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Episode #1: Art and Artichokes

Welcome to our first episode!

Art for Life Podcast by Gallery’s Choice
Episode #1: Art and Artichokes

Welcome to our first episode of the Art for Life Podcast! Check out our show notes below for helpful links to the recipes mentioned in the show.

Show Notes:

In this episode we will inspire you, as we share our story of how one passion for art turned into another for farming! We talk about why we decided to launch a Gallery’s Choice podcast show. And finally we’ll provide some fun foodie antidotes about artichokes, and why you should love them!

Episode #1: Art and Artichokes.

This is the Art for Life Podcast by Gallery’s Choice, and I am your host, Rose Jarecki. Gallery’s Choice’s Art for Life Podcast series. Meant to explore the creative side of life by sharing tips techniques, inspirations and recipes with the goal of living well.  Whether you are an artist, an artist wanna be, a regular Jane or Joe Doe, with some time to kill, I promise there is something in here for all of you. We will talk about our business and how to be a great career creative. We will get you started if you never, or you never knew you could. And we will share anything we discover on the topics of being healthy, happy and wise…

Click here for a .pdf of the full transcript.
https://galleryschoice.blog/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/Episode-1-show-notes-Art-and-Artichokes.pdf

Resources:

Never prepped a fresh artichoke before? Check out this video (and get ready to laugh!)

Veggie of the Week: Artichokes!

Recipes:

Bonus: Spinach Artichoke Flower-Heart Dip
https://galleryschoice.blog/2020/01/07/spinach-artichoke-flower-heart-dip/

Roasted Artichokes de Provence
https://galleryschoice.blog/2020/01/07/roasted-artichoke-de-provence/

Sponsors:

This episode was self-sponsored by Gallery’s Choice. Gallery’s Choice is a family-friendly art and gift gallery with a hands on art focus. Featuring the stained glass art of Rose and Bill Jarecki, the art gallery is home to more than 75 local area artists in a variety of media. In it’s 16th year of operation in the Downers Grove, IL area, the gallery teaches classes for young and old at all skill levels in glass art, including stained glass, fused glass, mosaics; fine art, drawing, painting (watercolor, oils and acrylics), and jewelry including metalsmithing, silver clay, and enameling. For a full line up of current classes, check out https://galleryschoice.blog/gallerys-choice-classes-and-events/

Special Recognition:

Royalty free music and sounds in this podcast were sourced from the
YouTube Audio Library
with special shout out to the artists of this episode’s featured tracks:
“Your’re There”
“Stacy and George”
By
The Mini Vandals

Afraid to Ask?

Stained Glass by the Numbers

Piece by piece, these stained glass side lights come together. I almost never stop to count the number of pieces in my designs. Sometimes I think it would scare me to know!

A labor of love, time spent in creation of beauty!

Some studio’s charge by the piece. This is a good indicator of the work’s complexity, given each individual piece will be touched six or more times in the fabrication process. Truly a labor of love in it’s creation. There’s something special about that kind of work – in the doing of it, and in the viewing of it. Both creator and end customer will get joy from the stained glass work. And this joy can last a lifetime. For me, that’s what makes these works meaningful and worthwhile.

Closeup of pattern and petals in various stages of completion.
Detailed closeup of pattern and petals in various stages of completion.
Custom stained glass sidelights soldered and ready for patina.

Moving Mountains

Sometimes the task ahead of you seems so great, like you are moving a mountain. And sometimes, the task of an artist is to build that mountain. In glass, of course!

As we undertake the latest commission work at Gallery’s Choice, I thought I’d stop and take a moment to share a behind the scenes look as we move mountains for our customers.

Our current studio challenge is one of space! Just getting the pattern entirely on one table isn’t yet possible. If you recall – we have the content, fixtures, glass and entire inventory of art objects from a 1,500 sq foot storefront jammed into a home-based studio – thank you COVID!

The project sits roughly 46 x 58 in and represents a decent sized window on a stairway landing in the customers home. But that’s not the impressive part. The story behind the imagery is the real news. Exciting aspects of the design represent a journey through life with all of its magical twists and turns, love and a strong foundation in faith. These special elements were presented as a family crest – the artistic expression and loving gift of this couples family! Representing these aspects are rewarding for me as an artist, as I know they will be cherished and meaningful to the entire family for generations.

Exciting aspects of the design represent a journey through life with all of its magical twists and turns, love and a strong foundation in faith.

Family Crest:
Sandblasted Mirrors

The crest, designed by the customers’ children, became the inspiration for the imagery of the custom stained glass mountain window project. As a separate project, we took the crest illustration and sandblasted accent mirrors which became holiday gifts!


Story of the Glass

The glass for this work includes a wonderful array of contrasting glass textures. Like the Wavolite Coblestone texture by Kokomo Opalescent Glass Company, Kokomo, Indiana. We selected this glass style to represent the piney needles of the pine trees.

KOG has a rich and interesting history. It is the oldest manufacturer of its kind in America. Celebrating 133 years in business this year (2021), they established themselves in Indiana in 1888, borne of a sweet deal for natural gas stores there that fuel the glass furnaces to this day. This natural energy source discovered in Kokomo was thought to bring fortune to an otherwise unassuming farm town and attracted many business deals.

In addition to using native energy, the raw materials originate locally. We were told during our tour that the silica sand KOG uses to create their glass comes from Ottawa, Illinois near Starved Rock, which is an interesting local connection. Who knew?

Formerly known as the Opalescent Glass Works, KOG has many interesting features – and I highly recommend taking a tour of their operation. Watching how sheets of art glass are produced, how the colors are mixed and how personal the process is, provides an appreciation of the medium. Call ahead to arrange, especially with COVID considerations. And tell them Gallery’s Choice sent you.

You can read more about the history of this American glass manufacturer at the link below:

https://www.kog.com/in-depth-history.html

Kokomo Opalescent Glass Factory Tours
1310 South Market Street
Kokomo, IN 46902

Wavolite from KOG lend the perfect textures for this tall pine forest!

Wavolite is just one of the styles we chose from KOG for this project.

Another favorite glass of mine is Stipple by Youghiogheny Glass. Stipple glass species has a waxy texture. Its translucent, ice-like quality, gives it an almost three-dimensional effect. It is more difficult to cut due to it’s rich texture, but soft and easy to grind, and is worth the work! This version of water contains blues, greens and pinks, with a heavily rippled texture perfect for representing motion of a flowing mountain river.

One of six American glass manufacturers, Youghioghemy Glass in Connellsville, Pennsylvania, boasts a similarly vibrant history as they have focus on producing glass for notable glass artists, including Louis Comfort Tiffany. To this day, this company produces Tiffany Reproduction glass styles which have the perfect opalescence for lamps and internal patterns and textures that mimic nature. To be sure, Youghioghemy Stipple and Tiffany Repro glass styles are my all time favorites. If you are in Pennsylvania, be sure to check them out:

Youghioghemy Glass
300 S 1st St,
Connellsville, PA 15425

Every time I select a glass for one of our commissions, it’s more than just the color I have in mind. I know the heritage that each piece of glass carries with it, and the legacy of many more artisans hands that went into the manufacture of the beautiful materials, the exquisite palette, I have to work with.

Now in the interest of keeping you wanting to see more, I am not including the finished project photos of this work quiet yet. There are more wonderful artistic surprises to come – including just how the project changes character as it comes off the board and is first kissed by sunlight. So stay tuned. The magic of the completed project will be revealed soon.

Moving mountains, after all, happens one piece at a time.

Student Achievement

Elise was awarded a $10,000 fine arts scholarship to Augustana based on her art portfolio, which was “…based almost entirely on pieces that she did over the years at Gallery’s Choice”!

We love hearing about the success of our students – and this recent email letting us know about Elise’s achievement really made our day!!!

As a teacher, I love seeing my students develop and it gives me special pleasure when these individuals take off on their own creative path. As an artist, I share the thrill of her recognition, and I know the dedication required to gain it!

Rose Jarecki /Artist Owner
Gallery’s Choice

All our congratulations!

We can’t wait to see what’s in store for Elise as she pursues her dreams!

Our oil painting program at Gallery’s Choice spans skill levels from true never before beginner, to intermediate, to advanced techniques. Elise started with us in 2015, as part of our After School Friday Art Club, and took a shining to oil painting media.

From her first formal oil painting class, Beginning Oil Painting, with us in August of 2015, to 2020 Elise has always been a thoughtful and prolific painter. Her dedication to the media spanned the gamut of topics, from simply sweet, to a series of Harry Potter imagery created for her siblings, to extremely detailed underwater worlds. Never afraid to experiment, she practiced and refined her technique through a never ending series of fearless expressions in a manner that had many of her adult painting class counterparts in awe!

As of late, Elise demonstrated a great attention to detail. She refined her ability to create depth and focus through lighting and atmospheric distortion, and began to come into her own as an artist through adventurous and surreal original imagery. (Bird’s Eye View) That migration, from imitating the images of others, painting from photographic reference, to using mastered techniques to create and execute what exists only in ones mind, is a necessary progression for any artist. From practice to mastery to application of techniques to create unique and one-of-a-kind work!

You can see more of her works by following her on Instagram @artsyelliephant

From 2015 – early works below! So proud to say “I knew her when!”

Inspiration for all young aspiring artists – wherever you start: success is achievable! Just Start! Follow your passion and practice!

Elise 2020 – Bird’s Eye View
and a $10,000 fine arts scholarship!
Congratulations!

Under normal circumstances, of course, we would celebrate Elise’s success in community within the gallery – and while that is not possible at this time – we hope you will help us celebrate her achievement here – on our blog! Leave us a comment as I am sure Elise will appreciate the support from her Gallery’s Choice community!

Gallery's Choice Kaleidoscope

Episode #12: Kaleidoscopes and Kohlrabi

Let’s Catch Up
with this week’s
Art for Life Podcast!

Art for Life Podcast by Gallery’s Choice
Episode #12: Kaleidoscopes and Kohlrabi

Listen Now!

Don’t forget to subscribe!
Take us with you and find us on iTunes, GooglePlay and Spotify!

Explore the importance of measured construction in your art – no matter what your media. Your host, artist Rose Jarecki, explores the construction of a time tested novelty the kaleidoscope and how to create color magic in glass using the power of light and color!

Show Notes:

Welcome to Episode #12 of the Art for Life Podcast!

Stay and play as we take a look at a the color and allure of kaleidoscope. This episode will explore the reason for the rave of this perennial favorite stained glass specialty. We will demystify the project and show you how staying awake in math class can make a difference when you are trying to make one!

Then, we get back on track with our “veggie of the week” regime and share a new found nutritional favorite: kohlrabi! You will love the easy to work with crowd pleasing recipe this week – so make sure and stay tuned all the way to the end!

Check out our helpful links below to the healthy “veggie of the week” recipe mentioned in the show.

More about this episode:

The powerful interactive art of the kaleidoscope depends on glass!

Glass mirror to be exact.  But not just any mirror.

Regular mirror is made by coating the back side of a piece of glass with super thin coating of silver.  Light, then has to pass through the thickness of the glass before being reflected back at you!

When using regular mirror in a kaleidoscope, the images ghost as they bounce back and forth hitting the mirrors and so the visual optics get dark, fuzzy and distorted as they get further away from center.

The glass mirror required for the demands of the optics in a kaleidoscope is a front surface mirror – the same kind of mirror used in telescopes, microscopes and cameras.  This glass is super thin and is made by vacuum depositing a layer of aluminum on the surface, creating a super reflective, non-distorting surface.   This premium grade surface mirror maintains image and light integrity and delivers a much sharper and intense color “hall of mirrors” effect within the kaleidoscope tube.

For more information on how to purchase this special grade mirror for your next Kaleidoscope project, contact us at www.GallerysChoice.com.

Like a microscope or telescope, the optics in a kaleidoscope are used to enhance what we see. What we see depends on having a source of light, and optics are used to control light reflecting or bending it so that we can see in different ways. Kaleidoscopes use mirrors to reflect light into beautiful shapes and patterns.

The configuration of the image is controlled by a system of mirrors. Two mirrors create a mandala image with multiple points depending on the narrowness of the angle.

(The correct pronunciation for mandala is “muhn·da·luh”, by the way – not “man dala”!!!! A great art topic for another day!)

A straight three mirror system creates a broad field image that spreads out appearing to be reflected infinitely on all side. The three mirrors can be set as an equilateral triangle or other angles to create a variety of images. A tapered three mirror system creates an image that looks like a faceted ball floating in space.

Example of a tapered three mirror system.

Wheels, wands, trays, bubbles, candles and many object, like glass marbles have been used by artists to create unique kaleidoscope images. Chambers holding colorful objects or media can be dry or wet (oil filled). Wet chambers allow the continuing motion to continually change the view without the viewers intervention. Dry chambers allow the image to shift quickly, but need viewer interactivity to change the scene! (Our beautiful blue kaleidoscope made at Gallery’s Choice by one of our students featured here has a dry chamber filled with blue and green crystals and features an outer body made of decorative stained glass.)

For more images of collector’s kaleidoscopes, check out http://www.kaleidoscopecollector.com

Check out our blog at:

https://www.galleryschoice.blog/

Episode #12: Kaleidoscopes and Kohlrabi

A stained glass gift project worthy of any hobbyist!

This is the Art for Life Podcast by Gallery’s Choice, and I am your host, Rose Jarecki. Gallery’s Choice’s Art for Life Podcast series. Meant to explore the creative side of life by sharing tips techniques, inspirations and recipes with the goal of living well.  Whether you are an artist, an artist wanna be, a regular Jane or Joe, with some time to kill, I promise there is something in here for all of you. We will talk about our business and how to be a great career creative. We will get you started if you never, or you never knew you could. And we will share anything we discover on the topics of being healthy, happy and wise…


Support your local businesses – closed during COVID – Shop with us ONLINE!

Check out our on-line shopping for stained glass art jewelry as well as our exclusive GC Lavender line of culinary and bath and body products. See them all at www.GallerysChoice.com

Read more about our classes, student works, artistic inspiration, and great farm to table recipes by subscribing to our blog at
www.GallerysChoice.blog

Resources:

Transcript of this show is available on this site:

Text of this show will be AVAILABLE SOON!!

GC Lavender Body Butter 1

For hard working hands, GC Lavender Body Butter formulated to promote natural healing by soothing an protecting rough, tired skin.

For natural healing GC Lavender Body Butter and other GC Lavender products, visit:

GC Lavender Boutique



Culinary Arts:

In our continuing mission of improving general well being through improved “food literacy”, we continue to research and share our new found understanding of eating fresh, healthy foods. By trying and sharing what we discover about one new fruit or vegetable that we never tried before we hope to inspire you to expand your healthy eating habits and enjoy greater wellness! Hope you enjoy this culinary artist side of us and enjoy new fresh flavors!

Recipes:

Recipe of the Week: Savory Lavender Triple Salt Kohlrabi Chips


Savory Lavender Triple Salt Kohlrabi Chips

So simple! A great way to add a new veggie to your daily routine!

Update the everyday!

Enjoy!!!

Kohlrabi

GC Lavender Gourmet Triple Salt Blend

GC Lavender
Gourmet Triple Salt

GC Lavender
Lemon Pepper

Sponsors:

This episode was sponsored by Gallery’s Choice. Gallery’s Choice is a family-friendly art and gift gallery with a hands on art focus. Featuring the stained glass art of Rose and Bill Jarecki, the art gallery is home to more than 75 local area artists in a variety of media. In it’s 16th year of operation in the Downers Grove, IL area, the gallery teaches classes for young and old at all skill levels in glass art, including stained glass, fused glass, mosaics; fine art, drawing, painting (watercolor, oils and acrylics), and jewelry including metalsmithing, silver clay, and enameling. For a full line up of current classes, check out https://galleryschoice.blog/gallerys-choice-classes-and-events/. (Please note: Due to the current Covid crisis, our in-person learning has been put on hold. Please stay safe and be well as we take a Pause for the Cause.) Please stay tuned to our web site for important updates regarding when and how our community learning will resume.

Special Recognition:

Royalty free music and sounds in this podcast were sourced from the
YouTube Audio Library
with special shout out to the artists of this episode’s featured tracks:
“You’re There”
“Stacy and George”
By
The Mini Vandals

Savory Lavender Triple Salt Kohlrabi Chips

When my husband first handed me this unusual looking food, I thought it was something from outer space – looking more like a space probe than a source of nutrition!

One cup of kohlrabi provides 93% of the daily vitamin C requirements and is an excellent source of potassium, fiber, and vitamin B6. According to Healthline.com it packs nutrients and antioxidants that may boost immune health and lower risk of chronic disease, like diabetes.

This veg is a member of the cabbage family – a little like broccoli and kale – but it is sweeter and less cabbage-y tasting and is really versatile in the kitchen! All parts of the vegetable are edible and it can be roasted, stewed, put in soups, or eaten raw in salads!

So as you can imagine, it wasn’t long in my culinary research that this vegetable became a sought after favorite and a delight to use in the kitchen. So let’s hear it for ‘K’ for Kohlrabi!

Savory Lavender Triple Salt Kohlrabi Chips

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Rating: ★★★★★
  • Print

Take chips and dip snacking to a new level!


Credit: galleryschoice.com

Ingredients

  • 2 c. kohlrabi – very thinly sliced
  • 2 T. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 t. GC Lavender Triple Salt Blend
  • dash GC Lavender Lemon Pepper

Directions

  1. Using a mandolin, slice kohlrabi in thin even slices, and place in a large metal bowl.
  2. Drizzle olive oil and toss kohlrabi until evenly coated.
  3. Place slices in a single layer on parchment lined cookie sheet
  4. Bake at 275 degrees (low and slow) for between 30 minutes to an hour until crisp and golden brown. (Keep rotating the tray and transfer those that get done faster to a paper towels.)
  5. Season lightly with GC Lavender Triple Salt Blend and a dash of GC Lavender Lemon Pepper
  6. Enjoy!

Friendly kitchen invader from space: kohlrabi!

Before using the kohlrabi, cut back the leaves and stems from the bulb. (Reserve these for use in a fresh salad or our fresh kohlrabi apple slaw – another yummy recipe coming soon!)

You can choose to peel the outer skin of the bulb before slicing – or not. I prefer to choose bulbs that are between 3 to 4 inches in diameter and tender – so peeling is not necessary.

Using a mandolin slicer is a quick way to make the thinnest even slices – of the vegetable or your hands – so I use a special slicing glove to protect against getting too close! (Take a tip from this accident prone “safety-focused” kitchen maniac! Use a glove!) I am using a hand held Good Grips Mandolin Slicer by OXO. (Not an affiliate. Someone should tell them they should be be an affiliate!) Anyway – worked great!

Just a note – you will want to prep more than you think you want -simply because once you start tasting the first few that come out of the oven it will be difficult to keep them accumulating on the plate, instead of accumulating in your mouth! My first batch never made it to the serving bowl, as I kept eating them as I rotated the pan and grabbed out the golden crispy done ones as they baked!

Seasoning Tip: GC Lavender Gourmet Triple Salt is a “finishing salt” designed to be added to foods at the end of the cooking process. It is a specially curated blend made with three types of salts – one for melt, natural sea salt for crunch, and Himalayan pink for a pop of intense flavor that allows you to use less (meaning less sodium) while you get more salty punch! So go easy when first using this salt blend, as you will need to use much less than if you were to use table salt! (Another healthy advantage!)

GC Lavender Gourmet Triple Salt Blend

Order GC Lavender Gourmet Triple Salt and impress your guests!

The latest in the GC Lavender Pantry Essentials line of easy to use seasonings!

Also, I use this new GC Lavender Lemon Pepper on everything! From my sunny-side eggs in the morning to soups and stews, to salads. The citrus zing pairs extremely well with the savory lavender and peppery pop giving what ever you use it on a unique “This tastes so good but I can’t place why” magic!

The Power of Thanksgiving

Our chosen creative life never fails to humble and inspire through the custom project we embark on, and the customers we meet.  And this year, even in its unprecedented psychosis, is no exception.

As we @gallerys_choice continue in 2020 to personally sail on into the abyss of uncertainty: Covid; open heart surgery and recovery; the loss of our livelihood from our store’s closure (due to Covid restrictions and mandates); and today, caring for an aged parent at life’s inevitable conclusion.  We continue through as we can, working our passion to serve customers by creating works of lasting beauty. 

In the midst of all that is happening in the world, I admit, sometimes I find myself wondering: “Am I doing the right thing?  Am I doing something meaningful, helpful and productive for my family and worthwhile for the community?”  Certainly, our art creation and teaching services are not deemed “essential” by any recent governmental definitions.  What is “essential” in my life is not necessarily necessity for anyone else – I know.  I get it. But what is it that I can do to make things better?

But then, just as this crest-fallen soul begins seriously to question its direction – something happens.  And right then and there, I am humbled, as I have many times been during my tenure in business, by how artfully and divinely everything is put in perspective. 

The customer story surrounding our current Snowflakes commission project provided me this powerful and meaningful perspective.  And one I wish to share with all of you.


Our customer’s story:

It was a fateful Thanksgiving morning, almost one year ago to the date, which started with the customary lighting of an outdoor smoker-cooker at the crack of dawn in preparation for the all-day turkey cooking ritual.  With seven grandchildren and a total of 12 people in the home still sleeping, the designated cook tended to the stove and food prep as they had many times before.  Meanwhile, the family continued sleeping, blissfully unaware that this day would be nothing like usual.

It only took minutes – less than the time it takes to rinse the turkey, for the accident to happen.

It was a small sound which woke one of the grandchildren, sleeping in a bedroom upstairs.  Hearing what seemed to be an unusual sound, she hurried downstairs to alert that something was wrong.

By this time – literally within minutes – flames had spread up the exterior of the house, threatening the lives of those sleeping within it. 

Due to the quick thinking of this one grandchild, and the quick and organized response of the first responders ALL twelve family members made it to safety that day.  A lifetime of mementos and belongings were lost – including all possessions of four of the grandchildren who were in residence at the grandparent’s home during this time.

This November, almost a year to the day after the fire, the grandparents will move into their newly rebuilt home.  And amid this season of Covid, regrettably, they will be moving in without the comfort of having their family with them to celebrate the occasion – but thankful that they have “being with them again” to look forward to.

And the stained glass snowflakes – a remembrance of a season and a tradition that the grandchildren so enjoyed – our humble honor to replicate, giving our work @gallerys_choice a greater purpose and as an essential part of this family’s renewal as they embark on the next chapter in their lives.


Before the fire. A room full of love, gracefully adorned by beautiful, hand-made stained glass snowflakes Grandma made.

I am so thankful to be a part of this family’s new holiday memories!

As we all pass through our difficulties during this time in our lives, take time this season to take stock – not of what was lost – but instead of our many blessings: our family, our community, our special talents.  The healing this positive mental perspective graces us with is powerful. It can transcend the difficulty of our current times and take us to a point in time where we can write the next chapter in our lives.

To you and all you love, A Very Happy Thanksgiving!

From all of us at Gallery’s Choice!

Blessing counted!

jello cheesecake on plate

Nostalgic Lavender No Bake Cheesecake

Sometimes it takes a look to the past to serve up today’s fabulous flavor! The addition of just a hint of GC Lavender’s Culinary lavender to the crust elevates this dessert and makes it contemporary!

A favorite recipe of mine, this perennial favorite is so light and airy, I can’t stop at one piece! Perfect for summer, this is a time saver that can be made ahead of Thanksgiving celebrations. And, you know, there is always room for jello!

Nostalgic Lavender No Bake Cheesecake

  • Servings: 12
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Rating: ★★★★★
  • Print

A long-time personal favorite!!


Credit: galleryschoice.com

Ingredients

  • 2 c. crushed graham crackers
  • 1 t. GC Lavender Culinary ground
  • 1/2 c. melted butter
  • 1/4 t. salt
  • 1/4 c. sugar
  • 3 oz. package Jello (strawberry, lime, lemon, orange)
  • 1 c. boiling water
  • 1 envelope Dream Whip Whipped Topping mix
  • 1/2 c. cold milk
  • 1/2 t. vanilla
  • 8 oz. cream cheese – room temperature

Directions

  1. Butter the bottom and sides of a 2.2 quart rectangular Pyrex dish or a 9 in. circular spring form pan.
  2. Crush graham crackers and add sugar, salt, lavender.
  3. Stir in melted butter.
  4. Reserve 3/4 c. of graham cracker mixture.
  5. Press remainder into the bottom and sides of the 2.2 quart dish or spring form pan. Set aside.
  6. In a small metal bowl, dissolve jello in boiling water, stirring to make sure all gelatin is dissolved.
  7. Place bowl of jello into the refrigerator to set partially (about 20 – 25 minutes).
  8. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, using a hand mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar together until smooth. Set aside.
  9. Prepare one package of Dream Whip per package instructions: In a metal bowl – Mix Dream Whip, 1/2 c. cold milk and vanilla whipping on high until peaks form.
  10. Once jello is partially set, pour into cream cheese and beat until well combined.
  11. Gently fold in dream whip using a large spoon or spatula.
  12. Pour into prepared crust.
  13. Sprinkle with reserved graham lavender mixture.
  14. Refrigerate 3 to 4 hours until set.
  15. Enjoy!

GC Lavender adds a tiny bit of panache to a time tested favorite!

Tip: Don’t have a spice grinder? Just rub the culinary lavender firmly between your palms to crush the buds. An added benefit to releasing all that great lavender flavor, your hands will smell amazing!

GC Lavender Culinary

Order online and get the best culinary lavender from GC Lavender!

Episode #11: Jackalopes and Jello

Let’s Catch Up
with this week’s
Art for Life Podcast!

Art for Life Podcast by Gallery’s Choice
Episode #11: Jackalopes and Jello

Listen Now!

Don’t forget to subscribe!
Take us with you and find us on iTunes, GooglePlay and Spotify!

Show Notes:

Welcome to Episode #11 of the Art for Life Podcast!

This episode will cover everything that’s happened here at the gallery and in our life for the past six months during the “season of Covid” and bring you up to date with where we are today.

Then, just in time for Halloween, we look at Jackalopes and explore the artistic concept of juxtaposition and how it is used to create drama in art.

Finally – we share an easy to make recipe with a nostalgic past:
Lavender No Bake Jello Cheese Cake!

If you are an artist who has suffered a dismounting blow from the recent disruption of the pandemic, if you are an art enthusiast who wishes galleries, art shows and in person art classes and performing arts events would resume, or even if you are just a curious soul wondering how we are all going to get by – stay with us, tune in, get ready to expand your mind!

Check out our show notes below for helpful links to the recipes mentioned in the show.

Take a peak into the life and times of contemporary artists and gallery owners as we pivot our business – staying engaged anyway possible to navigate troubling times during Covid.

Be inspired by confident words of survival and optimism for the future for artists.

Explore the importance of juxtaposition in your art – no matter what your media. Your host, artist Rose Jarecki, explores the powerful use of juxtaposition in art and how it’s use can transmit powerful messaging.

Check out our blog at:

https://www.galleryschoice.blog/

Episode #11: Jackalopes and Jello

Available on Amazon! No joke! A Jackalope!

The jackalope, infamous in North American folklore, is referred to as a ‘Frankenstein’ rabbit, can be described as something one might conjure during a nightmare.

This is the Art for Life Podcast by Gallery’s Choice, and I am your host, Rose Jarecki. Gallery’s Choice’s Art for Life Podcast series. Meant to explore the creative side of life by sharing tips techniques, inspirations and recipes with the goal of living well.  Whether you are an artist, an artist wanna be, a regular Jane or Joe Doe, with some time to kill, I promise there is something in here for all of you. We will talk about our business and how to be a great career creative. We will get you started if you never, or you never knew you could. And we will share anything we discover on the topics of being healthy, happy and wise…


Shop with us ONLINE!

Check out: http://www.GallerysChoice.com

Resources:

Transcript of this show is available:

AVAILABLE SOON



Culinary Arts:

If you joined us for our first episode you already know that Bill and I are committed to the goal of increasing our “food literacy” by researching and sharing our new found understanding of eating fresh foods. So each week this season, we will be sharing what we discover about one fruit or vegetable that we never tried before and share our discoveries with you. Hope you enjoy this culinary artist side of us and get inspired to eat healthy and enjoy fresh flavors!

Recipes:

Recipe of the Week: Nostalgic Lavender No Bake Jell-O Cheesecake


jello cheesecake on plate

Nostalgic Lavender No Bake Jello Cheesecake

Make simple things special!

An easy elegant way to update the everyday!

Enjoy!!!


GC Lavender Culinary

GC Lavender Culinary

Sponsors:

This episode was sponsored by Gallery’s Choice. Gallery’s Choice is a family-friendly art and gift gallery with a hands on art focus. Featuring the stained glass art of Rose and Bill Jarecki, the art gallery is home to more than 75 local area artists in a variety of media. In it’s 16th year of operation in the Downers Grove, IL area, the gallery teaches classes for young and old at all skill levels in glass art, including stained glass, fused glass, mosaics; fine art, drawing, painting (watercolor, oils and acrylics), and jewelry including metalsmithing, silver clay, and enameling. For a full line up of current classes, check out https://galleryschoice.blog/gallerys-choice-classes-and-events/. (Please note due to Covid crisis our in-person learning has been put on hold. Please stay safe and be well as we take a Pause for the Cause.) Please stay tuned to our web site for important updates regarding when and how our community learning will resume.

Special Recognition:

Royalty free music and sounds in this podcast were sourced from the
YouTube Audio Library
with special shout out to the artists of this episode’s featured tracks:
“Your’re There”
“Stacy and George”
By
The Mini Vandals

Custom Stained Glass Doors with Rustic Copper overlays

Rustic Cabinetry

Good things take time. Sometimes, they take A LOT of time! And there are those processes that cannot be rushed.

Like the hand-made, sculptural copper overlays for a set of rustic stained glass cabinet doors.

Rustic Custom Stained Glass Doors with Copper Overlays

Now, I could have gone the easy way – simply using the super thin, commercially available self-adhesive flat foil for stained glass. But I wanted to deliver something extra – my repeat customers are so important to me – I wanted to wow them. So, I went all the way: crafting meaningful sculptural imagery from flat, 24 gauge, raw copper sheet. This material will never peel off their doors, and allows for a more robust 3-D effect.

Time consuming as they are, there is no better method for fabricating a most durable, long lasting element that will continue to look better and more rustic as it ages. The process of creating these custom stained glass cabinet door overlays leverages metal smithing techniques of old – using torches and hammers to chase and repousse the metal into shapely relief. Each element is created with an abundance of care. No better way of getting into the detail than to hand cut each and every line using a modest jewelry saw and some hand files.

What, you say, no CNC machine? No prefab, template cutouts?

copper duck for stained glass
Chemical and heat patinas take center stage by delivering color and detail to copper elements.

Nope. Using the meaningful images provided by the customer as a guide, the patterning for these complex objects were drawing by hand, and then traced onto raw, flat metal. The trick, of course, was not to get confused about what was positive and what was negative space when cutting. (Negative spaces are the very important open areas within the images that help give them their form – the open areas inside the outline of the fish – for example.) To cut out the metal from the inside, a hole needed to be created that would accommodate the saw blade. For that we used a drill press and a manual hand punch and hammer. Then insert the blade, secure the saw and away you go! Easy, right?

Any artist or jewelry designer familiar with the tool will tell you – it’s not quite that simple. About a dozen broken blades later – thank goodness they sell them by the gross (that’s 144) and I almost had the first image roughed out!

Needless to say – I picked up some speed over the course of this project – but the fact that there was no short cut or easy way through reminded me how important good form and skill building basics are! The more I rushed, the more blades I broke. The more I concentrated on the detail, the faster things went.

A look behind the scenes demonstrates the patience required in the fabrication of the copper relief patterns.

The fabrication of the copper relief patterns adds to the uniqueness of the art glass and delivers durable beauty for years to come.

Working with sheet copper always excites me! It’s a soft and stretchy metal (once you get to know it!) and being able to manipulate it to provide shape, color, texture and detail made it the perfect material to use on these rustic cabin cabinet door inserts!

This method can be used on either copper foil method or lead came stained glass projects, and helps to add intricate visual detail without creating an absurd number of tedious art glass pieces.

Creating custom stained glass cabinet doors and windows provides us opportunities to take art glass to the next level!

Taking a Pause for the Cause

Circumstances beyond anything we could control or could have foreseen have created a condition where careful thought is required to find our path.

Not just a global pandemic. Not just open heart surgery. Not just an era of civil unrest.

ALL of these at once!


All things considered,
I’d say we are doing well!

-Rose and Bill Jarecki

As we came to accept the financial burden of having to support a storefront while being prevented from earning any revenue to support it back in March 2020, we carefully considered how we might continue in a brick and mortar environment, as arduous – albeit necessary – restrictions make servicing our community with a high-touch business like ours virtually impossible.

Then we considered the health and well-being of our extended gallery family – with many of our regular students falling into the most vulnerable category – with many of our key customers being hurt financially by job loss or reductions. Couple this with greatest uncertainty regarding future restrictions and shut downs eating away at the possibilities of strong revenue rebound during the late Summer and Fall. Factoring in that all of the subsidies and relief programs produced a tiny fraction of what would be required to continue. Finally, not to mention, trying to balance our own personal needs for a safe and speedy recovery from a major surgery and our concerns about contracting the virus at this time – the right path quickly became apparent.

I watched in horror as every last chance at not having to close evaporated as time progressed. Fearful of my every decision – to keep paying rents and continue to sink or to give up a storefront, students and customers I dearly love.

Then, I remembered a man greater than myself once said:
“So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is…fear itself — nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s first inaugural address 1933.

FDR was telling the American people that their fear was making things worse.

During the great depression, if you are old enough to remember (I am not, by the way!), news of the financial calamity caused people to run to the banks and take their money out – and – by so doing, they were causing even more damage to the economy. FDR took “unprecedented” steps during this time: closing banks for several days and calling Congress back to Washington for a special session. This gave the American people and government time to calm down and make recovery plans.

He thoughtfully hit the PAUSE button.

Finding precedent in his actions, my own fears abated and we came to the conclusion that the only way to continue doing what we love is to hit that PAUSE button, and give ourselves the ability to innovate our business forward with a clear head!

Taking a “Pause for the Cause”

So we are not “closing” in a traditional sense of a store closing.
As artists, we are NOT DONE!

We are, instead, taking the necessary steps to stay safe and re-organize, while mindfully acknowledging the volatility of the current socioeconomic and political environment. Big words for an artist? (Sorry, it’s my MBA getting the better of me.)

So while the decision to close our storefront is emotional for me and our customers, (how could it not be?), the decision was not made by emotion. With a cool head, and big plans to continue – we are preserving the potential to re-emerge better than ever! We’ve got this!

Meanwhile – new custom stained glass windows continue to be built – just as they have for more than 16 years! GC Lavender continues to be sold at Farmers’ Markets and online. These online shopping opportunities will be expanded with many more gifty art and jewelry offerings. And we are working on beta platforms for e-learning to take care of many classroom activities.

These new innovations will, understandably, take some time and effort.

In the short term – and as it becomes safe to do so, we will be spending more time coordinating fun events – being freed up a bit from the day-to-day rigors of managing a storefront. And as our art education takes on a fun and exciting new direction, we look forward to seeing all of you at these new events very soon

Your support for our business and our family during the
forced closure has touched my heart so very much
Thank You!
– Rose Jarecki

And, your continued support of our business moving forward is greatly appreciated! Your patronage helps us keep safely under roof at home and it will indeed be a key factor in determining how soon we can land back into a permanent retail space, more convenient for many of you.

Just know – We are NOT DONE!

“We, sadly, will be leaving the 926 Warren Avenue location in Downers Grove, at the end of June, in an effort to preserve capital and continue serving customers online and at other special event venues in the near term.”

June 15th, 2020

As we execute this transition, we hope you will keep in touch with us and continue to support the arts by subscribing to our newsletter, our blog and bookmarking our website.

Please take advantage of our Art for Life Podcasts – pick up some art tips, learn about our progress, and have a few laughs with us! We are beginning to find our voices again, after being knocked for quite a life loop!

Stay safe – be well, and we look forward to being with you again soon!