Thursday, August 7, 2014

Bookmark It is Orlando's Best New Bookstore

Bookmark It (3201 Corrine Drive Orlando FL) was the editors pick in the Orlando Weekly "Best of Orlando" issue. Located on the second floor of the East End Market, this bookstore offers books by local authors as well as books that further the markets mission of offering locally grown produce for restaurants and shoppers. While I was just starting this sketch, Adonal Foyle, an Orlando Magic basketball player stopped in to sign some of his books. He wrote a children's book titled  Too-Tall Foyle Finds His Game (Volume 1) along with, Shiyana F. Valentine-Williams and illustrated by Toni Pawlowsky. Too-Tall Foyle has trouble finding a sport that fits his abilities and the other kids keep laughing at him. He faces give up sports entirely but hopes to find his game. The book is set in the Caribbean and features vibrant illustrations, the book is based on the life experiences of the NBA veteran player. Proceeds from sales go to support his Kerosene Lamp Foundation which uses basketball to engage and empower at-risk youth to grow into healthy and well-educated leaders in the Caribbean and USA. Foyle's very presence made the bookstore feel small.His huge meaty hands gave a firm warm handshake.

I decided to take my tablet out to sketch. I worked in a bit of a panic since I didn't know if the battery would last. The computer offers too many choices which slowed down my workflow. Kim Britt, Bookmark It's founder, was experiencing technical difficulties with her laptop and smart phone.  Her phone kept turning off and then gave her the "blue screen of death". She was petrified that she would loose all her photos and contacts. She looked up an Apple Store and discovered she would need to drive up to Altamonte within the hour to get the phone repaired. Although her assistant Moriah Lorraine Russo had the day off, Kim had to call her in because the store was staying open late for a "Sip and Stroll" event. The great thing about the sip and stroll is that I got to sip white wine while I sketched. Moriah told me about Wednesday night figure drawing classes at "The Space" and I plan to stop over there soon. She was going out to dinner, so she was only able to watch the store for half an hour. Patrick Greene came in to fill in after she left. Rather than making life easier, technology caused a frantic panic as it sputtered and faltered. As I sketched I got a warning that the battery was running low. In a panic, I saved my file and sketched faster. Before my sketch was done, my computer screen blacked out. The battery had died. As I researched this article, Facebook crashed. I suspect that relying on technology for answers is not a great idea.

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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