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Default Pengwen’s perlieu: Make New Friends But Keep The Old....

Pengwen’s perlieu
Make New Friends But Keep The Old....

Like my new moniker image? The ‘new official’ pengwen was created in August, ’98, by my daughter, Nicola, just as I was publishing my first issue of Steppin’ Out.

I recently was going through some old papers and memorabilia (cleaning my office, gasp!) and ran across the drawing. I admit, I’d forgotten about it and promptly adopted it for my official pengwen image.

When I was younger, I would have felt really, really bad that I didn’t remember such an incident. Now, I can dismiss it with jokes about “Old Timer’s disease.” In the years since that moniker was drawn, I’ve met a lot of artists and wonderful people, seen much of the great land of enchantment and approached lots and lots of people around New Mexico about promoting the arts and events of their area.

Some of my favorite people and places today grew from those first contacts I made in the summer and fall of 1998. Mountainair’s Cibola Arts Gallery, with members Mary Schultz and Anne Ravenstone, welcomed and have supported my efforts throughout. On the western side of the state along the same highway (US 60), Magdalena’s varied artists and artisans, formal and informal groups have welcomed and encouraged me. Friends in Socorro wouldn’t let me quit when the going got tough – and so we’ve hung tough through the years.

Along with Cibola Arts Gallery, advertising supporters who have been with me since the beginning include Harold’s Southwest Gifts, on the south end of Socorro, with Marty Baca’s collection of New Mexican and Mexican art and artifacts. Animal Haven on the north with Pep & Dean Wilkinsen’s gentle hands caring for numerous pets. Rio Abajo Antiques and The Owl Café in San Antonio. The Owl is legendary and I drool over the antiques at Rio Abajo every time I stop in as I’m sure you will. NMTech’s Performing Arts Series’s Ronna Kalish has been a constant supporter from the get-go. My printer through all these years has been VanGuard in Albuquerque – they always do such a great job! Thumbing through the pages of Vol. 1 brings back lots of memories – and the realization of how much I’ve learned, how many new friendships, acquaintances and helpers I’ve met.

Writers, like other artists, put much of themselves in their work; as a publisher, I see each Steppin’ Out as my best effort in creating something beautiful and worthwhile. And so, it’s always encouraging to be greeted enthusiastically!

As my honey and self-described creative flunky says, “Steppin’ Out is what we do for fun and profit. Not much profit but a lot of fun!”

When I first started, I knew one thing for sure: I’d never run out of artists and art to write about. And for every story I’ve written, every gallery, studio, reception, performance and event I’ve attended, there were others that never got recorded here, others that I wished I could see and meet and experience.

In the beginning, I had helpers, but all were volunteer. Now in addition to Creative Flunky, I have my family of helpers: Greg, who masters the witchcraft of the web; and Nicola, the goddess of the website; and others who support and/or are sort of supported by this venture. Going into the 10th year of publication, I know I’ll keep finding treasures – ones new to me and ones I’ve met before. Meanwhile, my prayer is: God grant me the senility to forget the people I never liked anyway, the good fortune to run into the ones I do, and the eyesight to tell the difference.

And my motto: Commit Random Acts of Kindness & Senseless Acts of Beauty

Thanks to all you who keep me going. Thanks to you I can,….



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