Casey Whitesell, age 30, was born in Riverside, California and moved to Lake Arrowhead with her family in 1996. As a kid, she developed an interest in art, photography, music and theater stagecraft. She graduated from Rim of the World High School in 2007, and in the same year was accepted to the Pacific Conservatory for the Performing Arts in Santa Maria, California. While at PCPA Casey took classes in theatrical props design and management, as well as scenery shop, scenic painting and costume crafts. While working in the prop and scene shop, Casey was introduced to welding while learning how to build large sets for elaborate productions that were built out of steel. She first learned to MIG weld, and enjoyed it so much that she wanted to learn more about the welding process and how to work with various metals.
While working in the entertainment industry, Casey started to take classes for welding and started to devote more time to education in the welding and fabrication fields. She took welding classes at San Bernardino Valley College, and in 2016 she enrolled in the welding trade course at The Center of Employment Training (CET) in Colton. In these courses, she learned how to weld using the SMAW, FCAW, GMAW, and GTAW processes, and graduated from CET’s welding program in 2017.
Throughout the years, Casey has developed a passion for welding and working with steel. She loves TIG (GTAW) welding, and the FCAW/GMAW processes. She has found that she loves to combine art, metal, and her love of nature and animals to create unique wall hangings and sculptures. Casey especially enjoys working with metal because it is a resilient material that stands the test of time indoors and out, and can be altered using so many methods, such as heat, rust treatments or special dyes. She uses reclaimed steel whenever she can, using material that was sourced locally that is sometimes considered useless or trash by other people.
Casey dedicates her artwork to the memory of her little brother, James, who loved to build and work with tools.