About the Artist

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Denise Riches

Denise was born and raised in sunny Southern California. She realized her love for painting in college while studying Interior Design. Soon after, she placed her artistic journey on hold while raising three children. In 2009 a personal life event compelled her to return to her passion for creating art. 

The journey began as a therapeutic process through ‘art journaling’ and creating handmade greeting cards. She further developed her skills through workshops with local artist, online courses and by simply exploring with paint and various materials. In the beginning, her style was influenced by the artists she admired, however, in 2016 her own creative voice emerged when she participated in #the100DayProject on Instagram. The 100 heart paintings she created for the challenge laid the foundation for her abstract expressionist style she exhibits today. (View her 100 Day Challenge here.)

Her semi-abstract landscapes are created with no sketch or concept in mind. Building layer upon layer with various materials, tools and techniques, her paintings unfold instinctively. With each layer the landscape evolves providing new opportunities, new challenges and often unexpected surprises. Letting go of the outcome and embracing imperfection is what draws her to this free flowing painting process. Vibrant color and texture gives her work its distinctive style while her layering process gives her work depth, intensity and enriches her color palette.

Her passion for hearts is evident by the recurring theme in her paintings whether as a focal point or hidden in the layers. Her daily quest to find hearts occurring naturally in her surroundings helps her walk a little slower in the world noticing the beauty and wonder that nature has to offer. In turn, she posts her heart photos on Instagram to share with others. 


She is a member of the Orange County Fine Art Association as well as the Huntington Beach Artist Council. She often exhibits her work at Showcase Gallery and various City exhibitions throughout Southern California. She also displays her work at local arts and crafts markets. 


Denise currently works as a full-time Marketing Coordinator at a Landscape Architectural Firm in Orange County, California. This creative environment keeps her inspired and fuels her desire to paint even after a long day in the office. Her intention is to continue growing as an artist and bring more beautiful art into the world.

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Juried Group Shows


Huntington Beach Art Center, 'Surfing the Pacific Rim',
Huntington Beach, CA


Huntington Beach Art Center, 'Inspired', Huntington Beach, CA

Costa Mesa ArtVenture, Costa Mesa, CA

Newport Beach Art Exhibition, Newport Beach, CA


Costa Mesa ArtVenture, Costa Mesa, CA

Guest Artist, Showcase Gallery ‘Infinite Dreams’ Santa Ana, CA

American Institute of Architects OC ArtWalk, Costa Mesa, CA



Showcase Gallery, ‘Sankofa,’ Santa Ana, CA

Showcase Gallery, ‘Into the Woods,’ Santa Ana, CA

Showcase Gallery, ‘Artist's Eye Competition,’ Santa Ana, CA  

Showcase Gallery, ‘Paint the Metro,’ Santa Ana, CA

Featured Artist AvantGarden Gallery. Santa Ana, CA



Orange County Fine Arts Member Show, Santa Ana, CA

Resident Artist, AvantGarden Gallery, Santa Ana, CA

Juried Arts & Craft Fairs


Costa Mesa Women's Club Holiday Art Fair, Costa Mesa, CA

Surf City Art Fest, Huntington Beach, CA

Art in the Park, Newport Beach, CA

Patchwork Long Beach, CA

Patchwork Ventura, CA

Dana Point Art Festival, Dana Point, CA

Patchwork Santa Ana, CA


Professional Organizations and Committees


Huntington Beach Artist Council, Huntington Beach, CA

Orange County Fine Art Association, Santa Ana, CA

2017 to 2018

Showcase Gallery Jury Committee, Santa Ana, CA



Orange County Fine Art Association, Santa Ana, CA


Workshop Facilitator

2017 – Mixed Media Workshop, Showcase Gallery




1st Place Acrylic Category, OCFA Open Competition


3rd Place Mixed Media Category, OCFA Annual Member Show

3rd Place Acrylic Category, OCFA Annual Member Show