The Bakken has a powerful influence on the people who grow up here. Endless-day summers, harsh yet family-binding winters, and the rolling prairie that seems to go on like a swirling ocean. This unique environment also influences the art produced here. Daphne Clark was born in the plains valley of Fairview and has spent the last 25 years raising her lovely family here in Williston.
In 2012, after being a successful long-distance runner, some injuries had her looking in a new direction to throw her passion. While watching a special on Public Broadcasting about painting, she decided this was the thing to try. Try and fail. But like any good sportsman, she did not let this minor setback deter her. Failure is ultimately how we all learn to do anything. After an artsy friend recommended she switch from acrylics to oil paints, Daphne took like a fish to water, pouring her heart and soul into emotional and breathtaking images of her life, antique buildings, and the divine nature we are surrounded by here in the Bakken. "When I do things, I go all in '' said Daphne; all in, she did go. While being a mom, she spent the next seven years getting her Masters of Fine Arts in Painting from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco.
One day, after having an idea bumping around in her head for a decade for a knockout kids' book, Jesse Veeder called her friend and asked if she could make the art for the now-available children's book, The Prairie Princess. The story captures a young girl's view of her home in the prairies of the Bakken with uplifting original paintings by Daphne.
The illustrations are modeled after Jesse Veeder's daughter. In some, Daphne brilliantly superimposed the likeness of Veeder's daughter with other scenery to create her one-of-a-kind yet hauntingly familiar artwork. The book, The Prairie Princess, is available at Books on Broadway, Hansen's Unlimited, and Jesse Veeder's website, jessieveedermusic.com/product/752623. This book is a fabulous Christmas idea for anyone with young children or happy memories of the rolling prairie hills.