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From painting to mixed media, this Tucson family shares a passion for creativity
Meet Your Makers

From painting to mixed media, this Tucson family shares a passion for creativity

“It’s really important when someone has a talent .. to cultivate it,” says Patrice Frassinelli Lange

There are music families — The Jackson 5, Hanson and the Jonas Brothers, for example.

But sisters Kristie Cecil and Patrice Frassinelli Lange and Patrice’s son Isaac Lange come from an arts family.

“I think our mom — she kinda appreciated art a lot,” Cecil says. “She allowed me to take art lessons when I was just in junior high, so to me, that said that the arts are important and if you’re interested in doing that, you should pursue it.”

And the creativity doesn’t stop with Kristie, Patrice and Isaac. Another member of the family has a degree in graphic design. Someone else does quilting and stitching.

“I think a lot of it does start when you’re young,” Frassinelli Lange says. “I noticed when Isaac was little, he loved to draw and he was really good at it. So, I said, ‘Do more, do more,’ and he did a lot of it.

“It’s really important when someone has a talent, which he does, to cultivate it,” she says.

And although the family shares a passion for creativity, everyone has their own artistic perspective.

When the three of them paint the same object or scenery together, each painting turns out different — giving a nod to the styles they’ve developed.

Cecil, for example, paints with oils and gouache. She likes to work outside, painting mostly landscapes and still life — looking for “ordinary things” you might normally walk by without noticing.

Cecil moved to Tucson from Wisconsin about a year ago, so she’s still getting used to the scenery.

“The different saguaros and different cactus and mountains and vistas are amazing,” she says

Cecil was also an art teacher, teaching elementary kids, in addition to college students. And before the COVID-19 pandemic, she taught one-day workshops through Airbnb.

Frassinelli Lange, who moved to Tucson from Ohio about five years ago, has been dabbling with watercolor, but her primary focus is on mixed media, sculpture and collages — many of which feature birds.

She works with cloth, old paper and other found items.

Isaac Lange, who moved to Tucson less than two years ago from Virginia, has a degree in illustration.

He says he gravitates toward impressionism.

“I’m a fan of a more loose feel to painting, rather than hyper-realistic,” he says. “I like painting so it’s right on the cusp of looking abstract, but you can tell what it is.”

Isaac Lange also dabbles in welding and sculpture.

Contact reporter Gloria Knott at or 573-4235. On Twitter: @gloriaeknott

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