Monday, February 6, 2012

A Day of Art with Friends at the Mount Dora Arts Festival Feb 5, 2012

In looking at the numerology of 2012, a 5 year of freedom and discovery, I've made it a goal to travel more, whether it be short trips to discover more of Florida, or longer vacations to visit family and friends. Spending time investing in and enjoying my friends is important to me. So, yesterday, February 5, 2012, Theresa, Shirl and I ventured forth to spend the day at the 37th Annual Mount Dora Arts Festival. It was a 3-hr drive but we packed our car with water, fruit, chips and artichoke salad, and enjoyed the trip, not knowing what we would find when we got there.

We arrived in Mount Dora, which is about 30 miles NW of Orlando, just after noon on the 2nd day of the show and were surprised to discover the size and scope of the festival. It was huge and wonderful.

Artists from all over the country were there. I met Cindy McDougall, a jeweler from Fergus Falls, Minnesota where my mom and dad went to high school. Her husband, Jay (a wood sculptor) was there too. Small world. Another artist, Kirsten Walstead of SoMi Tileworks in Minneapolis makes beautiful artistic tiles.
One of my favorite art sculptors was Victoria Sexton who was selling her unusual sculptures (left) so fast I believe she sold out by the end of the day. She shares her current techniques here.

Greg and Mindy Rhoads, from Kansas, create intricate Mosaics (right) with words, quotes, and images, which I adore.

After hours of walking from booth to booth, and being inspired time and again with creative manifestations, the three of us took a break and walked down to the lake for a change of pace. We discovered the Lakeside Inn and talked about coming back to this festival again next year when we might stay overnight at the Inn and see more of the art in the 2-day festival. As it was, I believe I visited only about twenty-five percent of the booths. There was a lot more to see and experience that we didn't have time or energy for. I did take dozens of photographs throughout the afternoon which you can see on Flickr here.

Satisfied yet knowing there would be more adventure another time, we piled back into the car and began the journey home. All night my heart and head were filled with beautiful images of color and creativity, my dreams were vivid blessings, and I awakened this morning with joy. Such are the gifts of art and friendship.
- Raphaella Vaisseau

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