I realize the holidays are a little different this year, and one thing I’ve noticed is that Christmas trees and decorations have been going up a lot earlier! Twinkling lights are so cheerful, especially as our hours of daylight become shorter. The shops in downtown Culpeper are in full holiday mode, and I hope you’ll have an opportunity to visit and help support them.
Tony is preparing for his annual 25 Days of Snowflakes, and this year we have a shirt for sale thanks to our friends at Kash Imprints. On sale now through December 4, they come in a variety of colors, and are available with festive packaging and a gift message. Click here to purchase.
Tony has been cutting custom pop culture snowflakes for the past 6 years and posting them on social media. The shirt design includes some of his most popular snowflake patterns including Baby Yoda, Sesame Street, and The Grinch. If you look carefully, you’ll discover hidden references and characters. You can follow along beginning December 1st on Facebook and Instagram.
Sales of our shirts benefit our Art Jam classes and help to offset the investment in technology to transition these classes online. I taught our first classes through Zoom this fall, and while it required a lot more planning, it ran very smoothly. I was so happy to see that the kids adjusted so well and were very interactive with me and each other. Our next session will begin February 2 and it will focus on drawing. I also have some virtual watercolor workshops planned for all kids and adults.
I am thankful for the opportunity to share art with all of you. I hope you have a very happy Thanksgiving!
The CulpeperAir Fest is a celebration of aviation heritage and is a fun, family-friendly, community-oriented event. The show is locally produced, free to the public, and draws top performers from around the nation. We have worked with the Culpeper Air Fest since 2016, rebranding the festival, designing the event graphics, and redesigning the website. We’ve created everything from posters and street banners, t-shirts and hats, and fundraising materials like brochures and invitations.
Tony serves on the marketing committee for the Air Fest board, and he really enjoys being immersed in the event—taking photos of the 5th graders at the STEM event, prepping for the Sponsor Night Lights event, and helping with the finishing touches on the Jumbotron presentation with the Culpeper Media Network crew.
The Air Fest did not take place this year, but we look forward to when we can hear those planes buzzing overhead again!
Wayne Thiebaud is one of the most popular artists I’ve shared with students, and while they may remember him as the “cake guy,” his art definitely makes an impression. He’s one of my favorite artists too because of his work and his wonderful attitude as reflected in the quote…
“If we don’t have a sense of humor, we lack a sense of perspective.”
The Crocker Museum in California has been trying to celebrate this special birthday with a retrospective of his work, but the museum has had to close repeatedly because of the pandemic. The show will eventually travel to other museums around the country, and I think right now the closest it may come is Pennsylvania. I’ll definitely be watching for it and will let you know!
Fall is just around the corner and so is one of our favorite local events—Farm Tour weekend. Take a break and get outside for some FREE family fun right here in Culpeper on Saturday and Sunday, September 19-20 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.
The Culpeper Harvest Days Farm Tour offers a special opportunity to explore local working farms, agribusinesses, plus wineries, breweries, and distilleries. Activities, food, and entertainment vary by location. To learn more, visit the Farm Tour website or follow them on Facebook for the latest updates.
You can start anywhere and visit one or all of the stops on the tour! Click here to download a copy of the brochure which includes a map and directions to each farm. Each location will have printed brochures onsite as well.
If you have any questions about the event, I’ll do my best to answer them. We have been working on the Farm Tour for the last 10 years. A highlight for my family has always been the model trains which are displayed at Culpeper Agricultural Enterprises. Before the museum moved into the historic Depot, it was held there and having real trains that close to model trains was a special thrill. The Piedmont Railroaders Club would stop all operations at the first sound of an actual train, and everyone would hustle to the windows to watch it go by. My kids were so excited to learn that there were adults that loved trains as much as they do.
I hope you can take a break and check out some part of the tour. It’s very difficult to plan events right now, and it would mean a lot to the coordinators, the volunteers, and the farms to have a good turnout. They take great pride in the work that they do, and they’d love to share it with you.
I hope you all are well, and that you’ve managed to have some fun this summer! Our family has made a lot of art this year, and it’s helped all of us tremendously. Mr. Tony has been creating superhero artwork on his computer, I’ve been painting in watercolor and acrylic, Cole has been working on cross-hatched portraits, and Joy has been drawing portraits in color pencil on toned papers. I’ve tagged each of our instagram accounts if you’d like to see our recent work. Joy doesn’t have an instagram account, so I posted a sample of her recent work above.
In 2017, K Art and Design had the opportunity to rebrand Culpeper County Public Schools. It was an interesting challenge. The previous logo (left) had not aged well, and with the focus on books, it seemed to represent a library more than a public school system.
We learned at the beginning that the first applications of the new logo would be a job fair display and recruitment materials for new teachers. The logo needed to be modern and distinctive and also give the viewer an idea of Culpeper ‘s location at a quick glance.
Retaining a link to the original book concept was explored, but ultimately, the selected design focused on the idea of a pathway to success with a C for Culpeper encircling the starred location on the map. The color scheme was chosen to distinguish Culpeper from other school districts that often use primary colors.
Since the launch of the new design, we’ve enjoyed seeing the many ways it has been used. Our favorite is the activity school bus!
It’s hard to believe that it’s August. This year is a blur of pivoting and adapting to try to do what’s best for our family, business, customers, and community. It’s especially hard when “what’s best” isn’t really clear.
Tony and I continue to work primarily from home, being fortunate to have high speed internet at both locations. Our office phone has been forwarded so our contact information remains the same. Masks are required at our office building.
We have been busy working with Culpeper Tourism & Economic Development to support small business relief programs like Culpeper Cares and Culpeper Recovers. These programs are designed to get funds in the hands of local small businesses that have been so profoundly impacted by the pandemic. We also created materials to support the new parklet program that is currently adding outdoor seating along East Davis Street in our historic downtown. Creating presentations, forms, and fillable pdfs on tight deadlines might just be the most important work we’ve ever done. It’s been gratifying to be able to contribute to these efforts.
Our fall Art Jam classes will be held virtually on Zoom, a platform with which we are all now familiar. I’m nervous about how to engage students and the advanced planning that virtual teaching will require, but we’re going to do our best to keep offering classes that share art education in a fun way! We are preparing project kits with supplies to make it easier for families to participate.
We are continuing to celebrate 15 years of K Art and Design being in Culpeper, and this month I’d like to spotlight our work with Culpeper County Public Schools. They have been facing the “what’s best” question in perhaps the most difficult of situations. I think we can agree that teachers, staff, and students need our support more than ever. They are facing an enormous challenge and everyone is feeling that stress before the school year has even begun. The only thing we can control is how we choose to respond to this situation, and while kindness won’t solve everything, it’s a great starting point.
This school year, Joy is a freshman at Culpeper County High School, and Cole is a junior splitting time at CCHS and Mountain Vista Governors School. We’ve selected the remote learning option, and we’re looking forward to getting the kids’ schedules and figuring out what they will need as far as time, supplies, and workspace.
We sincerely hope you and those dear to you are well. These are incredibly challenging times, and if there’s anything we can do to make some part of your day easier, please let us know. Keep us posted on your schedules and plans for the fall!