The High Deserts Social Network Blog…

Gallery 839 at The Animation Guild

On Friday night, my husband and I went to an art show at this wonderful gallery in Burbank. It featured work by 4 artists: Michael Cedeno, John Cataldi, Danielle Powers, and Russell Calabrese.

I am proud to say, I bought a Cedeno to add to my always growing art collection. I love this man’s work. He is truly one of my favorites. The woman below is gorgeous, don’t you think? I love her pose and gracefulness. I love the pencil

or rather, charcoal strokes. Michael has a real command of his abilities. Being that he has been a supervising directing animator and had worked at Disney for 27 years, this piece makes me think of Tinkerbell, in the nude! Something about her face makes me think that. Of course, most guys probably aren’t looking at her face. HA!  I look at all parts of this beautiful woman and it actually makes me feel younger. I love the shape, curves, and even the stretching makes me FEEL.

If money were no object, I would have walked out owning a whole wall of his works. Another I loved was this : the Colorado St. Bridge. I spent a large part of my youth riding over this bridge, with my father. We would be going to the one and only Standard Brands in those days. I loved going there with him. 

In my childhood, we would always go to Pasadena from Eagle Rock to shop at various places. This evokes memories of that.

I do, however, own a painting of this same fantastic bridge done by Ken Kaylor. He’s another of those extremely talented artists that I know. In fact, Ken and Mike are the best of buddies and go painting together when they can.

It was a fun time with fun people. If you have the chance, you should go. The show runs  through Sept.30th.

We are happy this is ours!

                                                          Ken Kaylor, Michael Cedeno, Dennis Calaba.

We had the best time with everyone!

September 7, 2011 Posted by | chris calaba, graphic art, graphic experience, john cataldi, michael cedeno | , , , , | Leave a comment

Tickling the Keys

We have a fantastic piano right outside our store that is attracting a fan club. As we go about our busy day, all of a sudden, WE HEAR BEAUTIFUL MUSIC ! People, young and old, of all levels of talent, stop to play. We hear jazz, rock and roll, simple pecking, and everything in-between.

This guy was pretty great and really enjoyed himself. I did too ! The City of Lancaster had a great idea! Many others have joined the ranks of piano players on this great piano!

June 18, 2011 Posted by | BLVD Piano, Blvd Piano Project, graphic experience, Piano | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Multi-talented artist Dennis Calaba

Striking a note between Impressionism and Realism, Dennis Calaba’s style is difficult to categorize. His influences range from Homer to Wyeth. Born and raised in the San Fernando Valley, CA., he studied art at Cal State, Northridge and the Art Center of Design, Pasadena. He has been a commercial artist since 1977. Having worked in the entertainment, advertising, and aerospace worlds, it has expanded his talents and interests. He paints portraits, landscapes, seascapes, automotive art, murals, and animal subjects. Dennis chooses whether he will work in oil, watercolor, pastels, acrylic, guache, or pen & ink, depending on what will best suit the subject matter.

His inspiration is found in nature’s bountiful compositions. Underlying in each of his artistic works is a mood that he hopes will be communicated to the viewer. Location is not as paramount to this artist as capturing that “mood”. He believes that a successful work of art invites people to enter, bringing their own feelings into it. Dennis is comfortable working in his studio or outdoors. Both of these methods have advantages that he likes to incorporate in his work. It is this mixture of “capturing the moment” and “creating a mood” that give his art their dynamics.

He has gained wide-spread recognition from many awards in juried art shows, exhibitions and several galleries that range from Carmel Valley to Wrightwood to Lake Hughes. His works also hang in businesses and numerous private collections.
He has a wife and two daughters and resides in the far eastern Antelope Valley, where there are gorgeous sunrises and sunsets visible from his home everyday !
We, at the Graphic Experience are pleased to have his artwork hang here in our gallery. Come see it.


June 13, 2011 Posted by | antelope valley art, antelope valley artists, art, art gallery, art in the av, art on the BLVD, av art, graphic experience | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The importance of the hand written note

In this day of the social media revolution, cell phone texting, etc., the hand written note is rapidly becoming obsolete. Yet, how many of us still really appreciate getting that special card with a special personalized note written in it?

I know I do.

How many of us still have those special notes tucked away in a drawer to be taken out and looked at again and again ?

I know I do.

I really treasure the ones that are from people that are no longer on this earth and am really glad that I have saved some kind of communication from them, to see their handwriting again. It makes me “see” their hands and faces again.

I personally regret not saving more of the things that my mother wrote. I have plenty of things that my father wrote and I’m glad I still have those as both of my parents are long gone. I have a sister that has passed and I printed out her last e-mails to me and have kept them but it’s NOT THE SAME! I wish I had more things with her writing on it.

Anyways, the moral of my story is: in this age of rapid communication, please don’t forget to take the time to do something the old-fashioned way, WRITE a card or letter to someone you love. They WILL cherish it !!!


Graphic Experience 661.945.1718 624 W. Lancaster BLVD



March 21, 2011 Posted by | av best framing, av local art, cards, graphic experience, hand-written notes | , , , , | Leave a comment

Musicians Jim Seargeant and Don Blumenshein

More Moments From Graphic Experience with:

Musicians Jim Seargeant and Don Blumenshein

If you are a music lover, then the melodic, dynamic, and talented duo of Don and Jim are a treat to listen to ! They have been playing together for 30 years now and have a real “connection” to their music.

Jim and Don first met way back in 1971, attending the same high school here in the Antelope Valley. They started playing seriously together in 1980.
Since then, they have played on numerous occasions in numerous places ! This includes the Lancaster Performing Arts Center, and just about every public venue ( The Rock Inn, Cedar Art Center, Lakes and Valleys Art Guild and many more) there is and “used to be” places here in the Antelope Valley and beyond.

These artists have played at many private functions as well. They have a CD out called The Goods but unfortunately is sold out ! It has all original material and they have so many more new compositions, Don and Jim hope to put out another CD soon.

Jim’s earlier influences are Paul Simon, James Taylor and of course, the great Eric Clapton. Which leads us into other types of music these great musicians, Jim and Don play. When Jim was asked which type of guitar do you like best, “electric or acoustic ?”, he thought about it and honestly said he loves both ! He had a blues band for a while that was absolutely great. In addition to the blues, Jim plays literally all types of music.

Don, like any great musician, loves all music too. He has been lately really enjoying playing Spanish guitar, not to be confused with flamenco guitar. It’s all in the fingering and Don has the talent to do it all !
If you have an opportunity to hear these two together, apart, or with other musicians, be sure not to miss it !

September 9, 2010 Posted by | blvd today, Don Blumenshein, graphic experience, Jim Seargeant | , , , , | Leave a comment

Donna Weil / Dave Faust / AV Flowers/ Blvdtoday Yes, in spite of the opening day of the fair and Ted Nugent and all, the ART, WINE, & BLVD TODAY event was so much fun, everyone enjoying all the wonderful art, live art demos, great food, great wine, great music, and great company. If you weren’t here, you missed a good party !. I spent a good part of Sunday in here with a carpet steam cleaner to get all the spilled wine and food stains out of the carpet but it was worth it !

Colorful local artist Donna Weil

Donna Weil– Donna was born in Washington D.C. After WWll, her family moved back to Southern California. She lived in the San Fernando Valley, attended No.Hollywood High ( proud member of the Pert Jills ), Los Angeles Valley College, and after moving to Del Mar, attended the Interior Design Guild of San Diego. Donna has three fabulous children, four spectacular grandchildren, a beautiful home in the mountains that she shares with her very talented roommate and a flock of animals.
Donna’s art career began in the 1st grade, when her teacher and the principal of Fair Ave. School called her parents to discuss the possibility of her receiving professional training. Lucky for her, a neighbor, James Mastropietro, a noted watercolorist, introduced her to a group of artists in the back room of a paint store in Burbank, CA. They set her up with paints and an easel. The rest is history!
She was the primary muralist for schools in El Segundo, CA. and Ventura, CA. and her murals are in homes throughout So. California. She is the creator of “Weilones” home portraits, collected world-wide and her new addition “Dakota Millie’s Western Funky” art collection.
Donna’s awards include : Pacific Art Association, El Segundo Art Association, Antelope Valley Fair, The Art of the Trashcan (beautification project of Old Town Newhall) and the Santa Clarita Excellence in Art Award 2006, her winning painting on the cover of The City of Santa Clarita Arts Calendar Mar ’07 – Aug ’07.
Anyone who has seen her paintings knows her love of the West and vibrant color. This is attributed to her great-grandfather Buffalo Bill Runcorn( who helped settle the Badlands of No. Dakota), AND her childhood neighbor, Nudie, a famous rodeo tailor. Nudie would invite the neighborhood kids over to his shop to meet and visit with the “movie cowboys” and Donna would love to jump into his trash and collect colorful leather to make collages and doll furniture, the true start of her art career.
Donna’s art has been in galleries in London, Beverly Hills, Pavo Real in Lake Hughes, Cedar Center in Lancaster, Four Seasons Gallery in Wrightwood, The Lakes and Valleys Art Guild in Lake Hughes, B & R Gallery in Santa Clarita, The Cottage on Walnut, and Crossroads Gallery in Tehachapi.
We are pleased to represent her here in the Graphic Experience.

Local Artist Dave Faust

Dave was introduced to the world of of art at an early age. His mother Ethel, was a New York trained commercial artist, and his brother Rick, a fine artist, sculptor, and art teacher.Growing up on the central coast and in the Antelope Valley, the California landscape has always fascinated Dave. While still in high school, Dave studied under western artist Doug Oliver. He attended the Rocky Mountain College of Art in Denver before returning to the Antelope Valley to start his art career.
For the last 24 years Dave has been an award winning graphic designer and illustrator, creating graphics for NASA and other corporate clients. Although a trained graphic artist, Dave’s first love has always been painting. Returning to his oil paints several years ago, Dave has explored the medium through various subjects, he finds the art of plein air painting the most challenging and fulfilling. He has been particularly attracted to the art of the California impressionists. Dave was influenced by the cloisonne style of illustrators from the turn of the century.
Dave has been involved in the Lakes and Valleys Art Guild since 2004. He served first as Vice President and has just been elected toa third term as the President of the ever growing organization.
Dave currently serves as the Fine Arts Chaiman for the Antelope Valley Fair.
Come to see his wonderful works of art here at the The Graphic Experience.

September 2, 2010 Posted by | blvd today, Dave Faust, Donna Weil, graphic experience | , , , | Leave a comment