Young Artists are the Key To Summer Art Festivals

Young Artists are the Key To Summer Art Festivals

ButterflyWe need your help supporting a young artist selling her dynamic photos at at a summer art festival, the Port Clinton Art Festival.   It started as a means to teach Lulu about economics and the difficulty that artists face when trying to sell their work.  But now our little “Kayla Keats Photography” initiative has morphed into so much more.  What started out as taking some pictures at the Chicago Botanic Garden, developing them at Costco and then selling them at the Port Clinton Art Festival in Highland Park on August 23rd and 24th has become a family affair. Flower2 In May, Adam and Lulu decided that they wanted to spend an afternoon together.  (I was all for some Daddy-Daughter bonding time.) So, they grabbed their cameras and took off.  A few hours later, Lulu shot over 200 photos with her Nikon D70.  It took a few weeks but Lulu edited her remarkable photos and dwindled the collection to 12 AMAZING shots.   She decided that she wanted to sell her photos and, hopefully, make enough money to buy herself a new computer for school.  (She starts 6th grade on Thursday, August 21st – just a few days short of Lulu’s 11th birthday.) So, with our encouragement, our young artist paid the entrance fee and became an official exhibitor at the Port Clinton Art Festival. kayla-portclinton-9 As her biggest supporters (and pseudo-benefactors), Adam and I purchased matting and plastic bags.  We helped her price her work so she could recoup our expenses and still make a profit.  And lastly, Adam created a website where she can sell her photos (in addition to the Port Clinton Art Festival) to friends and family who aren’t able to make the event.  

So, now we are asking for your support and help.  Lulu is so excited to exhibit her work and hopes that her friends and local family will attend the fair and support her.  But she is also at an age where she is skeptical that people will actually purchase her art.  Sure, she figures, her parents and grandparents HAVE TO LIKE her photos—we’re related to her.  But Lulu has confessed to me that she isn’t sure that others will feel as excited by her art.  We disagree and hope that you will too. kayla-portclinton-11 Won’t you please log onto and purchase at least 1 or 2 of her pictures? As an added incentive, we have created a promotion that will take 20% off the total cost of your purchase.   Please use PORTCLINTON14 for a 20% coupon.   Please help us support a young artist and her passion for seeing the world through the lens of her camera.   Adam and I appreciate your help and hope that you love her pictures as much as we do!

Jingle Bell Shopping

Ring by Manya & Roumen, LLC

You could call me a “Magpie”; I’ll admit that I am drawn to shiny things.  I love to collect unusual art, paper, jewelry and even yarn.  One of my greatest joys (outside of family, friends, my country and the basics of life etc.) is finding unknown artists and crafters and getting a chance to speak with them about their creative style and passions.

The holiday season is the perfect excuse for me to seek opportunities to fulfill this small pleasure.  Here is a small list of the various fairs and markets that I have visited thus far:

        • A delightful holiday fair at The Grove in Glenview(early November) where I got to know an incredible woman who reuses/recycles old wooden furniture, repairs, paints and resells them.  Thanks to her work, Kayla has a new wooden bed for her American Girl Doll.
        • The annual American Visionary Art Museum’s annual BazaART fair while I was in Baltimore last weekend.
        • The Chicago Toy and Game Fair: I also met Barb Taylor, Chief Operating Officer of American Doll Houses, a mom-made company that uses recycled materials to create doll houses for 18 inch dolls (Like American Girl or Just Like Me dolls). Kayla has been begging me for a house for her American Girls ever since she laid eyes on the samples two weeks ago.

This weekend, Kayla and I are off to the 11th annual One of a Kind Show and Sale Chicago, to buy unique creations and also help Children’s Memorial Hospital; a portion of tickets sales will benefit Children’s Memorial Hospital.  If we make it before the crowds pile in (and I bribe Kayla with enough Hanukkah gelt), I am hoping to get a chance to meet many of the artists to learn the stories behind their work.  With over 600 craftsmen and women representing  a wide range of media and categories including ceramics, clothing, fashion accessories, fiber art, furniture, glass, gourmet, holiday, jewelry, metal, mixed media, painting, photography and wood, I am confident that Kayla and I will find quite a few things to inspire us to add just one more person to our ever growing holiday list.  Don’t worry, this time we have set a spending limit and have promised each other that we will not go above this amount.

If you are interested in meeting up with me or just looking for some place fun to shop that doesn’t include the words: mall, frenzied, toys, no parking, I totally encourage you to check out this alternative to mass marketing shopping.

Here’s the information:
  • DATES AND TIMES: Thursday, December 1; noon -9 p.m. Friday, December 2; 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday, December 3; 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Sunday, December 4; 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • SHOW LOCATION: The Merchandise Mart 8th Floor Chicago, IL 60654 (800) 677-MART (6278)
  • TICKETS: Tickets are $12 for adults. Tickets are available online at
  • A portion of tickets sales will benefit Children’s Memorial Hospital.

Look for me there!  I’ll be the harried mom with the kid on a massive sugar high!