I’m so glad you found your way to my page. My name is Steve Elvidge and I’m a gourd artist who lives in rural southwestern Wisconsin.
I was born and spent my childhood years growing up in rural Iowa. From an early age I was surrounded with art. My father had a lot of hobbies, 2 of which were oil painting and photography. Some of my earliest memories of my dad were sitting around with him painting landscapes on discarded plates. In high school my father and I spent countless hours both taking pictures and developing prints in the darkroom. On the other hand, my mother was a music teacher. One of her main functions each year was to organize a musical with her students. Part of that endeavor was to develop “sets” for the background. Many scenes were created in our living room with nothing more than cardboard, house paint, and a lot of creative elbow grease.
At age 18 I moved to Wisconsin where I’ve remained for over 40 years now, to attend UW-Platteville, majoring in art. After graduating in 1970 I started my teaching career with middle school students and then moved on to the high school age where I stayed for 12 years. During those years I became involved in teaching adult night art education through the county extension program. After 12 years teaching art, I decided to go into guidance and so I became an elementary guidance counselor. For the next 25 years I was a counselor, sprinkling in art everywhere I could find a place! During the summers I sold my art at local arts and crafts shows, mostly water colors.
I retired in 2002 and decided to focus my energies into my art, this time however, into working with gourds. I have been able to carry my painting skills to my gourd creations as well as incorporate other techniques, such as wood burning, carving, basketry, and weaving. Using gourds as my medium now, I have participated in many art shows around the Midwest as well as developed an online gourd business. During the summers, most Saturdays, if I’m not doing an art show, you’ll find me selling my gourds at our local farmers market.
I have loved doing art for all these years building skills and gaining creative energy all along the way. Whether I’m painting a gourd or embellishing it in another way, my mind is always turning, thinking of something else I can do with a gourd to produce a one of a kind work of art