Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Two in a Row!

That's right. Two awesome festivals over two weekends! And the potential for this coming weekend in Atlanta is expected to be even better.

Having two good weekends this early in the season is certainly a shot in the arm and confirmation I needed that I am still doing what I'm meant to do. The cool thing is that I'm meeting some some new artists and developing some wonderful friendships. Since I've been home from Savannah I've been on the phone networking with a couple of old friends and a few new ones. More about that in a moment.

This past weekend offered a pleasant surprise. Spartanburg's (SC) Spring Fling is actually 31 years young now but the Folk and Outsider Art Show is only in its second year. Young art shows can sometimes be dreadful as far as sales. Although I didn't set any records most of what I took in was profit since I had hardly no expenses. Even though we worked some long hours (Friday 3 to 9, Saturday 9 to 9, Sunday 12 to 7) two things made it extremely enjoyable. This was the first show in almost a year that my dear friend Christy Buchanan and I were able to attend together. Secondly, the music kicked some major ass!

Oh. My. God! Three days of continual coolness by local and regional acts. Seriously, being a former full-time musician and then a part-time local bar acoustic player I was really blown away. From funky jazz to blues, the Spring Fling had it all - and it was AWESOME! I ended up buying two CDs. The Watts from Spartanburg were a big hit Saturday afternoon before the rain dampened things (be sure to listen to all three selections via the link). They were followed by The StereoFidelics, a husband and wife duo from Asheville, NC who were just mind-blowing. Check out the video section of their site and you'll see what I mean (watch the entire 5 minute piece on the left side).

Spartanburg was a great bookend for my experience in Savannah. I've alluded to it for about a week now but I finally have a chance to tell you about getting to be "one of the ladies." While I have some wonderful male artist friends, for some reason I get the opportunity to hang out with some absolutely gorgeous female artists after many of the shows. Fine Arts on the River was just a new occasion for that to happen.

To make a long story short, Amy Cox, one of my best art buddies had some really terrific booth neighbors. That led to a dinner with some really cool gals on Friday night at a piano bar over-looking River Street. Friendships for life were made over a nice bottle of wine and some awesome appetizers. The rest of the weekend was just an absolute blast because of the energy exuded from this core group of artisans.

So without further ado, let me introduce the River Street Vagrant Pack (RSVP)...

This is Amy pretending to be a ceramist without any arms or legs. She must be good "kicking" that wheel with her chin while centering the huge lump of clay with her nose. Her hubby Jayson is one of the funniest people I've ever met. The guy is extremely bright and witty. My face is usually sore from laughing so hard after I hang out with them.

Here's my new painting buddy and possible camping partner in the future. Kelley Morris is an oil painter from....gulp...HOLDEN BEACH, NORTH CAROLINA! In her defense had I known her last fall she would've told me to stay far away from her locale unless I were there for sun & fun. Both Kelley and Amy surf. They live just a short distance away from each other so they plan on catching some waves later on this summer, dude.

Back to camping. Kelley...uh...makes me look like a wimp. She is all about roughing it as in tent camping with no air conditioning, etc. Even though she's just a tiny little lady I wouldn't want to piss her off!

This is our fearless leader, Moso! She is the real deal when it comes to folk/outsider art. I was really tickled that she showed up Sunday morning to squeeze in a day at Spartanburg! As it turns out she and Christy have actually met each other before at another festival. Hopefully the two of us will get to meet for dinner or drinks this coming weekend (she lives in Atlanta).

Oh yeah, Moso had the best quote from this past weekend. When asked if she'd drink one of Christy's Bloody Marys her reply was, "I'm an artist - I'll drink anything."

This is the lovely Christina Paluszek. She is cute as a button! I swear I thought she was about 25 until I read her bio when I got home. I wish I could look so young! Her jewelry is so very cool and so very different because Chris has studied some of the historical stuff i like: Celtic, northern European, and Viking cultures. I can't wait to pick her brain for some painting ideas!

Just one of "The Ladies."


Kyla said...

I could not be happier that things are looking up for you, buddy.

And you aren't just one of the ladies...you are the HAIRIEST lady. ;)

Gretchen said...

Love that last picture! Looks like some talented ladies too, would love to see the jewelry!

THRILLED your weekend was prosperous....and looking forward to next weekend!