Joanna Drakos

Anette Rink Portfolio 'Waiting for Spring' Watercolor on Aquaboard


I was born in Athens, Greece. My family emigrated to the United States when I was very young and settled in
Charlotte, North Carolina. I was raised in a hard-working, immigrant family with strong cultural ties to my native country. I entered public school in the first grade unable to read or write English. I quickly flourished and was soon enrolled in the “Gifted and Talented” program at my elementary school. This program opened up a world of artistic exploration that let my daydreams come to life through hands-on activities. In my school “Memory Book” under my
first-grade profile, I listed my favorite activity as: “paint.” I loved to “paint!”

I attended the University of North Carolina at Charlotte where I was an Art Major with an emphasis in Painting.
My most influential professors were Eric Anderson, painting, and Linda Kroff, darkroom photography. My last two years in college were spent living at “the Newell House,” a historic old home built in 1880 with train tracks running through the front yard. I roomed with three other artists in large rooms with studio space. I thrived in the creative energy that I craved and created some of my most dynamic early work during this period, including my signature piece, an abstract self-portrait titled “Sardonic Sophisticate.” This piece won second place in my senior juried exhibition.

A photography class in my final semester of college led me down a path of seeking to perfect my photographic compositions. I worked in the photography industry for many years professionally and in my personal work, amassing a large personal photographic archive.
The next career journey led me to work in the administration of non-profit performing and visual arts organizations including “Spirit Square Center for Arts” and the “Community School of the Arts” in Charlotte, North Carolina.

In 1998, I attended the Maine Photographic Workshops in Camden, Maine. I enrolled in a “National Geographic
Assignment” course. It was a transformative experience that led me to re-enroll in Central Piedmont Community college to pursue digital media and design. I graduated with honors having won many design awards. This thrust me into a decade-long career as a graphic designer and art director working in advertising agencies and magazine publishing.

My husband and I settled in Reno, Nevada in 2003. I worked at the Reno Gazette-Journal in the Custom Publishing Department and helped design many local publications including “Reno Magazine,” “Carson Magazine” and “The Business Report of Northern Nevada” where I was Art Director. We also produced brochures for popular local events such as Artown. After leaving The Reno Gazette-Journal, I pursued freelance design work and designed catalogs for “The Sports Business Journal” for a few years. We then welcomed our first daughter and I devoted my time to our family as my husband’s career was beginning. We eventually welcomed our second daughter and I became a full-time parent.

We had an idyllic American life. Then The Pandemic…
I spent my time in isolation with my two daughters while my husband was still traveling. We were navigating safety, sanity, and personalities.
Everyone has had their own profound experience during this time. Many have not yet fully comprehended the implications and repercussions.
My solace became my painting. I started to create a series of paintings, one after the other, allowing my creative expression to purge the pent-up emotions I encountered in quarantine and isolation. They were meditative, cathartic, expressive. I had come full-circle to the wide-eyed wonder of childhood daydreams and sought to create light out of darkness

Joanna’s Art

Anette Rink Portfolio Anette Rink 'Aspen Fragments' Watercolor on Yupo
Anette Rink Portfolio 'The Shortest Day' Watercolor on Paper
Anette Rink Portfolio Anette Rink 'Aspen Fragments' Watercolor on Yupo

Mailing Address

P.O. Box 1506
Reno, NV 89505

Meeting Address

Moana Nursery Design Center

1190 W Moana Lane

Reno, NV 89509

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