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Several artists have painted buoys and chairs to help raise funds for BHV! The artworks can be seen throughout downtown for residents and visitors to enjoy all summer.  Find your favorites, then place your bids in our online auction September 4-11, 2024.

You can visit the BHV Buoys & Chairs 2024 auction website here.

Be of Brave Heart

by DJ Robidou

9" buoy

Be of Brave Heart

There’s a call to ALL:

  Run the race from the start

  always rise from a fall.

  Release the fear

      and break through that wall.

  Never look back ‘cause it has      

  exited and gone.

  Rejuvenate, refresh, then move on

  sing! dance! continue The Run

          (it ain’t over til it’s done)

  Move through those hard times,

  we Don’t have time for them.

  Release - Be Delivered,            

            then Make Amends.

            And to ALL:

              Finish the Start!

                  “Be of Brave Heart”


Line tied by Chelsea Huckbody @littlefishlineco on Instagram.

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Herring in the Kelp Forest

by Amy Sweeney

15" buoy

     “I find inspiration in the amazing beauty, diversity and quirkiness that is Sitka. I love the mountains that leap from the ocean, plumes of whale breath drifting across the waves, cloud-wrapped islands, and even the hundred different gradations of rain from barely-there mist to downpour. Eagles soaring sky high, ravens swooping in the breeze, banana slugs slowly creeping among mosses, lichens, and ferns too numerous to name, the wonderful diversity of local human community and history, the annual return of salmon as well as human visitors-- even the dark winter months, when small-town community activities abound, are precious to me.

     "With my husband and two children, I have called Sitka home for over 30 years, and remain with a heart full of gratitude for the privilege of making my home here. I strive in my art to highlight cherished facets of this beloved, incredible place that is Sitka, Alaska.

     "I am a member of Sitka’s local artist cooperative, Island Artists Gallery. My artworks may be viewed in there at 205 B Lincoln St."

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by Ellie Jansen

8.5" buoy


     “I went to Brave Heart’s paint and sip night to show my enthusiasm to our volunteer artists for their pursuit in creating beautiful buoys for our auction and to help out. While perusing the raw buoys on the shelf at the Sitka Science Center, I felt compelled to pick up a paintbrush! I had just the evening prior finished reading Incredibly Bright Creatures by Shelby van Pelt and enjoyed the character of the wise and curmudgeonly giant Pacific octopus. Marcellus was my muse! I do hope he brings joy to those who spot him!”

     The line was tied by Chelsea Huckbody @littlefishlineco on Instagram.

Sun & Swim

by Cora Dow

10.5" x 7.5" buoy


     This fun buoy was painted by Cora Dow and features swimmers on one side, with beach enthusiasts on the other. Cora said, “I wanted to paint something that conveys the joy that I feel while being outside.” Cora’s art can be seen on Instagram


     The line was tied by Chelsea Huckbody @littlefishlineco on Instagram.

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Sitka Sky

by Angie DelMoral

11" buoy


     "Whenever I stand under a clear Sitka night sky, I am reminded of loved ones who have passed, who are just beyond the other side of the stars. 'Leave the light on for me,' I say, trusting and hoping I will see them again someday. I thought of them as I painted this buoy for Brave Heart Volunteers, a refuge for those who are grieving their own loved ones, preparing for end of life, or experiencing loneliness. The stars may be billions of miles away, but my loved ones remain ever near, shining bright and clear within my memory."

     The line was tied by Chelsea Huckbody @littlefishlineco on Instagram.

Breaking Free

by Kimberly Gleason

11" buoy


“I was born and raised on the outskirts of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. In my early twenties, I broke free and my wanderlust took me into the mountains of Colorado, and eventually into the splendid wilderness of Alaska. I traveled extensively around Alaska, and often lived ruggedly remote, until I finally settled in this beautiful small town of Sitka. I fell in love with not only the people, but how the majestic mountains are married to the sea. My love for Sitka’s great outdoors has me spending as much time on the ocean as I possibly can. My SUP has become a great escape for me on calm water days. It is my way of breaking free from the noise of life, and to float freely surrounded by beauty. The name of my buoy is ‘Breaking Free.’ May she inspire you to break free, whether it be from the noise of life, or as a reminder to emerge out of this world, to see its beauty and to find your happy place of peace.

     "I have one request: If you name her, please let me know her name. I am hoping she will be one of many in a series that I call Fat Bottom Girls."

     You can find Kimberly  on Instragram @itskimjo_yo

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Passing Through

by DJ Robidou

11.5" buoy


        Passing Through

Remaining steadfast in Light

   Yearning for Peace

 Always keeping the vigil for Life

    Never giving up Hope

           Always Magnificent!




               Nearer to Thee

                  Passing Through

Tidal Zone

by Holly Morris

15.5" buoy

     "The cracks and pits I saw as I cleaned the buoy inspired me to use them to design sea anemones and eel grasses in the lower half of the buoy. As I worked my way up, I found there were fewer cracks to outline so I transitioned to the forest and sunburst landscape. Sharpies were used to outline and color the shapes. Mod Podge was used to protect the colors. The artwork needs to be displayed indoors."

     Holly was born in Connecticut and raised in Colorado, Holly Morris is a lifelong artist. Her childhood wasfilled with outdoor adventures in the mountains and deserts and at her family’s cabin on a mining claim. Holly’s rich artistic childhood led her to attend the University of Northern Colorado and its Study in Florence, Italy. After her UNC graduation, she was employed as a geologic map painter, an experience which led her to pursue a geology degree from the University of Colorado. She has worked as an artist/geologist in Alaska since 1995 and currently calls Sitka home. Her original paintings are for sale at Gallery by the Sea in Sitka.

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Water Dancers

by Merri Larson

10" buoy


     “The inspiration came from living here at Twin Islands Lodge & Retreat. I was inspired by the diversity of all the beautiful sea life I’ve seen around the Island since we’ve been here. Whether I was just walking along the shoreline, kayaking or what we’ve pulled from a crab trap! It all started with the sea kelp because the water here is so clear and the Kelp is so pretty when it’s dancing in the water.”

     The line was tied by Chelsea Huckbody @littlefishlineco on Instagram.

Octopus Garden

by DJ Robidou

7.5" buoy + 3"w x 4.5"H Buoy


Octopus Garden

- a place we call HOME -

Nestled All Snuggly Together

Always Shining Happiness And

Emitting Love & Learning

Everlasting Nurturing


A big thank you to Rob Suarez for the beautiful rope-work.

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A Bloom of Jellies

by Sandra Butler

11" buoy


     Although my home base is in New England, I have been in Sitka for two full winters now, from late Fall through early Spring, spending time with my remarkable in-laws and the many Alaskan friends and family we have here. Last winter I participated in the Brave Heart Volunteers’ buoy fundraiser - almost on a whim - and thoroughly enjoyed painting colorful sea stars, seaweed, and shells that wash up along this coast. This year, after attending one of the BHV painting workshops at the Sitka Science Center, and observing, by flashlight, the amazingly delicate moon jellies gently oscillating in one of the tanks, I was completely captivated by them, and decided to try my hand at capturing their intricate details, their transparency and subtle luminosity.

     While there are many beautiful and unique jellyfish I decided to limit my focus to Moon Jellies (Aurelia Aurita) because they are abundant in the cold waters of Southeast Alaska, and are frequently sighted, sometimes in great numbers, by boaters, fishermen, and

divers. Unlike other species of jellyfish which can be extremely toxic, and even deadly, they pose little danger to humans.

     I loved painting these mysterious and elegant creatures. Ethereal shape-shifters, moon jellies contract their umbrella-shaped bodies when they move, propelling themselves with a fringe of tiny tentacles through the water in a graceful dance. Their bodies consist of moon-like bells, frilly feeding appendages that dangle below, and four horseshoe-shaped reproductive organs that create a beautiful cloverleaf pattern inside their transparent domes. I purposely chose to limit my palette to milky whites, shadowy grays, and deep blue colors as I sought to create a sense of underwater depth and convey the mystery and beauty of these magical invertebrates.

     You can see more of Sandra’s art at her website or email her at

     The line was tied by Chelsea Huckbody @littlefishlineco on Instagram.

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Good Mourning

by Angie DelMoral

10" buoy


     "When I paint, I am often surprised by how pretty my palette looks with all its muddled dabs and daubs of color. There is an abstract beauty about the messiness and the fact it was used to create something meaningful. During my last art project, it struck me how grief is like an artist’s palette. It feels like a muddled mess, chaotic and confusing, used to transform us in the most profound ways. But somehow, order emerges from the disarray, and we eventually find fresh hope and strength in our new life after a loss. This buoy represents the messiness of grief that lies below the surface and how it evolves into something strong and beautiful, like butterflies rising up and away as they heal."

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by DJ Robidou

13.5" buoy



Making things New again

      Overcoming ALL

Restoring the Lost

      Great thou Art

All things possible, Amazing Grace

     Now, Forever, and Always!

Winning, Intervening, Nourishing

             Freeing, Releasing,

        Edifying and Delivering



Line tied by Chelsea Huckbody @littlefishlineco

on Instagram.

Mountains of Memory

by Libby Stortz

7" buoy

     “I was inspired by remembering the mountains from my former street and window, along with a bit of the ocean. I loved that view and did a number of paintings of it. The buoy was a challenge, as sphere meant the mountains had to attach to themselves at some point on the buoy. You might see where that happens! So I decided to give the entire buoy a fantasylike look with metallic paint. It’s still just a bird feeder.”

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Ode to Octo

by Jude Reis

13.5" buoy


     Jude expertly captured the grace and incredible beauty of the octopus, which served as the inspiration for her buoy. She said, “8 legs, 9 brains, 3 hearts… what an awesome creature!! My red octopus is happy and excited to see you, and go home with you to grace your space and your life.”

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Perfect Adventure

by Angie Eaton

11" buoy


“I created this buoy to inspire myself and others to never stop dreaming, to always allow ourselves to release our expressions of our inner beauty.” As an artist, she said, “It is my dream and unique vision to embrace my journey in capturing beautiful memories through my love of art, and photography, by creating a vision of hope that illuminates the path and direction of concurring challenges and welcoming daily adventures.” Angie’s art can be seen on Instagram @angielynneaton


The line was tied by Chelsea Huckbody @littlefishlineco on Instagram.

Northern Lights

by Rain Van Den Berg

7" buoy

     Rain Van Den Berg is a Sitka artist and maker who works in many mediums. This is her first buoy for Brave Heart, and it honors the northern lights and the forests of Southeast. The northern lights swirl and dance in a sky seen through tree silhouettes, as the moon floats among them. The base of the buoy features an "angel" formation of northern lights, which the artist aspires to see in person one day. She hopes the buoy will bring joy to the highest bidder, and so appreciates the work the good people of Brave Heart do.

     The line was tied by Chelsea Huckbody @littlefishlineco on Instagram.

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by Yusur Jasim

7.5" buoy


     Yusur Jasim painted this joyful buoy using rich primary colors against a white background. Yusur said, “I painted fun colors and shapes that made me feel happy. My art is on Instagram @paintpoptart“


     The line was tied by Chelsea Huckbody @littlefishlineco on Instagram.

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by Victoria Smith

38.5"h x 17.5"w x 10.5"d highchair


     "Color in harmony makes me smile. The beauty of natural things is my inspiration. My intent was to bring color to this chair and still keep the natural simplicity of its form. I choose hummingbirds as subjects because they make everyone smile.”

     Victoria Smith, owner of Ravenhawk Studio, is a self-taught artist who works in several different mediums.  Her published artworks include The Celtic Calendar, (1994,1995,1997) and various private commissions.

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Hold Fast

by Allie Spurlock

27.5"h x 25"w x 17.5"d chair

     Allie breathed new life into this old chair that she found at a garage sale. She “knew right away she wanted it to look like it had sleeves of tattoos” and she decorated it with the kinds of tattoos a boat captain might have.

     On her website,, Allie says, “I grew up in Washington State and moved to Alaska to commercially fish. Art has been a lifelong work in progress for me, always trying to get a little better, and learn new skills. I love making things that reflect the life in the fishing town I live in, and the wildlife nearby. Creating big one of a kind pieces is one of my favorite things. The subsistence lifestyle on our little island requires everyone to make the best use of what they have, and that’s what I love about making art out of things that have outlived their original purpose!”

THANK YOU to the corporate sponsors of our 2024 Buoys & Chairs Auction!

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