Christy started her career in art as a children’s book illustrator and was the illustrator chair for the Austin chapter of SCBWI (Society of Children’s Books Writers and Illustrators) for 10 years. She has several published titles and was chosen to illustrate the 2011 Texas Teens Read! program funded by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission. Her Illustrations turned to fine art with her Succulent Series. The paintings began as an homage to El Paso, the city where she grew up. Currently, Christy is working on a Grackle Series (a bird found locally) as well as an Austin Series, a love letter from the artist’s perspective. Christy works in watercolor, ink, acrylic, and oil.
Congrats to our former Miller IDS employee Natalie Sideserf and her husband Dave for landing their own Food Network show, called Texas Cake House!!
Natalie makes truly unique, amazing cakes that you have to see to believe. After launching Sideserf Cake Studio in 2013, they have gotten lots of attention.
And to think, we knew them when! Thanks to them, we can all eat cake!
Paintings pictured to the left are: “Our Courtyard,” the fountain at Westminster, home to Tom and Janice; and the Central Presbyterian Church chancel, completed in November and Tom’s final painting. As our featured artist, a print of “Our Courtyard” is on display through January at both Miller IDS locations.
Our featured artist this month is the very special Tom Shefelman who passed away last month. This is, in effect, my written tribute to Tom as I knew him. You can read about him online on many websites and articles, some of which are listed at the end of this piece.
As an artist Tom was most publicly recognized for his architecture. He had an amazing number of interesting projects but he personally favored churches over all others. His websites show enthusiasm for research and sketches. In architecture he was a collaborator early on, both with other urban planning phenoms (including Alan Taniguchi, David Minter and Jim Nix), and in “teaming” on public space planning with Coffee Crier, Villava-Cotera and others. After studying at both UT Austin and Harvard, his career began at Kuehne Brooks and Barr followed by Emerson Fehr, and then on to Shefelman/Nix. Three amazing firms with amazing project history.
Tom designed numerous churches and I found that his design of the current Central Presbyterian Church dates back to 1955; his design of the church and the stained glass windows remain timeless and beautiful. His most recent painting is of the chancel (also featured here). Fittingly, Tom’s memorial service will be held in this beautiful place of worship this Saturday, January 14th at 11am.
Interesting project mentions include Lower Waller Creek Development Plan in 1982; design of the Starr Building back in 1954 for American Bank, now where McGarrah Jesse is located; and renovation of the Stephen F Austin Hotel in the ‘80s.
Tom was an accomplished watercolorist who partnered with his wife Janice illustrating children’s books she authored. His watercolors also include renderings of the lovely buildings he saw on his lifelong travels with Janice. Tom’s earliest artistic talents were focused on drawing and cartooning; he is quoted as saying “I don’t remember ever wanting to be an artist, I just was.”
To read more about Tom visit:
We appreciate that our neighbor, Emily Little, allowed us to feature her historic home on the cover of the Miller IDS 2017 Calendar.
Built in 1893, the Rogers-Lyons House is an excellent example of a Victorian-style brick residence. The home was constructed by Martin E. Rogers, bridge foreman for the A&NW railroad, who lived in the house with his wife, Addie Loving Rogers, until his death in 1942.
In 1944, the home was purchased by Lewis D. Lyons, one of Austin’s most prominent black citizens and land holders, who owned and operated the red brick grocery store at 518 East 6th Street. Mr. Lyons was a lay leader at Wesley Chapel Methodist Church, a trustee at Samuel Huston College, secretary of the Friend in Need Society of Austin and was known as “Black Mayor of East Austin.” Mr. Lyons was the only black bondsman in Austin at the time of his death in 1944. Mr. Lyons’ widow continued to live at the house and married Mr. Jerry Bell in 1951. Mr. Bell moved into the house and was employed by Governor Allan Shivers for over 30 years as chauffeur and houseman and was on staff during the seven and one-half years the Shivers family lived in the Texas Governor’s Mansion.
After Mr. Bell moved from the Rogers-Lyons house in 1984, the house was acquired by present owner Emily Little.
We are proud to showcase the home on our calendar. You can order your own calendar on our website.
‘Tis the season to make your business stand out. At Austin’s hottest new shopping district, Domain Northside, that is happening, thanks to some pretty outstanding large banners that run along Rock Rose. Just opened in time for the holidays, the sparkling new restaurants, stores and bars along Rock Rose are already getting a lot of media and shopper attention.
We produced many of these large banners for the hot shopping district. It’s a great way to capture the attention of your audience and excited customers.
Whether signage for indoor, outdoor, retail, fundraising, conferences, for walls, windows or hanging, go big, and let’s make your business sparkle this holiday!
KLRU is renowned for the Austin City Limits televised live broadcasting. And the taping of the show has been a desirable ticket to have for decades – over 4 decades to be exact. Premiering in 1974 with Willie Nelson, the show was created as a response to PBS’s request that local stations develop individual content. The show has become the longest running music program in television history and has been recognized in many significant ways.
A new event gaining momentum is the Austin City Limits Hall of Fame. The ACL Hall of Fame event was established in 2014 to celebrate the legacy of legendary performing artists and special individuals who have played a vital part in the pioneering music series’ remarkable 40+ years as a music institution.
Inductees this year were Bonnie Raitt, Kris Kristofferson, B.B. King, and Dick Peterson, whose journey began and ended at KLRU in Austin, playing a vital part in producing ACL. Performers included Willie Nelson, Mavis Staples, Rodney Crowell, Gary Clark Jr., Billy Gibbons, B.B. King Band, Taj Mahal, and Eve Monsees.
Sponsorship opportunities help benefit KLRU-TV; look for opportunites in the spring of 2017 and ticket sales to follow. Watch – the opportunities go quickly!
The Austin City Limits Hall of Fame is located at The Moody Theater and consists of a photo gallery, timeline/anthology mural, and an interactive online library of Austin City Limits content.
This month we honor the work of Don Collins, whose beautiful artwork has graced our annual calendar for each of the past 40 years. Don has produced approximately 400 works for our calendars, allowing us to share his passion with our customers.
Don has embraced hunting unique sites on back roads, long-deserted main streets and historical libraries in Texas for decades. The special sites include a story – be it a story of getting onto the property to take a photo, a story of the building itself, or a tale involving the folks he met on his adventures. His drawings and paintings breathe life back into these old homes, barns, courthouses, shanties and structures that he has chosen. Don authored the book, Traces of Forgotten Places: An Artist’s Thirty-Year Exploration and Celebration of Texas as It Was sharing some of these stories and drawings.
For the beautifully restored Austin house that graces the cover of the 2017 Miller Calendar, Collins made a late fall visit after the thick tree cover had shed its leaves.
Raised in Parker County west of Fort Worth, Don worked as a commercial artist after serving in the Army during the Korean War and graduating from the University of Texas at Austin. Though he produced a wide range of images for commercial accounts ranging from builders, architects, book publishers and NASA, Don now concentrates on landscapes, character studies, and nostalgia pieces.
Collins is active in his “retirement”, having recently published a colorful children’s book featuring animals of all kinds visiting doctors and dentists. He is involved with several DFW art organizations, accepts several commissions yearly, and travels abroad, with a trip to Africa scheduled in 2017. Additional work and contact information are available on his website, www.dchandart.com. Order your 2017 calendar today on our website.
Nothing instantly transforms a space like a beautiful, big banner. Stop by our North Location at 10713 Metric Blvd. to see how a wall banner can connect your message with your audience.
An interesting project that Miller IDS touched in our shop is the Soofa Bench, a project for the Office of Sustainability of the City of Austin. The Soofa Bench is a “smart bench,” and the bench has a built-in charging station powered with solar panels for mobile devices. It is BYO-USB cable, otherwise you are good to go, or shall we say good ON the go!
The benches were designed by three graduate students from the MIT Media Lab and the Harvard Innovation Lab. Currently the City has installed Soofa Benches in the Seaholm Eco-District, a lovely, grassy community hub tucked away north of Cesar Chavez, south of West 2nd Street and east of the former Seaholm Power Plant, which now houses numerous businesses including Honest Food, Trader Joes and UnderArmor Wired.
Austin is one of the cutting edge cities on the forefront of this device, included with Boulder, Boston and Jersey City. And it makes sense for Austin; as a community that values the outdoors but remains connected to our devices, what a great city to test our abilities to “rethink Austin for a bright green future.”
To read more on the Soofa Benches in Austin go to http://www.austintexas.gov/blog/soofa-bench-functioning-street-furniture. Our tiny part at Miller IDS was to create the aluminum labels that explain what the smart bench does. We thank the folks at Office of Sustainability for thinking of us!
“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” -C.S. Lewis
Meet this month’s featured artist, 20yr Austin resident and fine vehicle artist, Shannon “Shan” Fannin. Over the last two years, she’s painted classic cars from the 1930s to high performance supercars like the McClaren P1 and plans to paint motorcycles as well.
Shan’s paintings are a mix of realism, expressionism, and abstraction. Each of her paintings captures the form of the vehicle, and she plays with distorting the reflections in the body.
‘1951 Chevy Pick Up Truck’ is the piece that really says ‘Shannon’. She says, ‘A bit of my personality went into this piece. We share a bit of chaos, cheer, and vibrant vitality. This painting makes me happy. I hope it does the same for others that see it.’
Shan believes that Life has a way of waiting patiently until you are ready for your purpose. Shan always wanted to draw and paint as a child. As a teenager growing up in San Diego, she took advanced art classes and juggled working six days a week to help support her family. Patiently, Life waited 25yrs for her to come back to her art. Her husband suggested going back to art and her supportive instructors at Austin Community College taught her to create what made her happy.
Shan became fascinated by the expansive car culture, stories, people, and history of the vehicles when she and her husband purchased and restored a 1961 Ford Thunderbird. At an artistic level, she marveled at the abstract reflections in classic chrome and the complex tonal values of modern vehicle bodies.
Shan had her first solo exhibition at the prestigious Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance 2016 where she was commissioned to paint an award winning vintage Lamborghini Miura. In June, her 1961 Mercury Monterey painting took 1st place at Texas State University BIG Show. She flew to England over the summer to attend the Goodwood Festival of Speed in order to photograph vehicles for future paintings. Her paintings have been in venues throughout Austin including Austin Bergstrom International Airport, the statewide Art Hop competition, and numerous publications. She is represented by a northern California gallery, and is currently seeking further representation nationally.
Shan is available for commissions and her work can be purchased through her website. You can socially find her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.