8th Annual AFABW Arts Festival – Saturday

October 11, 2008 – Hollywood: Today, the Artists for a Better World (AFABW) 8th Annual Arts Festival featured art exhibitions, seminars, workshops, poetry reading, a music showcase, live model drawing, art for kids, face painting, and the AFABW Awards Event & Concert – all on the grounds of Celebrity Centre International. In addition to the celebration of art and aesthetics, the festival was held in support of the Association for Better Living and Education (ABLE), “a group working to create a better future for our children and communities.”

Children enjoyed face painting at the Kids Creative Corner run by Ron Fugitt. Sophia Dobin, a 7-year-old, took the job of face painting into her own hands. With a mirror, she made herself up to look like a dog. She said, “I like making my own creation. A dog is my favorite animal. I like to paint because it is really nice.” Next to her sat Devin Royce with his 23 month old daughter, Hayden. He painted his daughter’s face under her direction. Fugitt, who also had other crafts for kids to do, said, “I’ve been running the Kids Creative Corner for several years now. I get joy in seeing how creative children are. I get a lot of pleasure seeing them get pleasure creating things, and seeing their competence increase. It makes my day. I get inspired to do my own art.”

David Holt, a Volunteer Minister of the Church of Scientology, manned a yellow tent during the festival. He has experience helping musicians who want to become well-known and succeed in the area of being professional. Holt said, “I recommended that they read two booklets. The first, called ‘Handling Suppression,’ because any artist is vulnerable to people who pretend to be for them, and then tear them down. The second booklet, ‘Conditions in Life’ is how to get into power. I showed them a graph depicting a higher range which is stable.”

The Way to Happiness Outdoors Club, a group which holds outdoor events while raising funds to print a booket about making good choices, had their newly renovated boat at the Arts Festival. The boat, a 26-foot wooden cabin cruiser with a four-cylinder inboard even had a burner, a sink and a triangular berth in the bow. The Outdoor Club’s Executive Director, Bob Sullivan, also known as the “Fishin’ Musician” said, “If you lead life according to the tenets of The Way to Happiness booklet—if you’re happier—then your tendency to observe, understand and create goes out the roof.”

Today’s festival was filled with seminars and events, some of which are highlighted below.

Life Drawing: Life Draws from Life

“Ever since I was able to get out of the crib, I was drawing,” said professional illustrator and painter Ian Espinoza, who ran the Life Drawing sessions. By having models, such as Moriah Harrisen, strike poses, for varying lengths of time, Espinoza sought to relax an artist’s impediments to getting artistic concepts onto paper, comparable to a musician practicing scales to improve his ability to perform quickly. He said, “It’s all about the line of communication from the model to the artist to the paper, via his drawing materials. All are impediments to getting concepts into the physical universe.” Espinoza was assisted by professional artist Julie Snyder, who helped by teaching attendees some of the finer points of fine art. Attendee Nico Photos, illustrator, said, “Art is an important tool for communication because you can get across an idea on an aesthetic band. You can communicate important things a person wouldn’t otherwise be able to have.” Another attendee, Rebecca Davies, said, “Any kind of drawing suspends time; it becomes timeless.”

A Seminar on Visual Art Style Delivered with Style

Professional advertising and fine art photographer, David McCullough, presented a workable approach to creating and developing one’s own style as a visual artist. To illustrate his points David showed the works of 10 photographers to demonstrate how their visual style is a natural outgrowth of their effort to communicate a message through their images. He aptly demonstrated an approach that anyone can use to develop a visual style as a photographer or visual artist that is as individual to them as their own personality. David concluded his Visual Arts Seminar with a selection of his own works, illustrating a wide variety of techniques. Everything from techniques for landscape, portraits, food and architecture to such things as body paint and using clay to cover a woman from head to toe for a portrait of her as a statue.

Producing Your Own Music — at Home or Anywhere

In Celebrity Centre’s theatre (patterned after the theatre of Marie Antoinette), award-winning songwriter/composer/producer/engineer Randall Michael Tobin shared valuable knowledge with the audience on how to produce their own music. Covering all phases of the process, from honing in on who you are as an artist, to emphasizing the message in the songs, to preparing a recording space, the types of gear to purchase, and engineering the music, the seminar provided real-world experience based on Randall’s 30+ years in the industry. With the help of a mobile music production computer system and data projector to show some of the high-tech music software available, Mr. Tobin encouraged guests to follow the path he did which resulted in his gradual acquisition of enough equipment to produce not only his own songs and compositions, but to also produce professional recordings for others. Randall revealed such insights as, “Analyze how your room is going to sound by clapping your hands to hear how the sound reflects off the walls. Hear what comes back. A square room with parallel walls and with ceiling parallel to the floor, is highly reflective. Putting carpet on the floor and hanging a quilt or two on the walls will go a long way to a cleaner recording of your music” Attendee Dee Barber said of Tobin’s seminar, “Very valuable info. Packed. Nothing I could not use.”

Write It, Sing It, Show It Off at a Showcase

Platinum songwriter/recording artist Harriet Schock put on a showcase of 28 singer/songwriters that she had heard and loves because, in her words, “Songs help create a better world one person at a time.”

Songwriter Michelle Malone liked that it gave everyone a chance to perform. She said, “Everyone was raving about the singers.”

Lorna Aunario was thrilled to see her son perform.

Singer/songwriter Barry Keenan said, “The words and music were entertaining, thoughtful, insightful — good variety.”

Who were these 28 fabulous songwriters at the showcase?

Andrea Ross-Greene
Ryder Bach Jason Joseph
Michelle Krell Malone Sabrina & Craig Karen Black
Chris Towzey Valerie Ahern Joy Graysen
Alina Steven Neal Wagner The Stepdaughters
Margaret MacDonald Harriet Schock Barry Keenan
John Duyn Carol Ann Timmel Jeff Charreaux
Rick Penn Amy Hofto Jim Bouchard
Keith Jarvis Michele Vreeland Lorie Doswell
Roth Herrlinger Karen Hart Dale LaDuke

Poets Painted Pictures with Words

Tracy Repchuk, best-selling author and Founder of Canadian Federation of Poets, put on an extravaganza of featured poets, who read inspirational poetry to help create a better world. Tracy is also the editor of the Artists For A Better World International Poetry Compilation books.

One of the readers, Russell Salamon, said, “I always think efforts at communicating aesthetically are worthwhile. It is the quality within each person. The quality is varied, but the person is always present, and unique.”

The following poets were the featured presenters at the Live Poetry Reading:

Teresa Antonia Tamsin Rothchild
Don Kingfisher Campbell Russell Salamon
Yvonne Harrington Deb Shapiro
Danny Kaplansky Leslie Ann Silton
Tracy Repchuk Regina Tercero

Ten Easy Steps to Writing a Song

Award-winning singer/songwriter and instructor, Dee Dee O’Malley, presented her seminar about ten easy steps to writing a song honed by hard-won experience. During the seminar, she gave the tip, “If you want to get your CD packages opened by a Creative Executive, put them in a crazy box. For example, if you are writing a song about Christmas, put chocolates, ornaments and a Santa hat in the box for the executive. They can eat the chocolates while playing your song.”

Today’s activities culminated in the spectacular AFABW Awards Event & Concert, which featured lots of music, high-energy dance performances, and awards for artists creating a better world through aesthetics.