Sauntering through the last Affair of the Heart in July, a handsome man flipped me a card as I attempted to pass by. I instantly recognized the art via photographs of Oklahoma landmarks, collages and all manner of nifty Oklahoma inspired well framed memorabilia.
Liz Ingersoll captures the soul of "This Land is Your Land" after a chance encounter with the outdoors.
"In July 2007, I was 'freed' from my job of seven years while I was a few months pregnant with my daughter, Bella," Ingersoll said. "I hated the idea of just going out to get another job so I decided to take the opportunity to explore what it meant to never work another day in my life."
Ingersoll shot amateur footage for a while, but kept dreaming of purchasing her first digital, and expensive, professional model camera. She took the plunge one day by deciding to tap into her "freedom funds," a.k.a., her 401k. The results were not as positive as she had dreamed up.
"It didn't take long before I realized that all the expensive equipment in the world didn't make me a good professional portrait photographer. Who knew?"
The dream of photography was just about to be tossed aside, when Mother Nature decided to trap Tulsa in one of the worst ice storms on record.
"The December 2007 ice storm caught my attention and got me to thinking," Ingersoll said. "I grabbed my keys and camera and drove around aimlessly for what felt like five minutes. Eight hours later the sun began to set and I did my best to hold on to the moment because, aside from a few other events, I considered this cold, quiet day of exploring the beauty of Oklahoma to be one of the best days of my life. I knew in that moment what it meant to never 'work' again."
Amazing opportunities abounded when Ingersoll committed to photographing Oklahoma; however, there were some missed shots as well.
"The unfortunate side of this story is that I was a little late to the 2007 party. Beginning with our centennial celebration and the unveiling of the rusty Belvedere to the demolitions of the Camelot Hotel, Bell's and Metro Diner. I simply use these missed opportunities to fuel my passion and purpose as I keep driving around aimlessly with my camera in hand," Ingersoll said.
Ingersoll describes her process as carefully organized anarchy.
"If you don't believe me just reference one of my collages. The first one took me a little over a year to complete because I first had to make a list, map it out, take the shots, edit the images, take a Photoshop class, re-read the manual and only then was I able to begin piecing the puzzle together," Ingersoll said.
Mia Bella Art will be participating in the Blue Rose Riverfest August 25. For more information, including a gallery of Ingersoll's art, please visit MiaBellaArt.com.
Probably ... I'm Silly
SummerStage seems to engender new and exciting works by a wide range of creative individuals. Perhaps one might have been an audience member to Camp is NOT Sexy by Philip Geurin. He's back with his one person storytelling saga Funerals are NOT Sexy at the Tulsa Performing Arts Center August 24-25.
Geurin is an explosion of sight and sound -- and that's just in an interview! He can talk about everything from physics to science to theatrical improv theory, and the use of mask making as a type of hypnosis.
The show itself comes from the positive influence his grandfather, James Manuel Geurin, made on Philip's life. The stories of this saga are the tales Philip heard sitting on his grandfather's porch as a kid. The story, essentially, is about a person returning home from college to attend a funeral and the dark comedy and dramatic action that unfolds.
Funerals are not Sexy
He explains his acting style as more of a study in improvisational "neo-futurism" and storytelling. Geurin is quick to point out that his style of improv takes the audience on an arch of the actual story, as opposed to the Second City or Whose Line Is It Anyway style of comedic improv. His group "Improvination" meets at a secret location, but has been working together for a year. Geurin welcomes new members to his innovating approach to improv. Interested parties can email ImproviNationTulsa@gmail.com.
He also has many, many brain children in the works who may spring to life if Funerals are NOT Sexy is a success.
"I would like to take the idea of using masks in theater and give the mask a life -- following it through a life cycle, from birth, to being taught, to speaking, school, falling in love, producing offspring and then, finally, death," Geurin said.
He also said that at this stage, Geurin is wearing many hats to bring this production to life: actor, director, producer and marketing -- but he does it all with a smile. This would normally involve a huge amount of ego in other artists in similar situations. Geurin just shrugs and says with a smile, "I guess it's probably because I'm silly."
Funerals are NOT Sexy plays at the Norman Theatre of the Tulsa Performing Arts Center August 24-25 at 7pm. Tickets are available by calling 918-596-7109.
Etsy Bitsy Crafty
For those readers who troll the Etsy website for deals on everything from earrings to dog clothes, ever wonder what other sellers are like in real life? Are they as crafty as you? Are they nerdy or chic?
Aug 24 from 6:30-8:30pm, the Made: Indie Emporium, 501 S. Boston Ave., will host the second annual Tulsa Etsy Craft Party, where fellow Tulsans can create, revel and inspire one another.
Christine Sharp-Crowe, owner of the Made: Indie Emporium, explains it will be an even better crafting experience than the 2010 meetup of crafty individuals at Philbrook.
"We had a great turn out last time," Sharp-Crowe said. "This time there will be four projects. People can network, have fun, bring their business cards to swap, or if they have extra supplies, they can bring those as well for the swap table."
According to the Etsy website, the event theme is "Wish You Were Here," and it offers advice on everything from project ideas to how to stage a craft party of one's own and scoring free craft supplies from Michaels.
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