Sunday, August 28, 2016

Wednesday Open Words at Austin's.


When I go to Austin's Coffee, (929 W Fairbanks Ave, Winter Park, FL), I always order an ice cold "Yak", which is a flavor full iced coffee along with a Portobello Mushroom sandwich. I arrive a bit early, so I cs watch the Wednesday Open Words hosts clear the stag and set up the sound equipment. Heather was the host for the evening. She read first and I put he at the microphone in my sketch. Other literary types arrived, rehearsing their poetry or prose.

As always it was an entertaining and enlightening evening. I don't understand how most people can go home from work and then isolate themselves by watching a TV in their dark living rooms. Going to these readings, I get to experience so many local stories. Open Words happens every Wednesday, get out and see what is happening in your community, and if you are brave enough, step up to the microphone.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

German Lemus at Artlando.


Artlando is coming to Lock Haven Park in Orlando on October 1, 2016. They are looking are looking for innovative, interesting, talented visual and performing artists to take part in this all day event.
SPACE COST $125
WHAT YOU GET:
• 10’x10’ space for you to set up your tent, table and art!
• All the art you sell is commission free! You keep 100% of your profits!
• Entry into our competition (if you create on-site).
WHAT’S THE COMPETITION?
ARTLando is an immersive experience for our attendees where they can see art being created.
• We want you creating your art LIVE! Bring your paint, canvas and anything else you need to create your art.
• All artists that paint/create during the event will be judged and booth fees will be used exclusively in production of the event and to award $3000 in cash prizes to artists who place in the competition.
Winners will be chosen from a combination of judges panel and popular votes!
SUBMISSIONS DUE BY: AUGUST 31ST

At the 2015 Artlando I had to stop and watch as German Lemus painted y brand new Scion live on the lawn. He was getting close to be done when I arrived, so I sketched frantically, afraid he might put the spray can down and walk away. The car's surfs was richly textured making a bold statement. I don't know who drives it around today.

I participated in the first Artlando, but it rained all day long. I am debating about giving it a try again this year.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Weekend Top 6 Picks for August 27th and 28th.

Saturday August 27, 2016 
11am to 6pm Free. Big Bang Bazaar- Indie Art, Craft and Vintage Bazaar. Central Florida Fairgrounds and Exposition Park 4603 W Colonial Dr, Orlando, FL 32808. We are pleased to announce that Big Bang Bazaar (Indie Art, Crafts and Vintage Bazaar) will take place on August 27th, 2016! The event is family friendly and appropriate for all ages!
Admission and parking are free to all guests!
Big Bang Bazaar will feature a curated selection of over 200 local Indie artists and crafters, along with a free photo booth, Orlando Psycho City Derby Girls, Orlando Facial Hair Club and movies playing all day! Shoppers will find a wide variety of goods, all handmade by local artisans! Products such as clothing, accessories, jewelry, original art, art prints, housewares and much more will be available for purchase!
For more information about this event, please visit bigbangbazaar.net website, or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/bigbangbazaarfl
FREE ADMISSION!
NEW INDOOR VENUE!
BIGGER AND BETTER!
Interested in VENDING??
Info can be found on our website!
www.bigbangbazaar.net

8pm to 10pm $45.95 to $74.84 When Shadows Fall. Takes place in an undisclosed private location in Orlando, Florida. Upon buying a ticket, you will receive the address. We are located roughly 15 minutes from Downtown Orlando, 15 minutes from Universal Orlando, and 20 minutes from Walt Disney World. A thrilling new kind of interactive experience that introduces gaming elements into a real world open environment, highly themed and filled with characters to meet and missions to complete.
In short: This production blends gaming and live entertainment in ways you’ve never seen before.

10pm to 2am Free. Bare Naked Butlers Official Launch Party. One80 Skytop Lounge 400 W Church St, Orlando, Florida 32801. From the Creators of Florida's #1 Male Revue "Rock Hard Revue," Bare Naked Butlers Party and Event Service Provides Upscale, Hunky, Male Party Hosts and More to Enhance Events with an Edgy and Modern Touch...
Enjoy:
Male Eye Candy
Pampering
Chocolate Covered Strawberries
DJ Entertainment
Specialty Drinks
... and More!

Free Admission!
www.barenakedbutlers.com

Sunday August 28, 2016
Noon to 2pm Free but get some food. Florida Gospel Jam. Fish on Fire 7937 Daetwyler Drive Belle Isle FL. Every 2nd and 4th Sunday.

3pm to 8pm Free. August Art Critique. The Barefoot Spa 801 Virginia Dr, Orlando, Florida 32803. It doesn't matter what kind of art you do, we have had oil painters, papermakers, glass artsts, found object sculptors, video artists, watercolor painters, ceramicists, artists who draw and collage, jewelry artists, printmakers, etc. It also doesn't matter how much experience you have. We have included artists who have never shown and artists who are nationally recognized competition winners. The point is to get people from many different styles, backgrounds, and experience levels together to talk about everyones' work!
This is a group of artists talking as peers.The discussions have included pricing, finding materials, technique, framing, exhibition opportunities, and, yes, traditional critique. We are trying to mix different artists and get them talking about art! We will be looking at everyone's art individually, and talk about it for about 10 minutes. I know it is short, but the idea is not only to get other people to talk about your art, but to spend the evening talking about everyone's art!
We are looking for brand new art. By "brand new", I mean the newest art that you have. And if you bring more than one, please make them all be part of a series. Or if they aren't part of a series, make sure that you are prepared to talk about the art as a group.


4:30pm to 6:30pm $10 at the door. Orlando Roller Derby: Straight Jackettes VS. Thunder City. Semoran Skateway 2670 Cassel Creek Blvd, Casselberry, Florida 32707. OPCDG Presents: ORLANDO ROLLER DERBY VS THUNDER CITY DERBY SIRENS
Come watch Orlando Psycho City Roller Derby! Some of your favorite Orlando Roller Derby skaters will be taking on Thunder City!!! Doors at 4:30pm, first whistle at 5:00pm. It'll all go down in our home rink, Semoran Skateway.
Food and BEER will be available at the snack bar; all beer and wine charitable contributions go to benefit the Greyhound Pets of America, Senior Sanctuary.
We will have a 50/50 raffle, bring some cash! Half goes to the winner and the other half goes to our game charity!
Remember to bring your own chairs; chairs with rubber bottoms are allowed on the track, high heels are not.
And don't forget, you can take home a piece of OPCDG, with our new exciting merchandise.
After party will be directly after the game, at Friendly Confines Winter Park.

Any questions, check us out.
or email games@orlandoderbygirls.com

Thursday, August 25, 2016

West Side Story rumbles into the Shakes.


West Side Story will be performed in the Margeson Theater at the Orlando Shakespeare Theater, (812 E Rollins St, Orlando, FL) from September 7th to October 9th. I Stopped into the scenic shop to see the New York City set under construction. Jeff Ferree explained that carpet had to be installed on the second tier of the set, to reduce noise as actors walked. Jeff used the lift to get a roll of carpet up and then three stage hands rolled it out. One corner hung precariously over ledge. If anyone stepped o this overhanging carpet they would fall to the stage floor. Jeff used a carpet knife to cut away the excess carpet. To try and smooth the carpet out, he leaped forward multiple times like a kangaroo to try and stretch the carpet flat. 

At the same time lights were being turned on and off from the lighting booth. Someone with a walkie talkie confirmed when the correct lights came on. A few were out of place and will likely be replaced. The large bridge like structure is part of the set that is lowered into place during the fight scenes. Jeff showed me the set rendering designed by Jim Hunter, and it will look gritty and gorgeous. Large sections of steal mesh fence need to be scavenged for stage right. There is a virtual walk through of the set which is apparently quite impressive. 

West Side Story is based on a concept of Jerome Robbins, a book by Arthur Laurents with Music by Leonard Bernstein and Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. Idealistic young lovers Maria and Tony find themselves caught between rival street gangs, the American Jets and the Puerto Rican Sharks. Their struggle to survive in a world of hate, violence, and prejudice is one of the most beautiful, heart-wrenching, and relevant musical dramas of our time. West Side Story’‘s legendary jazz, Latin, and classical-inspired score features the treasured songs ““Something’‘s Coming,“” ““Tonight,” ““I Feel Pretty,” and ““America.“The movie came out the year I was born, and the story is still as fresh, vibrant and reliant as it was back then.” Tickets are between $18 and $33.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Pirate Festival in Cedar Key Florida.


Terry and I drove to Cedar Key for the Pirate Festival in September of 2015. The motel had a gorgeous view overlooking the water. That first day, I hiked down to where the Pirate encampment was to be found on the map. X marks the spot. Sure enough, pirates of all shape and sizes were milling about the camp. A mini pirate ship on wheels was parked on the street. A skull and cross bones fluttered along wit the American flag in the distance. Wenches were cinched up tight, showing ample bosoms. All the pirates were a bawdy fowl mouthed lot.

I've heard that the pirates invaded the beach at sunrise battling Cedar Key residents. Unfortunately I didn't witness or sketch the skirmish.  Thieves Row offered every imaginable apparel should you decide to become a pirate yourself. We spent mos of the day huddled in the shade watching musical acts performing on a white octagonal Victorian band shell. Acts included, The Bawdy Boys, Anchors Away, and Arrr Inc.

Mark Ye Calendars for the 4th Annual Invasion! September 16-18, 2016.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

When Shadows Fall Grand Opening.


After experiencing life as a Penumbra citizen, there was a Champagne reception in the original wait in area. This was I believe the office of K.C. Alexander the found of this dystopian society. Objects around the office indicated he was an educated and well traveled man. Clues about his vision for a perfect world could be found among the books and piles of paper on his desk.

Each cast member was announced and they entered the party to applause. Many actors were hard to recognize in their Orlandoan fashions. Some of the actresses wore gowns and party dressed. This was a big night, deserving a celebration. After a champagne toast, the cars and press wandered through the maze of rooms finding plenty of opportunity to mingle or sit in intimate groups to talk. For the first time I explored every of ice and chamber. I had only experienced a fraction of the amazing and intricate rooms. Each setting had hints about the occupant and the society as a whole.

I got to speak to my co-conspirator, Mallory Vance for the first time outside the playful confine of the game. She had already experienced Penumbra five times. She was doing office work for her mom, and in exchange she asked for a multi pass to When Shadows Fall. I was very fortunate to have been assigned to work beside her, since she knew her way around a bit, and she got us out of a few tight spots. To me she seemed to fit into the imagined over perfectly. After wandering through every room, I am left wanting to know more.

The cast and roll playing citizens all posed for a group photo. I can barely be seen, an artist hidden in the shadows.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Penumbra, the Perfect Futuristic Society?

When Shadows Fall is a groundbreaking first-person interactive experience that takes place in a 15,000 square foot maze of futuristic offices, labs, and a dark labyrinth. Mallory Vance and I were recruited by Daedalus (Joe Hall) to recover documents from the office of acting president Nickolai (Barry Wright). Documents we found hinted at a sordid affair with Odessa (Cassandre Heinrich). She had been a gold member of society, but she volunteered for experiments which scarred her for life and cast her as an unknown in the Labarinth. The relationship was abusive. Mallory hoped that if we kept the abusive relationship a secret, that Nikolai might one day repent and the couple could live happily ever after. She was a romantic at heart but ultimately an enabler.  Of course life never is that sweet and innocent. Besides, weren't the only ones who knew this dark secret.

What had been described as the perfect society was less than perfect. Posters proclaimed that "After acclimation everyone has a place" and "Join our society towards good." Our reward for joining the greater good was to be banished to the labyrinth for our anti-social behavior. Mallory was the most social of the new citizens, and of course I am an artist and therefor deserved be be part of the gold cast of society. As the unnamed, we had to give up our old name and embrace a new name, I became know as Odin and Mallory became Sarah.

In the end we all met in a public square where the true face of the society showed itself. Ideals were clouded by jealousy, rage and revenge. The misshapen underclass fought against their oppressors. Nathanael, the Minotaur (John Reid Adams) seemed the most tortured of the unnamed.  One of his prosthetic horns was broken off. His pained screams could often be heard in the halls. I clearly only experienced a fraction of the stories that could be unearthed. The experience left me yearning to learn more. One evening in Penumbra only begins to scratch the surface. You have to experience it for yourself.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

When Shadows Fall


I went to a media preview of "When Shadows Fall." This groundbreaking interactive experience happens in a large innocuous warehouse south of Downtown Orlando. There is no signage on the building. A young woman in a black dress held her phone in front of her and spoke to it. I assumed she was skyping but she was actually recording a video blog. Inside was a waiting area where four clumps of press spoke amongst themselves. Ricky Brigante the producer and Technical Director welcomed me. I was issued a small bronze colored badge. It looked like a mechanical eye with sunlight radiating from behind it. It was attached to a note which read, "Welcome new Penumbra citizen! Please accept this symbol of our new society with my highest regards." ~K.C. Alexander

One of my favorite early computer games was "Myst." In that game, you wandered through a three dimensional world looking for clues about the now abandoned civilization. Penumbra offers all the mystery of "Myst" while being fully interactive. It is unlike anything I have experienced before. We entered the first fully functional, totally harmonious society in the history of mankind two at a time or, in my case, alone. I walked down a long dark narrow hallway approaching a woman who asked for my allegiance to the new society. I was directed to a series of glowing tablets on the wall. Here, new citizens are given their new roles in the society. I then had to wait for a office worker, Cain (Chris Brown), who was in charge of internal affairs and quality control. He interviewed me briefly. When he found out that I was a journalist and sketched, he seemed interested and advised me to keep me eyes open and report back if I found any, deviant behavior.

I was reunited with the group in a dark hallway. Then, Harlan (Brett Carson) began calling out names. I knew already knew that there were various classes in this society. Golds were intellectuals and artists, certainly that is where I belonged. Silvers were like the middle class, while bronzes were hard laborers and then there was another darker class, the nameless, that no one wanted to talk about. Harlan called out about five names and then he called for me. I met the woman in black, Mallory Vance, and we wondered what our new role in society might be. We were lead to an area near a large reinforced vault door. Harlan's kind welcoming demeanor changed. He announced that our antisocial behavior had earned us a spot in Penumbra's dark underbelly, the labyrinth. Dark sinister rooms were contained by iron bars. A red light blinked above the vault door. Harlan bolted the door closed as he left us behind. A large octagonal table offered a spot to rest and ask long-term residents questions. While they were all scarred and misshapen, the women were quite beautiful despite their scars.

Mallory and I were assigned to help Daedalus (Joe Hall), who was dressed in a dark leather trench coat with a sharp pointed collar. He had red scars on his face. He asked us if we would do anything to escape from the labyrinth. Mallory was all in. I hesitated, wondering if murder might be required. He asked us to help him mix a potion in his lab. The walls were burned as if there had been a chemical explosion. I warned Mallory, but she was already pouring the chemicals together in a flask. The mixture could be used to incapacitate someone and allow for our escape.

Mallory and I were each given armbands that made it look like we were under house arrest like Daedalus himself. We were then sent on a mission to recover documents from Nikolai's office. Nikolai was an ambassador, the son of K.C. Alexander. After his father's death, Nikolai took over control of Penumbra. Mallory and I rushed through the maze of hallways, and hid any time security came around. We hit the jackpot recovering plenty of aging documents from the office. I followed Mallory's lead. She seemed to know her way around the hallways better than I. It was fun having a co-conspirator. A secret panel got us back to the labyrinth. We were looking for information about a citizens project but many of the document were love letters. When Daedalus asked about what we found, Mallory snatched up the love letters and hid them behind her back. She later gave these letters to Odessa (Cassandra Heinrich). Mallory is a romantic at heart, and she wanted the romance to remain private. Daedalus might have used the information to forward his own devious agenda. . .

Tickets to this first person experience are $45.95-$74.84.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

The Vinik Family Foundation presents The Beach Tampa.


The Beach Tampa is an interactive architecture installation in the Amalie Arena. Created by Snarkitecture, This 15,000 square foot immersive environment features an ocean of 1.2 million recyclable and antimicrobial white balls. Open to the public at no cost thanks to The Vinik Family Foundation, the beach will remain open until August 25th 2016. The environment is created on the floor of the arena using construction materials such as scaffolding, wall panels, and perforated mesh.

Performance artist Brian Feldman told me about the exhibit. He tried to get in on a weekend but there was a line for tickets. When he did get his ticket the entry time was for six hours later. He got sidetracked at an art event in St. Petersburg and didn't get back to the Arena. We decided to take a day trip during the week. This time there was no line. At the entrance guests are offered free ice cream. White fabrics lined all the halls leading to the beach, creating a sense of wonder and anticipation.

Security checked all bags and a metal detector wand checked for metal. My pencils kept setting off the metal detector but I ultimate made it through. There are free lockers available if you want to leave personal items behind before entering the beach. A volunteer questioned my artist chair but let me pass.  There were plenty of white beach chairs inside, but they were set back away from the 75-foot-wide beach shore. I set up right at the shore's edge where all the action was.

Within minutes of arriving, Brian spotted an olde woman who looked like she was in distress. Only her head was above the balls and she was sinking down as if in quick sand. Her face was red and her eyes panicked. I let a lifeguard know and she threw out a life preserver. Several more lifeguards moved in and tried to lift the woman. She was very heavy and it took three people to get her out. Later I saw another elder couple also struggling to get out. The woman seemed stuck, but her partner managed to help get her back to shore. Later, as she struggled to catch her breath in a beach chair she said, "That was exhilarating." Brian waded out and submerged until only his head was visible. A woman with beautiful black hair lay back on the sea foam of balls and spread her hair out as if a Victorian muse. Perhaps that selfie will be her next Facebook profile photo. There must be millions of selfies shot at the beach every day. Mirrors surround the ocean of balls increasing the feeling of an open expanse. The Beach signage is presented backwards and forwards so that any digital image will have the signage facing the right way if you aim your cell phone at the right angle.

I waded in once my sketch was done. A lifeguard warned me to empty my pockets since the pressure of all the balls tends to push objects out of pockets. I left me keys change and wallet in my sneakers at the shore's edge. When this huge ball pit is emptied there will be a treasure trove of objects to be found at the bottom. Brian took a few photos as I struggled in the balls. If you lay back and sink to the bottom it can be hard to get back up. Children know instinctively how to roll and get up. It is the adults who are more prone to panic.  Swimming in balls is a good workout. I was exhausted from my short exuberant swim. Afterwards, Brian navigated us to Gourmet Pizza Company, (610 S Armenia Ave, Tampa, FL), a pizza parlor offering vegan and gluten-free options , and I must admit it was the best pizza I ever had.

If you want to have a fun time, the drive west on I-4 to Tampa is well worth it. You only have until August 25th to experience the beach for yourself.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Weekend Top 6 Picks for August 20th and 21st.

Saturday August 20, 2016 
8pm to 11pm $15.95 and Members can enjoy the event for FREE. Adults-Only Science Night Live! Orlando Science Center 777 E Princeton St, Orlando, Florida.Live from Orlando, it’s Science Night Live!
Featuring the digital art show SENSORIUM, presentations from Microsoft, Mindbender Mansion and more!
Orlando Science Center is reserved strictly for adults at Science Night Live on Saturday, August 20 from 8–11:30 p.m. with grown-up-inspired programming. It’s social, it’s science, it’s 21 and up! This event proves there is no age limit on curiosity. You’re never too old to learn something new! It’s social, it’s science, it’s 21 and up and tickets are going fast!
EXPERIENCES
• Hear an engaging presentation from Microsoft (details to follow)
• Enjoy the NEW hands-on exhibit Kinetic Zone
• Unlock the puzzles in Mindbender Mansion for the final time
• View stars and planets through the giant refractor telescope in the Crosby Observatory
• Get inspired by the latest art gallery on display in Fusion: A STEAM Gallery
• View Sensorium - Exhibition of Interactive Sound + Art Installations, on display for one night only
• Experience giant screen films in the Dr. Phillips CineDome
• Conduct lab experiments in Dr. Dare's Laboratory
• Delight in food and adult beverages available for purchase
• Engage in science trivia to win prices!
• Experience a once-in-a-lifetime performance by Orlando Shakes
Make it a date night at Orlando Science Center for Science Night Live!
Tickets are available online only and the past two events have sold out so get yours before they're gone!
Visit www.osc.org/snl to learn more!
**Must be 21 and older
**Dress code is casual attire.

10pu until morning. Free. Creative Sleep Over. Defined Enterprises 279 Douglas Ave, Altamonte Springs, Florida 32714 You ever wondered what would happen if a bunch of creatives got together and slept under one roof? No need to imagine anymore, every second Saturday Defined Enterprises opens it's doors for all the creatives to spend one night out of the month together. Feel free to bring your own set of tools that allow you to create. Bring your own pillows and blankets. Food and beverages will be served through out the night.
Creatives, artist, dancers, directors, photographers, musicians, engineers, gamers, techies, models and innovators, you guys are all welcomed.
BRING BOARD GAMES AND THINGS THAT WILL HELP US COLLECT MEMORIES!!!!

10pm to Midnight Free. Dizzy punk. Saint Mathews Tavern 1300 N Mills Avenue Orlando fl.

Sunday August 21, 2016 
10am to 4pm Free. Lake Eola Farmers Market. South East corner of Lake Eola Park.

2pm to 4pm Free Yoga. Lake Eola Park, 195 N Rosalind Ave, Orlando, FL1 near the red pagoda.

10pm to Midnight Free but get a coffee. Comedy Open Mic. Austin's Coffee, 929 W Fairbanks Ave, Winter Park, FL. Free comedy show! Come out and laugh, or give it a try yourself.