Monday, March 10, 2008

Wine Festival...

Well, I am back from a successful weekend at the Southern Breeze Wine & Culinary Festival. We had a great time, sold some paintings, tried some new wines and met some great folks! You can't ask for better than that.

We arrived Saturday mid-morning to beautiful sunny skies and although windy, it was not nearly as cold as we had feared. On Friday in Jackson we were dodging snow advisories and sleet, so we did not know what we would face in Biloxi on Sat., but it was beautiful.

Set-up was a bit of a challenge for my talented helper, Dacia, and I. At these events, they have their own style of tent (pagoda-style) and so I was using their tent instead of mine. So without details, lets just say between that and the intense wind we were having to rethink everything we normally do.

The event we were displaying for was the Grand Tasting that takes place from 1-5 on Saturday. Let me tell you, it was wine-lovers heaven! There were hundreds of wines to try. I got so many great pictures that I am going to be painting wine bottles for years to come, whenever the mood strikes me.

The painting that I did for the festival was featured on the cover of the program. They also did T-shirts, but they did not have them there for sale unless you asked. The workers wore them to the brunch on Sunday though, and they looked great! They said that they hoped to have posters for the next event. It will be in Baton Rouge on the weekend of April 4-6. That is the weekend that we leave for Denver, so I won't be able to be at that one, but I have I bunches of friends there that I know would love this event!

This was the first time they held one of these at a site in MS, so the crowds were not as large as at some of the other venues. But I thought they had a great turn-out. I heard plans being made to have a bigger and better event next year, so I am glad that they did well enough to want to come back. South Mississippi needs all the fun it can get these days. And for those of you who do not keep up with these sorts of things, I want to tell you... Things are steadily improving on the coast. There are no words to describe how proud I am of all that has gone on here in Mississippi in the time since the moment the hurricane came onshore to this day.

I sold three paintings while I was there and made contacts that could result in the sale of a few more so I was a happy camper in that respect. Plus I had a weekend with my favorite girl, who is becoming quite the wine connoisseur at the ripe old age of 22 1/2.

Later this week I am off to Austin, Texas to take a workshop with two of my favorite artists...Carol Marine and Karen Jurick. I hope this week to get some of my more distasteful tasks out of the way...i.e. my taxes so when I come back next week I can hit the ground running with my painting! I have so much inside right now that needs to be on a canvas!

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