Featured Artist Carla Bratt

Enjoy the stunning portfolio of Carla Bratt, who shares her inspiration and techniques in an unusual medium. See more about her by visiting her website.



“Strength” fine art gourd 14″ H x 18″ W


Creating art on a gourd is as much about intuitive feel as it is in the application of technique. Their organic quality is unique among the many substrates available to artists to use in sharing their artistic vision.


Golden Sea Dragon

“Golden Sea Dragon” fine art gourd 20″ H x 8″ W


Every gourd is as different as the snowflake that falls to the ground. This difference offers a spontaneity and freshness to creating art. They have energy to them that a white canvas cannot offer. It is this energy and fluidity that has held me creatively captive for 25 years.


The Gourd Field

The Gourd Field


Interestingly, my excitement begins out in the gourd field. Surrounded by hundreds, if not thousands of gourds, I walk for hours by myself, feeling the wind and the sun urging me to connect with these special gifts the earth has offered.


Hummingbird & Poppies

“Hummingbird & Poppies” fine art gourd 12″H x 18″W


I am overwhelmed by the infinite choices, but as I continue to walk, I find myself gradually focusing in on each gourd’s individual beauty. I begin my selection; picking them up, scraping the dirt from them, rolling them around between my hands, and thinking. Wonderful, creative thoughts slowly flood into my head and heart. I see birds, fish, geishas, feathers, ancient totems, and more. The creative process has begun. I load my treasured choices for transport to my studio, where my artistic journey will continue.


Peace & Harmony

“Peace & Harmony” fine art gourd 16″ H x 18″ W


As I start to work on a gourd, I welcome its challenges. They are never perfect. They sit at odd angles or have curves that defy design. Their organic properties absorb color differently than a primed canvas.


Artist Carla Bratt's studio

Artist Carla Bratt’s studio


Some art mediums work well, others do not. Experimentation always rules the day. They are unpredictable and alluring at the same time. I can carve on them or leave them intact. They offer endless sculptural opportunities, begging to be vessels, birds, or animals.


Going for a Walk with Grandpa

“Going For A Walk With Grandpa” fine art gourd 28″ H x 11″ W


As humble as a gourd’s beginning might be, they can also become elegant, as though it were meant to be. I can apply metallic leaf to the surface, eventually having something as stunning as a gilt-edged porcelain vase or a heavenly, golden moon shadowed with birds in flight.


Dragon Power

“Dragon Power” fine art gourd 31″ H x 19″ W


Gourd surfaces echo the spirit of wood, so woodburning them is a natural choice. I sometimes burn deeply, conveying hints of ancient tribal worlds or so very lightly; shading a butterfly’s wing in a soft, warm brown.



“Timeless” fine art gourd 10″ H x 15″ W


There is something special about an art medium that can go from the simple to the sublime at the whim of the artist. It is that thought that stays with me, as I carefully and methodically work to find the essence in each gourd.


Tomorrow's Promise

“Tomorrow’s Promise” fine art gourd 26″ H x 18″ W


Upon reflection after all my years as a gourd artist, the plain truth of the matter is, that gourds are about beginnings for me. I have always said that there is not a whisper of boredom in my creative life.



“Sacrifices” fine art gourd 17″H x 19″W


Working organically and intuitively with gourds, feeling my way through their challenges, brings me full circle to exactly where I want to be for my next artistic endeavor, at a new, yet somehow familiar beginning.


Carla Bratt invites you to follow her on Facebook.



  1. These are truly stunning.

  2. Thank you Artsy Shark for the opportunity to share my work with others and for the fine selection of artists you are presenting this year! Thank you to all the viewers who have taken the time to view my work….it is held with gratitude!

  3. Carla, Your gourds are stunning. I love the designs and execution!

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