Peaceful Night

Peaceful Night
Peaceful Night

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“PEACEFUL NIGHT” is an original acrylic painting by Melfred Teller, resident of the Natural State, Arkansas. Melfred was born with ROP or Retinopathy of Prematurity. He is blind in his left eye and almost in his right. Melfred is a Native American from the Navajo tribe. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Melfred Teller for THASC Sales Co. which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork
“PEACEFUL NIGHT” is an original acrylic painting by Melfred Teller, resident of the Natural State, Arkansas. Melfred was born with ROP or Retinopathy of Prematurity. He is blind in his left eye and almost in his right. Melfred is a Native American from the Navajo tribe. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Melfred Teller for THASC Sales Co. which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.

I suppose that I was born with wolves in my blood (my father was of Roman descent) if there were any credence to the legend of Romulus and Remus. For those of you who are not acquainted with the legend, it goes like this. Romulus and Remus were twin brothers who were abandoned as babies and put into a basket that was then placed into the Tiber River. When the basket was stranded at the side of the river, it was said that the twins were discovered by a she-wolf and the wolf nursed the babies.

Statuette of she-wolf with Romulus and Remus
Statuette of she-wolf with Romulus and Remus

When Romulus and Remus became adults, they decided to found a city in the same spot where they had been found by the she-wolf. After quarrelling over the site, Romulus killed his brother Remus and as the sole remaining founder of the city, he named it Rome. This legend is exactly that, a legend. Yet in the Piazza of the Campidoglio in Rome, at the top of a pillar, you will still find this statue.

white Arctic wolf
white Arctic wolf

Let me tell you about some interesting facts about wolves, and then we’ll talk about their domestic counterparts, our dogs. Wolves are 10 times more intelligent than the smartest dogs and are the largest of the dog family, with adult males weighing between 95-100 lbs. The jaw pressure of a wolf is two times the jaw pressure of a German Shepherd. They even resemble German Shepherds but their legs are longer, their feet are bigger and their fangs can grow up to 2” which makes it easy to rip apart their prey like deer or elk. They can see and smell a deer from more than a mile away. Wolves can eat up to 20 lbs at once but many die of starvation, (feast or famine), because of the lack of food in the wilderness. THASC artist Manfred Teller’s wolves in his painting are most likely arctic wolves which inhabit the far north. Adult wolves like these have the ability to adjust their body temperature to adapt to changes in the weather. In extreme cold weather, wolves can restrict the flow of blood to the skin to conserve heat. They have both a fur coat and a thick undercoat, and the overcoat is long and thick.

20151014_143357-1Most wolves are gray. Today about 50,000 gray wolves inhabit Canada, while Alaska has 10,000, and the rest of the United States has less than 1,300. They also live in China and Russia. Wolves spend 8-10 hours on the move and can run up to 35 mph. Let’s talk a bit about why wolves howl and their association with the moon. The truth is that wolves (Canis lupis) don’t howl at the moon. Scientists have found no correlation whatsoever, so then, what do they howl at? A wide range of theories has been identified: First, wolves pipe up a lot during the night because they are nocturnal. They howl to assemble their pack (wolves live and hunt in packs of about 6-10 animals), to greet each other, to identify their location, to attract a mate, to scare off enemies or simply howl when they wake up… like when we yawn in the morning, or simply because of the “lonesome wolf” cry. A compelling theory here is that howling reaches a peak in the winter months, during the time of courtship and breeding. This certainly seems to be the case in Teller’s “PEACEFUL NIGHT”.

So where does the moon come from? Some think that this whole moon-howling rumor stems from Native American art and mythology. For example, The Native American Seneca tribes believe that a wolf sung the moon into existence. And now we’ll talk about some of the differences between wolves and man’s best friend, the dog. The first thing you notice about a wolf is its piercing yellow eyes. Most dogs have brown eyes or sometimes blue. Wolves’ heads are larger because their brains are larger and therefore are more intelligent.. We know the dog is a domesticated form of the gray wolf and dogs are seen in any place that is inhabited by people. Because dogs are domesticated, they have a weaker basic instinct to hunt. Wolves hunt in packs and have stronger molars than dogs, allowing them to rip open their prey’s throat or to crush large bones. Dogs need exercise like a daily walk. Wolves walk all day, every day. The paw of a dog is half the size of a wolf’s. Dogs are affectionate if taken care of, but wolves are wild animals and should not be bothered for affection. Dogs always live near humans, even if they are ownerless. Wolves love to live in packs away from civilization.

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Last year about this time, I went to the Mohawk Trail up north and stopped in a souvenir shop. I was immediately drawn to a box with wolves painted on top. Since seeing the movie Dances with Wolves back in 1990, with Kevin Costner and that dear little wolf “Two Socks”, I have been fascinated with these mysterious animals and, with Hallowe’en coming around the corner, I still like to believe they are howling at the moon!

Have a great weekend and remember all of our greeting cards and pocket calendars are available for purchase at www.thasc.com

-Maria

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Two Socks & “Dances with Wolves”

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Red Apple

Red Apple
Red Apple

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“RED APPLE” is an original oil painting by William Evans, resident of the peach state, Georgia. William suffers from Essential Tremors, a complex neurological movement disorder. He loves to paint southern rural landscapes. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by William Evans for THASC Sales Co. which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.
“RED APPLE” is an original oil painting by William Evans, resident of the Peach State, Georgia. William suffers from Essential Tremors, a complex neurological movement disorder. He loves to paint southern rural landscapes. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by William Evans for THASC Sales Co. which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.

When the air begins to feel crisp we are reminded that Fall is upon us, and that can only mean its apple picking time! It is also the time for the other related goodies to America’s second most valuable fruit (after oranges) to come along as well: apple cider, apple pie, and apple turnovers, just to name e few. I can’t wait to taste them all as soon as the season rolls around. Many local orchards are open for picking apples as well as taking hay rides, getting lost in a corn maze, and in some places, trying apple doughnuts!

Red Delicious apples
Red Delicious apples

With all that is going on in THASC artist William Evans’ painting “RED APPLE”, from the lovely vase to the colorful ferns and mushroom ornaments to the black and white checkered scarf, the focus is still drawn to the simple red delicious apple perfectly placed at the base of the left side of the vase. That is what he wants us to see the most amidst his extravagant background: the basic fruit of life. It invites us to take that first succulent bite! The red delicious variety is my favorite type as depicted above. Did you know it is the most widely grown variety in the U.S. with 62 million bushels harvested in 2005?

Here are ten other interesting facts about apples that might interest you:

  1. Two pounds of apples makes one 9” pie.
  2. 2,500 varieties are grown in the U.S. while 7,500 varieties are grown throughout the world.
  3. Apples are fat, sodium and cholesterol free.
  4. The pilgrims planted the first United States apple trees in the Massachusetts Bay Colony.
  5. Most apples are still picked by hand in the fall.
  6. 20151005_123837-1-1World’s top apple producers are China, United States, Turkey, Poland and Italy.
  7. Archeologists have found evidence that humans have been enjoying apples since at least 6500 BC.
  8. It takes about 36 apples to create 1 gallon of apple cider.
  9. Don’t peel your apple. Two-thirds of the fiber and lots of antioxidants are found in the peel.
  10. The old saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” comes from an old English adage: “To eat an apple before going to bed, will make the doctor beg his bread.”

William Evans gives us a wonderful inspiration through his painting for the consumption of apples. You can order his cards and many others at www.thasc.com and you can join me every Tuesday and Thursday for a new blog at http://www.preciousartbypreciouspeople.org

Please take a minute to comment on the blog after reading, I enjoy hearing from you.

Have a pleasant holiday weekend and how about trying some apple picking for a change!

See you next Tuesday, October 13, 2015.

-Maria

THASC is a unique small American business producing cards and other promotional products.
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South Pole Day Care

South Pole Day Care
South Pole Day Care

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“South Pole Day Care” is an original watercolor painting by Marlene Schwartz, resident of the Garden State, New Jersey. Marlene was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 1980. Marlene loves creating art and usually paints shore birds and other wildlife. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Marlene Schwartz for THASC Sales Co. which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their work.
“South Pole Day Care” is an original watercolor painting by Marlene Schwartz, resident of the Garden State, New Jersey. Marlene was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 1980. Marlene loves creating art and usually paints shore birds and other wildlife. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Marlene Schwartz for THASC Sales Co. which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their work.

After seeing a program on PBS’s Nature series on how penguins stay warm, Marlene’s greeting card has given new meaning to the word “huddle”. The only other place I hear this word regularly is when I watch football. Emperor penguins are like no other penguins, even though there are others of different shapes and sizes who don’t even live in Antarctica but in other

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Emperor penguin huddle

places like Madagascar and the Galapagos Islands. Did you know that larger penguin species like the Emperor are found in colder climates while smaller ones are found in warmer climates? One has to wonder, when temperatures reach 40 below zero, isn’t there a point where even Emperor penguins get cold? The answer is yes and the way they handle it is even more phenomenal. Huddling for them is a matter of life and death. Collective movements rather than individual ones are a necessity. The penguins on the outside row are reshuffled to the center without a single one getting crushed! The secret is they move very slowly without changing their position and do not use force in or out of the huddle.

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Emperor penguin chicks

Marlene Schwartz’s watercolor painting is so accurately detailed that it could easily be a photograph. Penguins are flightless and she shows their distinct tuxedo-like appearance which helps keep them safe in the water where they catch their food. Their young are raised, however, on land. Each penguin has a distinguishing call allowing them to find their mates and their chicks in large groups. The female Emperor lays one egg during spring and summer but it is the male who covers it with his brood pouch with which he keeps the egg warm for 65 days through icy cold temperatures. After about 2 months, the chicks are hatched and the mother returns from her fishing session at sea with food for the newly hatched chicks. In her painting, Marlene shows you the large penguin with the newly hatched chick in the brood pouch. The males now leave for their session at sea while the female takes over caring for them.20150916_165239-1Both male and female Emperor penguins take very good care of their young and procure anything they need. This comes across to us immediately in Marlene’s watercolor. We can learn a lot from these social aquatic birds. Knowing that their lifespan is about 20 years it is pretty safe to say that these creatures will be around for a long time.

Thank you, Marlene, for your amazing depiction!

See you on Tuesday! Have a great weekend!
-Maria

THASC is a unique small American business producing cards & other promotional products.
www.thasc.com

Liberty

Liberty
Liberty

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“LIBERTY” is an original acrylic painting by Donna Cushman, resident of the Constitution State, Connecticut. Donna is a Quadriplegic, and she paints with a brush in her mouth. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Donna Cushman for THASC Sales Co. which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.
“LIBERTY” is an original acrylic painting by Donna Cushman, resident of the Constitution State, Connecticut. Donna is a Quadriplegic, and she paints with a brush in her mouth. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Donna Cushman for THASC Sales Co. which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.
People magazine, November 28,1988
People magazine, November 28,1988

The years following President John F. Kennedy’s assassination in 1963, everyone seemed to ask, “Where were you when Kennedy was shot?” Decades later most people of that generation can still answer that with precisely the place and the time and what they were doing. I was crossing the Quadrangle at URI’s campus heading up a stairway to my next class after lunch, when a friend grabbed my arm and asked me if I knew. A nightmare of my baby boomer generation was about to take place.

On September 11, 2001, this generation was about to witness its own nightmare: the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City, the Pentagon in Washington, DC and a fourth plane, which crashed in a field in Pennsylvania. The decade following 9/11 was identified by its own question. “Where were you on 9/11?” I was ironically on my way to New York City to celebrate my sister’s birthday with her and my nephew. I was to leave that day at noon. Instead the world stopped and I never went back to New York until this summer, 14 years later, to visit Ground Zero.

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Ground Zero, August, 2015

I felt mixed emotions: anger, peace, comfort and immeasurable pain, like a wound that never heals. THASC artist Donna Cushman’s acrylic painting of “LIBERTY” was painted also in that fateful year, 2001. In her powerful depiction of the strong Liberty Bell and the determined glare in the eye of our bald eagle, she clearly reminds us of the strength that prevails in all of us, despite horror and tragedy, to carry on. The skies are blue again and her red banner speaks clearly that we are forever free.

Professor Constance M. Greiff wrote of the Liberty Bell that with its crack, it is “irreparably damaged…but perhaps that is part of its mystical appeal…” She goes on to say. “Like our democracy, it is fragile and imperfect, but it has weathered threats, and it has endured.”

I will be thinking of that freedom tomorrow together with all of you. Thank you, Donna.

Have a pleasant weekend. See you on Tuesday.

-Maria

THASC is a unique small American business producing cards and other promotional products.
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Father and Daughter

Father and Daughter
Father and Daughter

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“FATHER AND DAUGHTER” is an original color pencil drawing by Mark Cooper, resident of the Centennial State, Colorado. Mark was born with Alport Syndrome, a disease that affects the kidneys. The disease also affects his hearing and eyesight. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Mark Cooper for THASC Sales Co., which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.
“FATHER AND DAUGHTER” is an original color pencil drawing by Mark Cooper, resident of the Centennial State, Colorado. Mark was born with Alport Syndrome, a disease that affects the kidneys. The disease also affects his hearing and eyesight. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Mark Cooper for THASC Sales Co., which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.

Fittingly on Labor Day I am thinking of a tireless man that spent every waking hour supporting his family by working multiple jobs just so he could have Sundays to spend the whole day with us. He loved playing golf, but would play at 6:30 Sunday mornings so he would be back home in time for church and dinner with the family. I treasured my time with my Dad and especially the time we had alone. He was an intelligent and generous man and taught me many things. He passed his beautiful handwriting on to me and educated me. Growing up my dad always took the responsibility of teaching us about the “birds and the bees”. When it was my turn, he took me into the living room and opened up the biology book.

Dad and me napping
Dad and me napping

I learned how to cook from him and he gave me my love and passion for the beach. As a child (and still today) I had terrible allergies in summer so my Dad brought the family to a summer cottage on the shore where I could collect shells, swim with my brother and sister, dig for quahogs and investigate the urchins in the sea. In the late afternoons we would nap in the hammock together with my Howdy Doody doll.

THASC artist Mark Cooper’s drawing brings me back to the water and the summer walks with my father at my uncle’s camp. Frequently we would see dragonflies which are often found near the water. Mark accentuates the dragonfly in his drawing, reminding us that they are symbols of happiness, courage, and strength, all qualities which my Dad possessed.

In Japan as a seasonal symbol, the dragonfly is associated with autumn and often appears in art. My nephew has a Tiffany dragonfly lamp and, using beach glass, my niece designed a window in her home in the shape of a dragonfly. I was also sent lovely flowers with a beautiful silk dragonfly in the middle of them.

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Tiffany dragonfly lamp and artificial silk dragonfly

My father would remember my favorite pastry was a jelly donut and my favorite ice-cream flavor was chocolate and made sure on Sundays in Lent, when we were allowed to break our fast, he would bring me one. He gave me dollars for “A’s” on my report card, but was terrified when I told him I was going to study in Florence, Italy, for my Master’s. He wrote me endlessly. I’ll never forget how proud he was standing by my side at graduation.

Dad with his older daughter Sara
Dad with his older daughter Sara

Mark Cooper’s drawing of “Father and Daughter” is presented in the “circle of life” to me, beginning my formative years with a special man, on a walk in nature. Though I lost him far too young, that circle never ends. The dragonfly remains.

See you all on Thursday when we remember our freedom once again!

-Maria

THASC is a unique small American business producing cards and other promotional products.
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Summer Afternoon

Summer Afternoon

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“Summer Afternoon” is an original oil painting by Carol Marquardt, resident of the Evergreen State, Washington. Carol is a Quadriplegic from a gun shot accident at age 13. Carol paints with a brush held in her mouth and enjoys spending time with her family, painting and reading.
“Summer Afternoon” is an original oil painting by Carol Marquardt, resident of the Evergreen State, Washington. Carol is a Quadriplegic from a gun shot accident at age 13. Carol paints with a brush held in her mouth and enjoys spending time with her family, painting and reading. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Carol Marquardt for THASC Sales Co. which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.

20150901_161645Although most of us “four-season people” try hard to avoid the inevitable of summer coming to an end, there are some signs that finally bring us to the realization that summer is really fading and fall is near. THASC artist Carol Marquardt hints at some of those things that we dread to admit are starting to happen, but at the same time, tells us there is still more time to enjoy it. The trees are starting to shed their leaves and some branches look more like twigs now, as Carol shows in her painting. I must say my yellow dried-up lawn, which has suffered from an especially hot summer, has begun to look more like a hay field as well.

Rose of Sharon trees
Rose of Sharon trees

Her sole basket of flowers reminds me of how I wait until late summer to see my delicate roses of Sharon. They are the last flowers to bloom but are still accompanied by a very green pine tree in the back yard and some greener holly bushes in the front yard. The summer beach days are not ready to give in to Fall just yet. In fact my favorite time to visit and walk the beach is in late afternoon, when most of the crowds have dwindled and only the serious beachgoers are still lingering in the sunset on their lounges or throwing the last crumbs of their lunches to the patient seagulls.

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Sand Hill Cove Beach at sunset

Carol’s gray watering can has not lost it’s purpose yet and looks lovely sitting on the patio (with the matching gray grout) where it is ready to revive the nearby flowers, even though at this point, hope is lost for the dried grass. Carol’s painting of “Summer Afternoon” reminds me that there is still time to warm my skin in the sun, still time to water and enjoy the last summer roses of Sharon, and still time to walk the coastal beaches at sunset.

Although I dislike admitting it, I actually DO get a bit anxious for the arrival of Fall’s Fashion Show, but until that time, Carol’s painting keeps me in my favorite season, summer, with her wonderful THASC greeting card. I hope you all have a delightful end to summer and enjoy these last days. Wishing you a pleasant Labor Day weekend. See you next Tuesday.

-Maria

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THASC is a unique small American business producing cards and other promotional products.
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Red Brick House

Red Brick House
Red Brick House

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“RED BRICK HOUSE” is an original watercolor painting by Lori Schmitt, resident of the Wolverine State, Michigan. Lori was born with Arthrogryposis, a limitation in the range of motion of a joint. Lori has a great passion to create her artwork and paints with a brush held in her mouth. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Lori Schmitt for THASC Sales Co. which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.
“RED BRICK HOUSE” is an original watercolor painting by Lori Schmitt, resident of the Wolverine State, Michigan. Lori was born with Arthrogryposis, a limitation in the range of motion of a joint. Lori has a great passion to create her artwork and paints with a brush held in her mouth. This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Lori Schmitt for THASC Sales Co. which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.

The stunning beauty and eloquence in Lori Schmitt’s Red Brick House immediately takes me back to the spectacular mansions on Bellevue Avenue in Newport, RI., that I just visited last week with my family from Sicily. Like me, many of you who have been drawn to see this gorgeous ten-mile drive along the Atlantic Ocean, probably fantasize about occupying one of these residences even for a day. Lori strikingly accentuates the tall chimney and the front of her beautiful brick house by the use of a vivid red watercolor to draw attention to the same brick which is also very much a part of the mansions in Newport with their peaks, turrets, towers and multiple chimneys. The blue skies and manicured greenery in her painting are remnant of the perfect landscaping that surrounded each mansion, much like Doris Duke’s famous gardens at Rough Point.

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Kingscote Mansion

One such mansion that comes to mind when I see Lori’s painting is Kingscote, built in 1839 by a Southern plantation owner, George Noble Jones. It marked the beginning of the “cottage boom” and set the path as the first Newport summer mansion which stretched throughout the 19th century. These mansions and their residents made Newport equivalent to wealth and leisure in the early 20th century.

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The Breakers, Chateau-sur-Mer, The Elms, Kingscote and the Marble House are among some of the buildings which have been listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Kingscote is an unusual example of a landscape and residence preserved untouched with original collections belonging to the family. It is open seasonally for tours.

Would you ever like to live in one of those colossal homes on Bellevue Avenue? When you look at homes like Lori’s “Red Brick House”, don’t you wonder how many rooms there might be and how big they are? Would you like to sail a yacht and play tennis during the day for six weeks in summer? Do you ever wonder what it was like to grab a top hat and a fancy gown and attend an extravagant party with the elite families named Vanderbilt, Astor and Morgan with a full staff taking care of your every whim?

I’d be lying if I said I wouldn’t but I can look at Lori’s painting and have it take me there anytime I’d like to dream!

Pleasant dreams and have a nice weekend.

See you Tuesday!
-Maria

The Breakers
“The Breakers” Newport, Rhode Island

THASC is a unique small American business producing cards and other promotional products.
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Zebra

Zebra
Zebra

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“ZEBRA” is an original batik fabric painting by Christina Gray, resident of the Pelican State, Louisiana. Christina contracted polio at the age of two that left both her arms paralyzed. Christina now has the partial use of her right hand and arm from surgery. In the early nineties, Christina returned to University and obtained two Bachelor degrees and a Master’s in Fine Arts.
“ZEBRA” is an original batik fabric painting by Christina Gray, resident of the Pelican State, Louisiana. Christina contracted polio at the age of two that left both her arms paralyzed. Christina now has the partial use of her right hand and arm from surgery. In the early nineties, Christina returned to University and obtained two Bachelor degrees and a Master’s in Fine Arts.

This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Christina Gray for THASC Sales Co. which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.

Christina Gray’s fiery design “Zebra” displays still another medium used by a Thasc artist: batik fabric painting. In this composition one gets lost in the beautiful maze of such a gracious animal while the bright red and yellow colors
accentuate the unique distinction the zebra has in the equestrian world. As humans have fingerprints, zebras have stripes whose pattern is unique to each zebra.

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Indonesia, especially the island of Java (where all of the materials are easily available including cotton, beeswax and vegetable dyes), is the area where batik has attained its greatest peak of development. Very often batik is decorated with trees, animals and hunting scenes typically using a bright red color, called chicken blood red.

The closeness of the animals in Christina’s design actually depicts the reality of the life of the zebra. They are highly social and usually form family groups made up of
a single stallion, several mares and their recent offspring. Groups are permanent and they sleep standing up, much like on her fabric design. They sleep only when other animals are around to warn them of predators, among which also include cheetahs, hyenas, crocodiles and humans. Christina’s use of the maze I believe shows that the vertical stripes of the zebra serve as a camouflage which helps the zebra hide in the grass and thus becomes effective against the zebra’s main predator, the carnivorous African lion, which is color blind, and sees only a blob in the grass if the zebra is with a herd.

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Family group of zebras

Until recently batik was made only for dresses and other garments, but modern batik is used in various items such as Christina’s batik fabric painting, wall hangings and scarves which have a lively, bright pattern. I’m sure if you dig into your bureau drawer or your closet, you’d be sure to find something like mine here:

Red batik scarf with floral pattern
Red batik scarf with floral pattern

As I continue to explore the work of our THASC artists I become more amazed and excited at the diversity and complexity of their talent. Christina Gray’s fabric painting has me yearning to run to my favorite fabric shop and have this design made into a great Fall dress!

See you on Thursday when we explore still another exhilarating THASC artist. Remember all of these greeting cards and calendars are available at www.thasc.com

Ciao!

-Maria

THASC is a unique small American business producing cards and other promotional products.
www.thasc.com

Day-Glow Skyline

Day-Glow Skyline
Day-Glow Skyline

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“Day-Glow Skyline” is an original watercolor painting by Robert Mauro, resident of the Empire State, New York. In 1951, Robert contracted Polio and has been painting since 1968. Robert is dependent on a wheel chair and can only paint for about 20 minutes at a time, so he creates his art in stages.
“Day-Glow Skyline” is an original watercolor painting by Robert Mauro, resident of the Empire State, New York. In 1951, Robert contracted Polio and has been painting since 1968. Robert is dependent on a wheel chair and can only paint for about 20 minutes at a time, so he creates his art in stages.

This greeting card was reproduced from an original artwork by Robert Mauro for THASC Sales. Co. which has employed a unique number of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.

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For me, there is no other city that has a skyline like New York. I love the way Robert Mauro lights up his city with the glow of the moonlight and keeps it “The city that never sleeps.” The last time I was to go to New York City was tragically on September 11, 2001. We were to celebrate my sister’s 60th birthday, but it was never to be. The lights went out on Broadway.

After fourteen years I am going back to New York. This time I plan to visit Ground Zero and pay my respects. It will be a very emotional trip for me. My sister is no longer with me, but my cousins from Sicily are, so part of the excitement is still with me. In fact, we are leaving today, July 23, 2015, and in addition to seeing the wonderful things that New York symbolizes for our country, like the Statue of Liberty, we are also going back to Broadway. So as you read this blog, we will be visiting this magical city and getting ready to see “Aladdin” on W. 42nd Street.

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There are so many things that I am in love with in New York, but Robert Mauro’s bright colorful watercolor makes me continually think of the excitement of New York’s night life, particularly in Manhattan. Nothing can stop this wonderful City from drawing us into “being a part of it, New York, New York!“

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I personally prefer musicals and comedy to drama, but there is nothing really that can hinder me from seeing live theatre no matter what the theme. In fact, I always secretly wanted to act. I suppose I did everyday in a way in my own classroom. They say teachers are always “on stage!” Since the universal language is music, I always incorporated pop Italian music in my lessons, wondering how quickly kids learn the words…even if they aren’t sure what they are saying, they certainly can sing the songs!

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I’d love to read your comments on what your favorite things to do in New York are. I could never leave out the many museums, sky-scrapers, Cathedrals, temples, restaurants, neighborhoods, opera houses, hotels, stores, parks, TV shows, entertainment, fashion, monuments and on and on. For me that famous skyline has no equal and THASC artist Robert Mauro doesn’t let us forget it with his pink, orange, blue, green and yellow buildings along the Hudson River.

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I hope you all get to New York and Broadway at least once in your lifetime and if not soon, put them on your bucket list.

See you in late August!

-Maria

THASC is a unique small American business producing cards and other promotional products.
www.thasc.com

Cat Bed

Cat Bed
Cat Bed

By:

“CAT BED” is an original pen and ink drawing by Gary Lapelle, resident of the Mountain State, West Virginia. Gary contracted polio at the age of three that left him paralyzed from the neck down. Gary is now able to walk and has the partial use of his right hand and arm from surgery and rehabilitation.
“CAT BED” is an original pen and ink drawing by Gary Lapelle, resident of the Mountain State, West Virginia. Gary contracted polio at the age of three that left him paralyzed from the neck down. Gary is now able to walk and has the partial use of his right hand and arm from surgery and rehabilitation. This greeting card was reproduced from the original drawing for THASC Sales Co., which has employed a unique group of handicapped artists who create art to help rehabilitate themselves. They gain self-respect and pride through their artwork.

When I see paintings of cats, it is so easy for me to think happy thoughts, as cats have always been my pets of choice. That is, they are the domesticated pets I’ve personally chosen to cohabitate with. We always had dogs as children, but once I lived on my own, I chose cats. Actually my first cat, Tesoro, which is the Italian word for “Treasure” or “Darling”, lived almost 20 years and was so difficult for me to say goodbye to, that I didn’t get another cat for a long time, a VERY long time, almost 20 years later. Her name is “Sofia” as in “Loren”. The classic beauty, the dramatic poses….they are all there.

20150717_163947Gary Lapelle’s painting reminds me of her charismatic personality, although Sofia’s colors pale to those of Gary’s. I wonder if he’s had as much success with his cat actually sleeping in her cat bed as I. In fact I’ve had practically none. As you can see from my photo below, her bed has become a haven for her countless number of toys rather than herself.

Even though cats literally sleep their lives away, I don’t remember one time that I’ve actually seen her sleep in her bed. She really preferred much more to sleep in her perch when she was a kitten and even as she grew older. Now at almost 4 years old Sofia sleeps either on top of my legs or draped right beside me on my bed.

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Do you know how much cats sleep all day? They sleep an average of 15-20 hours a day.
The reason is that cats become active around twilight. I can verify that, as Sofia jumps on my head every morning about 4-5am to wake me for breakfast. After that they wind down for a long day of sleep. Cats are still predators but give chase and hunt mainly at night, but even housecats still retain that wild streak. Kittens and older cats tend to sleep more than the average adult cat.

Just like us, it should come as no surprise that cats are affected by weather and like to sleep more on rainy or cold days. I know many cats, like Sofia, who adjust her sleep patterns to feeding schedules. I almost get the sense that THASC artist Gary Lapelle’s CAT in “CAT BED” is anxiously waiting for her bowl to be filled too! Just look at those big, green yearning eyes!

I hope you all find time for a “catnap” during your busy day. I’ll see you on Thursday and then I’m off on vacation until August 17. In the meanwhile please continue to read our blogs for some scrumptious treats and sweets on our blog: http://www.preciousartbypreciouspeople.org Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday.

See you at the end of summer!

-Maria

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Sofia caught in her cat bed!

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THASC is a unique small American business producing cards and other promotional products.
www.thasc.com