Branching Out to the Arts

Saratoga’s Credit Union is proud to support our community of local artists by participating in the “Art in Public Places” program, organized by the Saratoga Arts Center. We will be highlighting a local artist on a monthly basis right here at our credit union at 23 Division Street.  You can catch a glimpse of our local artists and their creativity Monday through Thursdays 9am – 5pm and Fridays 9am – 6pm.

March Artist of the Month

We are excited to have Mary Waters, our March artist of the month! 


Artist Statement

Mary has been studying art at Creative Endeavors Art Center since 2007. Mary has participated in art shows throughout the region, including, Art in Public Places with Saratoga Arts Center, Art in the Park, had a solo show in Strolling Village Artisans, and was a featured artist at the Secret Garden Tour. She enjoys drawing and painting, and is inspired by imagery from nature, flowers, waterfalls and landscapes. Mary has been taking additional art classes for a few years in addition to Creative Endeavors Art Center.  Mary also sings in a band called “One Voice” which performs throughout Saratoga County.  She continues to display work through Creative Endeavors.

Creative Endeavors
Creative Endeavors Art Center cultivates the artistic talents of individuals with disabilities to hone their creativity.  We offer a wide variety of classes including painting, drawing, jewelry making, mixed media, papermaking, collage, print making, mosaics and photography.  Also, we have theater, textiles, writers and music groups.  Through this comprehensive arts programming, we have been discovering and nurturing true artistic potential.  As a result, our artists are gaining an avenue of expression.

Designed to truly be an integral part of the local arts scene, we have community members, high school and college students and our artists pursuing their joint interests together as the arts have the capability to equalize the playing field.  We hire professional artists, as well as our staff, to teach classes that are open to everyone.  The classes address various skill levels with schedules coordinated by the instructors’ availability and expertise.  No experience is required for beginners.

February Artist of the Month

We are pleased to have Hazal Ozturk, our February artist of the month!


Artist Statement

Born in Ankara, Turkey, Hazal Ozturk lives in Upstate New York now. She is a multidisciplinary person, which helps her to form her abstract art in a unique way. Although she has a Master’s degree in Chemistry; she works as a software developer by day and she is an artist by night. Her diverse professional background helps her to see the world in a different perspective and she reflect this to her art. Her message through her art is finding inner peace. She likes to see the world through lenses ( and canvases (

Her work has been exhibited in galleries in Albany (NY), Saratoga Springs (NY) and Lincoln (Nebraska). She is on the board of Albany Center Gallery and she is one of the selected artists for Albany’s Downtown is Pawsome public art project. Her piece, “ Happy Puppy ” will be on display at Discover Albany Visitors Center in Albany, NY until August 2020. One of her works, “The Universe, 2017”, was selected to be on display at Capital Rep Theater‘s “Paris Time” show between January to February, 2018.

November Artist of the Month

Special welcome to Pamela Stendardi, our November artist of the month!


Artist Statement

I am primarily a pen & ink artist specializing in architectural renderings. The details of the buildings inspire me. So many stories and secrets lie behind doorways and windows. A detail drawing brings out what we miss in quickly passing by. The black and white leaves us with a calming effect and lets our  imagination run  free.

I work with Real Estate Agents drawing commissions for clients as welcoming gifts for their new home or as a memory of one they are leaving behind. I draw private homes and businesses. Makes for a very memorable gift.

I am a graduate of The Vesper George School of Art. You can view my work at

October Artist of the Month

We are excited to welcome Mary Beth Vought, our October artist of the month!

Artist Statement
I received my BA in Studio Art from SUNY Albany and then proceeded with a career in illustration and graphic design. I’ve worked for several regional museums and am currently the Regional Art Gallery Director for the Arkell Museum at Cananjoharie. In high school, I was set free to wander the city of Cohoes with a watercolor pad and paints; I was captivated by working outdoors and ever since have preferred to paint “en plein air”. My paintings celebrate the incredible beauty of upstate New York and are primarily completed on site, in oils and occasionally, watercolor. By visually representing the wonders that surround us I hope to contribute to the appreciation and preservation of our shared and fragile environment.

September Artist of the Month

We are thrilled to welcome Alaina Vooris, our September artist of the month!

Artist Statement

Alaina Vooris is a self taught-multi media abstract expressionistic artist. She specializes in acrylic painting. Her art is influenced by feelings from everyday life experiences. Alaina creates emotional works of art with colorful palettes, textures, acrylic mediums and the illusion of movement depicting her vision of abstract expression. Each color she chooses has a special meaning and place in the painting. Alaina chose painting as a way to express her feelings when words aren’t there. She has an empathetic soul and can be affected by energies around her. She’s found calmness in art. Making art is a therapeutic way to deal with the stresses of life. For the viewer, she hopes that her art brings a spark to their eye, an excitement within themselves in true feel good art fashion.

In more recent months Alaina has been inspired by her interpretation of landscapes, seascapes and mystical fairyscapes that have brought out a whole new world in which she has been exploring. She’s found a love for painting with a wedge tool instead of a paintbrush; she feels she’s opened up a new place inside her that’s been waiting to break though. Her painting style has become freer and less controlled. This new style has allowed her to merge her own heart and soul with the world around her.

Alaina will continue to explore new possibilities within her art, creating new pieces to excite your soul. Her ultimate reason for taking this journey is to know that she has touched someone’s heart along the way. Art creates beauty, but art also can heal and remind you of the beauty within oneself.

August Artist of the Month

We are pleased to introduce you to Janene Bouck, our August artist of the month.

Artist Statement
Since 2015, I have been exploring my artistic expression through photographic endeavors. I am inspired by human nature and nature itself. Many of my images are presented as one of a kind multi-media works, often including  salvaged material. Most of my reclaimed materials originate from my home, the Great Sacandaga Lake Area, my playground, the Adirondack Park, and my childhood home, the Mohawk Valley Region of Upstate New York. In addition to creating artwork and decor, I also digitally restore photography at my home studio, Silent Jane Salvage, in Broadalbin, New York.

June Artist of the Month

We are pleased to introduce you to Richard Cavagnolo, our June artist of the month.

Richard Cavagnolo’s career took an unexpected turn as a stay-at-home dad of three children while living in the small town of Mechanicville in upstate New York. Needing a break from his day job, he enrolled in a series of art courses at a local community college where he developed a passion for photography. Over the next few years, he would juggle his responsibilities as a father, husband, photography student, and freelance photojournalist before dedicating himself to the practice of fine art photography. 

For more information and to see more works please visit:


May Artist of the Month

We are pleased to introduce you to Blaise, our May artist of the month.

Blaise is an artist from the Capital Region whose works include an elegant collection of alluring atmospheric paintings in both oil and spray-paint.  Prominent in these works is a vast array of bright colors, which promote a euphoric feeling in the viewer while dealing with the timeless themes of fear, love, regret and hope.  His quest to unearth the epiphanies embedded in our modern lives continues everyday. 

For more information and to see more works please visit:


April Artist of the Month

We are pleased to welcome Jeff Kramer as our April Artist of the Month.

Artist Statement
I am 68 years old from Housatonic, MA.  I enjoy depicting people and animals in their enviornments.

March Artist of the Month

Welcome Liz Droege our March Artist of the Month.

Artist Statement
I started painting 2 years ago after raising a family.  My style of painting is loose and filled with free movement of water and pigment.  I seek to capture the soul of my subjects, I paint animals and flowers mostly but love all subjects.  My animals are filled with love, my hope is to bring awareness of the plight these endangered animals face every day. We as humans are forcing their extinction by encroaching on their environment and by our selfishness in killing them for sport.  I look forward to growing as an artist and seeing where my art takes me on this new journey.

February 2019

Welcome to Ruth Conner our February Artist of the Month.  Come check out her work in our branch all month long.

January 2019

We are thrilled to welcome Ken Wilson as our artist of the month.

Artist Statement

Following my career as a member of the New York State Police, I found that I had time to reconnect in a serious way with my art, more specifically, oil painting. I had always had innate talent from as far back as I can remember, which was fostered by teachers as far back as kindergarten.  I developed the talent over time, with breaks along the way as I focused on the tasks of life, such as raising children and trying to make it home alive during a police career with too many close calls to mention.

As I spent time recovering from an illness related to my time serving in New York City during the 9/11 attacks, I found that equine and landscape painting in particular were the subject matter that gave me the most satisfaction and I dove back in to painting with a passion! As a primarily self-taught artist, I read about and studied the many different styles of painting from realism to modern impressionism and I think it shows in the different styles that I’m able to communicate with my work. Since 2007, I have developed quite a following, which includes buyers and collectors from as far away as Queensland, Australia!

I do quite a bit of plein air painting as well these days and I can be seen on the side of a country road or out in a field during my outings all over the Capital Region, as well as Vermont. Sometimes I get together with notable artists Mark Boedges and Stapleton Kearns!

2018 Featured Artists

October Artist of the Month

It is our pleasure to introduce Cathy Hall as our October Artist of the Month!

Artist Statement 

Expressing myself in writing and art has always been a part of my life, but I never had the chance to really focus on either until after I retired. It has been such a rewarding experience, both creating art and working with other artists. Sharing my work came gradually, but I am pretty comfortable with it now. My goal is  to keep experimenting and pushing my boundaries. I live in the town of Wilton with my husband and our two cats. I graduated from Skidmore College in 2009 with a degree in English literature. My two grandchildren appreciate my role as a Nana nanny, and I enjoy working as a Saratoga Arts volunteer. 

In this exhibit I include several different mediums. My main fields of interest are watercolor painting, printmaking and photography. I like traversing the edge between realism and abstraction as a way to challenge myself. When taking photographs, I look to the natural world around me for inspiration. I use only the settings on my camera, as I have not entered the photoshop world (as yet). I have been fortunate to have taken classes from nationally known, award winning artists such as sculptor/printmaker Bruno LaVerdiere, water media artist Elizabeth O’Brien and watercolorist/printmaker Debra Arter. I have not received any instruction in photography, and still consider myself a beginner in that medium. However, I do see value in the photographs I have taken, in that they attempt to interpret the world around me from unexpected perspectives.

August and September Artist of the Month

Diane Leifheit moved to the Adirondacks with her family over 40 years ago. She has been making art and working en plein air since the early 90s. A year-round resident, Diane can be found working in her studio, Point of View, in Gabriels, where browsing visitors are always welcome. In addition to Saratoga Arts, Leifheit is a member of the Adirondack Pastel Society, Saranac Lake ArtWorks, Adirondack Plein Air Painters, and North Country Arts. Additionally, more of her work may be seen at Plattsburgh Strand Art Center Coop where she is also a member.

As a pastel painter, color is what grabs Diane Leifheit. Her home base, the Adirondack region, contains the whole spectrum of color from the blue that is a shadow in a snowbank to the myriad greens of summer, to the riot of autumn leaves. Leifheit's medium of pastel allows her to construct a very close interpretation of a particular landscape, but also exhibit the freedom to capture a mood in the work i.e. misty mornings, swirling snowstorms or the atmosphere of a hot, humid day.
In one year, 2014, she completed 185 faces for a portrait project, "Face to Face: Drawn to Saranac Lake", depicting the people of her home town Saranac Lake, not just residents but visitors too.

Leifheit says, “When I begin a piece I am finding nuances of color. I am seeing color break into layers of other colors. Variations of one color sometimes gives way to opposite color. Then there is the spirit. In landscape, it is the feel of the sun, the riffle of a breeze. With people, there is the undercurrent of their life in their eyes, then a subtle letting go, a trust that I do see them under their hat, behind their glasses. I work hard to paint what I see, fair witness to who the person is at that moment.”

“To capture the essence, to create resonance in the image. That is the goal.”


Her work has been recognized by several awards and has been collected both regionally and internationally.  Leifheit's work has been shown in national juried exhibitions and has been published by North Light Books, Kennedy Publishing and “North Country Reflections” published by History Press.

Studio/Gallery hours are posted at Schedule a visit or drop in. Browsing is always welcome.

July Artist of the Month

It's officially Summer and we are excited to announce Rob Loveday as our newest artist to check out in the branch! The visual arts have been a large part of Rob’s life since he was very young. During his childhood, his family visited art museums, and attended opera performances in New York City. His mother had a profound influence on his exposure to the arts, both visual and performance. At age 20, he began using a Nikon SLR to document his love of nature. He worked at WAMC Public Radio in the late 1980’s, as a Control Room Operator, then at Bern’s Camera in Albany for 7 years. Four trips to Western Europe have solidified his interest in European Art and Culture.

His formal Schooling includes coursework at SUNY New Paltz, Virginia Tech and an A.S. from HVCC, culminating with a Certificate in Cardiac Ultrasound (imaging the heart). He has been looking inside the hearts of patients for the past 20 years.

Rob is an observer. Over the past decade he has worked hard to become aware of textures and shapes, contrasts and similarities, in anything around him. His main drive is in macro photography, and a fundamental characteristic of this world is the abstraction of an object, as closeness can obscure perspective.

In 2013, he had an epiphany. A conversation prompted him to put aside his documentary style of photography, and challenge himself to create abstract images. This change in direction has spurred new interests in lighting and color, in reflections, and water in all its forms. As always, we would like to thank Saratoga Arts for creating Art in Public Places, the perfect platform for our talented, local artists!


Artist Statement

Recently I have begun moving away from using photography to realistically represent an object. Instead, I use light to enhance or create, shape and texture in my images. I create images without using computer programs, and instead work with light in-situ. The light may be transmitted through, reflected off of, or applied to, the objects. I enjoy making photographs that provoke the viewer to question their perception of the scene. I find the dynamic nature of water particularly useful as a substrate for coloring, and to show the movement of time.

May Artist of the Month

We are happy to present our new artist for the month of May, Debbie Abdella! Debbie’s unique flair for collage art embraces the perfect combination and placement of handmade papers, fabrics, photographs, found objects, inks, and glazes. Stop by our branch on 23 Division St. to see all of Debbie’s fascinating art pieces, which are also for sale. We can’t thank Saratoga Arts and their program “Art in Public Places” enough for providing our local artists a place to showcase their many talents!

Debbie's Bio

Debbie grew up in Northern California in Marion County. She took much of her initial inspiration from the stunning surroundings, including the great redwoods, the beautiful Pacific Ocean, and the powerful Russian River. From a very young age she had a love of arts and crafts. Learning at her mothers side she was exposed to the joys of expression through countless artistic media. As a young woman, her interest were very diverse she experimented with many art forms pottery, jewelry making, photography, and theatrical hair and make up. When she relocated from California to New York she continued to evolve as an artist. After studying with an old passion for collage was rekindled since then, she has been consumed with her love for the medium and has continued to expand the definition of collage, including the use of handmade paper, fabric, photographs, found objects, inks, and glazes.

Artist statement everyone has a story and my artwork helps to tell mine. I have always found sanctuary in my heart, and I have found solace inspiration and joy there, as well my art has helped me to articulate my experiences, feelings, and thoughts. It has given rise to the expression of my authentic voice. I want to share my work with others to inspire and Kindle the dream of creativity. Life, and it’s essence, is like a collage we take what we are given, and we add to that what we can fine. I seek to make my life as beautiful as I can manage, and to do that, I must use my imagination, take risks, and invent new ways of saying, and new ways of being. The medium of collage allows for this kind of fluidity and for this reason is the perfect expression for me.

April Artist of the Month

We are happy to welcome Spring with the beautiful and enchanting watercolor paintings created by the talented Irene Radicchi. Her artwork will be on display in our 23 Division St branch today through April 27th. As always, we would like to thank Saratoga Arts for creating Art in Public Places, the perfect platform for our talented, local artists! To learn more about Irene, please visit her facebook page Saratoga Watercolors by Irene Radicchi.

March Artist of the Month

Stop by the branch to see the wonderful pieces of art created by Pat Hughes. Pat's beautiful paintings honor the saratoga tradition and love of horses. Many thanks to Saratoga Arts for creating Art in Public Places, the perfect platform for our talented, local artists!

February Artist of the Month

In his photography Konrad Weeber captures the beauty of equine sports. His photos take the viewers behind the scenes of horseracing and allow them to experience the daily passion in the work of horse people at backstretches, training tracks and horse barns. Horse people are motivated by their seemingly limitless dedication to horses. Konrad aims to capture this in his photos that often explore the changing light between dawn and sunrise. His goal is to photograph the poetry in motion of horses in flight, the intersection of sunlight and athleticism, and the caring passion of riders and caretakers for the equines in their charge. 

Konrad is a lifelong photographer who started with black and white photography of modern dance performances for a dance journal in his hometown of Vienna, Austria. He has followed his passion for photography as he travelled the world and transitioned to travel, outdoors and sports photography. After settling in Saratoga Springs two years ago, he started to explore horse racing photography and picked up horseback riding himself to develop a better appreciation for and connection with horses. He now specializes in equine photography as a freelance photographer. He shares a selection of his photos on his popular instagram site dailyhorselifeofsaratoga. To learn more about Konrad, please visit his website  by clicking here.

January Artist of the Month

Sean Walmsley loved photography since he was a child. He started with a Box Brownie camera and eventually learned how to develop film and print black-and-white pictures while in high school.  In college, Sean developed a keen interest in semi-professional photography and has been an amateur photographer ever since. We invite you to stop by the branch to view Sean's eye-catching photos of nature. To learn more about Sean Walmsley, visit his website by clicking here.

December Artist of the Month

Amy Hauer is an abstract mixed media painter who uses various materials and processes to obtain very unusual outcomes. She uses different mediums, inks and acrylic paints to create each one-of-a-kind piece.  Amy Hauer holds a BS in Studio Art/Graphic Design. She worked briefly as a Graphic Designer, before becoming a preschool teacher where she integrated her love of art within her classroom. After 23 years of teaching, she switched gears working in an office setting—though never leaving her love of art behind. Recently, Hauer recently found herself immersed in painting once more, and having a love for abstract art—Pollack and Picasso amongst her favorite— having always served as inspiration, she seeks to incorporate both fluid color and design with different experimental processes into each piece allowing her to achieve something different every time. Hauer lives in Albany County, with her husband and three daughters, as well as three furry rescue dogs and a huge cat.

She has exhibited her work at Art on Lark, The Stockade Art Fair and at the Saratoga Arts Council 10x10 show. She has also exhibited at the Saratoga Arts in the Park, winning Honorable mention for her piece, Monarch. Her work can be seen in two upcoming shows at Uncommon Grounds—first in Clifton Park, in February, and then again in June at its Albany site. Amy also can be found at the Saratoga Arts Council Member's Show, and this fall at the Clifton Park Library. This is her first showing at the Saratoga Federal Credit Union.


November Artist of the Month

Supporting our local artists in Saratoga Springs continues this month with a very talented family of painters. With the encouragement and support of family, friends, co-workers and the Saratoga Arts Center; MK and his wife, Selvi, decided to rekindle their childhood interest in painting and illustration. The once blank canvases are now rich with color and spiritual significance through the artists captivating designs and skillfully placed brush strokes. Their talents have recently extended to both of their children who are currently teaching themselves oil painting techniques and illustration. We welcome you to view the beautiful and enchanting family exhibit at our branch now through November 27th. All paintings are available for purchase.

To learn more about Art in Public Places, like us on Facebook for weekly event updates sponsored by Saratoga’s Credit Union.