Kasia Palermo displays her photography at Cowgirl Flair in Sonoita.

Photographer Kasia Palermo has found “the place where everyone is so friendly” here in Sonoita. A native of Poland, Palermo spent two years in London as a fashion model before immigrating to the United States in 1993. She landed in Santa Cruz, CA where she became versed in the art of photography. “Instead of being the subject of photographs as a model, I decided to be on the other side of the camera as the photographer,” she said. 

Spending the next 20 years as a professional photographer, shooting weddings and other events ,along with scenes of the ocean and shoreline along California, Palermo learned the craft of applying her photos on different media, mainly wood. She found success in art shows with her newfound skill and sold out at the art fairs that she entered in that area. But California’s ever increasing cost of living forced Palermo to seek a more affordable place to live. Arizona was the answer.

“Three years ago, my fiancé came here to work on a house for his former father-in-law and he fell in love with the area,” she explained. “I came over and fell in love with the place. It’s so much cheaper and the people are so much nicer. I cannot express how nice they are. Everybody waves to each other. Even the cops wave to you!”

Four months ago, Palermo found a place to display and sell her work at Sonoita’s Cowgirl Flair Boutique. She’s had to make a bit of a transition from her former subject of ocean scenes that was her focus in California. “Here, it’s horses and pigs,” she said with a smile in her voice. 

Palermo’s medium is photos transferred to mostly recycled wood, which gives it a rustic look – although, depending on the subject, the portraits can also be quite elegant. Although most of her work is from her own photographs, she is happy to do custom pieces for her clients. 

Palermo is on Instagram and is currently working on putting a website together. She is normally in the shop from Thursday through Sunday. She looks forward to meeting the “very friendly people in the area” and welcomes all to come see her work at Cowgirl Flair Boutique.