Meet Joan

Joan Justis in her studio

Welcome to my studio!

I love to learn, to teach and share, and to create pictures. My husband and I live in a green valley filled with dairy farms and patchwork fields of hay, corn, and alfalfa. We are surrounded by meringue topped mountains forested with aspen and mountain maple. Stream carved canyons radiate out like compass points.

While growing up in Chicago, I drew pictures with watercolor and crayons of snowy mountains, deer and cabins, never realizing that some day I could live here. When I was small my mother taught me the names of flowers and trees and how to protect rabbits cuddled in a furry nest in her backyard garden.

As a college student I finally decided to be an elementary teacher, because I could study everything! as I prepared for the degree. And I could teach little people how exciting it is to be alive. We have seven children, many who are also educators and busy raising our grandchildren.

Numerous artists paint nature with beautiful colors and good design and knowledgeable composition. However, when an artist has painted enough work, the images begin to reflect the inner self. As for me, they are a lens that reveal my experience, knowledge and gratitude for God’s creations. My paintings reflect what I find meaningful in life: God, His plan for us, His creations, and family. I value integrity, education, and service. I imagine that anyone looking at my work senses this and sometimes identifies with who I am. I paint to share the pleasure I find in what I see around me. The painting is successful, when I feel I have portrayed my experience. And because I was born with an artist’s spirit, I find joy in the process and cannot imagine spending a day without creating something!


  • Master of Fine Art, Utah State University, 2001
  • Bachelor of Art, Brigham Young University, 1966
  • Watercolor with Nita Engle, 1986
  • Watercolor with Tony Couch, 1986
  • Watercolor with Christopher Schink, 1990
  • Oil with Glen Edwards, 2007-8
  • Watercolor workshop instructor, Wyoming and Utah
  • Teaching Assistantship-Instructing Basic Drawing, Utah State University, 1998-2001
  • Esprit Art Center-owner and instructor of child and adult classes in drawing and watercolor, Wyoming, 1984-1993
  • First Grade Teacher, Cache County School District, Utah, 2001-2010
  • Vice President, Utah Watercolor Society, Cache Valley Chapter, 1999-2000
  • President, Wyoming Watercolor Society, 1987-1989
  • Board Member, Wyoming Watercolor Society, 1989-1993
  • Wyoming Council on the Arts Individual Artist Grant, 1989-1990, Created slide program: History of the American Watercolor
  • Utah Arts Council Teacher Initiated Project 2007-2008, mentored by Glen Edwards in oil painting
  • Best of Show, Utah Watercolor Society-Cache Valley, 2003
  • Utah Art Council Traveling Exhibit 1997-98, 1998-99
  • Black Hills Invitational Traveling Exhibit 1991-93
  • Clara Ely Award International Art Show Texas, 1990
  • First Premium, Professional Watercolor Division, Wyoming State Fair, 1986
  • First Prize, Wind River Valley National, 1985
Juried Exhibitions:
  • J.F. Prince Gallery Christmas Show and Sale 2010
  • Utah Watercolor Society Cache Valley Annual, 2003
  • Eccles Art Center Statewide Exhibition, 2000
  • Utah State University Faculty Exhibit, Myra Powell Gallery, Ogden, Utah, 2000
  • 76th Annual Spring Salon, Springville, Utah, 2000
  • Eccles Art Center Printmaking Exhibition, 2000
  • Utah Watercolor Society Spring Show, 1997, 1998
  • Wyoming Western Images, Murisaki Gallery, Tokyo, Japan, 1992-3
  • Black Hills Invitational, South Dakota, 1991
  • International Art Show, Brownsville, Texas, 1990
  • Nicolaysen Museum Juried Watercolor Exhibit, Wyoming, 1989
  • Hats, Chaps, Buckles and Boots, Galeria Mesa, Arizona, 1989
  • Seven State Regional, Cheyenne, Wyoming, 1988
  • Wyoming State Museum Watercolor Traveling Exhibit, 1985, 1986, 1987
  • Wyoming Watercolor Society Annual Exhibit, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991
Solo Shows:
  • 1984, 1986, 1989, 2002, 2003, 2011, 2015
  • Artists of the Rocky Mountains Fine Art Catalogue, 1990
  • French Creek Gallery, Laramie, Wyoming, 1991-98
  • Williams Fine Art, Salt Lake City, Utah, 1995
  • European Linens and Design, Salt Lake City, Utah, 1995-99
  • Cody Rodeo Company, Cody, Wyoming, 1996-2003
  • High Country Accents, Jackson Hole, Wyoming, 1997-2003
  • J.F. Prince Gallery 2010-15
  • Logan Fine Art Gallery 2010-2015
  • American Women Artists 2013 Associate Member
  • Budge Clinic Pediatrics Wing 2015
  • Fuhriman Framing and Gallery 2015

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