Hi, I'm Ilana.
I’m the artist behind Pine + Palette Studios. I’m a Wisconsin local with a soft spot for misunderstood species, tall midwestern pines, and the way the sun sets over The Great Lakes. As a former middle school teacher, science, conservation, and education have always been my passion.
My devotion to art and nature stemmed from my childhood. My pockets were filled with honeylocust leaves, mason jars were filled with crickets, and the song of spring peeper tree frogs filled my ears. As I grew up, I decided to turn my love of science and nature into a career pursuing biology education. After spending long days in the chemistry lab or identifying moth species in the entomology room, I would hustle back to my dorm room where I would sketch and paint the intricate gems I encountered in the lab. Shortly after, I took this love into my own classroom of 8th graders.
Then, life changed. My beautiful baby boy, Julian, was born with a terminal brain condition. I left work and spent my days caring for his captivating soul and troubled body full time. He taught me everything. He was incredibly strong and different and challenged everything I knew about life. He passed away just before he turned 5 months old and left me with a passion and reverence for life I could have never grasped without him. He connected me to the love of God and the vibrating energy of nature which has deeply informed my art. He made me brave enough to give up what I thought work had to look like and pushed me to become an artist.
Now, I choose to live my life with a deep understanding of how valuable time is, how necessary it is to love and support others, and how beautiful Heaven must be if God has already given us this much beauty on Earth.