2017 Western Regional Exhibition

2016 Western Exhibition in Scottsdale, AZ

The OPA 2017 Western Exhibition will be held at
Illume Gallery of Fine Art, Authentique Gallery of Art & Design and The Mission Gallery, in Saint George, UT
November 10 - December 9, 2017

Prepare for an event surrounded in beauty and culture. This picturesque community is referred to as Utah's "Dixie" because of its red soil and warm temperatures that are reminiscent of the Southeastern US. This area is nestled into a valley surrounded by the varied textures of mountains, mesas, vast lava flows and extinct volcanoes. With Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon, and Grand Canyon within a short drive, this community is surrounded by some of the most breathtaking natural beauty in the world. The area also offers a wide variety of things to do. This community has a vast history dating back to prehistoric times and offers world class museums, concerts, plays, historical sites and culture. Spend the day strolling the small shops and restaurants in the quaint downtown area or spend the day hiking in some of the most beautiful sites on the planet. You will be able to enjoy sporting activities in the area including golf, fishing, hiking and hot air ballooning, to name just a few.


Illume Gallery of Fine Art

Illume Gallery of Fine Art is the proud host of the 2017 Western Exhibition in Saint George, Utah.

Gallery Hours
10:00 A.M. - 6:00 P.M.

November 10, 2017

Julie Rogers
9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Painting Demonstration with
Julie Rogers
Location: Illume Gallery of Fine Art

Art has always been a constant companion in my life. Whether it was through my first impressions of painting the minute and life like qualities in animals or simply the bright myriad of colors in the landscape of our ranch in Goshen, Utah. As early as kindergarten my teachers noticed that art was the subject that would prevail over all others in my life. I have always drawn and painted my life's experiences since I was little. My work on the ranch was never complete and in that same aspect my obsession for art will never end. Art is a constant learning process.

What has started out to be simply an obsession has turned into a passion. A passion to create what I see and feel in front of me, to create the inner strength that presents itself within every subject I choose to paint. That emotion and "life" is and always will be one of my main challenges to capture in a painting. The living part of the subject gives the painting its spiritual essence. It is a desire of mine to capture that spiritual essence. I am always in search of an opportunity to paint with a higher goal. As I go through the trials of life I discover and gain principles of truth, a true vale that will be found shining through almost all of the experiences in our lives. I then try to incorporate those selfsame truths and values I have learned in my life's work, so that they in turn can help someone else learn and be touched by those principles

11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Lunch at George's Corner Restaurant & Pub Location: 2 W. St. George Boulevard, St. George, Utah 84770
Cost: Individual checks will be issued

Come meet the other artists who have come to attend this year's Western Regional Exhibition at George's Restaurant & Pub. This is just down the street from the gallery and a local favorite.

William Schneider OPA
1:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Painting Demonstration with Juror of Awards William Schneider OPA Location: Illume Gallery of Fine Art

After careers in music and finance Bill Schneider OPA returned to his first love, painting in 1990. His ski lls were honed during eight years at the American Academy of Art's Saturday Program in Chicago where he studied figure drawing with Bill Parks and oil painting with Ted Smuskiewicz. He continued his education through workshops with Carolyn Anderson, Dan Gerhartz, Scott Burdick, Harley Brown, Scott Christensen, Huihan Liu, David Leffel, and Richard Schmid among others. William commented, "The wonderful thing about art is that you can always get better. I view myself as a perpetual student!"

He has been featured in numerous publications and has received awards in exhibitions including those of: American Impressionist Society, Oil Painters of America, The Pastel Society of America, Portrait Society of America, and Salon International.

Bill was awarded signature status in Oil Painters of America (OPA). In addition, the Pastel Society of America has recognized him as a "Master Pastelist," IAPS (The International Association of Pastel Societies) has named him to the Masters' Circle and AIS made him a Master Signature Member (AISM).

6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Opening Reception & Awards Presentation Location: Illume Gallery of Fine Art

Please join us for an evening of fun and celebration as we take in the beautiful paintings that comprise this year's Western Regional Exhibition. A ribbon cutting ceremony officiated by St. George Mayor Jon Pike will take place at 6:15 p.m. Awards will be announced at approximately 8:00 p.m.

Saturday November 11

Rachel Pettit OPA
9:00 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Painting Demonstration with Rachel Pettit OPA Location: Illume Gallery of Fine Art

Over 30 years of professional painting experience gives Rachel Pettit the confidence to approach each new canvas with excitement. Experimenting with new materials and formats gives her exploratory nature the impetus needed to continue working on a daily basis. Plein air painting (painting outdoors, from life) remains a favorite method. The most appealing and fleeting scenes need speed and a well-trained eye and hand to capture. These paintings are often filled with expressive brushwork and spontaneity. Continuing to be challenged in this way restores the memories of natural light, values, and colors that are so important to bring a sense of place to the work.

She grew up in Scottsdale, Arizona, traveling, camping and exploring in the southwest. This instilled a great love of the outdoors which later was continued as a love of landscape painting. Her training has been through workshops and classes with regional and national masters including George Carlson, Scott Christensen, William Reese and Kathryn Stats. With the encouragement of these great artists, her paintings have taken on an impressionistic style, one which captures the essence or spirit of the subject and conveys it to the viewer. Her paintings have been juried into many of the nation's top exhibitions including Arts for the Parks Top 100, Oil Painters of America National and Regional Exhibitions, American Impressionist Society, and International Artist Magazine, and are included in collections throughout the United States. She now resides in Utah.

12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. "Hot Topics for Artists" Location: Illume Gallery of Fine Art
Cost: $10 per person for lunch

Enjoy a deli style lunch while Juror of Awards and Signature member Bill Schneider and OPA President Michael Carter discuss some of this year's current hot topics and trends that are "top-of-mind" for all professional artists. Bring your questions and join in the conversation!

John Michael Carter OPAM
2:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Painting Demonstration with
John Michael Carter OPAM
Location: Illume Gallery of Fine Art

John Michael Carter OPAM first began his studies in drawing at the age of 15 with his father E.L.Carter, a commercial artist. He attended the American Academy of Art in Chicago and then moved to Los Angeles where he attended the prestigious Art Center College of Design. There he received a background in the major classical schools of painting and graduated with a B.F.A, Degree. In addition to Carter's love of figurative painting, he enjoys the street scenes and landscapes he discovers in his travels here and abroad.

He has been a frequent guest instructor at art workshops across the country, including the Scottsdale Artist School since 1990, the Dallas Arts League and the Cincinnati Art Club. His thorough classical training and experience in drawing and painting gives him the technical expertise to provide artists with superb instruction. He is a Master Signature member of the Oil Painters of America and was OPA's National Exhibition Gold Medal recipient in 2004. He currently serves as OPA's president.

7:00 p.m. Artists' Dinner at Cliffside Restaurant Location: 511 S Airport Rd, St. George, UT 84770 Cost: $40 pp
(alcoholic beverages are extra)

Cliffside Restaurant

Join us for buffet dinner at Cliffside Restaurant, one of St. George's newest, contemporary American style restaurants with award-winning Le Cordon Bleu chef Jared Painter in the kitchen. OPA guests will dine on Fresh hand pulled mozzarella, salad, seasonal vegetables, penne rustica, New York strip steak, and Lilikoi cheesecake tartlet for dessert. Soda, tea and Coffee included. Alcoholic beverages are extra.

Sunday November 12

8:00 a.m. to Noon Paint the Parks!
Paint the Parks!

You can't visit Utah without spending some time painting the beautiful scenery. Take your pick from one of several parks in the area including Snow Canyon State Park, Coyle Lake, Pioneer Park and of course, Zion National Park. Or, Grafton, a famous old ghost town featured as a location in several movies, including the film classic Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.


OPA has reserved a limited number of rooms at the Best Western Coral Hills located in St. George, UT, and just a short walk to the gallery. Rooms must be reserved prior to October 16th or until the block is full. This is the same weekend as a championship softball tournament so do not wait to make your reservation as rooms are limited.

Best Western Coral Gables
125 East St. George Boulevard
St. George, UT 84770
Phone: 1-435-673-4844

Room Rates:
Double: $96.29 + tax
King: $96.29 + tax

Includes complimentary breakfast, parking and unlimited wireless internet access. Be sure to identify yourself as an "OPA" participant to receive this special rate.
The closest airports servicing St. George, UT are as follows:
  • 15 miles: Saint George, UT (SGU / KSGU) St. George Municipal Airport.
  • 54 miles: Cedar City, UT (CDC / KCDC) Cedar City Regional Airport.
  • 130 miles: Las Vegas, NV (LAS / KLAS) McCarran International Airport.

For your convenience, we've created a map of some of hotels near the beautiful Saint George area.

Registration Information

We are very excited you plan on joining us in St. George, Utah! Please be sure to let us know you are coming by emailing us in advance. All of the weekend events are free of charge except for the lunch and dinner events.

To register, please email Rosemary. Be sure to indicate whether you will be joining us for lunch on Friday and/or Saturday and dinner on Saturday night at the Cliffside Restaurant. Please bring cash (if possible!) for Saturday's lunch and dinner. We will ask for your payment when you get to the gallery. Individual checks will be issued for Friday's lunch.

Thank you!

Important addresses you need to know!

Illume Gallery
of Fine Art
29 West 200 North Saint George,
UT 84770
George's Corner Restaurant
2 W. St. George Blvd
St. George, Utah 84770
Cliffside Restaurant
511 S. Airport Road
St. George, UT 84770
Best Western
Coral Hills
125 East St. George Blvd.
St. George, UT 84770