Shelby K Cook was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest of the United States, where the west coast landscape of mountains and forests fostered a lifelong love of nature. She studied fine art in college, earning her BFA from Western Washington University along with a BA in Art History. After graduating, Cook moved to Seattle, WA, where she continues to paint and run her studio practice. Traveling when able, she brings her portable easel to paint en plein air wherever she goes.

Camellia II by Shelby K Cook


Focused on using painting to retain and revisit memories, Shelby draws inspiration from her travels and experiences. A connection to nature stemming from a childhood love of forests means she seeks interesting environments to inspire her, often painting en plein air during her travels. In the studio, she allows her recollections of a place to alter the image as she paints in order to tangibly capture memories. She is focused on exploring the relationship between people and the spaces they inhabit, trying to capture liminal spaces and transitional moments. These pieces specifically are a callback to her college thesis consisting of large pieces depicting tangled, dense forests as a metaphor for personal barriers. Now, instead of forests, she's captured shrubs in full blossom that still are dense webs of leaves and petal, revisiting the metaphor to show her own personal growth and blooming.


Camellia III by Shelby K Cook