Friday, August 19, 2011

Start 'O Summer & Music Celebrations

The birthing of Summer for me comes with the diversity of activities suddenly available here. This full page double spread epitomizes just that.

First, we visit the Grand Opening of the Britt Festival in Jacksonville. In the last two years Britt has joined hands with the City of Jacksonville to celebrate it's opening city wide. Throughout town is music, antique cars, food and beverage samplings and, of course, art. Our local Jacksonville "Art Presence" took part in the festivities sprinkling a variety of artists in their booths along the closed portion of 3rd Street's north side. My booth was just back from the main street, California Street (I know, I always wondered why an Oregon town would have as it's main street "California" ... but, I digress) and I watched close on the merriment of bouncing balloons (some adorable photos of children reaching for the blue 'n yellow), the Victorian outfitted patrons along side their antique cars and later in the day, as the heat increased, an argument between motor vehicle drivers. I did start this sketch right there on site . . . was plunking right along with the painting of my sketch . . . then suddenly looked up . . . and my antique car was gone!! How rude ~ did they even ask me? Anyway, that part I had to finish at home from the digital photo I've learned to snap just for these situations.

Just in front of me, right on the corner of the main street was Dolores Schwalb. A spirited 80 year old (I believe) who had written most of her life and was showing off her several books written about local life in the area from years ago. We exchanged fun stories and she gave me this postcard promotional. I loved the photo of her as a young girl on the farm.

Later into Summer, I had the pleasure of finally dropping into a neighborhood cafe/bar in Ashland to hear one of my watercolor student's musical group perform. She'd been inviting me for months! I was determined to go this month because her performance coincided with an event at the Ashland Art Center. The Art Center had been presenting free art movies with popcorn too.

This month the movie was "Wasteland", a movie about a professional photographer who traveled, and produced this documentary of "pickers" at the Rio de Janiero garbage dump. He ended up doing personal "portraits" of specific "pickers" with them helping. They created the "portrait" in a giant warehouse's floor using actual garbage, then photoing it from above. AMAZING!! Now, you have to watch it to see what happened to the images and the "pickers" too.

Anyway, the musical interlude at the "Wild Goose" Cafe & Bar was a delightful contrast to the content of the movie. My friend Beth, her hubby and several other talented musicians entertained us til the evening drew late. I love the dark, atmospheric background that brings out the musicians in my sketch - oh yes, I did it later too, from that same digital reservoir.

Don't you just love the energy of Summer as it brings a vitality and energy of so many aspects to life? Savor the gifts nature and humanity offer up . . . we all live with such miracles around us!

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