Welcome… I’m in the middle of a mystery I encountered through my art. And I want to share it with you…

I am a visionary fine artist who combines abstract watercolors, drawings and botanicals into collages that appear dimensional and bead jewelry.

Whichever medium I use I approach it with the intention to create an artifact of harmony to adorn your home or office that will bring a sigh of relief upon entering it and a smile of confidence when you wear a talisman necklace.

Kathleen O'Brien

I am on a path to explore these things through art, will you join me?

"I'll Miss You, Little Wren", watercolor, drawing, collage

“In contrast to collage that maintains its focus on formal or intellectual juxtapositions, Kathleen’s art always nudges one toward a deeper sense of wholeness and the inner complexity of our balanced existence as both organic and spiritual beings. Without question, she has made a personal commitment to creating art as a mystical practice, and, on a communal level, to providing nature-inspired beauty as a source of healing in a fractured world. ” ~John Andrew Dixon, designer, illustrator

values collage Kathleen O'Brien


A bit about my background

I believe in eternity. I am at my best when I remember just how long the path is, one that  lead me to search and find myself, my wholeness…

Studio Storage Suitcases, Kathleen O'Brien

My thing about suitcases

Both of my beloved parents were in the army when they met in Japan, where I was born. What an exciting life packing up to go to Italy, Germany, Austria, Ireland, Leavenworth (ha!) and many other places. But I was always the new girl at school, I felt I did not belong. My dad’s huge suitcase now holds our Christmas ornaments, which brings back the pleasant memories. My grandparents brought suitcases to take us on a tour of Europe, a paper buying spree. Grandpa was my first painting teacher.

I love to learn.

I disliked school and college, but loved going by train to Mannheim to open the printmaking studio for classes at Kuntshule Rodel. And later at Corcoran School of Art I served as Bill Newman’s assistant and Naropa with visionary master Robert Venosa. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Eagle Feather, drawing Kathleen O'Brien

Enough moving!

I needed to settle down. By one of those “coincidences” I fell in love with Boulder, Colorado in 1970. There I made my art – oil painting, drawing, beadwork & helped create Boulder Arts and Crafts Co-op, still in business today. I found my true love, raised two beautiful creative children.

The wisdom of my Native American teachers brought me directly to the center of my heart and soul, where I belong. Over a period of 15 years I received Shamanic trainings. Experiencing my own essence I learned what I most value; to convey through my art the ability we all have to access our wholeness and connection with the Source of All Life and to be of service to others.

In search of further healing and ways to be of service I had 6 years training and certification at Transformational Healing Institute with Elizabeth Frediani. This gave me firm grounding, not only for myself but in the teaching and work I do helping others overcome blocks to their fulfillment.

“For nearly 40 years, Kathleen and I have shared a unique reality, based both in art and Shamanic practices. I feel in her art, a vibration that brings healing and also reveals a multi-dimensional awareness of the connectedness of Spirit.” Deborah Brodmerkel, collector

Wood fired Masonry Bread Oven, Greg Orth

Transformation happens

With the children grown, a home too large and a desire to fulfill a long ago desire to go back to the land, we moved to Kentucky. Employing sustainable architecture concepts, I designed our home that my husband and son built. Soon we were keeping bees, saving seeds, growing figs, vegetables and herbs.

When I had a usable studio again I discovered was a different person, wanting now to see more immediate results in my art by being loose and energetic.

I rarely have an idea when I start on a blank paper. Rather, I trust the present moment to be the influence that draws me to certain colors and marks. The challenge of not knowing allows me to enter the mystery. My feelings and values guide the step by step process of where the energy leads.

Traveling Shrines, Ajax, instalation, Kathleen O'Brien


“As a photographer, I’ve seen and photographed thousands of other artists works in the studio. Photographing Ms. O’Brien’s work is the most difficult challenge I’ve had, bar none. Within many of the same pieces are broad and intense color, subtle color, items of reflectivity, 3 dimensional surface changes, texture changes and uniqueness within all of it. It is truly some of the most fantastic work I’ve experienced up close, and admittedly, my 4 decades of skill as a photographer CAN NOT do it justice. You really must experience it in person.” – Sam Davis Johnson


Sunwise Farm & Sanctuary honey, seeds, Kathleen O'Brien


One of our motivations for creating Sunwise Farm and Sanctuary – the home, the studio, gardens, bread oven, the trails around the 35 acres through field and forest – is to share it with visitors.

That is why in 2009 I hosted my first Open Studio. Once people arrive here they receive the energy of the land, the gift of art and good food.

Open Studio display, Kathleen O'Brien
Open Studio display, Kathleen O'Brien
Open Studio Gift Shop, Kathleen O'Brien
Open Studio Map

In 2013 I created Annual Open Studios ARTTOUR of 12 participants in our rural area. It makes me happy to expand cultural experiences in an area that benefits from learning about the various forms of expression. We’re excited to meet these visitors coming from near, and out of state. Another offering is Sunwise Celebrations – classes and gatherings to honor the cycles of the seasons.

“Indeed, Kathleen O’Brien has found her place. With a home studio close to nature, and a creative passion that distills her observations and meditations through heart, head, and hand, she is a gold-medal artist of the soul.” ~John Andrew Dixon

I will continue to integrate what I sense and experience creatively into the art form of my life and share that with you. My ancestors and spiritual guides walk with me, as well as my family, friends, collectors and students. I am not alone. I belong.

Explore my site so that you may

  • Choose the art that will make your heart soar when you see it in your home or office.
  • Choose jewelry that will make you feel confident.
  • Learn about ways I can mentor you in your own creative self expression.
  • Subscribe to my occasional MailChimp announcements and quarterly mid-season studio updates.

Thank you for your time and interest. I look forward to hearing from you,


%d bloggers like this: