CRESTVIEW — It's not hard to guess local artist Deni K.'s choice subject matter. The Crestview Public Library's exhibit wall is currently a menagerie of animal life.
Deni, who doesn't use her last name, is exhibiting her first exhibit, "A Walk on the Wild Side."
One of the most captivating details of Deni's animal paintings are the creatures' eyes. She painted the eyes of some of the wolf paintings on display with glow-in-the-dark paint.
Reference librarian Sandra Dreaden said the effect is wonderfully eerie when she and her colleagues turn off the library lights at the end of the day.
"It's like the animals are peering out of the darkness, watching you," Dreaden said.
Deni praised local art instructors who helped develop her talent. Those include Carolyn Stewart, who once had a Crestview studio, and teachers at the Journey Java Connection on Main Street and Artful Things in Niceville.
Deni hopes she can inspire other "closet artists," as she calls those who paint for fun but don't want to exhibit their art.
"There are a lot of closet painters out there who are a thousand times better than I am, but they keep their art in the closet," Deni said. "I hope I can challenge them to come out of the closet and share their art."
The library is offering two opportunities to acquire one of Deni's works. A warm Christmas candle painting is being raffled for $1 per ticket, with all proceeds benefiting the library book fund.
At the Dec. 3 First Tuesday lecture, presented by the Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge, an attendee will win a painting of a wise owl.
Contact News Bulletin Arts & Entertainment Editor Brian Hughes at 850-682-6524 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @cnbBrian.