the shop, it is one of the first things to catch their eye.

While touring the trails and byways of Clayton County, you may stumble upon a mural or painting created by the talented hands of Hennessey along the way. Whether it’s children, pets, or scenes within the rolling hills and river bluffs, Rabecca is able to capture the essence of her subjects completely by hand, using photos only when absolutely necessary. Using no form of computer manipulation, her paintings start as wet-brush sketches and evolve into fleshed out works of art captured in oil. To see more of her work, visit her studio, Bent Willow Studio in Guttenberg, to see her work and ask her about her passion for painting.

Written by Jayna Felder | Photo Credit to Rabecca Hennessey.

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