Artist Spotlight: Dorothy Lenard- Jewelry Maker

What do you do at Artisan Alley?

I make and sell jewelry for adults. This enables me to make other, more kid-oriented jewelry, which I donate to orphanages in the Ukraine.

How long have you been doing it?

I began making beaded jewelry in 2009 as a creative outlet. Shortly thereafter, I was inspired to create some jewelry for a friend to take with her on a trip to visit orphanages in the Ukraine. After honing my skills making jewelry for myself, friends and family, and the kids, I began selling my jewelry in 2016.

Why do you do it?

I enjoy the creative process, from finding beads I love, to designing a piece, to seeing the finished product spring to life. I also get great satisfaction in knowing I am providing a little something extra for kids who don’t have much beauty in their lives.

How were you drawn to your art form(s)?

I was inspired to start making jewelry after a visit to a friend who is also a beader. After that, I was awestruck at the wide variety of beads available. I took one class, and I was hooked!

Why did you get involved with Artisan Alley?

Because I tend to use natural materials that don’t show their true beauty in photographs, I was looking for a sales outlet in which customers could get their hands on my jewelry. I am so happy that I found Artisan Alley. I love interacting with customers and other artisans, and appreciate being part of the effort to grow the Bloomington art community.

How can someone else get involved with what you do?

Come in to MADE and look at my jewelry. If you find something you like, you will have the extra satisfaction of knowing you helped me make something for the kids!

Contact information

shedwells@yahoo.com
(812)325-2058
https://www.facebook.com/For-the-Kids-Creations-662363477279578/

 

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Upland Brewery and Dimensions Gallery partner up!

Recently Gabe Coleman, co-owner of the Venue, helped put our gallery in touch with Upland as they were in need of new art at their 11th street restaurant location. Upland has a rich history of supporting Artisan Alley and other local businesses, so we were delighted to partner with such an influential Bloomington organization.

Dimensions Gallery has been offered the opportunity to rotate this new auxiliary gallery every quarter so that the atmosphere is always changing. We are offering this display opportunity to our members exclusively and are currently taking applications for this and future shows. Please check out our Gallery Rental page to complete your gallery proposal if you have an interest.

If interested in becoming a member, in order to display your work in our MADE retail store, or our varying Dimensions Gallery locations, please fill out the Member Application below or reach out for more information on our contact page.

In order for your works to be considered for a gallery show, you will need to pay the processing fee of $15, located at the top of the website.

Artist Spotlight: Justin Cox – Tattoo Artist

Cox Art Studios - Custom Tattoo Artist in Bloomington, Indiana.

Who are you and what do you do @ Artisan Alley?

My name is Justin Cox and I’m a Tattoo Artist & Board President of Artisan Alley.

How Did You Get Started with being a Tattoo Artist?

I participated in a work study program through my high school in 2002 at Cain’s Grafik Dragon, a local tattoo shop in Ellettsville, Indiana. I received some valuable experience by doing the extra work that other artists did not want to perform. I stepped up to show my dedication and helped pick up cigarette butts using hemastats, mopped floors, polished chrome on my boss’s Harley, learned sterilization techniques, and a bunch of grunt work. Apprenticeships through tattooing is necessary to training and to learn patience and dedication. It’s a difficult apprenticeship and they really test you. I did all of the gross work including cleaning up puke and scrubbing toilets. After high school, I worked for various tattoo shops and then landed at Artisan Alley in early 2017.

Why Do You Love Being A Tattoo Artist?

I love the lasting and permanence of artwork on the human body. The artwork is seen and it’s not just hung up in a gallery. It may be seen my hundreds or thousands of people who may not even be seeking out artwork. For many forms of traditional artwork, you have to visit a museum, an actual gallery, etc… and not a lot of people take that opportunity. With tattoo art, you can go to a gas station, the mall, etc.. and see meaningful artwork just walking around. Tattooing has a huge history longer than most people realize and it’s one of the oldest forms of artwork. I love to be a part of this ancient tradition.

How were you drawn to your art form(s)?

It seems that art is dying in today’s world. I stencil, paint, sketch, make signs, pastels, etc… It’s not just tattooing and this other work transfers over to my tattooing. I always try to approach things in a creative way. One thing that separates artists from others is that we are problem solvers. Whether it’s building a shelf or drawing a picture we are going to find a way to make it work.

What other artists inspire you or have motivated you to be a creator?

Seeing my parent’s friends that were covered in tattoos and my grandfather’s old naval tattoos piqued my interest. Seeing my high school friends pay to get tattoos definitely influenced my decision to try this out. My entire family is a creative group of artists that provided me the support and told me that I could be whatever I wanted to be… and they were right!

Why did you get involved with Artisan Alley?

Affordable rent for a studio work space was a good first step. I knew when I met Adam and some of the other artists that I was going to join Artisan Alley. I viewed this as a great space for artists to plan the future of art and to reach out to the community to help save local art. My goal is continued growth for Artisan Alley and Cox Art Studios. I am looking to draw in more of a variety of artists. Sometimes people don’t view their work as “art” but I want to help Artisan Alley provide the space and opportunity for others to promote their craft.

How can others get involved and help further the cause?

Come and get tattooed, volunteer for Artisan Alley, or just come and visit and take a look at the place.

Contact Information

Cox Art Studios
Justin Cox
phone: 812-318-8643
fb: coxartbtown
instagram: justincoxtatt

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Artist Spotlight: Travis Puntarelli – Singing Telegrams

Travis Puntarelli - Singing Telegrams

Who are you and what do you do @ Artisan Alley?

Travis Puntarelli - Singing Telegrams
Travis Puntarelli – Singing Telegrams

My name is Travis Puntarelli and I do a variety of activities related to music including musical lessons, audio recording, and a singing telegram service. I like teaching young folks, old folks, and middle aged folks. I teach fiddle, guitar, composition, and song writing. I have a mobile studio setup that allows me to travel and do in house recordings.

I have been doing theatre and music in Bloomington for 15 years & also directed a puppet troupe.

Why singing telegrams?

My father had a singing telegram company called Mad Messenger in the 80’s & I’m excited to revive the tradition. I ♥ polling people from different vocations to collaborate on community art projects. Singing telegrams is a great platform for doing this.

Examples

  • An accordion player with a bottle of wine in an alley way @ 2am.
  • A string quartet under a bridge in the country.
  • A monkey who sings Italian arias.

Why did you get involved?

We saw the space and it looked interesting. We needed a space for some arts & crafts, recording, & Dungeons & Gragons (talk to me about this).

How can I get involved?

I am currently seeking people (especially string players) who want to learn, collaborate musically, & foster a creative culture in the Bloomington area. Email Travis at upfolktheband@gmail.com or visit his MADE studio at 222 W 2nd Street.