About Fine Balance

Life surprises you when you allow it to.

Fine Balance Imaging Studios started as a leap of faith out of a real desire to do good.  After a number of life-changing events sent Nancy on a path to create a new way of life, she enrolled her mother Pat and her son Joe in opening an art gallery in the quiet little seaside town of Langley on Whidbey Island.  Joe had his own share of life-altering circumstances after the dot-com crash changed his assumptions about  his career path, and the three of them banded together – reestablishing a long-separated sense of family, while creating a brand new business together.

Nancy Baker, Owner

Nancy Baker, Co-Owner

 Isle of Art Gallery

The Isle of Art Gallery (inspired by Joe’s joke after seeing the often used Whidbey Island license plate frames stating “Isle of View” – if you don’t get it, say it out loud) reached out to local island artists, along with a few from the family friends at the Kirsten Gallery in Seattle, to establish a venue where emerging artists with a passionate and inspirational vision could exhibit their works and debut in a locale where art was paramount and highly respected.  Within a year of the gallery opening, Nancy and Joe saw a need not being met by local resources – artists were sharing their tales of having to go off-island (a time-consuming and sometimes expensive endeavor) to several different businesses to pull together the resources they needed to get their basic needs met to make a living doing art.  The most obvious need was that of getting fine art reproductions made in the form of giclee prints or canvas gallery wraps.  With Joe’s  background in the arts as well as digital imaging, the family pulled together resources from the remaining stocks and retirement funds to purchase the basic equipment needed to start printing for gallery’s artists.

Isle of Art Studio evolves into Fine Balance Imaging

A year later and the printing business was establishing itself as a great resource for local artists, growing by word-of-mouth alone – and still to this day, most clients find us because of a conversation with another artist.  Joe and Nancy saw the need to expand, and moved from a little back room behind the Langley Clock Shop next door to the Isle of Art Gallery into their own space where the old Knox Photo shop had been – a fitting evolution for the space.  What began as the Isle of Art Studio shifted into Fine Balance Imaging Studios – a name based off of an early email address Joe had, “findingbalance@…”  – an attempt to find a balance in life between doing work he loved and making time in life for all those things the corporate lifestyle had forced him to put aside during the dot-com days.  Creating a business working with art and artists every day was the solution to finding balance…and Joe and Nancy realized that rather than always seeking to find balance, perhaps the answer was in setting an intention with their business that they already had it – a Fine Balance.  This would be the foundation for the quality of work they would provide for artists as well, as every fine art print requires a fine balance of color correction, subtle adjustments, the right choice of papers, along with other precise variables in order to re-create a museum-quality giclee fine art reproduction.

Joe Menth, Co-Owner

Joe Menth, Co-Owner

Responsive Services for Artists & Businesses

Over the last decade, Nancy and Joe have added more services – every time based on what artists, small businesses and local non-profit organizations are asking for – including graphic design, business basics such as business cards, brochures, flyers and posters, as well as larger scale displays like wall murals.  Most recently, Fine Balance Imaging has added a new piece of equipment that will further expand their offerings: a cutting plotter.  With this, they can create wall decals, car decals, and even cut stencils and sand-blasting masks for artists to get their works into even more kinds of media and new venues.

Always Growing

The addition of two new employees and a business partner has set the stage for expansion into new services in the coming years.  Fine Balance Imaging Studios hopes to network with local artists, designers and craftsmen, as well as complimentary businesses and organizations to be a hub for creatives to find their inspiration and fulfill their needs as working artists.