Chris (Christina) Willey has an MFA in Illustration from Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY, and a BFA in Drawing/Painting from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE.
She is a full-time painter and Professor Emeritus of Art from the University of Central Missouri, where she taught for 22 years. For 13 years, before teaching full-time, she was an illustrator, painter, and graphic designer.
Chris has had numerous solo shows and conducted workshops in United States, France, and the Netherlands. Most recently, she taught a pastel workshop in France, and several workshops locally in Kansas City
She has acquired signature status in the Missouri Valley Impressionist Society, MidAmerica Pastel Society, and the International Society of Acrylic Painters. She has won over 48 awards in many juried shows, including Best of Show and Gold, in 9 international, 35 national, and 49 regional shows. She has been accepted in many juried plein air events. Her art is held in a number of private and corporate collections in the U.S., Netherlands, and France.
Willey is an artist who paints from life. She regularly attends figure drawing classes, and travels to plein air events. Her work always begins with direct observation, but the endpoint is about making a beautiful painting. She tries to distill the essence of what attracted her to the subject into her paintings, while allowing the paint, the design, and surface to have their own voice.