Second annual Art on the Towne encourages new artists and vendorsMay 30, 2022 05:30PM ● By Rachel Aubrey
By Rachel Aubrey | [email protected]
On May 7 the South Jordan Arts council sponsored its second annual Art on the Towne event in front of city hall and the surrounding businesses.
Despite the less-than-ideal weather, the event welcomed first time artists and vendors as well as several returning artists. The town center was lined with easy-up tents filled with creations from wood work to greeting cards, pottery to oil on canvas, all original works crafted with care.
South Jordan resident Melissa Singer of Singer Creations joined the event for the first time. A recent retiree of the United States Marine Corps, Singer has been applying techniques from Shelee Art of Australia, who offers an online art course for beginners and professionals alike. Singer said she has been creating original work using the Shelee method for the past three years. On display were decorative tiles, canvas prints and jewelry, all created by Singer using acrylic and resin, and each taking approximately one month to fully cure and set.
“It’s just fun to do,” Singer said. “A way to destress.”
Although she is not looking to turn her hobby into a business, not wanting to put too much pressure on her creativity, Singer was able to gather some valuable feedback as several passersby asked for a type of jewelry she didn’t have on display. She plans to offer more variety at her next art event.
Another soon to be retiree and first-time attendee to the art event was South Jordan resident Sheryl Tripp. She creates art using cement. A cancer research scientist by day, Tripp admitted that her professional background has helped her to be able to work with such a unique medium. Tripp displayed decorative concrete discs in the shape of turtles, her most popular sellers. She also creates lawn or garden discs for the ultimate Utah Ute or Brigham Young University Cougar fans. While her art is not your typical hang on the wall type, it is unique and original and provides her a creative outlet.
“I get my inspiration from my mom,” Tripp said. “She had stepping stones with glass embedded in them.”
Tripp also gets inspiration for her designs from her travels south of the border. Both Tripp and her husband have enjoyed numerous vacations to the Mexican coast. She takes those memories and turns them into brightly colored concrete artwork.
The vision for enhancing the public’s access to the arts and artists is something the South Jordan Arts Council has understood as being important for the individual and for families.
A member of the Arts Council for the past four years, Kelly Holtman, who is also a professional watercolor artist, is encouraged by all the local art events that allow new artists to flourish and grow.
“I would love to see South Jordan be known as an arts mecca,” Holtman said.
She added that for new artists, the Art on the Towne event is a great way to allow the public to become familiar with their work, to receive feedback and learn from other artists. As a professional artist for the past 26 years, Holtman said that there is a lot that goes into preparing for art events, but that it is good for the community to get to experience the arts in multiple ways.
“When art is lacking in a community there is a lack of connectedness,” Holtman said.
For a lot of artists, the creative process is one of solitude, preferring a quiet space to focus on creativity and concentrate on the little details. For others, it is a family affair, done wherever there is room in the house to create. Nathan Andersen and his daughter, 7-year-old Priscilla, have created a unique twist on some recognized classics. They refer to their work as Copy Cats, famous classic paintings recreated with cats instead of humans.
Andersen admitted he enjoyed the smiles he saw on people’s faces as they walked by and noticed the paintings, realizing the clever twist on a classic. Although this was their first time attending the Art on the Towne event, they have participated in several small children’s markets, providing Priscilla the opportunity to experience the interactive elements of creating art, talking about it with the community and selling it to interested parties.
“Many artists, including myself, feel at peace when painting,” Andersen said. “I believe it can help with depression and give a sense of accomplishment.”
The South Jordan Arts Council looks forward to future events such as the Chalk Art Festival on Friday, June 3 and Saturday, June 4 during the Summerfest, and the production of "The Music Man" in early July. For more information about how to be a member of the Arts Council or for other art programs visit www.sjc.utah.gov/403/Arts.