Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Executive Director

For a recent advertising illustration assignment I was asked to sketch an executive behind his desk. Rather than search for that executive online doing an image search, I decided to ask friends on Facebook if they knew of an executive who might not mind my stopping by to sketch him on location. Genevieve Bernard suggested Frank Holt, the executive director of the Mennello Museum of American Art. Frank was fine with me sitting in his office and sketching as he worked away on his computer.

His office is has colorful vibrant walls. The orange wall behind him ties in perfectly with an orange curtain featured in the painting that hangs on it. Gorgeous orchids were bursting into bloom. I like his desk which is simply a thick sheet of glass supported by saw horses. The room was simple and elegant much like the vibrant museum itself.

On display now at the Mennello is "Style & Grace" exhibition of American Impressionist paintings and sculptures collected by Michael and Marilyn Mennello. This really is an amazing collection of paintings by some of my favorite "Ash Can" artists, like Robert Henri and George Bellows. Sometimes I feel like that is the time when I should have been working as an artist. But hey, make the most of the time you have, right?

Friday March 30th there is a reception for IMPRINTS: 20 Years of Flying Horse Editions. A celebration of UCF's limited-edition fine art book printing press, with a printmaking studio set up in the museum for workshops. 6-8 p.m. Admission $5, free to members. Continues through August 12.

Saturday, March 31st share a cup of coffee with the Artist: Mary Whyte. We are thrilled to have the teacher, author and "investigative watercolorist" from South Carolina discuss her book, Working South: Paintings and Sketchings by Mary Whyte , a series of interviews and portraits of blue-collar workers whose ways of life are diminishing. She is in town for the UCF Book Festival. The event is 10:30a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Reservations requested. Admission $5, free to members.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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