Shannon Fannin

Shannon was born in Long Beach, California. She earned a college scholarship to pursue an art teaching degree for teaching special needs children. However, life had other plans. She put becoming an artist on hold for marriage, a career in marketing, and raising a family. Using her portfolio for a resume, she taught elementary school art for two years through a private academy.

After a 25 year hiatus from an art career, Shannon returned to school to refresh her abilities. She took a handful of courses to reacquaint herself with mediums and started to build on her expressionistic style. Being a great fan of color, Shannon prefers working largely in many media including pastel, charcoal, watercolor, gouache, ink, and acrylic and usually combines many of them in mixed media pieces. She enjoys bringing chrome and carbon fiber alive through her vehicle paintings, conveying the human form and imagined still lifes. Her eclectic nature allows her to create work that simply makes her happy. She lives in Austin with her husband of 26 years and their college student son.


Who are we when nobody is looking? Most of us go about our lives often concealing our inner selves from the world. One indication of our true personality is the car we drive or even dream of someday owning. Similar to the abstracted images visible in chrome or carbon fiber, outside influences manipulate and form our character.

My works reveal the distorted reflections within us all.

Cars are more than appliances to get us from Point A to B – they are mobile sculptures that reflect the journeys of their travelers in both reality and dream. Just as we focus on the curvaceous figure of a beautiful model, we admire cars for their initial appearance – drawn in by beauty but captivated by the depth of character. My art reveals the hidden stories and nuances of each automotive personality to the viewer, connecting them with the unknown world of the car and their memories.

To truly connect with the physical realm of each vehicle so that I may better understand their stories, I manipulate the canvas with brush, fingers, and hands. Every abstract line, smudge and dull shadow is a hint into the vastness of the story unfolding. From a distance, the viewer believes one perception, upon approach, more is revealed – the lie their eyes have told them becomes a reality. Incomplete visage is manipulated by the observer’s imagination – tree becomes smear, human becomes segmented shapes, the story something new with each step.

I live for the moment that the optical illusion is realized by the viewer, with a smile or a laugh – success! My paintings marry nostalgia for cars with the love of art. My art is a collision of the human components of imagination and fantasy garnering a visual and emotional response from both car and art lovers alike.

All images courtesy of Shannon Fannin