Smile Politely

Artist at Work: Kelly Eddington

Each year, a panel of arts professional select a signature image to be used as the predominate look of the 40 North’s Boneyard Arts Festival marketing. This year the panel selected Kelly Eddington’s “Pop” (watercolor, 18”x24”) to be the signature image of the 2015 Boneyard Arts Festival!

Eddington’s passion for watercolor began when she was a teenager in La Harpe, a small town in west-central Illinois. Currently living in St. Joseph, Eddington is a former art teacher with seventeen years of experience in Illinois’ public high schools, including Unity High School in Tolono. She has spent the past five years pursuing a career as a full-time artist.

Roger Ebert struck up a Twitter friendship with Eddington, and the two even managed to collaborate on a painting called Abandoned Knowledge. “He pointed my eyes in the direction of a photograph taken by one of his colleagues at the Chicago Sun-Times and told me I should paint it, so I did. You don’t say no to Roger Ebert,” says Eddington. “It ended up winning Honorable Mentions at a national watercolor competition and the 2013 Quad State Biennial in Quincy.”

“’Pop’ is one of my most cheerful watercolors. I painted it during a stressful period where I found myself reaching for bright colors again and again. The pinks and reds were almost medicinal. The repetition of the round shapes comforted me, and it was soothing to be in control of these colorful little worlds during a chaotic period that was thankfully brief.”

For the festival this year, “Pop” and several other works by Eddington will be on display at the Visit Champaign County Welcome Center in downtown Champaign on Friday from 4 – 6 p.m. of the festival.

For more information about Kelly, please visit and

For more information about the Boneyard Arts Festival, please visit 40

Related Articles