Mary Engelbreit inspiring change

A few days ago, Mary Engelbreit, a fellow artist and designer and a native of St Louis, posted this illustration and reflection on her Facebook page:

“When situations turn horrible and I find it hard to move on, I usually draw my way through it. These drawing hardly ever see the light of day, since they’re really just a form of therapy for me. But these events unfolding now in my hometown and across the country , shining a light on the ugly racism that still runs rampant in our country, made me think that maybe this drawing could help in some small way. While it’s not a cheerful little picture you’d want to hang over the sofa, you might know of a school or an office or a police station that could use it. All proceeds from the sale of this print will go to the Michael Brown Jr. Memorial Fund.
mary engelbreit hands up don't shoot

http://www.maryengelbreit.com/store/In-The-USA-Fine-Print.html

Mary received a huge response to the image, raising $25,000 over the next few days for the memorial fund. While most of the comments were positive, she also came under criticism from some who viewed the image as inflammatory.
Mary kept her resolve, later posting this update:

mary commentary

The above was removed by Facebook, and she followed with another update:

“Thank you all—-well, most of you!— for your kind words and support over the last couple of days. They far outweighed the negativity I received. Obviously tempers run high during a terrible situation like this, and without any clear leadership in Ferguson or St. Louis releasing accurate information, it’s going to take a long time to settle down, I’m afraid. I hope my drawing was a help to some of you, anyway. We’ve made well over $10k so far that will be donated the the Michael Brown Jr. Memorial Fund, so thank you for that. I know it’s been difficult to get on our website due to the large numbers of people trying to get on, but the print will always be available, so there’s no need to rush!
Also, Facebook got in touch with us and said they would put the post back up (although I don’t know what’s taking them so long; we put it back up in about 5 minutes, without the picture) and they told us they would make sure it wasn’t removed again.
I’m going to return to my “regular programming” later today, which I know will bore the crap out of a lot of you, so thanks for being here for these few days, and thanks to most of you for being so kind.
Meditate, pray, hope and/or work (whatever works for you!) for peace and SANITY to return to our world. Be the change you’d like to see.
Love,
Mary, A Known Subversive. ( My absolute FAVORITE comment!)”

Thank you, Mary Engelbreit for showing compassion and conscience in the face of a difficult situation. It is the role of artists to do what we can to make this world a better place- through inspiration and encouragement, but also through responding with courageous truth-telling. Your actions point the way to a better world.

Mary Engelbreit was interviewed on her local NPR affiliate about the story. Listen to what she has to say here.

 

 

Brian Nunes new Film – Find your Way: a Busker’s Documentary

Filmmaker Brian Nunes was our most recent guest bell ringer at the Pike Place Market. The crafts community was thrilled to meet him, especially since Brian made a film called Find your Way: a Busker’s Documentary, which is about the buskers at Pike Place. These folks are a special part of the fabric of the market and they are a talented and much loved group of musicians.

Buskers are hard working folks who are often misunderstood and under appreciated and Brian’s wonderful film shows their true stories and opens your heart to their passion. The film follows the musicians over three years and features world renowned violinist Joshua Bell and 90’s rocker Chris Ballew of The Presidents. I promise you will see street musicians in a new way, and never pass them on the street again without appreciating them.

Brian says: “The film is a discussion of how we define success – both culturally and personally.  It examines the way we create value based on context and challenges audiences to think deeper about how they consume culture.

 My passion in life is being true to one’s personal creative path and encouraging others to do the same.  My personal work is a reflection of that passion and I will always bring a level of authenticity to any story I tell.”

Here’s the trailer:

You can attend a special screening of Find Your Way in Seattle. Providing enough tickets are pre-sold by September 4th, it will be shown at the Uptown as part of the Seattle International Film Festival – Thursday, September 11at 7:00pm – 9:00pm. Let’s help make this happen – hurry and get your tickets here.

Not in or near  Seattle? Check the website for details about the other screenings in Portland Santa Monica, New York, Breckinridge, and Bellingham

Back to School Gift List

Back to School lists are out, and now is the time to stock up for a great year. Pencils, binders, backpacks, new shoes, and don’t forget this unique alarm clock from Paper Scissors Rock. This tiny clock makes a great gift for your favorite teacher, ensuring that they will start their day right, bright and early.

Clock with an apple on the face and the words "to teach is to touch lives forever" with floating pencil second hand

My alarm clocks are not just for teachers. Look through the dozens of designs in my alarm clock gallery to find the perfect one for the student in your life- preschool through graduate school!

ballet alarm clock
The clocks feature reductions of my original paintings and collage work, on a tiny 2 X 2 clock face. They are cordless and lightweight- perfect for travel. But what makes them totally unique is the miniature image that floats around the face counting the seconds. For instance, on the ballet alarm clock above, its a miniature ballerina. Check out the whole collection for great back to school gift ideas.
Its also the perfect time pf year to get a classroom in shape and off to a great start with clever decorations that celebrate the work of teaching and learning, such as this teacher wall clock.

teacher wall clock

And don’t start off the year without these stylish glass gem magnets, perfect for displaying student work, reminders, and to-do lists.

teacher glass gem magnets

Here’s to another great year of learning, growing, and teaching!

Lily and the Rock

My new neighbor Bob has this great dog named Lily. He moved into the house at the end of the dead end road we live on, which has almost no yard. So I told him Lily could play in mine anytime.

The other day I looked out the window and saw Bob watching Lily play with something. I couldn’t tell what it was, but it looked like she was having a blast. I went outside to check it out and join in the fun.

It turns out that Lily is in love with a rock. Not any rock, just this one particular rock. She could care less about any other rock.

When Bob moved in he brought her rock with him and put it under the coffee table. Lily has spent months laying near the table with her head on her paws staring longingly at the rock. This is the first time in 6 months he brought it outside so she coud play with it.

 

I honestly have no idea how I made half of the second film film in slow motion. But I think it’s pretty cool.