web

South Whidbey artist is painting the blues away

All proceeds from a raffle for a local artist Louie Rochon’s painting will benefit a food bank.

As a way to combat the “gloom and doom” of present times, a Clinton-based artist decided to donate one of his paintings to a good cause.

Louie Rochon, who specializes in free-form abstract art, recently painted a series of bright works characterized by their resemblance to flowers and the natural world.

“It felt like spring to me,” Rochon said about the paintings. “I wanted to put something out that felt optimistic, encouraging, inspiring.”

The soft-spoken painter has written candidly about his struggles with bipolar disorder and past addictions. Over the last several years, art has become an outlet for his energy.

His art sales had been down because of the pandemic, and Rochon was feeling helpless until he thought of an outlet.

“Thinking about my problems and meditating, all of a sudden the idea was, ‘Stop thinking about yourself, go do something for somebody else,’” Rochon said.

He contacted Good Cheer about holding a raffle for one of his art works, with all ticket proceeds going to the food bank.

Rochon’s piece, titled “Revival,” will go to one lucky winner of the raffle. The painting is currently available to view at Useless Bay Golf and Country Club. Raffle ticket buyers need not be members of the club to enter the prize drawing.

“We’re really grateful that both the country club and Louie want to reach out and help those who are struggling in these times,” said Carol Squire, executive director of Good Cheer.

Raffle tickets can be purchased for $100 each at the club, where Rochon currently has an exhibit.

“Even though it’s a private club, they’ll welcome anyone in to see the exhibit,” he said.

People can also send $100 donations directly to Good Cheer, which will enter them into the drawing. They can do this by donating on the website goodcheer.org and including a memo specifying the raffle and mentioning their address and contact information. People can also mail checks to Good Cheer/Rochon Raffle, PO Box 144, Langley, WA 98260 and provide an email address so a receipt for the raffle ticket can be sent to them.

The drawing takes place Dec. 13. The winner does not need to be present to win and does not need to be from Whidbey Island.

Rochon’s painting has a value of $3,900. He said around 20 people have already entered the drawing.

No stranger to charitable causes, Rochon completed a 5,000-mile walk across the country to raise awareness for pediatric AIDS in the 1990s.

This year, he has donated paintings to Feeding America and the UW Medical Center.

“Revival” was created over a few hours using a series of quick paint strokes. Palette knives, rather than brushes, were involved in the painting. To make certain shapes, Rochon used his hands or an old sheet to dab at the canvas.

Rochon said he put on some loud music — Lady Gaga, in particular — as his aid in creating the abstract art pieces.

“There’s no plan to the work,” Rochon said. “It’s all down on open canvas.”

He plans to continue painting similarly cheerful scenes as long as the pandemic continues and until “normal life” resumes.

Artist Louie Rochon contacted Good Cheer about holding a raffle for one of his art works, with all ticket proceeds going to the food bank. Rochon’s piece, titled “Revival,” will go to one lucky winner of the raffle. Photo by Kira Erickson/Whidbey News-Times

Artist Louie Rochon contacted Good Cheer about holding a raffle for one of his art works, with all ticket proceeds going to the food bank. Rochon’s piece, titled “Revival,” will go to one lucky winner of the raffle. Photo by Kira Erickson/Whidbey News-Times

More in Life

Photo by Emily Gilbert/Whidbey News-Times
Brittany Darby helps raise a wall at Habitat for Humanity of Island County’s two townhomes on Southeast 10th Avenue in Oak Harbor during the Women Build event Saturday.
Women Build: Lending some muscle to Habitat for Humanity

Forty women and some men volunteered for Habitat’s Women Build 2021 event this past weekend.

Members of the public and Whidbey Island Rocks are encouraged to paint and hide stones with Garry oak designs or other local flora and fauna this week in preparation for a hunt Saturday. Photo by Jane Geddes
Island rock hunt celebrates Oak Harbor ‘Year of the Oak’

Whidbey Island Rocks is encouraging people to paint stones with Garry oaks before a hunt Saturday.

COPY
Langley scene abuzz with new coffee shop

A pair of millennials have opened the newest business in downtown Langley.

Photo provided
The Deception Pass Sail and Power Squadron, also known as America’s Boating Club of Deception Pass, hosts jamborees and other social events, along with boater safety and education classes.
Whidbey boaters promote safety, education

The Deception Pass Sail and Power Squadron hosts education and safety classes, and social events.

Michael Nichols, owner of Whidbey Green Goods, stands in his hoop house, also known as “The Hovel.” Customers visit the Clinton farm to pick up their own produce and plant starts. (Photo by Kira Erickson/Whidbey News Group)
One-man Whidbey Island farm gears up for spring

The pandemic has brought a longtime farmer out of retirement.

Frances Schultz, holding a picture of her younger self, recently turned 100 years old. Her daughter, Connie Van Dyke, right, said her mother’s photo looks like one of actress Barbara Stanwyck. Photo by Emily Gilbert/Whidbey News-Times
At 100, Oak Harbor woman reflects on busy life

Frances Schultz turned 100 years old on March 30.

Photo by Cara Hefflinger
After Coupeville resident Geri Nelson saw these two Great Horned owlets and their mother, she posted to social media to see if there was any local photography interest. Cara Hefflinger came to the tree, camera in hand.
Coupeville owl family makes an appearance in photographer’s lens

O ne woman’s discovery of a brood of owlets in Coupeville caught the eyes of many admirers on social media, including one South End photographer.

Photo by Kira Erickson/South Whidbey Record
Third grader Laszlo McDowell gets up close and personal with a gray whale skull.
Students learn about being ‘whale-wise’

South Whidbey Elementary School students got a taste of what it would be like to live as gray whales.

The Oystercatcher’s owner and chef, Tyler Hansen, prepares a dozen 3 Sisters beef bolognese lasagnas to go on the shelves at 3 Sisters Market. Photo by Emily Gilbert/Whidbey News-Times
Chef liaises with other business owners

A Coupeville chef has expanded his partnership with local business owners to… Continue reading

Tim Leonard, owner of the Machine Shop in Langley, hangs a purple neon star he made on the wall of his arcade. Photo by Kira Erickson/Whidbey News Group
Neon art show colorizes Machine Shop’s reopening

A cacophony of happy buzzers and bells and a riot of glowing… Continue reading

South Whidbey Lions announce scholarship winners

South Whidbey Lions announced the recipients of this years scholarships. South Whidbey… Continue reading

Photo provided
Representatives from local organizations that received checks this year.
Eagles Aerie distributes checks to local nonprofits

The Eagles Aerie canceled its 2020 and 2021 plant sales because of… Continue reading