Biography

Wildlife artist and photographer Marie Rust is a Southeast Michigan native whose love of nature began as a child.  Hours spent on the shores of Whitmore Lake taught Marie how to be still and observe the natural world.  Over the years she developed a deep connection to natural rhythms and to the lives that share our world.  A self-taught artist, she has taken her observational skill and applied it to her artwork, creating carefully wrought portraits of wildlife.


Now living on five acres outside of Bitely, Michigan, Marie is a partner in Bear Track Studios, LLC, a business she started with two other nature artists with whom she also lives.  She is a member of the Stewardship Network, Michigan Audubon, National Audubon, and the Nature Conservancy,  and has done volunteer work with the Michigan DNR through their Stewardship Program.

 

Artist Statement

 

“Alternating layers of colored pencils, ink, graphite, and other drawing media, and working almost exclusively from my own photography and field experience, I create finely detailed and intimate portraits of wildlife.  Through composition and cropping my work is meant to reconnect viewer and subject, a primal connection I feel has been lost in our hectic and overly-mechanized world.  I believe it is important to present these amazing creatures as individuals in order to remind us that we are all sentient beings deserving of life.”

Awards and Honors

 

Honerable Mention, 2017 Grand Haven Art Festival, Michigan

 

First Place, Two-dimensional, 2017 ArtFest Fort Myers

 

Award of Distinction, 2016 Three Rivers Art Festival, Covington, Louisiana

 

Second Place, Drawing; Duane Walters Memorial Award "Best in Tawas Bay;" and People's Choice Award, 2016 Tawas Waterfront Fine Art Festival

 

First Place, Fine Art, 2016 Cadillac Festival of the Arts

 

Third Place, "Splish Splash," 2016 Ohio Decoy Carvers and Collectors Association Flat Art Competition

 

Second Place, 2015 Frankfort Art Fair, Frankfort, Michigan

 

Best in Show, 2015 Blueberry Arts Festival, Ely, Minnesota

 

Best in Show, 2015 Pentwater Jr. Women's Club Art Fair, Pentwater, Michigan

 

Award of Mastery, 2015 Queeny Park Spring Art Festival,
St. Louis, Missouri

 

Third Place, 2D, 2014 4th Street Festival, Bloomington, Indiana

 

Honorable Mention, 2013 Outdoor Art Fair, Traverse City, Michigan

 

Cora Bliss Taylor Award, 2012 Waterfront Invitational, Saugatuck, Michigan

 

Honorable Mention, 2009 Art in the Park, Petoskey, Michigan

 

Best in Show, 2006 Art in the Park, Pinckney, Michigan