Camera Lenses and Paintbrushes: 2 Local Artists of Note

That lovely scenic view from your Smoky mountain cabin can be taken home with you, through the eyes of two talented local artists. Both Ken Jenkins and Robert Tino have devoted their careers to education and preservation, charity and faith, beyond just producing wares for sale as their livelihood. 


Ken Jenkins is a nationally known and widely published wildlife photographer. In addition, he writes and speaks publicly on natural history topics and faith. His work can be found in hundreds of publications like National Geographic, Southern Living, and Audubon.

Ken’s work over a 30-year span captures amazing imagery that elevates photography to pure, lovely art. Don’t miss his galleries, Beneath the Smoke and Heaven’s Eyes, which are located at 467 Parkway in Gatlinburg, at the Highway 321 junction. Many beautiful images are reasonably priced. Photos of all sizes, sold unframed, or matted and framed ready to display. Books of nature, fine gifts, along with items for camping, hiking, and photography are all available for purchase.
Ken is also founder of Wilderness Wildlife Week (WWW), a Winterfest educational event that occurs annually in January. 2015 marks its 25th year, and the events take place mostly at Leconte Center in Pigeon Forge. WWW has a huge following with over 20,000 attendees. The week features workshops, expert seminars, hikes and field trips, and all sorts of classes for both young and old, open to anyone wanting to attend. It is a great place to learn about so many topics: please plan to visit and be both entertained and educated by this event. I summarized the 2014 WWW earlier this year, which can give you a flavor for what is to come in 2015 (see blog archive for Jan 15, 2014).
Robert Tino has been painting since he was a student in the 1980’s, and has a broad and devoted following of collectors for his creations of Smoky mountain landscapes. Local mountain scenery, animals, floral depictions, holiday images, and other striking subjects are featured. His use of color is much appreciated for its depth and variation that beautifully captures the nuances of our countryside. Never ordinary, each piece deserves study for its detail and long-term enjoyment of ownership. Various editions and collections are available for purchase, in many configurations. Professional matting and framing services are also provided at this local art gallery.
Even the Tino gallery itself is a showplace. The antebellum farm homestead is listed on the Tennessee Register of Historic Places, and has been in the Denton family for generations (Robert’s wife is Mary John Denton Tino). Thousands of art lovers have enjoyed this charming place to visit. A full complement of artwork, along with fine gifts and regional pottery are offered for purchase. Robert says he tries to preserve the region’s heritage as a storyteller through his watercolors and oils.
In addition, celebrate our local heritage every October as the Tino gallery hosts the Smoky Mountain Homecoming, now in its 22nd year. A family event with a large, happy following, we locals also enjoy this fun heritage celebration every year. Bluegrass music, storytelling, crafts, food, games, antiques, farm skill demonstrations, wagon rides, and more are a part of the festivities, along with Robert’s new art releases available for viewing, signing, and purchase. Check the blog archive for Sept 25, 2013 for a more detailed summary.
There are many area artists worthy of your attention. Start with these two fine gentlemen to increase your art appreciation. Come stay with us at Volunteer Cabin Rentals soon!




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