How do you define yourself? Are you a climber, a writer, a speaker, an activist? What about an artist, or a traveler, or a skateboarder, or a filmaker, or a foodie? The trick isn’t to discover which one of those things you do the most and ignore the rest, but rather to find a way to combine a group of them into something greater than any one of them can be standing alone. For some, this might be taking their love for cycling and their knack for film-making to create an ongoing video series of their travels on the road. For others, this might be taking their love for climbing and passion for experiencing the culture of where they travel and turning it into a book like Majka Burhardt did here with Coffee Story: Ethiopia. For Whitney Orban, this meant combining her love for the outdoors and climbing with her talent and skills in art. We asked Whitney to tell us what message she’d like her artwork to convey and she told us, “I want it to convey how inspired I am by nature. Everything I do, who I am, and the artwork I create, is reflective of my passion for adventures in the outdoors.” And that’s exactly what you’ll find in her work below. Mt. Lindsey- watercolor and pen on paper. Mt Lindsey is one of Colorado’s fourteeners and my first experience with class 4 climbing. I have a love hate relationship with this mountain. The views at the summit were amazing, and the experience taught me a lot about myself, but the loose rocks and exposure on the Northwest Ridge had me pretty gripped. I can’t say it was the most exhausted I’ve ever been on a hike but I can say that I was the most scared I’ve ever been. Even though it was mostly just the mental aspect for me, being able to bring myself to a more relaxed state and get through it wasn’t easy. This painting reminds me of what I was capable of when conditions got technical and a little scary and I try to bring that same energy into my everyday life when things get a bit difficult. Great Sand Dunes and Sange de Cristo Mountain Range- oil on wooden panels. My art goes hand-in-hand with my adventures and love for the outdoors. I wanted to try a different perspective on landscape paintings, which has always been my favorite subject to paint. Technology plays a huge part of our everyday lives, it can hinder the environment or it can be used to improve it. This painting shows how nature has been altered with the man-made irrigation circles. However, thanks to technology, we can sit at our computer and see amazing places such as the Sange de Cristo Mountain range in Colorado, or somewhere further away, that we may never see if not for the help of satellite images and internet. Andrew on Caustic- oil on canvas After painting the satellite landscape view of Red Rock I wanted to paint what I loved most about Red Rock, the colors of the sandstone rocks and the fantastic climbing. Trying to convey the colors of the rock was my goal and the challenge of this painting. TonSai Beach, Thailand – watercolor and pen Early in the morning before the limestone cliffs are busy with climbers, the tourists are laying on the beach, and the fishing boats (that make a lot more noise then they look like they should) get going, TonSai Beach is a surreal paradise. Whether you’re in the middle of Bangkok or on the beach, Thailand is a busy place, yet looking back, this is how I remember it most. Whitney Orban is based in Golden, Colorado. She moved to Colorado from Florida in 2007 and immediately fell in love with the mountains. She graduated from Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design in 2009. Follow her adventures on www.bradleysadventures.wordpress.com or @Whitneyio. 6 Responses Justin Lukasavige April 4, 2012 Wow! Great work! Diane Ramey Bradberry April 4, 2012 What a special girl….. you *rock* Whitney Orban! Sharon Erickson Kahler April 4, 2012 Amazing and inspiring young lady!! Whitney Orban April 5, 2012 Thank you everyone!