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Drawing attention to local talent

Annual art show features well-known as well as just discovered

Created date

July 14th, 2009

Charlotte Micklos thought you were either born an artist or you weren t that was, until she discovered a hidden talent she never knew she had. I went to a local art show years ago and saw some paintings by people I knew, says Micklos. I thought, if they can do it, why can t I? Micklos began taking art classes and painted off and on while raising her five children. I started out so that I could paint my children s portraits, says Micklos. Today I have nine grandchildren, and I ve painted all of them too. My kids all have houses full of my paintings.

Artistic expression

Now retired and living at Charlestown, Micklos entered two recent paintings, one of her son-in-law s boat on the South River and another of an iris, in Charlestown s 19th annual Visual Art Show & Sale. This is her ninth year participating in the event. Thirty-five of Micklos s neighbors participated in the show held in the community s conference center. Artists were awarded first, second, and third-place ribbons in seven categories including painting, photography, woodworking, and sculpture. Year after year, I m so impressed with the vibrancy and love of life that the artists exude in their art, says Charlestown Community Resources Coordinator Martin Buker, who organized this year s show. It s really amazing when you stop to think that many of these artists only recently started painting, drawing, or sculpting after they moved to Charlestown. Wilda Rummel is one of those artists. She started painting ten years ago, after she chose to live at Charlestown. Rummel is a shining example that it s never too late to try your hand at art. I had never painted before, says Rummel. I always wanted to but was intimidated because I had never had any training. Then a couple of people living here encouraged me to go to a class [at Charlestown]. I was surprised that it came naturally to me. Now Rummel finds herself behind the easel once a week in one of Charlestown s on-site classrooms. Recently, three of her paintings were displayed in the Charlestown Square Clubhouse. It s interesting to see what comes out of what you started, says Rummel. Once, I was so disappointed with a painting that I threw it in the trash. The next day, someone encouraged me to take it out and keep working on it. I ended up winning second prize for it in the art show.

Nature s palette

At the art show, members of the Garden Club also offered floral interpretations of selected paintings. Called Art Blooms at Charlestown, this portion of the 2009 show was organized by Garden Club members Ruth Vanderlinde and Doris Cooney, along with Garden Club chair Barbara Walker. The idea for Art Blooms at Charlestown initially came from a national program held in galleries like The Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, says Vanderlinde. Before the event, art show participants provided a selection of drawings or paintings to be interpreted in the form of a floral arrangement. We always use fresh flowers and sometimes dried, but never plastic or silk, says Vanderlinde. We buy the flowers from local stores and make the arrangements the day before the art show so that they re fresh.

All shapes and sizes

This event was a great opportunity to draw attention to the talented artists we have living here at Charlestown, says Buker. It just goes to show that you re never too old to learn new things, and Charlestown is the perfect environment to do just that. As for Micklos, who describes herself as not an artist but just a lady who paints once in a while, she continues to be impressed by the number of undiscovered talented people living at Charlestown. Whenever someone says they like or admire one of my paintings, I always tell them anyone can do it. They don t believe me, but it s true. Give it a try you might surprise yourself.