creative culture

The Whole Story for the Next Generation by Mary Jennings


These are two of my murals painted in 2002. Just an email from the new owner of the residence wanting to know the story behind their creation.

He wrote, "These works of art were things that we were looking for when purchasing a new home. They are always quite beautiful and the conversation starter for every guest that comes in the door. We just had our first baby girl, and as she grows up she will be able to look at the beautiful painting you have in the hallway and bathroom. It's almost as if a story book has been put in the room."

So pleased when people want to know the story. I remember it like it was yesterday. ‪#‎tbt‬

This Foyer mural is created to fool the eye. The French call it Trompe L'oeil, translated to mean "fool the eye". When designing this mural, it was important to create the illusion of open air and space in an area that wasn't able to accommodate furniture or accessories to give it space or personality.  A traditional landscape was chosen for it's timeless beauty.  There are nice accents and details for your eyes to rest upon.  It could be raining to dangerous flood levels or snowing enough to shut down a city, but will always be a beautiful day in your foyer with this mural.  

This work was created to add the illusion of open space in a relatively small environment.  The aerial perspective along with the framework of he window help add to the impact of the landscape.

The Studio Center: Where Classes, Parties and Clubs Gather to Create. by Mary Jennings

I knew it the moment I walked onto the open front porch.  This was the spot!  I wanted to teach art right here.  And after many months of conversations, cleaning sessions and preparations, I am ready to introduce you, my good friends to a wonderful opportunity and destination.  

Location, Location , Location.

The location is in Falls Church, Virginia and it looks so warm and inviting and even has great parking.  It was a house for some great family quite some time ago and even has the plaque telling all who pass its a historic landmark.  When I first stepped in the door of this darling all white house, it was the main store front for The Front Porch, a furniture rescue company owned and operated by Dave and Joni.  I got to know the owners and witnessed their immense friendliness very soon after we met.  They waste no time in being the friendliest furniture folks in town.  We became fast friends.  I love what they do. I speak the language of furniture rescue too and would like to support them in any way I can.  

Joni’s vision for this location was clear once they moved The Front Porch to a bigger location just down the road.  She wanted to share her knowledge and great skills with Chalk and Milk paints, caning chairs, and breathing new life into some great little pieces of furniture. She has done this many times and thought The Studio Center would be a great place to focus on instruction.  She was kind enough to invite me into the share the experience.

The Studio Center Mission Statement: Providing creative space for creative instruction.  A place where ideas have worth and rescue is without limit.

A great review for Joni on Yelp.

A great review for Joni on Yelp.

My Classes! They’re Here! My Classes! They’re Fun!

I am teaching, organizing parties and leading some fantastic groups meeting at The Studio Center.  You should come enjoy the fun and creativity. You can join my mailing list to see what’s happening from month to month.  You can check my website for a list of offerings or find the classes and groups on Meet-up.  

Here are just a few classes I offer: Group/Private Art Lessons, Pyrography, Creative Coffee Club, Sketchbook, Unframed Friday Art Night LIVE, Social Painting, Ugly Art Party, Canvas Floor Rug, Kids Create Club and Empty Nest Art Group.

Find So Many Classes on the Social Site, Meet-up

As of today, you can join the group organized on the app and website, Meetup.  I have organized a group called the Cool Creative Culture at The Studio Center, Falls Church and have an event planned already. You’re invited. It's an open house with demonstrations and special offers.  Please join the fun!

Another Way To Stay Connected Great Events

Find out more about The Studio Center, The Front Porch and The Back Dorr by visiting

Burning Love! Own Your Creative Wood-burning Starter Kit by Mary Jennings

I have the great privilege of teaching art to individuals and private groups.  One of my classes is on the art of Pyrography (translation: writing with fire).  I have put together the essentials for a great start to the art of Pyrography, otherwise known as wood-burning.  In a blog on this topic, Slow Down and Make Your Mark; A Beginners Guide to Pyrography, I give some basic instructions as well as show some student work.  

In this post I will show you some of what the beginner kit includes as well as offer you a way to get the kit for yourself.  

You might be asking yourself, how do I get one of these kits for myself?  I’ve assembled these kits and have made them available to people who participate in the Pyrography lesson I have made available to you.  I teach in two locations. One is at the Salamander Resort and Spa, Middleburg, VA and the other is at The Studio Center, Falls Church, VA.

There is also a group set up for classes that I offer at The Studio Center available through Meet-up

Kit includes: wood-burning tool, four tips, two basswood surfaces, colored pencils, transfer paper and instruction/inspiration sheet.

Kit includes: wood-burning tool, four tips, two basswood surfaces, colored pencils, transfer paper and instruction/inspiration sheet.

Words for the Wise; Building Your Vocabulary with an App. by Mary Jennings

True confession time.  I am addicted to learning and have always enjoyed the never ending opportunity for learning that vocabulary provides.  I got the itch to bump up my personal word bank when I was told I had an “impish” expression on my face.  Impish was not a word I was all that familiar with; I promptly looked it up.  My friend was right.  She found the most fitting word to describe my expression. 

My discovery for the day comes in the form on an app that I use on my phone.  I found one that feeds me a new word every day.  Please allow me to share it with you to help fill your life with rich pabulum. The app is Word of The Day.  Don’t allow yourself to become latent in this current culture.  GROW with the times.  To follow is a photo showing how the app looks on a phone. 

In the comment section, please share with all of us some great words or apps we should know.  Your recommendations are very welcome.  Let's learn together.