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Twenty Minute Trainings: Thursdays in April, 12:10-12:30

This series of 20-minute workshops will show you how to get the most out of your library resources. All workshops will be held online. Workshops are open to students, faculty, and staff. No need to pre-register! Just click on the Zoom link of the webinar you’d like to attend. If you miss one, you can watch the recordings later. For more information, see the Spokane Research Guide page.

Introduction to Collaborative Web Annotation

April 2nd 12:10-12:30 Web Annotation Zoom

This webinar will introduce you to collaborative web annotation (think “social remote reading” and threaded discussions attached to online newspaper articles, online scholarly articles, web pages, and more). This relatively easy-to-implement technology is a great way to have students critically engage with the source text, you, and each other in an asynchronous format. Questions? Contact Lorena O’English.

Beyond Fair Use: Teaching with Copyleft and Public Domain Content

April 16th 12:10-12:30 Fair Use Zoom

The Fair Use exception in copyright law allows limited, transformative copying of works even if they are under copyright–but some works can be used much more freely, because some or all copyright protections do not apply. This webinar will show you how to identify materials that can be copied or adapted with few or no restrictions, including materials in the public domain and Creative Commons licensed materials, which can be used in open educational resources, course materials, and more. Questions? Contact Sam Lohmann.

Using DMPTool to easily create data management plans

April 23rd 12:10-12:30 DMPTool Zoom

When applying for NSF or NIH grants the Federal Government requires that the principle investigator complete a data management plan (DMP) that provides information regarding how and where the research data will be archived and shared. Perhaps the easiest way to make a compliant DMP is by utilizing the open-source application, DMPTool. DMPTool provides an navigable system to create discipline and funding agency specific DMPs. Questions? Contact David Luftig.

Creating Accessible Learning Materials: Document Accessibility

April 30th 12:10-12:30 Accessibility Zoom

This webinar will give a brief overview of the application of Web Content Accessibility Guidelines applicable to learning materials (PDFs and slides) and their importance for Universal Design for Learning. Questions? Contact Ben Rearick.

A Coronavirus Reading List

During this season of coronavirus and isolation, Jerry Becker is rereading P.G. Wodehouse’s “A Bounty of Blandings,” an English tale of an earl, his prize-winning pig and his demanding family.

The WSU Libraries system administrator takes comfort from Wodehouse’s trusted humor and the words of fellow author Evelyn Waugh: “Wodehouse is an anodyne to annoyances. He’s a tonic for those suffering from bearable but burdensome loads of boredom, from jadedness of outlook and dinginess of soul.”

“What I like most is his use of language, comic turn of phrase, whimsical point of view and ability to find humor in the everyday life of the early 20th century,” Becker said. “When reading his stuff, I find myself applying Wodehouse quotes and ‘isms’ to circumstances in our daily life here at home with my wife. It makes us laugh!”

For many now, a reading journey can bring much-needed laughter; feed a hunger to understand; and create an allowable human connection amid the restrictions of social distancing. Here, then, is a reading list from WSU Libraries faculty and staff that can’t help but be influenced by these strange, anxious, lonely times.

We have been here before

Several of those polled about their reading pursuits found themselves delving, not surprisingly, into pandemics of the past. Manuscripts, Archives and Special Collections rare books cataloger Julie King is reading “A Journal of the Plague Year” by Daniel Defoe; the novel, published in 1722, concerns the plague epidemic in London in 1665.

Other possibilities, courtesy of scholarly communication librarian Talea Anderson, are the 1947 novel “The Plague” by Albert Camus and the 1992 science fiction novel “Doomsday Book” by Connie Willis. “‘Doomsday Book’ is an especially haunting retelling of how people experienced loss on its most intimate level during the spread of the bubonic plague,” Anderson said.

Erica England, first-year experience librarian, chose “Tell the Wolves I’m Home” (2012) by Carol Rifka Brunt. The book is set in 1987 during the AIDS scare and tells the story of how a young teenage girl mourns the loss of her gay uncle to AIDS, while learning to accept who she is and who he was.

“Although I’ve read this book before, it’s been a few years, and I thought now would be the perfect time for another reading of it,” England said. “Ultimately, it’s about profound loss and the giant grief that accompanies it. But it’s also about finding yourself in that loss and finding your way through it. Above all, it shows how compassion can make us whole again. And I think during this time, we need compassion more than anything else in the world.”

Special collections librarian Greg Matthews said he read a review of “Florence Under Siege” (2019) by John Henderson about a month ago. The book details how the city of Florence handled plague for a year in the early 17th century.

The city health department, the Sanita, consulted with peers in other cities such as Milan and Venice to contain the plague by closing the city; establishing lazzarettos, or quarantine stations, in civic and church spaces; and providing daily rations of food and drink for the entire populace.

But the picture wasn’t entirely sunny, Matthews said. One of the more appalling dimensions of life during plague in Florence was the perception that poor people were too selfish and stupid to discourage the spread of disease to their betters. Also, Jews were suspected of being plague vectors, maybe malicious ones.

“So it’s not as though people were behaving at their best,” he said. “People carried on, insisted upon living their lives by dancing, gossiping and courting.

“The book uses contemporary eyewitness accounts to tremendous effect, describing the empty streets of the city and how certain citizens were taken into custody for (being accused of) endangering their neighbors by talking to passers-by through windows or staying with friends,” Matthews said. “It’s been illuminating and affirming. For a book about death and dying, it is filled with life. If the story it tells has heroes, then they are compassion and human ingenuity.”

Comforting and humorous reads

Comfort takes many forms during times like these. Trevor Bond, associate dean of digital initiatives and special collections, is reading WSU English professor Buddy Levy’s 2019 book “Labyrinth of Ice: The Triumphant and Tragic Greely Polar Expedition.” Bond bought a copy at a local reading Levy gave shortly before coronavirus concerns halted campus activities.

“The vivid descriptions of men living in close quarters in subzero temperatures in months of complete darkness somehow bring me comfort in this period of social distancing and isolation,” Bond said. “Buddy is a terrific writer and a great colleague.”

For Talea Anderson, our current circumstances remind her of a similar experience of isolation when she taught for four months in Costa Rica—and the books that helped her.

“I experienced an incredibly lonely time when all I really had for comfort were books,” she said. “Two books that resonated with me were ‘Refuge’ [1991, by Terry Tempest Williams] and ‘Crossing to Safety’ [1987, by Wallace Stegner].”

Neither of them is explicitly about quarantine or isolation, but the characters in both novels are struggling to come to terms with the deaths of loved ones (and in Williams’ case, the added loss of reliable comfort in natural settings). Both books are pretty melancholy, but the writing is beautiful—comforting in itself—and I found it cathartic as well to see characters grappling with the same emotions I was feeling.”

Development director Dawn Butler suffered an initial disappointment in her reading journey. (“I can say with a high degree of confidence the 2019 sequel to ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ would likely make anyone of conscience more anxious—not the best decision I’ve made.”) But she has since downloaded “Three Men in a Boat,” a humorous account of a two-week boating holiday on the River Thames by English writer Jerome K. Jerome, published in 1889.

“I’ve also started ‘The Seven or Eight Deaths of Stella Fortuna’ [2019, by Juliet Grames] and like it,” Butler said. “One sentence that resonated with me is ‘… I will offer my opinion that it is the moral responsibility of the incompetent to identify their own weaknesses and not accept positions of power.’”

A few final selections

Owen Science and Engineering Library evening lead Libby McKeighen suggests any nonfiction book by Sam Kean. He is the author of such books as “The Disappearing Spoon: And Other True Tales of Madness, Love and the History of the World from the Periodic Table of the Elements” (2010) and “The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons: The History of The Human Brain as Revealed by True Stories of Trauma, Madness and Recovery” (2014).

“They are science/history and really informative, but they are also engaging and funny,” McKeighen said. “I myself have had them distract me during particularly hard times in my life.”

Jen Saulnier, undergraduate services librarian, recommends the 2019 book Maybe You Should Talk to Someone: A Therapist, Her Therapist and Our Lives Revealed by Lori Gottlieb. “This is a great read for anyone interested in mental health, humanity and empathy—all extremely important topics at the moment,” she said.

Human resource coordinator Bonny Boyan suggests “Not Tonight Josephine” (2016) by George Mahood. “It would be an especially great read for someone who wishes they could be traveling instead of stuck at home,” she said. “It is laugh-out-loud funny. I might just need to read it again.”

A last suggestion comes from yours truly: “Will My Cat Eat My Eyeballs? Big Questions from Tiny Mortals About Death” (2019) by funeral director Caitlin Doughty. The author of two other bestsellers, creator of the “Ask a Mortician” web series and founder of The Order of the Good Death answers questions from children about death, dead bodies and decomposition.

As Doughty writes in the book, “All death questions are good death questions, but the most direct and most provocative questions come from kids.”

—Story by Nella Letizia

Mothering a Book: Recollections of a WSU Author

In her 2019 edited book “Mothering From the Field: The Impact of Motherhood on Site-Based Research,” WSU criminal justice associate professor Melanie-Angela Neuilly collected the experiences of academic researchers and mothers conducting their fieldwork while raising children. Neuilly’s own experience of juggling site work and motherhood in Nice, France, in 2014 is also chronicled.

WSU author Melanie-Angela Neuilly with 4-month-old daughter Grace in Nice, France, in summer 2014.

Neuilly said she came to the book somewhat circuitously: In 2013, she obtained a WSU Seed Grant to conduct ethnographic field observations at a medico-legal institute in Nice. However, Neuilly was obtaining her green card then, and in the midst of a somewhat risky pregnancy. She got a no-cost extension on the grant and conducted her research in the summer of 2014, with her 3-month-old daughter and husband.

“It was a terribly difficult endeavor, probably the hardest professional experience I ever went through,” Neuilly said. “It was so hard, I felt compelled to document it in various ways. Upon my return, I wrote an essay about the experience in our professional newsletter. It caught the attention of one of my graduate school friends, who was living through similar experiences, and we got to chatting during our annual meeting. This is when we decided to write a book about it. We placed a call for contributors, and the rest is history, so to speak.”

Neuilly and other WSU authors in the past year would have normally been honored in person during the WSU Libraries’ Crimson Reads, but this and other WSU Showcase events this year were cancelled over COVID-19 concerns. For more information on all WSU authors who published in 2019, visit the Crimson Reads library guide.

‘Standing on the shoulders of giants’

For Neuilly, being a WSU author means “standing on the shoulders of giants,” she said.

“In my case, it has meant being informed and inspired by the work of late WSU author Kelly Ward, and then being lucky enough to collaborate with her on this project and having her as a book contributor,” she added.

Neuilly’s book also includes two other WSU voices: Lindsay Marco, a doctoral student in counseling psychology, and Kimberly Garland-Campbell, a geneticist in wheat breeding in the USDA-ARS Wheat Health, Genetics and Quality Research Unit.

“As such, being a WSU author also means being part of a team,” Neuilly said.

The importance of university presses

An integral part of any academic author’s team is the university press and staff that work with the author to bring his or her scholarly work to fruition.

“I see my role at the press as a catalyst, helping authors put their work into a format that makes it accessible to others,” said Linda Bathgate, WSU Press editor-in-chief.

University presses are an essential part of the academy, Bathgate said, providing a forum for the publication of peer-reviewed scholarship across a broad spectrum of subjects, topics, formats and genres.

“[University presses] facilitate the transmission of scholarship developed in the academy out to the communities that need it,” she said. “They help academic fields move forward.”

University press titles are among the most trustworthy publications in today’s media environment, Bathgate said, as they are typically reviewed by a community of academic readers, including the acquiring editor, the peer reviewers and the editorial board members.

“Integrity of content is paramount,” she said. “Developing a good reputation takes time, but it takes just one book to damage or destroy it.”

Lessons learned from ‘Mothering From the Field’

In writing “Mothering From the Field,” Neuilly discovered that writing about her experience and pushing herself to go beyond self-reflection into theoretical, methodological and policy development was cathartic.

“Beyond my own writing, reading and editing contributors’ chapters was one of the most energizing and grace-inducing process I had ever gone through in academia,” she said. “The strength, resourcefulness and determination of my fellow academic mothers in the field are awe-inspiring. Their genuineness and willingness to open up their wounds, show their vulnerability, made the process truly worth it. There is value and community in sharing our truths, and it is my hope that readers will agree.”

Most of all, Neuilly said she learned that she doesn’t have to do everything by herself because she is not alone.

“This is something that is easy to forget in academia, as we burrow down in our silos, in our offices, in our fields,” she said. “Nevertheless, let’s always remember to remind each other that others have gone through what we are going through, and when we bring our communities together, we rise stronger, and we solve problems better, so maybe the next generation does not have to do it all on their own again.”

To the WSU Pullman Community: Closure of Libraries

To the WSU Pullman Community:

The WSU Libraries on the Pullman campus will close beginning March 21, 2020 due to the evolving environment surrounding COVID-19. All other state university libraries in Washington have already closed, as have the vast majority of research libraries in the U.S. and Canada. We regret making this decision but think it is necessary for everyone’s safety. Libraries and library staff are very committed to helping people and to providing resources to support research and learning. We will continue to do our very best to serve during this trying time.

During the closure we will still be providing a large suite of remote services. Below are a few of the resources available but this link ( ) will always have the most up-to-date information on access options and services available.


Print books held in our library can be checked out and mailed to you via request. Return postage will be provided. Visit our website for access to Search It and other databases.

We are also going to increase our Purchase on Demand options for materials that cannot be obtained through Interlibrary Loan.

We have over 200,000 e-books available in many disciplines. Please work with your liaison librarian or get help online if you have questions about these resources.

You can also use our Purchase Request form if you have something for us to consider purchasing: .

Books and materials you already have checked out with the exception of reserve items will be automatically renewed until they are returned.

Journal Articles & Magazines:

Many journal articles can be accessed online via our website. For items not available in full-text online, you can request copies in Search It. For in-house materials, we will scan and email them. For items not held locally, we will process Interlibrary Loan requests.


Reference:  Online Reference is available 24/7. Pullman librarians and staff will be online Monday-Thursday from 9am – 5:30pm and Friday from 9am – 4:30pm (at a minimum). Staff at other libraries will help in other hours. See our Ask Us page for available reference methods.

Reserves: Most items are already on electronic reserve and will remain available 24/7. If you have additional requirements see our Course Reserves page.

Instruction: Librarians can meet with your class using Zoom. They can create online activities for your students and share the results with you. They can consult with students individually, or in groups, using Zoom, via email, or over the phone. To find your subject librarian see our Find Your Librarian by subject page.

Manuscripts, Archives and Special Collections (MASC)

MASC faculty and staff are available to assist with remote research. Please contact by email: or call 509-335-6691.

Again, we regret having to make this decision. We will do our best to reduce the disruption this will cause.

Terrell Library display showcases strong female leads in literature and film

One of Lorena O’English’s favorite fictional female protagonists is Tara Chace, the agent at the heart of “Queen & Country,” a graphic novel written by Greg Rucka. Chace is a rarity—a female operative in the male-dominated world of espionage. Erica Nicol, on the other hand, is drawn toward the lead character Lalita Bakshi in the 2005 film “Bride and Prejudice,” a Bollywood adaptation of Jane Austin’s beloved classic “Pride and Prejudice.” While seemingly as different as they can be, Chace and Bakshi share one thing in common: they are examples of women determined to be in the driver’s seat of their own lives.

WSU librarians Lorena O’English (left) and Erica Nicol with their Terrell Library display of literature and film showcasing strong female leads.

O’English and Nicol, both WSU librarians, share their admiration of strong female leads through a display of books and films they collected at Terrell Library as part of International Women’s Day on March 8. The display, located at the table outside of the CUB entrance and the time capsule in the New Books area, runs through March 31.

“We’re trying to focus on titles that are fun but that show women with agency,” O’English said.

“Displays like this are a good way to find items that may not be easily browsed in our library collections,” Nicol said. “You need an entry point.”

The librarians also sought to showcase women writers from different cultures, including Isabel Allende, Banana Yoshimoto, Marjane Satrapi and Margaret Atwood. Foreign films are part of the display as well, such as “Water,” a 2007 Academy Award nominee for Best Foreign Film that is set in colonial India and details the lives of widows in an ashram.

About 50 books and films are available to patrons for checkout during Terrell Library’s regular hours. International Women’s Day activities by other campus units and organizations continue throughout the month; to learn more, visit the WSU Women’s Center website to learn more.

—Story by Nella Letizia

NCBI Functional Genomics Workshop set for April 15-16

Registration is now open for the National Center for Biotechnology Information’s Functional Genomics Workshop. The workshop, which was originally scheduled for April 15-16 in Terrell Library, is moving to a completely online format.

Presenters will facilitate the workshop through GoToWebinar from their headquarters at NIH, instead of through Zoom. Time schedules and sessions will remain the same. To register and for more information, visit the workshop webpage. Those who have already registered will receive notification of the change. New registrations are welcome.

Sessions will cover the following topics:

  • An update on NCBI BLAST and other sequence analysis tools
  • NCBI resources for animal and plant genomics research
  • NCBI resources for pathogen (bacteria and virus) genomics research
  • NCBI resources for gene expression and genetic variation research

Featured speakers are:

  • Peter Cooper, NCBI Customer Experience team member and team lead for Strategic Communications (education, social media and conferences). For the past 22 years, he has provided user support for the NCBI molecular databases and tools and has directed scientific education and outreach efforts, including popular courses and workshops such as the long‐running NCBI Field Guide, Discovery Workshops and Modular Workshops and numerous short courses at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories, the Jackson Laboratory and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Cooper has research experience in biochemistry and marine biology.
  • Wayne Matten, NCBI Customer Experience team member. Since 2000, he has provided user support, including teaching courses and workshops on a wide range of NCBI resources. Matten is part of the BLAST-help group, maintains the NCBI-U.S. National Library of Medicine YouTube channel and creates tutorial videos on NCBI tools and resources. His research background is in biochemistry/molecular biology focused on signal transduction mechanisms involving oncogenes.

NCBI is part of the National Library of Medicine, a branch of the National Institutes of Health. NCBI provides access to biomedical and genomic information. In functional-genomics studies, researchers seek answers to biological questions by utilizing high-throughput methodology.

2020 Edible Book Festival Cancelled

This event has been cancelled due to concerns about coronavirus.

For Sarah English, the WSU Libraries’ Edible Book Festival brings back memories of childhood classics revisited in scrumptious and creative ways. She’s enjoyed the event several times both as a spectator and as a judge.

The top entry for the 2019 Edible Book Festival’s People’s Choice and Best Visual Display awards was “Happy to Give,” submitted by Andria Donnenworth.

“Some of my favorite presentations over the years have paid homage to stories I loved growing up—a jar of button-shaped cookies that Corduroy would love to have pulled a spare from, a sugar-and-color-filled secret garden and the Very Hungry Caterpillar’s food trail, which ended with some medicinal relief,” said English, a WSU donor and librarian at Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories in Pullman. “Proust’s madeleines and Frank‑in‑stein have also made appearances. I’m looking forward to laughing and delighting over the cleverness of this year’s entries.”

Registration is now open for the fifth annual Edible Book Festival on Friday, April 3, part of WSU Mom’s Weekend activities.

Entries will be accepted through March 29; to register and for more information, visit the library guide website. Participants can register individually or as a group. Entry rules are simple: Submissions must be made from edible materials and somehow relate to a book.

Edible book festivals take place around the country and world to celebrate books, art, food and culture. They got their start with the first International Edible Book Festival on April 1  2000. Since then, organizations and universities have served up their own versions of the popular event.

WSU’s festival begins with public viewing and judging at 2:30 p.m. in the Terrell Library atrium, with winners announced at 3:30 p.m. Awards will be given for People’s Choice, Best Visual Presentation and Punniest. Light refreshments will also be available.

“We really hope that people will take inspiration from a favorite book or author and run with it,” said Erica England, festival organizer and first‑year experience librarian. “Every year, the Edible Book Festival continues to grow and draw guests to Terrell Library, including many WSU moms and their students, to see contestants’ ingenuity and tributes to their favorite literature. It’s a fantastic way to engage with our patrons, community members and out‑of‑town visitors.”

“The festival celebrates forms of creativity—culinary arts and punnery—which we don’t often get to express in academia, but are certainly delightful life skills,” English added.

—Story by Nella Letizia

Preparing for the 2020 Census

The start of a new decade in the United States marks the U.S. Constitution-mandated administration of the U.S. Census, a count of the country’s population. Want to be ready before Census Day on April 1? The Census 2020 website offers useful information such as getting the facts, how to respond, why your answers matter, and privacy and security.

The Census is important for several reasons, said WSU Social Sciences Librarian Lorena O’English. First, the Census is used to redraw the states’ Congressional districts. Undercounting can cause a state to lose a Congressional district, or affect how districts are drawn inside state lines. Second, the federal government uses Census data to distribute more than $675 billion a year to states and communities. Third, researchers at WSU and around the world rely on accurate Census information as part of their historical, social sciences or other disciplinary research efforts.

New to the Census this year is the ability to respond online as well as by phone and mail. The online questionnaire was inspired by the work of WSU Regents Professor Don Dillman, who served for two years by special appointment with the Census Bureau in the early 1990s.

“Census responders will also be happy to know that the 2020 Census is very short and focused on demographic questions about age, racial background and more,” O’English said. “The detailed questions of past Censuses are now covered by a separate survey, the American Community Survey, which is conducted more often. In addition, the proposed citizenship question is not part of the 2020 Census.”

College students, a population that traditionally has been considered hard to count, should be counted where they live and sleep most of the time, O’English said. Residence hall students, either international or domestic, will receive a Census form from WSU, either print or online. Students living off campus will receive a mailed invitation to take the Census online, over the phone or on paper in mid-March.

A WSU student group, Cougs for Census (#CougsCount), is promoting campus and community participation in the 2020 Census. To learn more, visit the group’s website.

Finally, be aware of potential scammers, O’English cautioned. “The real Census will never ask for information such as Social Security numbers. Everyone who works for the Census takes a lifetime oath to never divulge any Census data.”

Glass salmon installation reception set for Jan. 30 in Terrell Library

Lummi Nation glass artist Dan Friday with glass salmon.

An installation of glass salmon by Lummi Nation glass artist Dan Friday will be commemorated with an opening reception from 3-4 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 30, at the Washington State University Terrell Library atrium. The installation, titled “Schaenexw (Salmon) Run,” is funded by the state’s Art in Public Places (AIPP) program and curated by Todd Clark of IMNDN, a nonprofit organization dedicated to advocating for contemporary Native art and artists.

“The ‘Schaenexw Run’ is an homage to our traditional way of life and our cultural connection to flora and fauna of the land,” Friday said. “Salmon and fishing have been a way of life for people of the Northwest since time immemorial. From the reef nets of the Salish Sea to the dip nets, traps and weirs of the Plateau, many tribes are known as the Salmon People.”

“The Terrell Library atrium is the perfect location for ‘Schaenexw Run,’” said Trevor Bond, WSU Libraries’ associate dean for digital initiatives and special collections. “With Terrell’s glass dome and natural light streaming into the space, the glass salmon will look fantastic. And as the seasons and the quality of light changes throughout the year, so too will the sculpture. Thousands of WSU students, faculty and staff pass through the atrium each week, and I think that ‘Schaenexw Run’ will encourage visitors to stop and be inspired.”

Based in the Seattle area, Friday has spent the last 20 years working for such artists as Dale Chihuly, Paul Marioni, Preston Singletary and many others. He has taught at the Pilchuck School of Glass and held residencies at the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, Wash., and the Dream Community in Tai Pei, Taiwan. Friday is a recipient of the Discovery Fellowship through the Southwestern Association for Indian Arts, and his work can be seen in galleries across the United States.

AIPP purchases and cares for artworks in state buildings, colleges, universities and schools throughout Washington. The State Art Collection includes nearly 5,000 artworks, located where people study, work and live. Encompassing a wide range of materials, sizes and styles, the collection represents notable artists from Washington, the Pacific Northwest and beyond.

Founder of IMNDN and enrolled member of the Wailaki Tribe, Clark brings a unique curatorial voice to his exhibitions by understanding what it means to be Native in the 21st century. Clark has worked with many prominent Native artists, including Rick Bartow, Joe Feddersen, Edgar Heap of Birds, Wendy Red Star, Nicholas Galanin, Peter Morin, Shan Goshorn, Gail Tremblay and Lisa Telford.

‘Art in the Library’ artist paints pet portraits for family, friends

Lula, a yellow Labrador.

The pet portraits second-year Washington State University veterinary student Jessica Turner paints for family and friends tell a story of each subject. There’s Jackson, an Australian cattle dog and best friend of Turner’s dog, Lily. Yellow Labrador Lula gets Pandora charms for her collar every Christmas. And Oz, a Portuguese water dog, helped a young man propose to his fiancé by wearing the engagement ring around his neck.

“It makes people happy to see their pets,” Turner said. “I like to see the reaction from those who receive a painting.”

Turner’s pet portraits will be on display through mid-May at the Animal Health Library, part of the WSU Libraries’ “Art in the Library” program. An opening reception will take place from 4–6 p.m. Friday, Jan. 24, at the Animal Health Library in Wegner Hall 170.

The twice‑yearly “Art in the Library” exhibit features animal-themed works, typically from artists with a connection to the WSU College of Veterinary Medicine. For more information, visit the WSU Veterinary Medicine website.

For beloved pets

Raised in Edmonds, Washington, Turner started painting portraits in high school. Since then, she has created almost 20 portraits for family and friends.

“They seemed to bring people happiness, so I kept doing it,” she said.

Turner’s portraits usually start with a photograph. She works off of a grid to paint the image on the canvas with the correct proportions. One portrait takes about 10 to 20 hours to complete.

Charlie, a German Shepherd-husky mix.

Several of her portraits depict beloved deceased pets. Xena’s portrait was a gift to Turner’s stepmother Denise to honor her English bulldog. Charlie, a German Shepherd-husky mix belonging to Turner’s father Jessie, passed away last summer, so Turner gave her father a portrait of Charlie to remember him by.

Turner benefits from her painting too. “Art is really relaxing and gets me out of my head,” she said. “It’s a very good stress reliever.”

‘I like the community’

Turner’s maternal grandparents Donald and Mary Lou Sherwin were talented ceramic artists and painters, but the rest of the family turned more toward the sciences. Turner’s mother, Serena, is a nurse. Her sister, Kristen, will be an optometrist, and her father, Jessie, is an electrical engineer.

Turner also pursued a program in science when she attended the University of Washington, graduating with a biology degree in 2018. She chose to apply to WSU for her veterinary studies after working with a veterinarian who graduated from the WSU vet school.

“She talked to members of the UW pre-vet club about the program here and how great it was,” said Turner, who will graduate with her DVM in 2022. “I like the community.”

Turner’s own special portrait pet

A much-loved subject of Turner’s paintings is Lily, a pit bull-American Staffordshire mix. Turner adopted Lily, pregnant when she was picked up in the Houston area last year. After giving birth to her puppies, Lily was transported to Seattle and found her forever home with Turner at Thanksgiving. A recent photograph shows Turner and Lily hiking at Wallace Falls State Park in Snohomish County, Washington, last summer.

“My mom and I try to hike with her once a week during summers around western Washington,” Turner said.

Turner says her favorite part about Lily is that she loves to cuddle. “As soon as my alarm goes off in the morning, she is so excited to snuggle with me. It is also nice to have a running buddy.”

—Story by Nella Letizia

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