“Seasons of Love” Tickets, and other Sister Cities News.

Stratford Sister Cities Seasons of Love Tickets

Stratford Sister Cities Seasons of Love Tickets

Member organization Stratford Sister Cities Chorus announces tickets are now on sale for its annual event

“25 Seasons of Love”

with guest appearances by

the Messiah Baptist Church Choir
the Stratford High Select Choir

Sunday, June 12th, 4 p.m.
Flood Middle School
For Tickets, call 203-380-6777, mailbox 1234

In other chorus news…

Stratford Sister Cities in Stratford Upon Avon 2016
Stratford Sister Cities in Stratford Upon Avon 2016
  • 34 delegates represented our town at Reunion 2016 hosted in Stratford-upon-Avon, England. Our Home Stay Hosts were wonderful to us, as you were in the summer of 2014 when you did the  hosting. It was an awesome good time. If you are a Facebook person, you can see photos in two places: 1) Stratfords of the World Reunion UK 2016  or 2) Stratford Sister Cities Chorus You will recognize many of our global Stratford neighbors in the pictures, maybe even your homestay.
  • NOTE: The next Reunion of the Stratfords of the World will take place in September of 2018 in Victoria, Australia. Care to join us? Drop a line saying you would like to be kept in the loop.
  • Would you like to see your name in the June 12th concert program? We have a “FAN” page; you can be one for a $10 donation. Respond stating the name you would like printed on the fan page and follow up with a check payable and mailed to: Sister Cities Chorus c/o 401 Hilltop Drive, Stratford 06614. Please respond by May 27. You can mail the check later.
  • Stratfords of the World/Sister Cities will march in the Memorial Day Parade, so please join us as we strut our colors down Main Street on May 30. Our unit will gather on the north side of Christ Church at 11:45 a.m. Wear any combination of red, white and blue clothing.
  • Look for us on June 4 at the Main Street Festival. Stop by our exhibit to say hi and see the new Stratfords of the World logo coffee mugs we had made to take to the UK and to promote our organization locally. The mugs will be available for purchase.

    Stratford CT 2016 Sister Cities Friendship Garden
    Stratford CT 2016 Sister Cities Friendship Garden
  • The Friendship Garden at Boothe Memorial Park has been replanted with great help from garden designer Anne Lees of “Fleur de Lees” and many SOW volunteers who enjoyed getting down and dirty for the cause. Check it out as it fills in over the next month.

Painter Karen Essig in the Natural World

Sailboat by Karen Essig
Karen Essig CT painter
Painter Karen Essig, a Coastal Arts Guild Member,  depicts her New England home and neighbors in landscape, portrait and still life through watercolors & oils.

Guild member and painter Karen Essig will not be found painting in her studio all day. In fact, the room where she most recently used as her studio is now a spare room for her grandchildren.

Like many artists, Essig works full-time. She is a nurse.But her practical life has not stopped Essig from pursuing her dream one. She paints copiously.

“When I was young I would love watching my Mom paint pictures in her spare time. She is a very talented artist, and  I hoped her talents would rub off on me.  I started playing around with a sketch pad for fun as a young girl, and  I painted my first oil painting at the age of 16.”

Sailboat by Essig

It wasn’t until she was 50, that she started working with watercolors. She had found her medium.

“I had always worked worked in oils. It wasn’t until the last 5 years that I really expanded into watercolors. I love it.”
As a painter, Essig has enjoyed dozens of commissions over her years paintings, including children’s portraits as well as 15 paintings for the Hershey Hotel when it was remodeled.

As a lifelong New Englander, Essig said she is affected by the beach, the sea and the natural world.

“I am intriguied by nature and colorful subjects,” she said. “I like to paint realistic images. I have done everything from scenery to portraits to still lifes.”

Contact Karen Essig for commission portraits or to view a gallery of her latest available work.

A beautiful gift: Connecticut artist notecards

Tango: Mark Hannon

We’re proud to present a beautiful packet of Connecticut artist notecards, now available for sale here on our site.

The work of eight of our members are featured on the cards, including information about the artist and their work.

The work reflects a life in Connecticut by our coastal artists. The artwork represented includes watercolor, printmaking, mixed media, photography and poetry/collage.

The notecards are 4″x6″ and blank inside, with plain white envelopes.

Connecticut Ar Notecards

Suzanne Coiro – An American Watercolorist

Coastal Arts Guild of CT member Suzanne Coiro uses watercolors to create beautiful and representational visions of the natural world. Coiro is an American landscape and seascape watercolor painter based in Stratford, CT and formerly of Queens, New York.

 

Landscape by Suzanne Coiro

 

Throughout her life she has continued to refine her skills as a fine artist, but Suzanne began her artistic career in the early 1980’s as a graphic designer, designing corporate marketing materials primarily for the legal field. She received her initial training at Stony Brook University, Long Island, School of Visual Arts, NYC, and Parsons School of Design, NYC. She decided to close her personal graphic design business in 2007 and now devotes her time exclusively to painting.

 

 

Members of the guild enjoyed Coiro's discussion of her work at the guild's April meeting.
Members of the guild enjoyed Coiro’s discussion of her work at the guild’s April meeting.

Although her true love is the ocean, you will often find Suzanne at the beaches of Stratford and Milford, sketching dune grasses and the rocky shoreline of Long Island Sound. She will sometimes explore a floral or architectural subject.

Coiro's painting "Sunflower" was selected to be included in the Guild's notecard collection
Coiro’s painting “Sunflower” was selected to be included in the Guild’s notecard collection

Coiro is currently a member of the board of the Coastal Arts Guild of Connecticut, holding the office of Secretary since 2004 and in previous years when it was the Stratford Arts Guild.
If you wish to contact Suzanne to schedule a meeting to preview her work or to commission a work, email Coiro at s.coiro@sbcglobal.net.

Fire and Paint: The Art of John Houle

John Houle Burnt Offerings 2015

A first place winner at the Elements of Nature Art Show, John Houle’s pyrography is instantly recognizable for it texture and technique.

“I believe art should … make a statement about who we are and about our passions. Pyrography, scrimshaw on wood or woodburning, as an art form is timeless and yet very unique. Our ancestors used burnt wood (charcoal) to depict their everyday lives on cave walls before there were other media.”

John Houle Timber Wolves

John Houle, the artist behind “Burnt Offerings,” depicts animals active in nature, as well as familiar markers of a natural landscapes, such as mills, lighthouses, and trees in his work. The subject matter and the media are intricately intertwined.

“The use of Birch wood with its tight grain, allows for intricate and extensive detail and texture. The marriage of the two mediums, pyrography and acrylic wash, greatly enhance the creation allowing you to touch the scales of a bass striking a plug, feel the plumage of a preening bird or touch the rocks beneath a wave washed lighthouse.”

Houle’s work will be available this weekend at Artists and Artisans in Paradise, August 30th at Paradise Green.

Stonehill industrial decor influenced by family

Stonehill Design: Cylindrical Honeycomb Light
Stonehill Design’s Cylindrical Honeycomb Light

Fairfield-based designer and artist Jason Aleska of Stonehill Design has mechanical handiwork in his genes.

“My grandfather owned a tool and die shop which eventually evolved in my father’s business, Advance Heat Treating Co. in Fairfield, CT.

I was always fascinated by the amazing machines they had in the shop, like the Bridgeport Milling Machine, a relic we still have to this day…”

Aleska gives old items a new lease on life, upcycling rustic and vintage industrial pieces such as fans, rotary phones, radios, space heaters and more.

The new items become fanciful, mechanical and are, in fact, still useful. They are also one-of-a-kind lighting and decor, fabricated by hand in his workshop.

“These men, using these tools were able to provide for 3 generations of our family. They instilled in me an appreciation for quality workmanship and a respect for the time it takes to do something yourself.”

Come and meet Aleska and see his beautifully crafted work Sunday, May 3rd at the Baldwin Center in Stratford.

 

Should I Build My Artist’s Website?

If you are an artist or creative person without a website or social media presence, here’s a sad truth:

You are missing out on the bulk of business exposure opportunities.

However, if you want to reach your customers and art lovers and really sell your work, it’s time to come to terms with the reality that most people are spending more and more time online.

Do I really Need a Website?

Yes. A website is a your online home and gallery. It’s where you get to reach out to the world, share your work, and tell them who you are.

It’s often the first place (and hopefully not the last!) that people will interact with you and your art.

If you think about it, this is AMAZING! In the past, artists and their followers could only meet people in person! Now, you have the chance to extend your reach to any corner of the world, to virtually anyone with internet access.

The website is your launchpad to marketing yourself. Do you feel intimidated by the idea of “marketing” yourself? That’s normal.

Just think of a website as a (practically free, beautiful, ever-customized!) listing in the yellow pages. If you don’t have one, how will people find you??

Why Learn to Design a Website Myself?

If you hire a designer create a site for you, that’s great! They will love you for it! Most designers will create professional, beautiful sites that you will be proud of.

However…

Here are the THREE Cs of why learning to design it yourself may be better for an artists or creatives right now:

  • Creative Control – It isn’t always easy to express to another designer what you are seeing in your mind. Your website expresses the ‘YOU’ brand. It says what you want it say and looks the way you want it to. Doing it yourself gives you that control.
  • Cost – Over time the cost of changes to a site definitely add up. You don’t have to pay yourself anything to change an image, add a page, or post a blog update once you know how to do it yourself.
  • Continuing Education – There is nothing better than expanding your skillsets and learning more in life!

If you are ready to get serious, then..

Take This Class

If you don’t have a website, you can sign up now for the Coastal Arts Guild of CT’s 4-week course “Building a Website for Artists and Creatives.”

Building a Website

Build a Website for Artists & Creatives

The course — co-taught by designer Mark Hannon and content and social media specialist Elizabeth Howard– will give you opportunity to create your OWN HOME online.

This class is currently closed. If you would like to see this class offered again, please contact us and let us know! Thanks!