Category Archives: Recent Posts

It’s Here, It’s There, It’s EVERYWHERE!

Fall 2016 has been an amazing time for our local Arts community!  As it turns out, if you can’t find some great art you just aren’t looking hard enough.  Between the Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival, the Harrisburg Art Walk and various artists setting up at our favorite local businesses such as the Cabarrus Brewery, there is art almost everywhere we look!  So, what could be better than an abundance of great art??  A growing number of talented local artists THAT’S WHAT!

We were surprised to find out that Rowan Cabarrus Community College has a  fantastic Visual Arts program that is growing at steady speed.  The Visual Arts program is headed up by Fine Art Chair Jenn Selby (who has been described as a rock star in the world of art) and her amazing team of professors.  The professors at RCCC, all of which have earned MFAs at prestigious universities across the country, include a wide range of graphic artists, painters, sculptures and various mixed media and video artists.  We recently visited Clearwater Artists Studios in Concord to check out some of their work during the Opening Reception of the Inaugural RCCC Faculty Exhibit.  The show, which will remain up until October 31st features numerous artworks that you really MUST SEE to believe.

14799980_10157642106430274_982893075_oOne of our favorites was this Sound Synthesizer created by Professor Christian Ryan.  We were thrilled to watch him demonstrate it before our very eyes!  Ryan took the piece right off of the mannequin and demonstrated the unique sounds that it creates while also explaining how he creates many of his works from trees that he has harvested right in his own back yard!

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14803111_10157642106175274_739473822_oAnd of course we simply must mention the work of  Clearwater resident artist and RCCC instructor, Walter Stanford who was a hit with even the youngest art lovers at the show.

 

 

 

So naturally, after visiting this exhibit we got to thinking…  how do these very contemporary young artists incorporate their techniques into their teaching practice?  What kinds of art are the students creating?  And most importantly, HOW do we find it??

Well, this was a much easier task than we originally thought!  RCCC has art classes on both the North and South campuses and it isn’t entirely uncommon to see a group of students outside working on their next masterpiece.  RCCC offers classes in painting, still life drawing and figure drawing with live models, sculpture, ceramics, photography and the list goes on and on!

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In these studio style classes, student artists work together to build 14795932_10157642106285274_566737038_o
and create works which are then critiqued by
themselves and their peers.  They are then encouraged to enter their pieces into 2 student exhibitions hosted by RCCC throughout the year.

If you love good art like we do, you will be thrilled to know that the next exhibition is coming up this Friday, October 28th!  This show, which is a juried exhibition will feature some of the finest artworks that RCCC has to offer.  All pieces have been created by students who are pursuing their Associate in Fine Arts degree and who are dedicated to perfecting their craft.  The show will be in a new venue this year in the beautiful Downtown Salisbury.  The works will be available for viewing from October 28th-November 5th between 10am and 5pm on the 3rd floor of the historic Meroney Theater located at 213 South Main Street in Salisbury.  The opening reception will be October 28th from 5-8pm.  Many of the artists will be present along with their instructors and refreshments will be served.  Please come out and show your support for our arts community by checking out what the youngest among us are creating!  We’ll see you there!

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Kannapolis’ NEW Photog Scene!

When Michael Knox came to Kannapolis from Asheville, North Carolina, he discovered an arts community that was going unrecognized.  It was a vibrant group of multi-talented artists, musicians, photographers and crafters that were traveling up and down I-85 to show off their creations.   Knox was determined to foster an environment that would benefit the artists, the area business owners and the City of Kannapolis in a truly amazing way.  From this desire, Kannapolis Arts emerged.  As many of you know, Kannapolis Arts created the Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival in Downtown Kannapolis.  But what you may not know is that they didn’t stop there.  In an effort to further connect the arts community Kannapolis Arts has been experimenting with various Facebook groups geared towards individual specializations.  While some proved to be less successful, one thing is for sure, Kannapolis is home to a wide variety of extremely talented photographers who are eager to grow their craft and their community.  David Roman, professional photographer and co-founder of the Kannapolis Arts’ Photographers, created the group “as a place where you would be able to post questions, get ideas, answers, advice, etc. from other local photographers.”

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Photo Courtesy of Kevin R. Daniels

Roman is the owner of Romanda Photography and Chasing the Sun Photography and has been a regular vendor and volunteer at the Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festivals.  While explaining his desire to start the group Roman stated,

“a lot of photographers are very territorial and to me have seemed very stand-offish. Making it hard to ask real questions. Things like ‘what settings should I used for this setup?’ or ‘where do you go to shoot a great sunset?’ We have a lot of amazing people willing to help in any way.”

To propel the group even further, Roman organized the first Photographer’s Meet-up just last week in Downtown Kannapolis.  Photographers from the group were given a specific topic and were invited to bring their knowledge and equipment and work hands on with the group.  So far they have shared their own unique lighting and flash techniques, tips for the best places to find a great sunset in the Kannapolis area, and helped one another to troubleshoot their way through various editing programs and camera difficulties.

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12322937_10157169134270223_2548519965981593948_oAfter the first Meetup the group was more enthusiastic than ever.  Duane Duvall of Photography by Duane Duvall immediately posted up his photos to the Facebook group saying, “for those who missed out tonight in the group, you gotta try to make the next one. We had a lot of fun tonight or at least I did anyway. It’s nice to get together and talk shop and learn new stuff. This was an off camera flash meet up and David showed me how to do a “Back Button” focus trick. Just talking shop together helps us learn so much more. Best photog group ever!!!”

13710430_151621125262969_6416272622029065894_oPhoto Courtesy of Photography by Duane Duvall

If there was ever a place to grow as a photographer,  Kannapolis, North Carolina is it!  With so many amazing photographers willing to share and explore it seems natural that this group will continue to grow.  If you are in the Kannapolis, North Carolina area and you are interested in joining the Kannapolis Arts Photographer’s Groups please click HERE.

All photos shown are from the Meet-Up and feature professional photographers including Duane Duvall of Photography by Duane Duvall, David Roman of Romanda Photography and Chasing the Sun Photography,  Kevin R Daniels of Xiiith Photo Video Designs, Stevi Rosenthal of Stevie Rosenthal Photography and Kannapolis resident Topper Hightower.

Dewey’s Dessert Finale, A Sweet Cause

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This Saturday, April 30th 2016, Kannapolis Arts Volunteer Bailey Wingler will reveal the works of 12 different artists across North Carolina.  These paintings, which were created as part of the Healing Hearts with Healing Art facebook campaign, will soon adorn the walls of the Holly Haven Family Care Residence in Winston-Salem.  Wingler, along with her long time client Jennifer Alford, provided canvases to area artists who then painted bright and joyful pieces in hopes of bringing joy to the Holly Haven residents who are battling advanced stages of HIV disease.  Saturday will mark the finale to the Dining with Friends annual fundraiser which supports Aids Care Services.  To celebrate, ACS will host a night of dancing, drinks and desserts provided by the famous Dewey’s Bakery of Winston-Salem.  This event, called the Dewey’s Dessert Finale will take place in the Millennium Center in Winston-Salem and begins at 8pm.  More information regarding this event can be found HERE.

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Artists who donated original works for this event include:

Rowan Cabarrus Community College art students,

As well as,

Beth Engelhardt, Old Town Soap Co.

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What began as a hobby making bath and body products as Christmas gifts turned into a business for Beth Engelhardt of the Old Town Soap Co. She sells handmade soaps, lotions, candles, body sprays, lip products, beard oils, bath bombs, lotion rollups and wax melts at her shop in China Grove and at various festivals such as Kaleidoscope in Kannapolis.

Old Town Soap Co. was a presence at every Kaleidoscope event last year. “It’s just an awesome event for everyone who makes handcrafted items to sell for people to enjoy,” Engelhardt said. “It’s always a fun, upbeat atmosphere, with music, food and fun!”

To create her line of handmade items, Engelhardt does extensive research to learn about the best butters, essential oils and other ingredients to use in each product. She’s formulated moisturizing soaps, a bar for teens and others with acne-prone skin, and even “You Dirty Dog,” a shampoo bar for dogs.

I love making things and being creative,” Engelhardt said. “I can get lost in Hobby Lobby for hours. When I tell my husband that’s where I’m headed, he always threatens to take my credit card.”

Check out Old Town Soap Co. on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/oldtownsoapco/ and their website at https://www.oldtownsoapco.com/, or drop by their shop at 113 S. Main St. in China Grove.

The Wandering Pygmy, Sam Kearns

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Artist Sam Kearns puts Kaleidoscope at the top of the list of festivals where she has sold her work. “It is my favorite festival because it is so art driven,” said Kearns, who sells her handcrafted dream catchers and original paintings under the name The Wandering Pygmy. “All of the vendors are real artists, and it’s nice to have a festival that promotes raw art like Kaleidoscope does.”

Although she holds two jobs and goes to school full-time, Kearns is serious about her art business. After painting for six years, she decided four years ago to add dream catchers to her lineup. “I wanted to do something more tactile,” she said. “Since then, I have become very passionate about dream catchers and see them as just as much of a creative outlet as painting.”

Whether painting or crafting a dream catcher, Kearns said finding the time to create can be a challenge. Wrapping the outside of the hoop and fashioning the weave in the center are both time-consuming tasks even for the smallest dream catcher.

As if work, school and art didn’t take up enough time, a busy Kearns also has a passion for nature and travel, and is planning a five-month trip to Alaska. She also loves camping, rock climbing and lounging in her hammock. “I am so fond of my hammock that I have a tattoo of it on my leg!” she noted.

Visit Kearns in person at the April 30 Kaleidoscope festival, or check out her work on Facebook and Etsy under The Wandering Pygmy.

Kaleidoscope Profile: Reflections of Kenya by Susannah Kelty

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After working as a Christian missionary in Kenya for 28 years, Susannah Kelty decided to resurrect the creative outlet she had used years earlier as a small fundraiser overseas.

Having retired back to the United States in 2011 to care for her elderly mother, Kelty revisited Reflections of Kenya, which had been born more than a decade earlier as an outlet for the photo note cards she and her photographer husband produced as a fundraiser to help the pastors in their area of northern Kenya. This time, she decided to pursue Reflections as a hobby to provide exposure for the work of Kenyan people who create handcrafted items to support themselves.

The products she now sells through Reflections of Kenya come from various sources and include: handmade jewelry; decorative home items such as placemats and cushion covers sewn from traditional Kenyan fabrics; blank note cards featuring images of people and scenery in Kenya; hand-decorated special occasion cards created from hand-crafted paper; and framed photos of Kenyan flowers, birds and wildlife.

The welcoming atmosphere of the Kannapolis Kaleidoscope festival has been perfect for Kelty as a hobbyist. “Reflections of Kenya is so small that it is definitely classified as a ‘side hobby,’” she said. “I enjoy the Kaleidoscope festival because it is intimate, friendly and varied.”

Easter is On It’s Way!

With Easter right around the corner, I thought I would share one of my favorite traditions.  Dyeing Easter eggs!  I know, I know, you buy the dye from the store along with the little cardboard drying rack and Voila!  But that’s not how we at Just Bailey Designs like to do things.  Why go out and buy all that dye when you can make your own?  Today I am going to show you how to take regular white eggs and decorate them using all natural materials.

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To get started, you will need Yellow Onion Skins, Beets and Red Cabbage.  You could also use Frozen Blueberries, Turmeric or Coffee to name just a few.  For the purposes of today, I am going to go one step further and add some designs to my eggs using flowers and leaves from around my yard!  If you want to do this, you will need to clip a few flowers or interesting leaves and you will need an old pair of panty hose or very thin socks.



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12873390_10156675778010274_1857605447_oThe first thing we are going to do is cut our panty hose into small
segments around 4 inches in length,  this could vary based on the size of your eggs.

Always go big if you are unsure and then you can cut off the additional fabric once you have tied it securely.

Next we will press our clipping onto our eggs very gently and then secure with the panty hose.
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At this point we can move on to making our dyes.  For this project I have 9 eggs and will be dying them 3 at a time.

12874190_10156675778670274_2873711_oWe place 3 of our eggs into a small 1-qt. pot and cover with water.  Next I am going to add the skins of 3 yellow onions.  Bring this mixture to a boil and then cover and simmer on low for 15 minutes.  Turn off your burner and add a teaspoon of vinegar to your dye.  Allow the eggs to sit for a minimum of 3-5 hours to allow the dye to stick.  I like to leave them overnight!

**The longer you allow your eggs to sit in the dye, the more saturated the colors will be.**

 

12517147_10156675901950274_758073907_oRepeat this process with all of your dyes.  The onion skins will create a rich caramel color.  To get a sandy brown, you will use 1 large beet that has been roughly sliced.  And to get a blue color, you will use half a red cabbage that has been roughly sliced.

 

 

 

Once we are  ready to remove the eggs from the dye and have allowed them to cool, it is time to cut away the panty hose and remove our flowers.  Use a paper towel or your fingers to clean away any debris.

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To give your eggs a glossy look, apply a small dab of any regular cooking oil, like Canola oil and use it to shine your eggs.  Use a paper towel to remove any excess.

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Local Artists Give Back

Local Artists spanning 4 area counties have joined together to create special works of art for the Holly Haven Family Care Home in Winston-Salem as a part of the Healing Hearts with Healing Art initiative.  The Holly Haven residence, which is a part of Aids Care Services,  “provides professional, courteous care for persons living with advanced HIV disease and support for their families and loved ones. [They] offer round-the-clock “family-style” residential services, including meals, activities, medication administration, housekeeping, and personal care.”

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In an effort to bring joy and healing to the residents, area artists are creating vibrant pieces specifically for Holly Haven.  The artwork will be on display during the signature Dining with Friends Fundraiser on April 30th, 2016.  “After the individual parties, guests and their hosts will come together to enjoy an exclusive community-wide celebration, free of charge, that concludes Dining with Friends with complimentary desserts, live music, and dancing […]” (aidscareservices.org).  More information regarding the Dewy’s Dessert Finale can be found HERE.

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Several of the artists participating, along with organizers Jennifer Alford and Bailey Wingler will be attending the event.  For more information, please visit the Healing Hearts with Healing Art Facebook event page hosted by Just Bailey Designs.

Healing Hearts through Healing Art

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Bailey Wingler, Salisbury artist and sole proprietor of Just Bailey Designs, has always had a passion for using art to make the world a better place.  So, when her long time client, Ms. Jennifer Alford of Winston-Salem, commissioned her to create a painting for the Holly Haven family care home Bailey immediately sprung into action.

Holly Haven, located in Forsyth County, is a residence that  “provides professional, courteous care for persons living with advanced HIV disease and support for their families and loved ones. (They) offer round-the-clock “family-style” residential services, including meals, activities, medication administration, housekeeping, and personal care.” (aidscareservice.org)

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Alford, an art lover and volunteer with Aids Care Services, felt compelled to purchase artwork after volunteering at Holly Haven and noticing that many of the walls were bare.  She believes that art can have a healing effect and that purchasing a piece of art was just a small way she could bring some joy into the lives of the Holly Haven residents.  After discussing this with Bailey, the two decided to embark on a project to fill the halls of Holly Haven with as many colorful artworks as possible.  Bailey, who is very active within her local arts community started an event on Facebook inviting area artists to paint canvases that Alford would supply.  The two were immediately contacted by interested artists spanning through four counties.

The group of artists include Darcey Quates Wilson of Darceyjoy Design, Same Kearns aka The Wandering Pygmy, Ali Carter, Marietta Foster Smith, Michael Owens, Shane Manier of the Guerilla Poets, Gloria Rodriguez, Artist/Musician Sue McHugh and Just Bailey Designs.

Artists will be working on their pieces over the next month and hope to unveil all of the artwork at the end of April.  More information regarding the unveiling of the artworks will be provided soon.  In the meantime,  if you are interested in participating in this event, please email Bailey Wingler at justbaileydesigns@gmail.com.

 

EXTRA EXTRA READ ALL ABOUT IT!!!

In case you didn’t already know, Kannapolis Arts, a division of Downtown Kannapolis Incorporated, has organized an Art exhibit featuring local artists at the new Salisbury Business Center located in Downtown Salisbury.  This exhibit is very colorful and contemporary and features a unique variety of works including oil paintings, digitally enhanced photography, still life photography, bright acrylics works, captivating pastels and even pieces using food coloring and mediums you have to see in person to truly appreciate.  More information regarding featured artists can be found HERE.

This is such an awesome opportunity to spotlight some of our local artists and to create a fun and energetic vibe that we hope will carry over into the future of the Downtown Kannapolis area.

Thanks to the dedication and generosity of the Salisbury Business Center and the Rowan Arts Council, a reception will be held this Wednesday, February 24th from 6-8pm which will include light hors d’oeuvres, refreshments and performances.  This reception, which is FREE to the public, will also include an artist meet and greet.  Visitors will have the opportunity to meet the artists, ask questions and purchase some spectacular pieces.  Additionally, Kannapolis Arts volunteers will be on hand to answer questions regarding their role in Downtown Kannapolis and their impact on the local Arts community! See you there!