Local sisters find joy in following their hearts, and in their great grandfather’s footsteps, as they pursue careers in art

By Hilary Dartt • Photo by Trisha Shaffer

During the past couple of months, sisters—and artists—Jennifer Fox Hamilton and Lindsay Fox have seen their art businesses explode.

What shifted a couple of months ago? The two of them started working together.

“She got me into it. I wouldn’t be doing it without her,” said Lindsay.

Jennifer added that Lindsay has helped her come out of her shell, step past her resistance, and feel more comfortable being visible as an artist.

Fulfilling a lifelong dream, Jennifer enrolled in art school in 2020 and launched her art business, Fox Art & Soul Studio, in 2021. She also began teaching painting classes at The Art Store in Prescott … and that’s where Lindsay’s art journey began.

“She kept saying, ‘You should take my painting class,’” Lindsay said.

In August of 2021, she did. And, she said, “This train came in hot”: Lindsay found that once she started painting, that’s all she wanted to do.

That train came in just as Jennifer was considering putting her art business on the back burner to solely focus on work from her day job (she illustrates homeschool curriculum coloring books).

But Lindsay encouraged Jennifer to board, and everything changed.

In January this year, Lindsay decided to start putting her art out there: “It’s not going to do it on its own.”

Jennifer and Lindsay had their first “sister show” at the Raven Café, featuring their mixed media artwork. Then, in March, the two participated in a two-day art festival at Suze’s Prescott Center for the Arts: first for the fourth Friday Art Walk and then for Suze’s Grand Opening.

Although Jennifer, an introvert, said it was exhausting, she also said, “It was awesome. We had great sales, some of my painting students and collectors came to see me, and I met so many new people.”

Lindsay, the extrovert of the pair, manages and tends bar at Lyzzard’s Lounge, and said she loved introducing her sister to friends who stopped by.

Creativity runs in the family, the women said: their great-grandfather, Runar G. Rodell, is considered one of America’s greatest western artists. His work—dioramas with backgrounds painted in oil paint and foregrounds containing sculptures made of sticks and other natural materials he collected in nature—is currently on display in the Phippen Museum’s James Gallery.

Celebrities including Bob Hope, Ronald Regan, and Bing Crosby have owned his work, which also hung inside Prescott’s Pinecone Inn when Jennifer and Lindsay were younger.

His granddaughter, Jennifer and Lindsay’s mother, Kathy (Hood) Stewart, is a photographer and remembers collecting tufts of grass and sticks for her grandfather to use in his work. Their father, Gary Fox, is a writer, was a photojournalist, and does woodworking. The women’s maternal grandparents, John and Katherine Hood, sang opera. Their other four siblings are creative as well; however, Jennifer and Lindsay—like their great-grandfather—are pursuing full-time careers in art … and are reaping the benefit of doing it together.

“I’m just so thankful she didn’t quit [painting],” Jennifer said of Lindsay. “Her work is beautiful. She drives me to keep going and believe in myself. Doing art with my sister is amazing; I felt like I was on an island there, doing this by myself.”

“I love seeing people do what they’re passionate about,” Lindsay said. “I’m discovering myself as an artist after being in the workforce and being a mom. Painting is all I want to do.”

The future is bright for the pair. Jennifer has plans in the works for a gallery, hoping to open in spring of 2024. Lindsay is lining up art shows and festivals for 2023, to create brand recognition and get her art out into the world.

On Instagram, follow Lindsay @lmfox.artistry and Jennifer @foxartandsoulstudio, to see their art, and to learn more about how to buy their work and merchandise.