Fair exhibit shows off Bakersfield artist

Chrystal Fortt
October 6, 2010
Filed under Kern County Fair

Tom Bumgarner, who used to take art classes at Bakersfield College, entered 10 pieces in the art section of the fine arts building at the Kern County Fair and won first prize for a picture of a tiger on scratch board and also volunteered for the Bakersfield Art Association.

“I missed a few years, I didn’t enter anything. I just didn’t have the feeling for art, and then all of a sudden I got a spurt and started in again so this year I entered 10 items,” said Bumgarner. “[Art] for me is a hobby, it’s just relaxing.”

Bumgarner was a little reluctant to admit he won first place, but his wife, Barbara, was proud of his work.

“I’ve [won first place] before. I enjoy it, it makes it worthwhile,” said Tom.

There were many artists that entered the competition that Tom was a fan of.

“I definitely enjoy Patti Doolittle’s artwork, Nancy Ely, her watercolors are fantastic, Shirley Rowles, I love her work,” said Tom.

“Mary Lou Slinkard, she does a lot of western, her family are cattle people. Her and her husband use to have a ranch up in Kernville, she’s a natural in cows. She can tell you real quick if an artist knows the anatomy of the animal or not just by the way it’s painted,” said Tom.

Tom and Barbara enjoyed volunteering for the art section of the fair. Barbara checks in pictures, and Tom helps hang them.

“We started last Thursday and helped to Sunday, that’s just to get this room ready,” said Tom.

There was a lot of preparation for the art room before it was open to the public. “They cover the windows so no one sees the judge go around and judge the art,” Tom said.

Besides, every year can be different, you know, it’s about their style.”

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