Artist Profile Mindy Ronni Reasonover

“Will Work For Lobsta” wood carving | 18” x 4’

A native of Nashville, Tennessee, husband Ronni studied art at Troy State University in Alabama, but he put his artistic career on hold while he played professional baseball for six years with the Atlanta Braves and the Detroit Tigers in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Baseball had always been in his life; his father even played for the Brooklyn Dodgers. After he left the big leagues, Ronni started a carpentry business in Natick. He has always loved working with wood—“stuff I find on the beach, stuff that people drop off, any kind of wood,” he says. “The best is the old, with a lot of character. I buy lumber sometimes at Home Depot when I don’t even need it!”

Ronni also dabbled in painting over the years, and slowly, art began making its way back into his life. Fast forward to 2000—the year he met Mindy. “That was when it became all about color,” he says. Ronni ended up shutting down his business and going to work with Mindy at Color Your World. “I know what I can do with color now,” Ronni says. “His paintings before were dark and scary,” Mindy adds with a laugh. The couple married in 2001 and moved to Cape Cod.

Ronni crafts one-of-a-kind custom beds, tables, and other furniture, largely out of old wood that’s been salvaged from torn-down houses and old boats. He creates whatever strikes him in the moment, and his style varies from classic to whimsical—from a traditional table featuring a painting of a compass rose and a fish to a table that’s shaped like a fish. Always one to try something new, Ronni began creating woodcarvings as décor items, painting the pieces in bold, primary colors. The first of these creations to sell was a giant, six-foot lobster. That was back in 2011, and his art business has snowballed since.

If Mindy has influenced Ronni’s work, he has also been a major influence on hers. He thought it only natural that such a great muralist would also be great at fine art painting. He asked, “Why don’t you try putting some paintings onto canvases?” and that was the catalyst for Mindy’s foray into oil painting 17 years ago. Now she teaches oil painting classes twice a week at her in-home studio. Many of her students are fellow artists, and Mindy says she is constantly learning something new. “Teaching,” she says, “makes me a better artist.”

Visitors stop by frequently to see what Ronni might be doing in his driveway, as he’s often out there creating something whimsical in wood. They can also find him painting with his easel in various locations on the Cape. “I’m inspired by nature,” he says. “The beaches and the houses on the Cape have so much character. And I’m inspired by Mindy. We’re inspiring to each other.” – Marina Davalos

Mindy and Ronni Reasonover show their art at Nantucket Artworks, 31 Centre Street on Nantucket, and at Palette Fine Art Gallery, 4 Merchants Square in Sandwich.