Roadrunner Meets Tennis
MEET THE ARTIST: Diana Chambliss, Roadrunner Arts, Loveland CO
Welcome back to our Artist Spotlight series, where we feature our contemporary makers and also share background on the creators of our vintage and collectors' items.
At TennisAlley we seek out local artists whose style speaks to us; then we ask if they're so inspired to create something tennis-themed, exclusively for us. When we met Diana at the Loveland Farmers Market in the summer of 2022, we were smitten with her style. She has been open to ideas and runs with them, bringing us back even more than we imagined, from earrings to bookmarks.
Diana calls her business Roadrunner Arts. Here's how she describes herself: "I am a solopreneur with a love for family and friends. I have 2 wonderful sons, Jathin and Joshua ... we lost our dear Aubree 🐝 in 2019 ... and numerous grandkids. I dedicate and create to honor them.
"I love creating unique and nostalgic wearable art and personal items out of beads, wire, copper, leather and bottle caps."
Any connections to tennis? "I grew up within walking distance of our local tennis courts and love the game!"
We quickly learned that Diana loves a challenge and loves to learn by doing. "What about bookmarks with irreverent sayings by tennis greats?" we wondered and gave her a list, including more than one by the ever-quirky Andy Roddick. She came back with the sayings stamped into copper riveted onto leather, onto which she had stamped an Izod-esque alligator and tennis balls, hand-painted with itty-bitty paint brushes and toothpicks. From one end, colorful tassels of lovely ribbons in tennis colors. David Foster Wallace, we like to imagine, would find this level of bookmark artistry fitting for his legendary collection of tennis essays, String Theory (a copy of which we just happen to have in stock). Diana created these bookmarks especially for the tennis playing bibliophile in your life.
We also love her resourcefulness! With leftover leather, she created wicked-cool alligator bracelets with chunky silver clasps, and a one-of-a-kind keychain, which we use for locking up TennisAlley at night.
What else? Watch for some leather stick hair barrettes in the future! Ooh la la ... hand-painted alligator hair art at TennisAlley? Yes, please!
In other news, Diana is having some fun creating outlet/switch covers from aluminum cans. She says, "I'm inspired by artwork on other mediums, like beer and pop cans." She is fascinated with mixed media designs of leather, metals such as copper and brass, and other findings.
See what else this delightful lady is hammering, riveting, and painting, and where to find more of her work, by following her at Facebook.com/RoadrunnerArts.
Thank you, Diana! We dig your style and really enjoy working with you!