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Dave Shelton shares his sense of fun, love of art Shelton has been the sign maker and artist for Oaks Amusement Park in Portland for more than 25 years, painting numerous murals and creating a colorful backdrop for families to play. In 2013, he painted a space-themed background on the walls of the bumper car building. “The inspiration was The Jetsons TV show,” said Shelton, who owns White Water Signs & Graphics in Gates. He offers vinyl lettering, logos, cartoons, banners, truck/ car decals, large format printing and T-shirt screen prints, and other design work. Shelton’s signs can be seen on businesses throughout the Santiam Canyon and beyond, including Mehama Ace Hardware, Mountain Café in Mill City, The Hoop in Salem, Anthony Hall in Sublimity, and on vehicles such as Power GMC of Corvallis. His customers give positive testament to his talents: “Dave is the most professional sign maker! I always know that he’s the one who did them because they always look great.” And “polite, professional and quick. Love the service!”

Signs may be Shelton’s bread and butter, but cartoons remain his passion. “Cartoons are something everyone enjoys and gives a playful feeling to signs and advertising,” he said. “Not to mention the history cartoons play in politics as well as humor in general. You can convey so much information and emotion in a single drawing.”

Arts Center in Mill City. Fee is $25. “Dave enjoys working with all ages and welcomes families as well as

In 1980, Shelton put his talents to work creating a cartoon strip called Bernie, loosely based on his life and loves. Stonewall Features Syndicate based in San Francisco picked up the strip, and Shelton drew four strips per month for almost 10 years.

individuals,” said Cheryl Gribskov, with Hearts to Arts. Students are asked to bring a drawing tablet, pencil, felt-tip pen, eraser, and photo to turn into a cartoon.

“My cartoon was carried in a number of weekly and bi-monthly periodicals across the country,” he said. “It was a great experience, and helped me to hone my writing, drawing and inking skills to a professional level.”

“I hope to foster a love of cartooning in my students and encourage more people to draw!” said Shelton.

Through Santiam Hearts to Arts, Shelton will teach basic cartooning in a two-hour class on two consecutive Saturdays, March 18 and 25, 10 a.m. to noon at the Canyon

To register or for more information, call Gribskov at 503-949-8071 or send an e-mail to

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March 2017 • 5

Our Town South: March 1, 2017  
Our Town South: March 1, 2017  

Our Town Community News serving Stayton, Sublimity, Aumsville, and the Santiam Canyon