Wednesday, September 23, 2015

The Driftless Area Art Festival│2015


Last August, a few other Elkader artists and I joined together in the hopes of organizing Elkader's first ever fine art festival. With Kate showing at the prestigious Driftless Area Art Festival last year, Kris and I decided to drive out and take notes! Boy, were we impressed with the level of organization, quality of work, booth displays, and overall atmosphere of this awesome fine art festival! It was obvious that our group would look to Driftless as the benchmark to creating our very own fine art festival in Elkader. I even came home and immediately blogged the fun experience: The Driftless Area Art festival 2014. I also knew right away that I would apply for Driftless 2015! 

After applying, I received my acceptance letter and news that one of my images would be on the official festival postcard! Not only would my painting make the postcard, but they decided to use it on their "friend buttons" which were given to each festival supporter! How cool is that?! 

While I didn't have time to take very many photos of this year's Driftless experience, I did manage to snap some of the highlights with my cell phone! 

Highlights:
  • Selling Art! It's always exciting to see people walk out into the world with one (or two) of my paintings. "Meditate" and "Summer Stroll" have left the building! I'll miss these wooded pathways but hope Olivier and his lovely wife enjoy them for years to come! Thanks, guys! And, thanks to all of those I didn't get to snap a photo of who walked out with JWebb Art! Feel free to send me photos of your paintings in their new forever homes! :) 
  • Meeting A North Carolina Native! Would you believe that a fellow North Carolinian found me in the tiny town of Soldiers Grove in the middle of apple country Wisconsin?! And... we were even wearing the same shoes! Nice to meet you, Rachel!
  • Hanging out with my Homie! After an amazing Saturday of art, Kate and I enjoyed the most delicious dinner provided by the Driftless Team and got to relax before we crashed! Exhaustion doesn't begin to describe it. 
  • Meeting Other Artists! I couldn't have asked for cooler neighbors for the weekend! :) 
  • Familiar Faces! Seeing folks who met me at Art Fair on the Green in La Crosse, people who recognized me from Elkader, and friends who surprised me with their presence, was awesome!
  • Favorite Artist Awards! Receiving three very special Favorite Artist Awards was the icing on the cake! Thank you to my new friend Julissa (what a gorgeous name and sweet girl!), and to Jillian and Declan for picking me as their favorite artist! I loved seeing which paintings sparked interest from these awesome kiddos! 





That about sums up my awesome weekend at the Driftless Area Art Festival!
Thank you to all of the wonderful volunteers, event organizers, patrons, and fellow artists for making it a truly wonderful experience! I look forward to next time! 


Cheers!
Jillian 

P.S. A huge thanks to Jerry and Liz Quebe for not only organizing a truly terrific event for eleven years running, but for offering their guidance, leadership, and encouragement as mentors to us on the Cultural and Entertainment District of Main Street Elkader as we planned our first annual Art in the Park! Art in the Park's first year was tremendous, thanks to role model festivals like the fabulous Driftless Area Art Festival!





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