Finding an art career, at a grocery store

Jun 27, 2018, 6:30 PM | Updated: 9:13 pm

DRAPER, Utah – Harmons – to James Bennion and Scotty Clawson – isn’t just a grocery store.  It’s an art gallery.

“Some customers tell me they’re walking through an art gallery.  It doesn’t feel like grocery shopping,” Bennion says.

Bennion and Clawson are part of a small army of sign-painting artists employed by the company to add color, character, and characters to the grocery stores.

In Bennion’s Bangerter Crossing store, Lucille Ball cries among the onions.  In produce, Sponge Bob hangs out with the pineapples.  Down the bulk food aisle, Andres the Giant recites his famous line from “The Princess Bride” – “Anybody want a peanut?”

“Some customers tell me they’re walking through an art gallery.  It doesn’t feel like grocery shopping.”

Today Bennion draws bread, but he started out baking it.  He made artisan bread in the store bakery but dreamed of becoming an artist.

“When I was a kid I used to watch my mom pull out a canvas easel and start painting along with (television artist) Bob Ross,” he says.   “I was thought that was cool and I started drawing ever since.”  When he found out Harmons hired artists he says he pestered his employer until he got the job.

Scotty Clawson was a motorcycle mechanic and a mechanical engineering student but, also secretly dreamed of becoming an artist.  He took an art class and he says the instructor convinced him to switch careers.  He quit engineering school and started taking art classes but he says he didn’t get much support.

“I had multiple people tell me you’re never going to amount to much you’re never going to go anywhere you’re never going to do anything,” Clawson says.

He says he didn’t truly believe he’d made the right decision until, at age 29, he thought he was having a stroke.

He says he was helping his father install a door when he started to slouch to one side and was having difficulty speaking.  Family members quickly rushed him to the hospital.  Clawson had a Transient Ischemic Attack, a ”mini-stroke,” from which he fully recovered.

“It made him more passionate about life and about what is pursuing,” says his wife, Jessica Clawson. “You never know when your last day’s gonna be and so he wanted to enjoy life and be passionate about it.”

Clawson, showing off his work at the Harmons at Traverse Mountain, points out a sign advertising balloons.  It depicts a bundle of balloons pulling a grocery store up into the sky, a reference to the movie “Up.”

“I love the story of ‘Up,’ taking something that seems a little far-fetched and making it plausible,” he says.  “Making a decision, changing your life and going on a new adventure.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

(Utah Highway Patrol)...
Josh Ellis

SLC firefighters battle 2-alarm fire near I-215 to SR 201 ramp

Firefighters responded to the area of Interstate 215 and state Route 201 due to a 2-alarm wildland fire Wednesday morning.
13 hours ago
(Spanish Fork City)...
Madison Swenson

Spanish Fork home catches fire after fireworks spark in outdoor garbage can

A Spanish Fork home sustained major damage Monday night after recently-discharged fireworks sparked a fire in a trash can that spread to the house.
13 hours ago
(Morgan County Fire & EMS/Facebook)...
Josh Ellis

One injured in Morgan County rollover crash

Authorities say one person was hospitalized after rolling their Jeep in a remote part of Morgan County.
13 hours ago
Sharon McMahon has one million ‘Sharon Says So’ Instagram followers. (Sharon McMahon)...
Candice Madsen, KSL TV

Woman behind ‘Sharon Says So’ podcast explains how we stop screaming at each other

Sharon McMahon is known as America's government teacher. Every day, she takes to Instagram, clearing up misinformation with straightforward facts. KSL NewsRadio's Boyd Matheson got some great advice from her about civility for our series, "A More Perfect Union."
13 hours ago
Candice Madsen, KSL TV

Why Utahns may need a refresher course in civics education

Civic knowledge is alarmingly low in Utah and across the country. Only nine states require a full year of civics or government studies, and 10 states have no requirement at all.
2 days ago
FILE PHOTO (Deseret News)...
Madison Swenson & Debbie Worthen, KSL TV

Dog dies after being found unattended in hot car

Officials with Salt Lake County Animal Services are reminding Utahns to not leave their dogs unattended in a hot car after one died Tuesday.
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

hand holding 3d rendering mobile connect with security camera for security solutions...
Les Olson

Wondering what security solutions are right for you? Find out more about how to protect your surroundings

Physical security helps everyone. Keep your employees, clients, and customers safe with security solutions that protect your workplace.
Many rattan pendant lights, hay hang from the ceiling.Traditional and simple lighting....
Lighting Design

The Best Ways to Style Rattan Pendant Lighting in Your Home

Rattan pendant lights create a rustic and breezy feel, and are an easy way to incorporate this hot trend into your home decor.
Earth day 2022...

How Are You Celebrating Earth Day 2022? | 4 Simple Ways to Celebrate Earth Day and Protect the Environment

Earth Day is a great time to reflect on how we can be more environmentally conscious. Here are some tips for celebrating Earth Day.
Get Money Online...

More Ways to Get Money Online Right Now in Your Spare Time

Here are 4 easy ways that you can get more money online if you have some free time and want to make a little extra on the side.
Lighting trends 2022...

Lighting Trends 2022 | 5 Beautiful Home Lighting Trends You Can Expect to See this Year and Beyond

This is where you can see the latest lighting trends for 2022 straight from the Lightovation Show at the Dallas World Trade Center.
What Can't You Throw Away in the Trash...

What Can’t You Throw Away in the Trash? | 5 Things You Shouldn’t Throw in to Your Trash Can

What can't you throw away in the trash? Believe it or not, there are actually many items that shouldn't be thrown straight into the trash.
Finding an art career, at a grocery store