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This holiday season Salida & Buena Vista Chambers of Commerce are selling a very special piece of 14er Art as a fund raiser for the Chaffee County chamber offices’ tourism effort.

James Niehues is a world famous ski resort map artist, who has been painting aerial views since 1986 and his art graces many Colorado ski resort maps.  He did his first ski map in 1988, and since then he has created over 350 different views for resorts, tourist bureaus, golf communities and outdoor sports related entities. While we know him for his Colorado work, his talents are appreciated by clients around the world. In Chaffee County, they include Monarch Mountain and The Chaffee County Visitors Bureau.

In 2014 The Chaffee County Visitors Bureau commissioned James Niehues to paint the Collegiate Peaks of the Sawatch Mountain Range. James did not take on many new projects in this stage of his career but he excitedly jumped at the opportunity.

Collegiate Peaks Art Image by James Niehues. Art is available for sale as an art canvas or as poster prints.

“I have always wanted to paint the Collegiate Peaks” Said Niehues.

Niehues’ method of painting the Collegiate Peaks started with aerial photographs of the mountain range. He flew to the Central Colorado Airport and picked up Scott Peterson, Marketing Director for the Chaffee County Visitors Bureau and flew through the valley up to 16,000 feet above sea level taking photographs of the mountains.

“It was cool we could see over the mountains and even see Taylor Reservoir,” said Peterson.

Niehues then sketched the mountain based on the photographs and Google Earth views. Then he added color and detail with watercolor paints and an airbrush.

This image has been utilized in many advertisements to promote this beautiful  Arkansas River Valley. Nancy and Scott Anderson, from BV Trail Reports fame, were commissioned to name the mountains, high mountain lakes, trails, fishing access and rapids throughout the image.

With the lost opportunity for both the Salida and Buena Vista Chambers of Commerce’s to host events as fundraisers this summer, this poster and canvas sale is hoped to recoup some lost operating revenue.

The Chaffee County Visitors Bureau has donated 10 prints on canvas 40″  x 21″ to be sold as a fundraiser for $175 each. Canvases may be purchased at either the Salida or Buena Vista Chambers of Commerce.

Poster prints are available 21.5″ x 39″ for $25.

Featured image: In conjunction with the Chaffee County Visitors Bureau, this art image of the Collegiate Peaks by James Niehues is for sale by the Salida and Buena Vista Chambers of Commerce this holiday season.