Artist: Rachel Johnston
Passion for creating radiance is reflected in Topeka, KS artist Rachel Johnston’s paintings. From her first works of hunting and fishing motifs on neckties that she sold at the tender of 13, this self-taught artist has spent a lifetime experimenting with a variety of forms of self-expression. She favors painting in oil, acrylic, colored pencil, oil pastel and making baskets of pine needles, raffia and gourds. An example of her persistence is when she took up basketry after reading an article in a craft magazine. She and her family gathered pine needles in Gage Park to begin this endeavor which paid off when she showed her first baskets in the Mulvane Art Center where she was later their Artist of the Month and her work was shown on the KSNT-TV Noonday with Nancy Perry program.
Rachel has lived in many places across the US where she has always brought her enthusiasm for fine art and craft. She is a charter member of the Key West Art Society. While in Florida she was given the honor of designing the ships crest for the U.S.S. Medregal, a U.S. Navy submarine of the Atlantic Fleet, the work she is most proud of. Her desire for quality in her art can be related in her funniest memory, “While living in New London, Connecticut, I threw some work I didn’t like in the trash only to see someone carting it all off later. I couldn’t believe it!” Her work has been shown in several galleries, government and corporate venues and won awards for her work in colored pencil, acrylic and oil pastels. Her work is in private collections across the country, France and Haiti.