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Arts & Culture Faithful Creativity

New Faculty Member Helps Students Connect

Faith and Art

A Working Artist

By Nicole Miller | Illustration courtesy of Scott Kolbo

Escalation Red: Portrait 2012View more photosView more images of Scott Kolbo’s artwork

Escalation Red: Portrait 2012, 22" × 30", archival inkjet, ink, prismacolor, and charcoal.

“I don't remember a time when I wasn't drawing,” says Scott Kolbo, Seattle Pacific University's newest associate professor of art. “My father is a minister. Growing up, I was in church three or four times a week. Sometimes I was bored. Drawing was a great way to not get in trouble.” Early drawings, he says, were influenced by “low-brow” art: “I was reading Spider-Man comics like crazy.”

When he sold his first series of paintings shortly before he graduated from college, he remembers
thinking, “It's probably not a dumb idea to pursue this.”

Now, teaching drawing, design, and illustration courses at SPU, he helps his students navigate their own vocational journey. He tells them, “You're probably going to need a day job” in addition to making art.

“But I've always looked at it as an opportunity,” he says. “With any luck, it'll make you more
interesting and your work will be more interesting.”

For the artist of faith, he says, integrating one's work with one's spiritual life is natural. “Art
depends on an individual artist's knowledge base and interests; if your faith is a part of that, it's
going to come out.”