Happy Trails Studio

Meet Zelma Allan, artist and owner of Happy Trails Studio in Cedarville.

Raised on a cattle ranch 27 miles north of Gerlach, Nevada, Zelma Iveson's closest friends were horses, both wild and domestic, cows, and a few dogs and cats.

In this solitary land the high desert became her playground. Riding horseback she explored the rim rocks and sagebrush covered lands. Searching a horizon to horizon panorama, she could spot a coyote hiding in the brush, a newborn foal, deer and antelope resting in the shade of an old juniper tree. Even the camouflage of rattlesnakes and lizards seldom escaped her eye. She helped herd cattle, run horses, and brand. Through all of these experiences she developed a watchful eye, the eye of a master landscape artist.

Spending much of her time in the evenings drawing she developed her skill as an artist. Never having had an art lesson other than ones that Mother Nature taught her, she has become one of the most accomplished artists in northeastern California and northwestern Nevada. Color, detail, and realism are evident in each piece.

Ever study a painting of the old West and the horses or cows didn't look quite right? It happens more than you realize. Not with Zelma's paintings, they reflect the real animals and the real west.

Zelma is a rough and tough woman. She's worked as a bartender, a cow hand, a ranch hand, a mother and grandmother, yet always found time to draw and paint. One person described her paintings as "what you can see when you get real quiet."

In recent years Zelma has broadened her artistic talents to include mosaics, jewelry, shell art, carving, leather work and art pieces made from items she's gathered in the desert.

She opened a little studio on Main Street in Cedarville several years ago called the Happy Trails Studio to display some of her many creations. If you're looking for a taste of the old West, some crusty stories or beautiful artwork, this is a place to stop.

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Latitude: 41.5271922 Longitude: -120.1721263 Elevation: 4643 ft
the best travel advice comes from the people who live here
Darice Massey

Seasons Open

Year round

Hours Open

By appointment only


This lady seems like the real deal. Her paintings are of the American west, not abstract and something you need to guess at.

novalee, 9/19/2011

I've known this woman for more than 30 years. She knows of which she speaks! What you see in her art is what she's seen in her life. Be grateful to share that vision.

Deb Burland, 9/22/2011

I have known Zelma and her family since 1970. She is as down to earth as anyone could be. She knows from experience what she paints. This is what she puts into her paintings which portray depth and beauty. If you want beautiful work to hang on your wall, make an appointment to meet this wonderful gal. It will be an experience of a lifetime!

Pat Boegle, 9/22/2011

Zelma is a unique person, she has lived the life, talked the talk and walked the walk, she tells it like it is in her art and her life. They threw the mold away after they made her.

Victoria Williams, 10/15/2011

I have been to her little studio and seen her work. She is an amazing artist and she can work with any medium from watercolor to oil. Zelma has been trying new ways to put her artwork out to attract new customers to her western art. Stop by and check all of it out, her and her artwork, you will not leave disappointed!

Ellen Casey Smith, 11/6/2011

I have been to the studio, but never when it has been open. But what you can see through the window is awesome. I am very fortunate to own a piece of this artist’s work. We found it in a studio in the Sierra foothills. We were so surprised to find it in our backyard we had to have it. We own "The Storm" title on painting. We get a lot of compliments on this painting. Only wished you had more in our area.

Linda A. Iveson, 8/3/2012

The shop is open by appt only. You have to call 530.279.2172 and talk to the artist. She's close and is happy to open the doors for you.

Deb Burland, 8/18/2012

Her artwork is all that I own in my house and my office. She paints pictures of family and life on the desert which is always in my heart! She is amazing and so talented, if you have the chance make an appointment and stop in her shop, she should be discovered by all! I can't say enough good about her artwork!

Angela Schliesser, 2/4/2013

Mom's artwork is the kind of art that makes you see a story with the beauty and sincerity it displays! She lived a lot of these "stories" which makes it so much more "honest" somehow.

Regina Archuleta, 2/4/2013

I have had the fortune of knowing Zelma all of my life. I visited Zelma's shop in down-town Cedarville before it was title Happy Trails. Zelma has a beautiful eye for drawing horses, cows, and ranch life. Her artwork is amazing. She is so creative. Anyone looking for creativity should stop into her shop to see her art work and strike up a conversation with Zelma. It will be an experience of a life time. Zelma has seen a great deal in life. Best of luck to her. I hope she is still shooting for the moon. Because even if she misses, she'll land among the stars.

Tammy A. Moore, 3/12/2013

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