My name is Cindy Lowes, and on my artwork I use a signature of 'CHOPP'. Currently I live in Ishpeming Michigan but was born and raised in Hawks, Michigan. I was introduced to the Upper Peninsula when attending Northern Michigan University and never left. From NMU I received a Bachelors of Fine Arts and a Bachelor of Science with a major in Illustration. Before NMU I earned an Associates in Graphic Arts Technology at Alpena, Michigan.
I began painting ornaments as a college student, with a nonexistent budget for Christmas gifts. The idea of giving persoanlized ornaments seemed like a great idea. Family and friends loved them and the next year someone suggested selling some at a local craft show. Being straight out of college and still low on money for Christmas gifts, it was worth a try. The first show I only offered about two dozen ornaments and sold out. The next year I tried a couple more shows – and started building up customers. Eventually I grew to do one show per month from July to Christmas, but the last few years I cut back to only doing shows around November and December. (In 2003 I became a mother of twins - but will be back to do more shows as they get a little older; they will be able to help at the shows!).
For now this website helps keep me in touch with people. I've "met" and shipped ornaments to many states such as Texas, New Mexico, AZ, Washington, New York, New Jersey, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Hawaii, Oregon, Florida. Some ornaments have even made their way to China, Germany, England, Canada, Mexico and Findland.
Nearly all the designs shown on the website have been requested from the customers looking for something in particular. The collection has now grown over the years to quite a selection of different designs - way over 100! - and more are always created whenever someone requests something I don't have. (There's even ornaments for twins - personal experience for that one!). I do have some designs that are not posted yet - such as business man, princess, rock climbing. In early 2013 I will work on updating my website with more designs.
I do not limit myself to only painting ornaments and canvas, I also create stained glass items, stepping stones and needle crafts. Currently I have an addiction to crocheted bead jewelry and have included pieces in my shows. One of my favorite hobbies is cake and cookie decorating (oh the excuses to have cake and dessert!).
Thank you for stopping by my website. I hope to see you at one of my shows this year -- or hear from you via the internet.