OSCODA — Beef jerky, macramé wreaths, crochet, stained glass, sun catchers, wood signs, soap, body lotion products, chimes, garden towers, cedar bird houses, doll furniture and cards made by Special Olympians don’t even begin to cover the list of items for sale at the 2022 Art on the Beach.
Over 52 crafters showed up to sell crochet flowers and wreaths, toddler dresses, goat soaps, handmade license plates, cement leaves for your garden, t-shirts, crushable seagrass hats were all laid out by individual vendors in individual plots on the grass next to the Oscoda Beach Park. This provided cooler air and easier access to the bathrooms.
All of these items could make a good gift for a grandchild or a family member, said Oscoda/AuSable Chamber Board Member Gaylynn Brenoel.
“There’s one crafter that makes doll clothes that are unusual and unique,” she said. “You will find something that’s just not found in a typical retail store.”
Art on the Beach is hosted by the Oscoda/AuSable Chamber of Commerce.
Local organizations such as The Oscoda Lions Club, Oscoda Rotary Club, Friends of the Library and Special Olympics made an appearance at the annual event, helping with the setup and hosting tables.
There was too much to cover for any one event, but a sampler of things are covered below:
In one booth sat Oscoda resident Rick Bender’s flat board intarsia. These are flat boards of woods cut out by stencil, painted and sculpted to form 3-dimensional scenes that are then framed and hung on walls.
Bender has been working in flat board intarsia for over 25 years as a hobby, doing it in his spare time and sometimes taking on a commission, depending on how interesting the job is.
Bender’s craft strategically stresses not being too perfect in the sense that the cuts are so precise, he needs to hold back on some things in his pieces or else they may look fake. After carving and sculpting the wood, he thinly lays on paint to show the wood grain through the coloration.
“That’s so they know it’s wood and not plastic. It’s not something made overseas where they made a mold and shipped it.”
Additionally, showing the wood grain complements each piece and helps make it unique.
Bender creates his own templates and scenery, experimenting in shape creation and texturing to provide realistic subjects and scenery.
“These here are not mountains, they’re pyramids, they’re mounds of dirt,” he said, showing a photograph of the old way he did mountains when he started in the late 90’s. They were carved out as roughly triangular pieces with crudely shaped snow caps.
He then pointed at a newer intarsia on the wall selling for $30. On it was a scene depicting mountains from a trip he had in Alaska. Instead of possessing geometric shapes, the snow peaks on the mountains snaked their way down the slopes through imagined crags. The faces of the mountains possessed jagged, irregular rock faces carved (with a jig saw) out of the skyline. “See, those look like mountains. And that’s the way they looked when I was there.”
Oscoda Schools Superintendent Scott Moore and Teacher Kristy Bergquist sat at a tent representing the Oscoda Rocket Club, which is affiliated with the Oscoda Rotary. From now until August 14, the public has a chance to enter a charity raffle. The closest guess to a rocket’s height on an altimeter launched on that day gets $500 first prize.
Sandy Carlson of Barton City makes and sells macramé, yarn dream catchers and other soft goods. She also hand draws custom designs over wooden cutouts that serve as art pieces.
As a medical worker who fills out forms all day, she tends to get bored and doodles in her downtime between stacks of paper.
“Sometimes, my boss comes in, sits with me and we doodle together!” she said.
In a small bucket, she houses little floppy-eared stuffed animals. She makes each ones unique with button eyes, different sized ears and she sews in different expressions on their faces.
Some are happy, some are frowny, some looked surprised or angry. She said had a shipment scheduled for later in the day from a lady who worked with autistic kids.
Kate Felix Scheurur is a mixed media artist who began cutting out collage and painting over the paper glued to canvas, typically over scenery involving plant life.
After quitting her job as a political science analyst, she has devoted six years of her life to making art with bright colors and hard lines.
Recently, she has dropped collage creation, focusing more on penning over shapes painted on canvas.