Rufty Client Creates Custom Oil Painting for Our Updated Office

For our team here at Rufty Homes, one of the best parts of the job is forming genuine connections with our clients. As we work together to design their homes, we learn about each other, eventually forming friendships that last well beyond the project completion. 

For example, when we worked with Barbara Hunter and her husband, Frank Rockhold, on a build in 2019, we learned all about Barbara’s flourishing art career. In fact, we’re getting ready to build an art studio addition to her home in the coming months!

One of the members of our Accounting team, Kelly Nicholson, has been following Barbara’s work over the years. When we decided to give our office a refresh, Kelly knew that Barbara would be the perfect artist to create a custom oil painting to hang in our updated space. 

We hope you enjoy this interview with Barbara as she explains more about her process as an artist and the inspiration for this painting.

What inspires you as an artist?

I’ve always felt the need to create and, over the years, I’ve worked with various media including pencils, charcoals, oil painting, and even photography. Regardless of what I’m working on at any given moment, the consistent theme is that it’s always my intention to create something beautiful to share. 

What is it that you love about oil painting?

While I’d experimented with oil painting in the past, I found myself drawn to it more and more over the past several years. In 2018, I took an oil class and ended up creating a portrait of my granddaughter. In April 2020, I finally had more time to pursue oil painting and I’ve thrown myself into it ever since. 

Painting isn’t just about paintbrushes. As an artist, I love shooting photos in film and using those photos as the basis of my paintings. It’s all about capturing what I see and bringing it to life in a new way. 

What is the inspiration behind the piece you’re working on for Rufty?

Kelly has a glass wall in front of her desk and we wanted to create a piece that she would enjoy looking at each day. In talking to her about special moments in her life, she reminisced about her 10-year anniversary trip to Venice, Italy, and shared a photo from the view out of their hotel window, which I’ve recreated in the painting. 

The scene, which features over 100 windows, captures the beauty of Venice and the magic of that special trip. I’m honored to recreate that moment into a painting that can provide a momentary escape for Kelly and the rest of the Rufty team as they bustle around the office. 


We’re so thankful to Barbara for taking the time to create this special painting for our office. You can explore her portfolio of work and commission a piece of your own by visiting  

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© 2024 Rufty Homes Inc. All rights reserved