Creativity and Community

by Mark Stash

If you don’t already know this about me, art and creativity are near and dear to my heart. I believe that the desire to express yourself in these ways can have a powerful impact on the local community and even the world.

Enter the doors of ArtisanWorks (page 32) in Rochester and you will be in a for a world of over-stimulation. The place exudes creativity and art and everything else imaginable that’s visually stimulating. Founders Louis Perticone and Kimberly Trenholm have put together a collection of memorabilia that is numbered at more than 500,000 pieces at the moment. In the early 2000s they took over an old manufacturing facility and it has grown to fill the space to its present day size.

Louis started his collection in his late teens, and Kimberly has kept everything organized. ArtisanWorks has become a Rochester destination for visitors near and far. The local art community has partially been funded by the organization by purchasing their artwork. This has only added to the culture and experience in this Upstate community.

Who knew that a few simple shapes and colors can give us the likeness of a person (page 10). Caricature artist David Cowles has done just that. His work has appeared in Time, The New York Timesand People magazines. He was first influenced by the whimsical illustrations in MAD Magazine. Through a 40-year career, David has influenced entire generations with his art.

Creativity comes in all forms of media. Musician Claudia Hoyser started out just singing for fun in her hometown of Fairport (page 44). Now, she’s turned that talent into a full-blown musical career, and building upon that, she’s also a major social media influencer and is involved in her own brands of coffee and whiskey. Claudia covers many country favorites, along with a few of her own songs. I have seen the joy she brings to crowds, including a time where she started singing John Denver’s “Take Me Home, Country Roads,” and the entire bar broke out in song along with her. That’s spontaneous and genuine joy that she brought out in people that night.

This magazine is another form of expressing creativity, through the work of talented writers, illustrators and photographers. We sincerely hope this issue brings you joy and an appreciation for the wonderful Finger Lakes community.


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