Gallery 287 – Backroad to Yellowstone

Gallery 287 – Ennis, Montana

Capturing the essence of the people, wildlife and ranch animals engrained in our Western lifestyle is the special talent of artist Cathy Toot and Muddled Moose  Studio.  What began as a hobby painting intricate images on gourds of all sizes has grown into a full-time, professional career.

Immersing herself in the western way started 20 years ago when she and her husband arrived in Ennis, MT.  Whether teaching the two-step at the Blue Moon Saloon or participating in  cowboy action shooting, where people dress up in period clothing and shoot light loads of ammunition with rifles, handguns and shotguns while playing out a Wild West scenario, Cathy is at home in the West.

As Cathy puts it, “I do more of the soberness side of the Western world,” Toot said. “There was no leisure, and there was no whining or ‘woe is me.’ Things were made and happened because you did them yourself.”

“I feel much more comfortable when I put on clothing of real westerners back then…” Toot said. “And when I paint them, maybe it is a way to keep that in front of me all the time, and not forget.”

Cathy’s studio, the Gallery 287, is the next step in making her mark in the world of western art.  The grand opening took place in May and Cathy is there, painting, 5-6 days a week.  She also holds classes to inspire others.

“I am proud of being a woman of the West,” Toot said. “And that is clear in my work, because although my subject’s eyes may be tired, they are also full of a fierce pride.”

Cathy is an inspiration and an artist – stop by Gallery 287 studio and see for yourself!


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