Katie and Loni’s paths have crossed many times in the last 25 years. In the 90s they went to the same clubs, to see the same bands, and ended up at the same parties. They have more than one mutual friend and have most likely been in the same room hundreds of times… slightly sensing the awesome tingling of destiny yet never quite identifying its source (I mean really, anyone from Portland knows how small this place actually is). Oddly, Loni and Katie met for real because of their connection to Sharon’s sister-in-law, which is also how Katie met Sharon (see… small town). Loni and Katie finally met about ten years ago and they quickly discovered their mutual interests in mixed media arts and crafts, as well as their shared obsessions with glitter; unicorns (and narwhal), the sweet-sweet tunes of their youth, and pretty much anything considered nerdy.
Naturally, when Sharon stepped down as co-host in the spring of 2015, Loni was the first person Katie thought of when looking for another co-host. Thankfully Loni agreed and jumped right in! Only on their first day of recording, on Loni’s very first day as Katie’s co-host, did they fully come to understand the epic celestial alignment and fulfillment of fate that they were a part of. *cue hard-core power ballad and glittery pyrotechnics*
Katie is the oldest of three in what her mother refers to as “a wild pack of howler monkeys”. As a child, when not busy with her wantonly destructive monkey duties, Katie could often be found out in her grandpa’s shop taking things apart and turning them into other things. Not much was safe when it came to her curiosity about how stuff works, and more than one household small appliance was lost to the “found object gods” before She learned to start scavenging for things that other people viewed as garbage to use in her artistic experimentation. Katie survived the angst of her teen years by writing and drawing/painting/sculpting about the bubbling caldron of emotion that a properly brooding young girl experiences. Thankfully she shook off the angst (most of it) and her artistic nature and curiosity stuck around.
It is her hunger for learning new things and applying art to life that inspired Katie to pursue a degree in graphic design, which she proudly received in the summer of 2013. She still writes daily; she still takes appliances apart to find the perfect part for a piece of art (although she usually waits until things break on their own these days), and she still hungers for experimentation and challenges in her artwork. This air of well planned chaos is evident in her mixed media collage, assemblage, sculpture, drawing, and painting works. When not creating way more mess and work for herself than is necessary in her Portland home/studio, Katie spends her time wrangling/entertaining/being entertained by her fantastically Muppet like husband; the beatifically angst wrapped enigma that is her teenage son, their incredibly zany Cockapoo known as Mr. Doo-dah-day, and their pretty little calico kitty who goes by Miss Calamity Jane. She also swears a lot.
Katie’s favorite thing about Loni is her laugh and how easily it comes. Seriously, Loni has a great laugh! And she does it all the time. It makes Katie smile pretty much every day. Katie also loves how fearlessly Loni attacks new projects. She just finds cool things on the interwebz or in magazines that she wants to try and BAM, she does them! And they always look amazing! Katie is mystified by how long it took for she and Loni to connect and become such good friends.
Loni was born with an inherent resistance to authority and penchant for rule breaking. Her mother soothed her restless spirit with arts and crafts, allowing her and her brother to create and sell magnets and pencil toppers at the bazaars and craft fairs she sold her wares at. Loni began expressing her emotion and defiant nature through art early in life by making very detailed, anger fueled drawings when she was upset. One such picture of a loin, created specifically to let her mother know how angry she was with her, still hangs on the wall at her childhood home (her plan totally backfired as her mom loved the drawing). The missed signals it represents piss Loni off to this day.
In the 90s Loni fine-tuned her rebellious nature by joining a rock band. She played bass in Monkey to the Monster, performing at local clubs and recording two albums with them. She was eventually kicked out of the band for “being a typical bass player”, solidifying her legendary bad-assness.
Angry drawings and rock & roll lifestyle be damned, Loni grew up to become a successful self starter who likes to find her own way and make her own rules. When her youngest child came down with head lice and Loni found all of the treatment options and attitudes about such a common childhood event to be a bit frightening and over the top, she discovered another way and started a mobile head lice removal service called Nit Nanny. Basically, she goes to people’s homes and helps them get rid of head lice!
When she is not being a super hero to lice stricken families of the greater Portland area, Loni is hanging with her own family, kitties, and chickens. She loves using her mad furniture refurbishing skills to decorate her home. Her art jam is embroidery but once she decides she is going to learn to do something, she becomes obsessed, sometimes even withholding food and bathroom breaks for hours!
Loni’s favorite thing about Katie is her no nonsense way of looking at things. She seriously cracks Loni up and she very much admires Katie’s ability to tell it like it is. Loni also admires Katie’s artistic abilities and how good she is at so many things. Basically, she just thinks Katie is awesome and can’t believe they didn’t become friends long ago.
Sharon is no longer with the show, but does comeback to visit occasionally. Because she does sometimes sit in for Loni and all of our episodes from the year she was with the show are still available for listeners to download, we are leaving her bio here for new fans to read. Plus, we love her tons and like having her bio here.
Sharon has been creating things from papers and fabrics as long as she can remember. In fact, her hamsters were widely known as the most fashionable rodents on the block when she was a kid because she use to sew outfits for them. Eventually Sharon’s hamsters formed a coup and by the time middle school rolled around she was forced to give up her aspirations in rodent fashion design for jewelry making. She continued to design and create her own jewelry through high school and into college where she studied and obtained a degree in ceramics. Sharon also studied and apprenticed under world renowned ceramic artist Wally Schwab for three years, as well as studying with Don Sprague and Richey Bellinger during this time.
Sharon is still making jewelry and you can see how much her love of clay and texture carries over to her work. Always inspired by nature and industry, she uses and experiments with mixed metals; patinas, glass, paints, beads, wire, feathers, and many other media in her creations. In addition to making and selling beautiful jewelry, she also makes amazing cards and wonderful mixed media art pieces when she is able to step away from the daily chores of her family farm, on Washington’s gorgeous Olympic Peninsula.
Katie’s favorite thing about Sharon is her awesome smile, how quickly she laughs, and the fact that these things combined with her pretty, long, straight hair have always reminded her of Janice, from the Muppet’s Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem band (and that she takes this last fact for the HUGE complement it is meant to be).