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Thought Provokers: Balboa Park & Hillcrest

San Diego has always had an artistic soul.  The culture and heritage of our city, like most great cities, owes a tremendous debt to the arts community.  Supporting local art is something we care deeply about and we’d like to do everything we can to help the local arts community thrive.  Unfortunately, too often media attention is monopolized by corporate interests and tabloid gossip – but culture doesn’t come from a focus on celebrity breakups it comes from a focus on the arts.

Below, you’ll find some incredible artists and creative professionals from in and around Balboa Park & Hillcrest that we hope you will check out, follow and support.

Samantha Hale

I am a big believer that comedy is tragedy plus time. As a writer, I like to tackle dark subjects and try to find the funny. Well, I just recently lost my mom to cancer, and I still tear up just writing that. Seeing those words. Mom. Cancer. Lost. But I started writing about it. Read more>>

Kaitlyn Alfaro

I started selling my paintings to friends and family through social media. It gave me such a warm feeling knowing that someone enjoyed this part of me enough to hang it on their walls and give it to their friends as gifts. Read more>>

Aaron Aranda, Richard Aranda, Austin Denison and Christopher Wentz

Our main logo is skeleton hands holding flowers that were created by Aaron’s twin sister Natalie Aranda. The artwork’s juxtaposition of living flowers in dead hands represents the band’s process of creating something new against all odds. Read more>>

Deb Gargula

A painting class with my son was my introduction back onto my artist path. Although my first painting in 20 years was no masterpiece, I was encouraged that all of those experiences and previous lessons were still within and I made a commitment to reignite this part of me. Read more>>

Raechel Denise

I use my mom’s film camera. There was an event I was shooting, and I captured this great candid of one of my classmates with whip cream all over his face. I still remember it clearly till this day. It ended up being blown up and framed and hung at school and landed on one of the front pages of the yearbook. Read more>>

Kathleen Conover

Focusing on Watermedia over the next few years, I traveled to study with the masters and heroes in my field and painted, painted, painted! Techniques, history, communication, etc. can be taught academically, but an artist must put their time in at the easel to truly learn their craft, find their voice and travel their personal journey. Read more>>

Chris Stell

Then I discovered advertising art in college and found a great way to use my creative skills, drawing ability and ideas for an adventure that has spanned over 45 years in San Diego. I was a graphic designer way before computers all art was done by hand Read more>>

Steven Galle

For the last two years, I have attended a music festival called Lightning in a Bottle, and my favorite part about the festival is how everyone contributes something to the experience. Some people are amazing dancers, some spin fire, and some people just bring their awesome energy. Read more>>

Heather Rosso

I was always on a hunt for unique, beautifully crafted pieces of jewelry. Once I started to travel abroad, I took a fascination to the different styles and techniques of various cultures. It was such a fun adventure finding pieces of jewelry in various countries and then sharing the stories about those treasures. Read more>>

Ruth Fromstein

I’ve had a close relationship with art since picking up a brush and canvas while a child in small-town Wisconsin. One of my favorite childhood memories was when my father took me to the only local art store (Sherwin Williams) and simply said: “pick something out.” The dilemma of choice has stuck with me all these days and is perhaps the reason why my art takes inspiration from such a variety of styles and techniques. Read more>>

Birky Greene

I decided to become an artist as a 6th grader living in Colorado Springs. At that time I had my own struggles emotionally and academically, and art was and is the way I worked through them. I’m not sure I would have made it through school if not for art. The next year my family moved to Maine.  Read more>>

Vicky DeLong

While living in Naples, Italy from 1983 through 1987, I had the opportunity to study at the Instituto della Porcellana e della Ceramica located on the grounds of the Royal Palace of Capodimonte. From the Italian masters of the institute, I learned ceramic techniques, including creating the many types of flowers and leaves in the Capodimonte style, a tradition that dates back to the early 1700’s. Read more>>

Matt Smith

I was fascinated by electronic music, rock, and the idea that a performance isn’t necessarily meant to be a fixed, static masterpiece – rather, it can be a window in time through which the performer and audience alike can shift their point of regarding slightly and cast the work in question in a new light, changing it is it is rediscovered. This is actually the origin of the name “Iridas,” from Terence McKenna’s suggestion that consciousness is “an iridescence upon the matter.” Read more>>

 

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