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Creative Guild is all about the love of art

'Love is in the air’ is theme of annual fundraiser benefit for the Santa Clarita Creative Guild

Posted: April 5, 2009 12:23 a.m.
Updated: April 5, 2009 4:30 a.m.
From oil paintings to watercolors, landscapes to portraits, a love for art was in the air at the Hyatt Valencia on Sunday as the Santa Clarita Creative Guild presented its annual benefit with the theme “Love is in the Air” held in the Grand Ballroom.

The guild joined in collaboration with the Santa Clarita Valley Artists’ Association to support the annual music and art event, which will benefit art enrichment programs for the Santa Clarita Valley youth and senior centers.

“We hope to promote the beauty of the art around us,” said Zony Gordon, Santa Clarita Creative Guild president. “Through the support shown here today, the secret of artists present in our community is one step closer to being unveiled.”

The event showcased work from local artists — most of whom are members of the Santa Clarita Artists’ Association and whose colorful works of art were displayed throughout the spacious ballroom.

“It’s great to be here and I’m getting inspired by everything I see,” said sculptor, Nabil Badr, who was one of four artists featured in a live artist exhibition during the event. “It’s like having a date with art.”

Open to the public, tickets were sold at the prepaid price of $25 or at the door for $40 and offered a no-host bar along with live music while guests perused the works of art on exhibit.

The smooth sounds from the jazz stylings of Gary, Barry and Mary added an element of classic charm to the event.

Singers Dezzi Rae Marshall and Sheila Colby serenaded the room with upbeat, well-known tunes, while later, the popular local music group, “Back on Track” performed their anticipated “Love” concert to artists and art lovers alike.

“What could be better then music and art put together?” asked Badr with a smile.

Badr, along with artists Lorelle Miller, Laura Wambsgans and Romeo Downer were invited by the guild to exhibit their talent in action, creating their works of art in the presence of event patrons.

Painter Laura Wambsgans stood at her easel, which she calls her “little buddy” and explained the locations that inspired some of her landscape oil paintings.

“From Placerita to Sand Canyon, it’s all so gorgeous,” said Wambsgans. “The lighting in this town has a magic all its own. I could be happy painting the scenery in Santa Clarita for the rest of my life.”

“It’s so important to bring art into the community,” said Scott Bruckner, a devoted patron of the arts and a participant in the event’s art exhibit.

His sculpture called, “Crescent Moon” was made from local wood that was warped and otherwise unwanted, until saved by Bruckner.

“It’s about making something out of nothing,” said Bruckner. “That is the best part of discovering new creations and about yourself as an artist.”

It is the goal of the Santa Clarita Creative Guild as well as the Santa Clarita Artists’ Association, to promote local artists and encourage more interest in art in the community. With a larger turn-out this year then the previous event in 2008, Gordon said she hopes for an increase in future awareness of the arts in the SCV.

“We are seeing so much support from the community and also our artists who are participating,” said Gordon. “It’s such a great feeling to see everyone unified on bringing art to the forefront of our lives.”

Artists of all ages were involved in showcasing their work, with a special area in the room designated as the Youth Art Exhibit.
Talented youth participants from Mission: Renaissance on Town Center Drive in Valencia presented several works of art.

“I love seeing all of the artists works because they are so different to my own and that inspires me,” said Laurie Morgan, Artists’ Association President and fellow artist displaying her work at the event. “Young or old, there is an artist in everyone. That’s what makes this event great.”

Guests who came to witness and enjoy the event played their own part in making the afternoon a success for local arts by supporting the live auction held for the work of award-winning artist, Romeo Downer. An audience of art admirers bid on Downer’s painting of a Caribbean landscape, which he painted in two hours while on a visit to the Caribbean.

In addition to a silent auction, which included items of an artistic and non-artistic nature, patrons also voted for the annual People’s Choice Awards, given to the guests’ top choices among all of the art on display.

“I am delighted that I could contribute to the awareness and appreciation of art in this beautiful community,” said People’s Choice 2009 first place winner, Evelyne D. Resella. “I hope to continue passing on positive feelings to others through what I paint. Art makes me alive and if I am not painting, I am not really living.”

Resella won for her oil on canvas painting called, “Sunset and Sweethearts,” which boasted vivid colors with a romantic edge.
Words of encouragement to seasoned and budding artists alike came from Jackie Cleveland who captured second place.

“Paint what you love,” said Cleveland. “The rest will just happen.”

“Art is important for everyone at any age,” said participating artist, Jessie Madden. “The world needs art. It speaks to people in a way that words just don’t, and everyone should have the chance to communicate that way.”

Along with the Santa Clarita Artists’ Association, the Sunday event was presented in cooperation with Hyatt Valencia, KHTS AM 1220, Mission: Renaissance, The Signal, Union Bank of California and Evie Cook Graphic Designs.

The event’s co-sponsors included Intero Real Estate Services, Norona Insurance Agency, Fiesta Grill, Abbey Lane Café, Santa Clarita Family Dentistry, AIM Mail Centers, Sisel Health Products, Santa Clarita Capital Funding Incorporated, Stevenson Donuts and Bakery, Creative Source, A Sign of Quality, Rafael Molina of Realty Executives, Fast Frame and Lee’s Wine Bistro.

For information about the Santa Clarita Creative Guild, call (661) 312-3422. For more information about The Santa Clarita Artists’ Association visit


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