By Mary Karr

“Art’s a staple, like bread or wine or a warm coat in winter.  Those who think it is a luxury have only a fragment of a mind.  Man’s spirit grows hungry for art in the same way his stomach growls for food.”  Irving Stone

There is an established philosophy that suggests beauty and art are as essential to the human spirit as food and water, and so provides us with an uplifting of our souls while seeking an inner meaning to our lives.  Painting has become to mean to me as something important to my peace of mind and spirit in the development of myself.

Autumn is on our doorsteps and, if you are up to the paths less traveled, now is the time to venture out and enjoy the charming towns and glorious views nearby.  We are fortunate that we are surrounded by lovely parks and scenes of natural beauty plus some of the state’s most vibrant galleries.  One of the most interesting day trips to take is a few hours spent in the river arts district in Asheville.  There you will enjoy watching artists at work in their studios which line up along the French Broad River.  It is amazing to see how this area has grown and developed into an intriguing destination for art and craft lovers. The breathtaking drive north along the Blue Ridge Parkway is another day trip which will take you to the Folk Art Center, not far from Asheville, open all year with outstanding local art and crafts on display.

Fall is a great time to make memories while enjoying the spectacular colors of autumn.  Roadside stands abound offering tantalizing produce along with mounds of orange pumpkins and local honey.  There’s the captivating smell of wood smoke in the air without the crush of heavy crowds, and if you are hungry, wonderful little cafes and restaurants to discover.

The Lake Lure Artists have had a busy summer, highlighted by our August Art Show at the Lake Lure Inn.  You will find their work for sale at local restaurants and shops plus a changing display at the Mountains Branch Library.

“One seeks to become an artist by training the hand.  Then one finds it is in the eye that needs improving.  Later on one learns it is in the mind that wants developing, only to discover it is all along in the spirit.”  Lawrence R. Brullo, Florence, Italy