Alaska Art

Featured Artist

Barbara (Barb) Johnson




     Barbara Johnson is a retired teacher who lives in Chugiak, Alaska.  She worked for 24 years at Tanaina and Machetanz Elementary Schools in the Valley and loved teaching kids. Before becoming a teacher, Barb worked for Alaska State Parks, Trailside Discovery Camp, National Audubon Society, US Fish and Wildlife Service, US Forest Service, and the Peregrine Fund.

     Barb came to Alaska from Colorado in 1981 with her husband, Steve. Together with their only daughter, Erin, they have spent their free time exploring Alaska by hiking, backpacking, skiing, mountain biking and packrafting. They also love traveling, birdwatching, and learning about nature.

        Barb has always loved art and painting. She often paints with watercolors on outdoor adventures and she shared that joy with her daughter, Erin, mostly using a small packable watercolor set on outdoor trips.  It wasn’t until she retired, that she joined the Valley Fine Arts Association and began taking classes and painting more regularly. She now enjoys painting with watercolor, alcohol ink, acrylic, and is beginning to paint with oils as well. Encouraged by her daughter, she had her first art show at Kaladi Coffee Shop in May.  She also had two watercolor paintings selected for the  VFAA juried show in 2018.

            On June 19, 2017, Barb and Steve’s life changed forever when their daughter, Erin, was killed by a bear while working near Delta, Alaska. Art has been a therapeutic way for Barb to deal with this immeasurable loss and a way to honor her daughter.  She remembers happy times spent painting with her and now donates two-thirds of the proceeds from her paintings to the Erin K. Johnson Memorial Fund, which was formed to support things close to Erin’s heart. It is Barb’s way of keeping Erin’s spirit alive. The fund provides financial support to organizations and projects that encourage getting youth in the outdoors, science education, and protecting wild places we can all enjoy. For more information about the fund go to:

Barbara Johnson

You may contact Barbara personally  at:



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Past Featured Artists