Michele Rushworth

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Two More Governors' Portraits for Wyoming
Cheyenne, Wyoming

Bryant B. Brooks, Governor from 1905 to 1911
Lester C. Hunt, Governor from 1943 to 1949

Rushworth's remarks at the unveiling of her Portraits of former Wyoming Governors Bryant B. Brooks and Lester C. Hunt:

"It's a great honor to be here and to have two more of my paintings added to the collection of governors portraits for the state of Wyoming. I'm humbled by the knowledge that they will become part of the state historical record and be preserved for years to come.

I enjoyed working with Renee Bovee of the department of Cultural Resources, along with Shelly Trumbull and Elise Chadwick , descendants of governors Brooks and Hunt. They were so helpful in providing additional reference photos, and in the case of Governor Brooks, even a copy of his autobiography.

It's always an extra challenge working on posthumous portraits, especially ones from so long ago when few photos are available and those are only in black and white. It's also very interesting, though, because researching and painting the portraits helps me learn about how their lives were different from ours, in the eras when they lived.

In my portrait process I researched the backgrounds of these two governors extensively, found additional reference material online and in books. For Governor Brooks's portrait I researched Edwardian era office furniture and clothing and had a model pose in a suit that I rented from a historical costumer. I spoke to the governors' family members about eye color and hair color and pulled it all together to create the paintings you see here.

The whole process was a great honor and a pleasure and I thank the Wyoming Department of State Parks & Cultural Resources for giving me the opportunity to create these portraits." —Michele Rushworth

Wyoming Capitol building

Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal

Capitol building interior before the ceremony

Looking up at the capitol dome

Governor Brooks portrait with some of his descendants

Governor Hunt portrait with his daughter and grandson

The portraits later went on display at the historic Governors Mansion in Cheyenne

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