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We Make Penland on October 3

Giving Day photo banner in wood studio

Next Wednesday, October 3 is Penland’s 2nd annual Giving Day, a 24-hour push to generate support for Penland programs and share the impact of this place we love. The theme for the campaign is #WeMakePenland because this is a day to celebrate the creative power of making, the ideas and energy and inspiration that are born here, and—most of all—the strong and vibrant community that holds it all together.

Each one of you is a critical part of this community, and that’s why we’re asking YOU for your help. Please join us on October 3 to make our #WeMakePenland campaign a success! Here’s what you can do:

  • Share your story—Find a favorite Penland photo, write a short caption about what Penland means to you, and share it on social media with the hashtag #WeMakePenland. Every story adds power and momentum to the campaign!
  • Make a gift—Our goal is to reach 300 donations on October 3, and every gift counts! Whether you can give $1 or $10 or $50, your gift helps support the creative discovery and connection that Penland fosters. You’ll be able to contribute at penland.org/wemakepenland when the campaign goes live on October 3.
  • Get your friends involved—Help us spread the word far and wide! Text your family, send an email, or post on Facebook to encourage others to join our push on October 3.

We couldn’t have Penland without people like you, and we sure wouldn’t want to! Thank you for helping us make this day a win and for making the Penland experience richer for everyone.

If you’d rather not wait until October 3, you can make a gift now and have it count toward our Giving Day goal.

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Your Penland

Two photographs taken by Sarah Banko during her Penland workshop this summer

Well over 1,000 students and instructors passed through Penland’s studios this summer, and each one brought different talents, interests, ideas, and perspectives. That’s why we love seeing the variety of work our students make, browsing their photos, and hearing their stories—each one adds a new richness to the Penland experience.

Below, we share a few recent blog posts written by Penland students that illuminate a bit of that experience.

Sarah Banko

Studio assistant for Sally Van Gorder’s Narrative Photography workshop
“Two whole weeks of learning, teaching, relaxing in the mountains, taking photos, eating incredible food, meeting new people and so much more. It was an absolute blast and I cannot wait to return sometime in the near future, perhaps as a student next time to learn something completely new to me.”
See Sarah’s blog (and her gorgeous photographs!)

Brigitte Boucher

Student in Keith Wallace Smith’s workshop Figuring Out the Figure
“It’s hard to sum up my time there in a neat, simple way. Immersive, intense, transformative. Challenging yet fun. Inspiring and eye-opening. I learned a ton, pushed myself out of my comfort zone, met all kinds of wonderful people, lost track of time, and also got a clearer idea of what I might want to do next with my art.”
Read Brigitte’s thoughtful post and key takeaways

Elizabeth Busey

Student in Andy Rubin’s Monoprinting workshop
Our studio of twelve had artists from seniors in undergrad programs to people who were embracing art in their retirement. I spent almost all of my time in the studio, so I was able to experience the differing energies of the morning printers, and those who found their groove towards midnight. Everyone brought such generous energy and good will to the studio each day.
Read more about Elizabeth’s first time monoprinting

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Letterpress Possibilities

Slow down. Be still. Pay attention. Take note.
—Beth Schaible

Details of Beth’s studio desk filled with calligraphy, letterpress, book samples, and more.

There’s an attentiveness and quiet that flows through Beth Schaible’s considerable body of work—tonal letterpress prints, meandering and elegant calligraphy, hand-bound leather journals with stitching along the spines. Her hands seem capable of communicating calm presence into her materials.

Beth is a printer and an artist, an adventurer and an observer. She collects the beauty around her in photographs and on paper with paint and ink. Her travels and her art inform each other, with the same winding trails showing up on the mountains she climbs and the lines she draws with her pen. Both are acts of appreciation.

Beth Schaible (third from left) teaching a bookbinding workshop at Penland in 2017.

Beth has a deep connection to Penland and the surrounding mountains—she spent two years here as a core fellow, lived in Asheville for years while doing design and letterpress at 7 Ton Co., and returned to Penland a couple times to teach summer workshops in bookbinding and printing. This fall, we are thrilled to have her back for eight weeks to instruct a Penland concentration.

Beth will teach Letterpress Possibilities this September 23 – November 16. Students will learn to use a wide range of printing techniques, from hand-set type to polymer plates made from drawings, to get their ideas down in ink and paper.

Whether you’re a seasoned printer or you’ve never turned the crank on a Vandercook press, eight weeks in the studio with Beth will get your ideas flowing and your skills sharp. There are a few spaces left in the workshop—register now to discover the letterpress possibilities for your work!

We also have a few work-study scholarships available. Applications are being accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.

Three of Beth’s letterpress printed notecard designs

Letterpress Possibilities

Students in this workshop will learn to translate type and their own hand-drawn imagery into print using hand-set type, carved blocks, polymer plates, and other processes in both monoprints and editions. We’ll discuss the best techniques for each individual’s work. We’ll cover printing-press basics and upkeep and troubleshooting during printing, and we’ll engage in weekly conversations about content, production, and craftsmanship. While the workshop will be mostly print based, we’ll also cover basic book structures. All levels. Code F00L

Beth Schaible—Studio artist and owner of Quill and Arrow (CA); teaching: Pyramid Atlantic Art Center (MD), Asheville Bookworks (NC), North Bay Letterpress Arts (CA), Penland; former Penland core fellow.

quillandarrow.com

Penland Fall Concentrations
September 23 – November 16, 2018
Clay  |  Glass  |  Iron  |  Letterpress  |  Painting  |  Textiles  |  Wood

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Photo of the Week: Canoe Launch

Thirteen canoes in 2.5 weeks—the class poses on the water in their handmade boats. Photo by Nadia Massoud.

This past session, Gerald Weckesser came to Penland to teach a skin-on-frame canoe building workshop. Over the course of 2.5 weeks, the boats took shape in the wood studio, first as steam-bent ribs, then as fully lashed frames, and finally as Dacron-skinned vessels ready to hit the water. On the final morning of the session, the class strapped their new creations onto their vehicles and headed to the lake for a maiden voyage. The water was calm, dappled sunlight lit up the boats like lanterns, and nobody capsized—a fitting end-of-session celebration, indeed.

Happy paddling, canoe builders!

Penland’s Gary Jobe loads three canoes onto his truck outside the studio.
Each canoe is sized for a single person and is light enough to be maneuvered with ease.
Students made quick double-sided paddles from plywood to use on the lake.
Gerald poses with one of the canoes by the shore of the lake.
Gerald Weckesser, canoe building instructor and A+ canoe model. Photo by Nadia Massoud.

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July 4th Celebrations

Every summer, Penland celebrates the 4th of July much like the rest of the country—with picnics, with a parade, with fireworks. But when you get a whole community of creative people together, there are bound to be some extra quirks and flourishes that make the event memorable and uniquely “Penland.” This year was no different, thanks to the enthusiasm and flair of our students, instructors, staff, residents, and community. Here’s a look at some highlights from the most spirited day of the summer:

Picnic-ing in front of the Dye Shed

7:00 PM – Friends and families gathered on blankets and lawn chairs all along the road to chat, enjoy a picnic dinner or a drink, and wait for the festivities.

the head of the parade marches up Conley Ridge Rd

7:34 PM – Here comes the parade! A banner printed with the Declaration of Independence headed up this year’s procession, along with a Statue of Liberty costume, a pretty rad bowtie, and quotations from Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Paine, Theodore Roosevelt, and Patrick Henry.

plywood sculptures on parade

7:36 PM – Matthew Hebert’s wood students came marching by with the kinetic plywood sculptures they designed and made this session. There were snipping scissors, a frog with a moving tongue, a stove with flames that swirled as it rolled, an Uncle Sam statue with gesticulating arms, and more.

parade float with rainbows and a giant rat

7:40 PM – This epic float with rainbows and a giant hamster came rolling down the road. Parade entries are a reflection of the passions and priorities of Penland’s community, and pride and “Keep families together” were both recurring themes this year.

La Llorona float approaches with the mountain in the background

7:47 PM – The impressive La Llorona float, a joint effort between Martin Mazorra’s letterpress workshop and Jay Ryan’s screenprinting students, made its way past the knoll. This crew was also responsible for many of the gorgeous posters that were part of this year’s parade.

The fireworks crew brings up with rear in a pickup truck full of bottle rockets

7:54 PM – Penland’s facilities and grounds crew (aka fireworks show magicians) brought up the rear of the parade, along with 20,000 bottle rockets decked out in their rainbow finery.

core fellows serve up ice cream from big cardboard tubs

8:08 PM – Two big carts of vanilla and chocolate ice cream rolled out onto the Pines Portico, and a team of heroic core fellows started speed scooping.

Violet gets a bit messy eating chocolate ice cream

8:10 PM – The youngest members of the Penland community showed us all how to truly enjoy a cone.

the parade award for "Most Sparkliest Artist"

8:15 PM – Awards were given out to parade participants in a variety of silly and less-silly categories including “Over the Rainbow,” “Most Industrious,” “Dirtiest Clothes,” “Most Patriotic,” and “Most Sparkliest Artist.” Each award was handmade by students and instructors in Penland’s workshops.

sunset over the knoll while waiting for fireworks

8:37 PM – More picnicking and relaxing went down on the lawn while the sun set over the mountains. A bonfire burned out on the knoll, ready to ignite the bottle rockets that accompany the end of the fireworks show.

fireworks exploding over the knoll

9:28 PM – The first colorful explosions lit up the sky. Oohs and aahs quickly followed.

two views of Penland's fireworks finale

9:42 PM – The entire Penland campus burst into screams and applause as the fireworks reached their finale and 20,000 bottle rockets shot towards the sky. Dave and his crew really know how to put on a show, and dozens of folks commented that this year’s was the best one yet.

A huge thank you to everyone who came out to celebrate creativity and community with us! Let’s do it again next year.

See even more photos over on our Facebook album of the 2018 parade.

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Photo of the Week: They Made These Jeans!

Ana Toth's textiles students pose in their new, handmade jeans

Round of applause for Anna Toth’s textiles students—they’re posing in the custom jeans they made this session! Each pair is the result of extensive measuring, calculating, fitting, adjusting, and readjusting to get the shape just right for each student’s own body and style. These folks had the best looking denim at show and tell, hands down.

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Photo of the Week: Experimental Drawing

working on a collaged sketchbook

Up in the drawing and painting studio, Evie Woltil Richner and her students are experimenting with mark making, process, and play. They workshop is called Experimental Drawing & Sketchbook Development, but a quick look around the room reveals that the first week has gone far beyond drawing to include collage, photography, brushwork, and more. Above, student Amy Robinson adds text to the richly detailed book she is creating. Meanwhile, core fellow Kento Saisho experiments with 3D forms in cardboard and gesso. The goal of it all is less about a product and more about revitalizing each artist’s flow of ideas and energy.

developing maquettes with cardboard and gesso