Local artist paints her passion for airplanes

Local artist Cher Hogan’s fascination with images of aviation was sparked at an early age.
“I always was interested in airplanes,” she recalled Monday. “As a kid growing up in Saskatchewan, I used to watch the crop dusters and that.
“When I moved here and saw the float planes, I did a painting of one and it went over well,” she added.
So well, in fact, that Hogan gradually is gaining renown as one of the country’s premiere aviation artists, with her work gracing 11 magazine covers to date.
Hogan’s latest paintings and sculptures are on display this month at the Fort Frances Public Library.
While the show reflects a variety of her interests, including nature, animals, portraiture, and family life, images of airplanes–in flight and at rest–dominate.
One of the paintings, entitled “Future Dreams,” is featured on the cover of the current issue of Women’s Pilot Magazine. The piece depicts three children, including Hogan’s granddaughter, seated in front of a vibrantly-coloured Beech 17 stagger-wing plane.
Recently, two of Hogan’s paintings also were chosen from a pool of 670 submissions worldwide to hang for six months in the National Aviation Museum in Ottawa.
Hogan shows her work at the Birchwood Gallery in Winnipeg, the Gorman Museum in Osh Kosh, Wis., and a number of other small galleries in the U.S. Some–but not all–of the pieces featured in the library exhibit here are for sale.
The artist, who is self-taught, works mostly with watered-down acrylic paints but occasionally uses watercolours. She also dabbles in sculpture, and recently started creating small decorative tables out of logs inlaid with hand-painted pieces of slate.
Examples of these also are on sale at the exhibit.
When she isn’t too busy with the many commissions she takes on, Hogan teaches art classes out of her home.
At this point, she can’t imagine her enthusiasm for painting her favourite subject matter will ever dry up. “It’s just the beauty and grace and the thought of flight,” Hogan said, explaining her lifelong fascination.
“It’s the freedom of it. Birds fascinate me, too. There’s quite a comparison there.”
Has Hogan’s interest in flight ever prompted her to try her hand behind the controls of an aircraft?
“I’ve only flown as a passenger,” she admitted. “But I would like to learn to fly some day.”