Ruby Allain (5): “I’m an artist, too.”

Ruby Allain only turned five at the end of April, but she’s already making her mark as an artist. “We all hang out together in our one big room and share supplies,” explained her mom, Morgan. “The bookmark thing started because when Danny and I have to cut down paper, there’s usually an inch left… Continue reading Ruby Allain (5): “I’m an artist, too.”

Elizabeth Kinahan Paintings: “A Way We Can Share an Experience”

“My responsibility as an artist is to think as creatively and outside the box as possible,” Elizabeth Kinahan shared. “That skill of visual art is valuable to other people. That is where I struggled the longest--in seeing there is value in painting pictures. He was powerful in teaching me a lot about that. He would say, ‘Let’s walk around town and go into the shops and see what art they have up. If they don’t have art up, we can say, wouldn’t it be nice if you had art on your walls? We’re artists. We can put some art up. And if it sells, we can give you 10-15% of that piece.’ I said, ‘That’s crazy. We can’t do it.’ He said, ‘Nope, let’s go.’ We got our art up all over the place."

Quiet Bear Art: “Trading an Object that Means Joy”

After ten years, Ken Webb began to realize he couldn’t stay at his job for another 35 years. “It was a decent job, but wasn’t too fulfilling,” he admitted. “It all came together at some point over the period of a few years that I wasn’t content and happy doing the daily grind that I saw people doing of getting up and punching the clock. … I was slowly doing more art as a side hobby and that was the direction I wanted to go. It was pretty difficult leaving a pretty secure job for something I didn’t know how to make a living at.”

Henna Blessings: “You Never Know if You Don’t Try”

The draw to the art form was deeper than something fun for Molly Arms to try. Arms wasn’t interested in permanent tattoos, and henna provided a way she could wear her art constantly. “In the beginning, it was because I wanted to do henna on myself,” Arms shared. “I didn’t think about a business.”

Kelly Miranda Photography: “There’s Enough Room for Everybody”

Kelly MacNiven also found support in the small business community in Durango. She attends the local Chamber events for networking opportunities, and has developed a good rapport with other local photographers. “We can all help each other out and there’s enough room for everybody,” said MacNiven. “There’s enough business to go around. We don’t need to be competitive. It works and we all help each other out and it’s a great community of artists and business owners making sure there’s enough room for all of us, doing what we love to do.”

The Bottom Line: Producing

Sunnyside is one of many of the local ranches, farms and businesses that the Ore House works with in order to produce local, sustainable and organic food and drinks. Yet there is complexity and cost in offering such a menu. “The price of local beef and local pork is high,” admitted Chamberlain. “And it is higher than what a consumer might see at the store. But instead of asking why local food is so expensive, start to ask why the other food is so cheap.”