About Me

Rebecca Bricker-Smith
About Me:
               My name is Rebecca (Becca or Becky).  I live in Salina, Kansas....right smack dab in the middle of the United States with my husband Cody and my dog Chloe----a Peek-a-Poo with curly blonde hair just like her mommy’s!!:)  We have been working diligently on starting a family for the past several years----currently seeking fertility treatments---and extremely optimistic that it will happen for us soon.    I am an art teacher with my Master’s in Education who was unable to find a teaching job  after my husband’s job relocated us this past summer.  So after teaching 7-12 Art for ten years I am currently trying my hand at being a full-time artist.  I have spent years and years dabbling in painting, drawing, ceramics, etc, and I am happy to say that I have finally found my niche as a collage artist. I have always loved collage/mixed media/altered art and as a self-proclaimed hoarder I realized after the move that I either needed to utilize all the junk I collected or get rid of it.  My collections include mainly vintage items collected from my grandma’s attic, antique stores, thrift shops, garage sales, etc……some of the items include: vintage valentines and other ephemera, vintage toys (smalls), costume jewelry, old keys and hardware, antique silverware, paper dolls, children’s books, vintage fabrics,  old yardsticks-- measuring tapes and rulers, buttons, ribbons, lace…you name it, I collect it!!  I also have an extreme obsession with dolls----I love, love, love dolls and collect them as well!!  So I decided to combine my love of dolls and my love for vintage items and the result is my series called “The Dollhouse Diaries”.  I hope you enjoy viewing (reminiscing-in) my art as much as I enjoyed creating it!!

Artist Biography:
When driving through my home town of Lucas, Kansas, a small, rural, farming community, it is quite easy to see why I chose to pursue an art career.  With “The Garden of Eden” located practically in my back yard, a rock garden/gallery next door, and an art center right around the corner, it was obvious that I couldn’t go far without experiencing phenomenal creativity.  Lucas is considered the “Grass Roots Art Capitol” of Kansas.  I was born in 1975 to Dave and Cindy Bricker.  I was the second born of four children, two boys and two girls.  With encouragement from my family, I realized at a young age that I was not only interested in art but possessed artistic skills as well.  Throughout my high school career I took art classes and earned high honors on my art work.  I developed a close relationship with my art teacher who played a vital role in influencing me to pursue a career in teaching.  In the fall of 1993, I enrolled at Fort Hays State University, at the time FHSU was one of the top ranked art schools in the nation. I studied art for several years and eventually graduated with a Bachelors Degree in Art Education with a major in drawing and a minor in painting.
       In 2001, I started my first teaching employment at a Catholic School in Hutchinson, Kansas.  I settled into teaching with ease at Trinity Catholic Jr./Sr. High School teaching 7-12 art classes; mean-while attending mass and establishing a great relationship with God.  During my time at Trinity I also started teaching private art lessons to elementary-aged kids. After three wonderful years at Trinity, I met my husband, Cody Smith, and moved to Marysville, Kansas.  I was extremely fortunate to find another wonderful teaching job at Valley Heights Jr./Sr. High School teaching 7-12 art.  Valley Heights is located between the towns of Blue Rapids and Waterville, Ks; about a ten minute drive from Marysville.  I continued to teach private lessons and sit on local art boards where I used my advocacy skills to emphasize the importance of art and culture in a small, rural community.  In addition to teaching art, I also participated as a dance coach and sponsor for most of my teaching career.  At the end of 2007 I finished with a Master of Arts degree in Education.
       Although teaching art is my true calling, it has always been a demanding job that keeps me extremely busy.  Due to my consistent full schedule, I struggled to find time to create my own artwork.  So now that I am taking some time off from teaching I can finally focus on my own art.  I especially enjoy altered art, collage, mixed media, and pastel.  My influences include artists from the past such as Degas, Monet, children's book illustrator Bessie Pease Gutmann, and Hallmark illustrator Betsey Clark as well as modern day contemporary artists such as collage artist Kelly Rae Roberts, Lisa Kaus and illustrator Mary Engelbreit. Some of my other loves include: decorating, shabby-fying/resurfacing, thrifting/junking, crafts, fashion and collecting vintage items.  In May of last year a  dream of mine came true as I embraced the opportunity to help build and be a part of a brand new, cutting edge art gallery located at 115 N. Santa Fe Street in downtown Salina, Ks.  “Studio B. Art Gallery” offers studio rental, a consignment gallery, and art lessons taught by “yours truly”.  I not only have a wonderful space in which to sell my artwork and teach k-12 art lessons, I am surrounded by amazing artists with whom I cherish.  We are a creative family full of inspiration and support for one another.  Please come check us out if you are ever in the neighborhood.