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Hansville Art Guild draws residents to colorful tour

HANSVILLE — Different studios splashed with color and creativity showed off artists’ work to the public over the weekend with the help of the Hansville Arts and Crafts Guild’s tour.

With a variety of media to choose from, visitors got to see and try everything from woodworking to painting to long arm quilting to neon glass work and the creators were glad to explain each craft to curious onlookers.

“We had a wonderful turnout, and all the people were so enthusiastic over the demonstrations the artists did,” said guild member Dawn Thomas. “The woodturners had a great set up for their demonstration, and I know the neon glassmaker was having people make vases.”

About 75 people worked their way through houses and studios on Friday, with a smaller crowd Saturday. Thomas guessed the good weather on Saturday kept more people outdoors and in their gardens.

“We do this activity more for the public awareness of what artists are in the area,” said woodturner Norm Hix, who has been practicing the art for five years. He and woodworker Dan Marler showed off their individual talents during a demonstration. “One of the things I do is fill the woodturners in with stone. Dan Maler, who is also a woodturner, puts brass in his voids, and I put stone in my voids. I specialize in stone, and he specializes in brass, so we each had something different to offer. We had someone ask us if we put coffee in the wood voids.”

Coffee beans can serve the same purpose as stone or brass in woodturning as decoration or part of the item’s design. They are placed into the void with glue, he said, and add a brown filler to the wood.

Another demonstration that intrigued visitors was neon glass artist Laurie Lewis’ studio, where she was showing people how to create vases. Many didn’t realize she was in the area, so the tour proved to be valuable for attracting new customers.

“Overall it went really well,” Lewis said. “The most important thing is the exposure we get from it. We have a 3-D frog here that everyone asks about. About 90 percent of the people also ask how I got into the business. My grandfather taught me... We also had hands on demonstration here for people brave enough to try it. It helps them develop an appreciation of how hard it is to do, you can’t just pick it up and do it.”

Thomas said the event was the most successful the guild has had, but did mention next year the artists might try to congregate in one spot and have the demonstrations in different studios so the tour won’t be as spread out.

“We had a great time, but the advertising screwed up a little and didn’t list our house so we only got 30 people the first day,” said textile artist and Redmond resident Lana Fulwiler. She was based out of her in-law’s Hansville house with different fabric wares. “The next day we put out more signs and got more people to visit. The people really were great.”

“I think it was just so successful this year,” Thomas said. “We had just so much fun meeting all the people.”

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