About me

A pastel portrait of me, the artist.

Self Portrait, 2016.

About me

My name is Marie Marfia. I am an artist working in Ludington, Michigan. I like to paint skeletons, portraits and landscapes. Pastels are my medium of choice. I create art every day.

People who like my work tell me that it’s approachable, full of emotion and texture. I like to think it’s a reflection of me!

About my art


Ever since I was a kid growing up in a big family, humor has played a huge part in my life. It’s as important to me as breathing and it comes out in my art, willy nilly. I think that’s where the skeletons come from. It’s about me making fun of death, because well, why not? You know the saying, no one gets out of here alive? Exactly!


Don and Marti, 14×11″, sold.

I love painting people. I love looking at faces and trying to get the essence of someone’s soul on the paper. It’s challenging and fascinating and fun.

Portraits make wonderful gifts! Check out my Portrait Commission page to find out how it works and then contact me. I’d love to hear from you.


pastel painting of a curve in the road, sunrise, lake

Last Ice, 9×6″ pastel on sanded paper. ©2018 Marie Marfia

I happen to live in a beautiful place, surrounded by the Manistee National Forest and on all sides by lakes and rivers. I walk in the woods every day (except hunting season!) and it refreshes my soul and makes me want to paint! Usually, my landscapes take the form of small, daily paintings. Check out my latest works here.

Beach Art

pastel painting of dunes and lake michigan and sky and clouds

Getting There, 9×6″ pastel on sanded paper. ©2018 Marie Marfia

Lately, I’ve taken to driving out to the Ludington State Park, the Queen of Michigan’s state parks! While I’m there I take a lot of pictures and then I go back to my studio and paint up a storm! Or sometimes it’s a nice sunny day. Water, sky and dunes—I am in my element when I’m out walking around the shores of Lake Michigan. Did I mention I love to live here? You can see my original beach art, plus hand printed cards at Art on the Town Gallery in Pentwater, Michigan beginning May 2018.

Daily Painting

I am a serious student of pastel painting. This means I paint at least a small painting every day.

Watch me work!

Here’s a video of me talking about my studio at 307 S. James Street in Ludington, Michigan. You can also check out some time-lapes videos on my Youtube channel.

Here’s one of my recent videos:


“I love your work and am truly honored to now own a piece. :)” Helene Sirko

“I think you did a fabulous job on my portrait and I don’t even like getting my photos taken! I love showing people my portrait.” Dorothy Gamble

“Thank you so much for putting your beautiful talent to work on my face. I love it.” Mel Mitchell Goodwin


Marie Marfia is a pastel artist who likes painting skeletons, portraits and landscapes.

Marie got her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Kendall College of Art & Design in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She worked the next 30 years as a graphic designer, honing her compositional skills and learning how to work under deadlines. In 2011, she picked up pastels and promptly fell in love with the medium. She paints every day and hopes, with all that practice, by the time she’s 80, she’ll be fantastic!

Marie is one of eleven children born to hard working parents. She was the first girl after seven boys and, not having a name picked out in advance, her father and brothers decided to draw one out of a hat. Fortunately, Marie’s mom woke up in time to name her after her grandmother and that was that, except her brothers still continue to call her Mitzi.

She currently lives in Fountain, Michigan in a tiny little house with her husband, Steve Oliver, and two happy dogs. They have three grown children. Marie’s studio is called The Bonafide Gallery and is located in Ludington, Michigan. She’s there most days, painting and posting to her blog.

Resume and Contact Info

Marie Marfia

2465 N. 13th Street, Fountain, Michigan 49410

marie@mariemarfia.com • MarieMarfia.com


Bachelor of Fine Arts, Kendall College of Art & Design, Grand Rapids, MI
Workshops with Karen Margulis, Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida; Tom Christopher, Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida; Ann Manry Kenyon, Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida; Margaret Dyer, Tampa, Florida; Casey Klahn, Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida; Michael Chesley Johnson, St. Augustine, Florida; Helen Ashmead, Jacksonville, Florida


Member, Pastel Society of America
Member, Great Lakes Pastel Society


LACA Member Show, Ludington Area Center for the Arts, Ludington, MI January-February, 2019
Holiday Art Ramble, Fountain, MI, November 2018
Art Ramble in the Woods – Summer 2018, Fountain, MI, July 2018
Surreal Soiree 10, Group Show, Baton Rouge Gallery, Baton Rouge, LA, January 2018.
Art Prize 2017, The Bitter End Coffeehouse, Grand Rapids, Michigan, September-October 2017.
Grand Haven Art Walk, Group Show “October Curiosities,” Grand Haven, Michigan, September 2017.
Group Exhibition, Gallery Uptown, Grand Haven, Michigan, October 2017.
“Making Faces,” Performance Hall Lobby, Ludington Area Center for the Arts, Ludington, Michigan,
April-May 2017.
Group Show, First Coast Pastel Society, Jewish Community Center, Jacksonville, Florida,
September 2015.
Juried Group Show, First Coast Pastel Society, Cultural Center of Ponte Vedra, Ponte Vedra Beach,
Florida, May 2015.
“Greetings from St. Augustine,” Limelight Theatre, St. Augustine, Florida, September-October, 2014.
Group Show, First Coast Pastel Society, Larimar Arts Center, Palatka, Florida, July 2014
Juried Group Show, First Coast Pastel Society, Cultural Center of Ponte Vedra, Ponte Vedra Beach,
Florida, June 2014.
Group Show, First Coast Pastel Society, Gallery 26, Melrose, Florida, December 2013.
Art Walk, Carling Building, October 2012-September 2013.
Jacksonville Premiere “The Red Tent Movie: Things We Don’t Talk About”, Karpeles Manuscript
Library Museum, April 5, 2013.
Hip Expressions Dance Studio, St. Petersburg, October 2012-January 2013.
Art Walk, Hemming Plaza, June-September 2012.


Currently seeking gallery representation.
The Bonafide Gallery, Ludington, Michigan
Art on the Town Gallery, Pentwater, Michigan
The Attic at Archway Framing, Atlantic Beach, Florida


Professional Graphic Designer, 1986-present
Taught Basic Pastels Class, Ludington Area Cultural Arts, 2019
Taught multi-age art class, Not Your Average Homeschoolers, 2009-2010