Miller IDS’ Featured March Artist

Miller courtney holder broken spokeThis month, our Featured Artist is Courtney Holder.  Courtney began oil painting at age 9, and it’s still her favorite medium, especially for personal pieces like our featured “Broken Spoke”. She believes “oils deliver a spectrum and depth of color and flexibility that’s hard to beat and that punch of color that really resonates with the neon colors and swirl of movement that permeate the music and dancing that takes center stage at places like the Broken Spoke”.

Courtney wants her paintings to tell a story – and this painting beautifully tells a story about a nostalgic place encrusted with emotions and memories that mean so much to generations of Austinites. The Spoke is one of the first places Courtney heard live music as a kid, and it’s where she later went boot scoot’n with her now husband. In her own words, “you may recognize some of the regulars in the painting; while the city grows with the new wave of hipsters and progressives, some Austin mainstays dig in their heels and refuse to change. When I drive by the Spoke on my way home, with all its character hanging out all over the place, and surrounded by shiny new towering apartments and lofts, all that rusted metal, dirt and neon glow the Spoke gives off just makes me smile. It’s good to see, that some stories never change.” You can enjoy more of Courtney’s artwork on her website.

Miller IDS’ February Featured Artist

Poppy Fields ForeverMiller IDS’s Featured Artist this month is Lynn Kessel. As a child, Lynn played with art extensively, encouraged by her artist father. However, college and a business career took her time and attention and it was twenty years later before she heard the call and took up a brush again.

Also changing career paths, Lynn returned to school for her Master’s degree and is now a Counselor working with at-risk youth in Williamson County, and has been instrumental in successfully infusing art into the program.

Lynn prefers watercolors and acrylics, primarily painting the flora and fauna she finds near her Georgetown home or on her travels. Her bright colors and tight focus bring the natural beauty of her subject directly to the observer. Her images appear on multiple gift items and her paintings are sold through the Artisans Connect Gallery in Georgetown and she exhibits her work annually at the Georgetown Red Poppy Festival in April.  Her website is

How a savvy businesswoman helped bring Antone’s back downtown

miller antone'sFrom today’s Austin Business Journal:

Thanks to the business and real estate matchmaking skills of Meredith Sanger at the Downtown Austin Alliance, the Antone’s blues club is settling into its new home.

Antone’s co-owner Will Bridges said the Alliance “is really under-credited” for finding appropriate real estate for local businesses in the tight and pricey downtown market.

Bridges and his partners, including musician Gary Clark Jr. and Susan Antone, had been looking long and hard for the right place to re-establish Antone’s, which had its genesis in 1975 when Clifford Antone opened the blues club at Sixth and Brazos streets in a former furniture warehouse. Over the years, the club moved several times.

The club’s cachet survived — greats such as B.B. King and Muddy Waters performed there — even when Clifford Antone served two prison terms stemming from drug trafficking and money laundering charges. He died in 2006 at age 56.

In subsequent years, the club operated at Fifth and Lavaca streets but moved to East Riverside Drive in 2013.

“We knew we had to represent Antone’s in the right way,” Bridges said. “We talked to a lot of people and made a lot of runs at a lot of places. We were looking for a needle in a haystack.”

Enter Sanger, who enjoys a challenge. She lured nationally lauded Houndstooth Coffee to a spot in the Frost Bank Tower and persuaded Portland, Oregon-based Voodoo Doughnuts to open its first Texas store on East Sixth Street.

“Will gave me an idea of where they wanted to be and I could tell that the Maxey’s building didn’t look like what he wanted — at least at first,” Sanger said. “But once he got in there he realized it was a hidden gem in downtown.”

Bridges expected it to be “all offices, but then we saw the beams and columns, I just knew that was the spot. Something with soul, great bones. It just spoke to us.” Additional information>>>

Miller IDS’ Featured Artist January 2016

Miller don collins noah cox house 600This month, we are especially proud to highlight the work of Don Collins, whose beautiful artwork has graced our annual calendar for each of the past 38 years! This decades-long process of calendar design began over coffee when Robert Lambie Miller expressed dissatisfaction with the commercial calendars then available, and suggested that Don do something on a more local level. The result was well received, hence the 38-year tradition. You may recognize the featured work “Noah Cox House, Roma, Texas” from the cover of our 2016 calendar.

Don has traveled the back roads and long-deserted main streets of Texas for years, searching for unique images reflecting a Texas that existed in the past. His inspired drawings and paintings breathe life back into the old homes, courthouses, shanties and industrial sites he finds.

Raised in rural Parker County, Don attended NTAC and Texas Tech before army service during the Korean conflict, completing his final year at UT Austin. Settling in Austin, Don was an active commercial/easel artist for 52 years, serving a broad array of clients, including architects, builders, NASA contractors, publishers, state agencies, and many others.  As a painter, he participated in scores of venues throughout the Southwest, initially depicting wildlife, and later broadening into character studies, landscapes, and historic/vernacular architecture.  Still active at a somewhat more relaxed pace, he welcomes commission work, and is at the board daily, doing art for the sheer pleasure of it.  Don has also co-authored the popular book, Traces of Forgotten Places: An Artist’s Thirty-Year Exploration and Celebration of Texas as It Was. Don has produced more than 300 works for our calendars, allowing us to share his passion for our state with our customers.  Additional work and contact information are available on his website.

Austin’s Creative industry growth loses ground to other cities, report says

Miller greetings-from-austin-texasFrom the Austin Business Journal:

Austin appears to be losing traction in growth of its creative industries to other U.S. metros, according to the latest report by renowned researcher Richard Florida.

In “The Winners and Losers of the U.S. Creative Class” article released Monday in The Atlantic CityLab blog, Florida notes that the percentage of workers employed in the creative industries dropped slightly in Austin in 2014 as a share of total workforce compared to 2000.

Places such as Las Vegas, Indianapolis, Portland, Salt Lake City and Baltimore saw the most rapid growth in the creative sector during that time perios, even if that percentage is still small relatively speaking.

In 2000, Austin rated No. 5 among largest metro areas for creative industry employees — 35 percent of the total economy. That number dropped to 34.1 percent in 2014 — a small amount but a large contrast to other places, even in the Rust Belt, which are attracting creative workforce with greater velocity.

Austin Business Journal previously wrote about the exodus of the creative class from Austin’s urban core— due in large part to the lack of affordable housing.

In Florida’s study, Austin now ranks No. 10 for creative industry employment. Raleigh, North Carolina, also has experienced a loss of creative class momentum in the past 14 years — down 4.3 percent compared to Austin’s 2.8 percent loss.

Texas overall did not fare well in the study. Houston, Dallas and San Antonio joined Austin for slowest growth in the creative work sector. Other also rans were Birmingham, Alabama; Orlando, Florida; New York; Pittsburgh and Philadelphia.


Brandon Lack Exhibiting in East Austin Studio Tour

"Tiny Bubbles" by Brandon Lack
“Tiny Bubbles” by Brandon Lack

Excited to see our Miller ISD September Featured Artist, Brandon Lack, exhibiting in this weekend’s East Austin Studio Tour at 1319 Rosewood! @eaststudiotour

We are proud support the tour and encourage you all to pick up a catalog of artists and a map to all exhibit spaces at any Austin public library – see you on the tour!

New Equipment in the House!

We’re very excited to announce that Miller IDS  is an authorized servicing reseller for Oki-Data small format products and Colortrac portable scanners!

OkI_C941e_6527869Miller IDS is now selling and servicing Oki-Data small format color printers and multifunction systems.  The Oki MC873dn series offers all the MFP productivity features you want, in a compact, environmentally friendly device.  The Oki C941e is a five color LED device that prints with CMYK plus White or Clear toner.  The C941e is an affordable printing device with breathtaking output, stunning detail and production speed up to 50 ppm in Color.

colortracWe are also offering the world’s first truly portable wide format scanner! The SmartLF Scan by Colortrac works like a digital camera, enabling you to scan to internal memory, USB, PC, network or cloud.  Portable and self-contained; just plug it in and scan, then download the images back at the office. Perfect for construction, engineering and architectural site work!

For more information, please contact:
Webb Fox
Phone: 512.200.6549

Miller IDS is happy to support the East Austin Studio Tour!

East Austin Studio Tour - Big MediumAs Miller IDS produces print and fine art reproduction work for many local artists, we are proud to support both Big Medium’s 2015 East Austin Studio Tour and the associated Due East fundraiser, as well as last season’s West Austin Studio Tour. Austin has so many talented artists and artisans creating fine work and we are happy to help them showcase their art.

This year’s East Tour is happening over two weekends, November 14/15 and 21/22, so you have plenty of opportunities to participate. It’s a free, self-guided event and you can pick up a catalog and map at any Austin Public Library starting November 9th.

Our Featured Artist of the month, Flip Solomon, will be showing her work at the Canopy creative work space and studio on the tour – we hope you stop by to see her!

November’s Featured Miller IDS Artist

2 foxes combined flat clean black crop 2This month, we are focusing on Flip Solomon, an Austin artist of many dimensions. Classically trained in graphite, she now works in pen and ink, acrylic, watercolor, batik process, jewelry and embroidery.

Flip was raised in New England, and received early artistic training at Hartford Art School and Massachusetts College of Art and Design, before finishing her degree at the University of Texas. Her interests in anthropology and travel are apparent in her art, as much of her work focuses on other cultures and both human and animal anatomy.

Flip currently works and shows in Canopy, an East Austin creative space. Her work, as well as that of the other artists sharing the space, will be a part of the East Austin Studio Tour.

Dreams are Flip’s primary inspiration for her art. Afflicted with narcolepsy, she has frequent REM cycles both day and night, which allow her to dream more than most people. She has trained herself to draw in dream states, which not only helps to ground her, but produces beautiful and deeply personal art. The “Fennec Foxes” featured here was inspired by her late mother, for whom fennec (desert) foxes served as a spirit animal.

You can view and purchase more of Flip’s creativity on her website, but we encourage you to visit Canopy on the East Austin Studio Tour and to drop by either Miller IDS location to see the ‘Fennec Foxes” print.