Pamela Dion Bowes was born in Little Falls NY and from there moved to various small towns because of her father’s jobs. Pam loved living in small towns and would go back in a heartbeat if she could.
In the past 31 years, she has lived in Liverpool NY a suburb of Syracuse with her husband Bob whom she has been married to for 32 years. They have two wonderful sons, two dogs, a Chinese Crested, a Giant Malamute, and a tiger cat.
Pam say’s she has always been a “Crafty” person doing things for her son’s local schools and gifts but never any real painting.
When she was a teenager she did ceramics but that was the closest she came to painting.
About nine years ago, she found she had some time on her hands and decided to take a class or two on Tole painting. After that, she took classes on “One Stroke” which she enjoyed very much. This lead to six months of practicing and enjoying painting!
With hours of painting behind her, she developed her own flair and started teaching at local craft stores. Two years ago, Pam became certified in oils to teach and is now an Alexander Certified Instructor.
She has been to a few seminars through the Society of Decorative Painters even though they are one or two day seminars she feels like she learned a lot and would like to see more workshops in her area.
She now teaches Tole, One Stroke and oils and loves every minute of it! Pam says she is basically a self-taught artist as there are very few instructors in her area.
The beauty of nature and colors inspires Pam to paint. She loves vivid colors and the challenge of trying something new. Painting has become a very fulfilling way of life for her but she feels that she can never learn enough.
When painting she finds that she can get lost in the wonderful world of color and strokes, time has no meaning. She can sit for hours just painting what she loves.
One of Pam’s favorite things that she has been painting the last few years is vintage items that she finds at estate sales and auctions.
Searching for things that no one wants any longer like old percolators, tea kettles, vintage silver-plate trays and dishes, Pam takes them home and repurposes them into beautiful works of art.
This past year she started painting on vintage spoons. She was fortunate to be able to take a class with Diane Bunker who showed her how to make a pendant out of an old silver spoon. It was a simple design done in black and white and layers of resin. Pam fell in love with this and it was the beginning of painting hundreds of spoons, which she turned into pendants, sun catchers, fan pulls, and ornaments.
She has painted spoons with florals, mini scenes, and Santa’s. One of her favorites is her Halloween spoons, which are three-dimensional.
Instead of throwing out the handles, she turned them into angels and pendants.
She eventually started using Alcohol Inks to paint the surface of the spoon then added resin and the results were spectacular. She is now experimenting with Alcohol Inks on glass and then painting a design on top. Alcohol Inks really give a different look to glass, almost like stained glass and is really easy to work with.
Her favorites to paint are the wine bottles and holiday ornaments. Her lighted wine bottles have been a great success for Pam, especially her Halloween ones. She custom paints and personalizes her ornaments and has always been big hits at the shows she does.
Nine years ago she started teaching at a local store, where she continues to help others learn what a wonderful thing painting can be.
When Pam decided that she wanted to try and teach people how to paint, she knew she did not want to teach the way she learned.
She felt it would be best to start out with basic instructions and a limited palette and work from that. When she starts new students out who have never painted before she first of all tells them to try and relax and breath. Painting is for enjoyment and relaxation. There is no need to be nervous or uptight about it.
She then has them start out by practicing on wax paper for a few weeks until they get their basic strokes down. Then when they gain some confidence in themselves and feel comfortable she introduces them to projects. It has worked out wonderfully for them.
She has found from her own experience that when you teach a “project” class and someone has no experience they usually don’t end up finishing the project and it goes home and sits on a shelf and they never come to a painting class again. So by starting out with the basics she takes her students slowly along and they end up staying in class and learning how to paint!
Pam believes anyone can learn to paint; you just have to have the time to practice and have patience.
She also finds time to volunteer teaching at Senior Citizen Centers and other venues of that nature.
A few years ago, she met a woman who painted ornaments for the soldiers in Iraq, this led to her and a group of her students doing the same.
They paint all sorts of designs from snowmen to palm trees. Pam designs the ornaments and her students paint them. She has even painted wine bottles and sent them over. It has been great fun and very rewarding and has been greatly appreciated by our troops. It is just a little something to remind them of home and to know we are thinking of them. She is very proud of what they have done.
Asked what she has planned for the future:
“ I would love to travel teach but I really have no idea on where to start on that and I would love to possibly one day create my own painting patterns.”
Pam is a Helping Artist for DecoArt and has had one of her ornaments selected for their online site. Look for a beautiful Leopard Snow lady, she is easy to paint and you can find all the instructions on the DecoArt website.
Pam is currently working on a website and says that she would love to help anyone who needs instruction on painting.
You can contact her at: firstname.lastname@example.org
To see more of her artwork go to:
She also can be found on Facebook at:
Pam Bowes or Dion's Decorative Designs