Archive for Sara Brown

The evolution of Art & Coffee

Posted in Artists, Magic, photography, Shows with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 5, 2010 by artlovemagic

post by Michael Lagocki
photos by Kelsey Paine, Josh Dryk, and Eddie Walker

I imagine most of you reading this have been to, or at least know of, Art & Coffee. This is our longest running show, a monthly Open Mic and Live Art experience that we do at coffee shops. The idea first started in 2008, when I met Bill Priestly, the owner of a new coffee shop, Saxbys, in North Dallas. I loved the shop and after talking to Bill, I wondered if artlovemagic could be impactful in bringing an audience out to a new establishment like his.

We were. For the next year or so, we did monthly shows there that were a little bit of a twist on the artlovemagic model. We opened the mic up to the audience and brought out a handful of live artists for a free show. Attendance was strong right from the beginning.  And we noticed several people would show up month after month. Art & Coffee was a success.

These days, we’ve moved the show down to Deep Ellum and we do it at the wonderful It’s A Grind. Again, this just came from one of our leaders walking into the place and having a conversation with them. They asked us to come and do four shows (that were very successful) and then we contracted for the rest of 2010.

One of the great things about this monthly show, is now that we have a few HUGE shows under our belt (see Underground & girlShow), we’re pretty comfortable doing a show this size. (Art & Coffee usually has about 6 artists in it- girlShow this year will have 60). We’ve become masters at setting it up, and especially tearing it down. We’re usually out the door 30 minutes after Art & Coffee closes.

It’s also become a learning ground for new producers. Melody Hay,  Amanda Davis, Josh Dryk. Michelle McSpadden, and many more first learned the ropes producing A & C before moving on to our BIG shows. Producing A&C entails selecting a group of artists, running a pre-meeting, supporting their team through marketing and getting ready for the show, and then being the lead person on the floor night of.

Producing is a blast. I always say that the production role is where you really get to author the stories in ArtLoveMagic. It’s not for everyone, but I’m thankful that we’ve found a few really great producers who love putting these shows together. And I’m thankful that we have a few dedicated souls who love this show and help it happen every month. Deb, KZach, Mario, Bookworm, Hammer, Eddie, Dugger and others… thank you so much.

But the best part of Art & Coffee is the talent. I LOVE scheduling talent to do these shows. There are two groups to schedule each time Art & Coffee rolls around- the live artists who will create during the show, and the feature performers who hold down the mic. While most of the mic is open to the audience, we always have a feature poet and feature musician, who each perform twice during the night.

I believe having a feature performer does two things that work well within our mission. First, it ensures the mic will have some strong performances. Usually this isn’t a problem as our audiences are pretty talented. More importantantly however, I believe it can grow the artists. It’s easy to find an open mic to perform at. It’s less common to find a feature spot, where you’re asked to be a lead performer and to set the tone, performing multiple times, and being annouced as someone to pay attention to. Sometimes we’re lucky enough to find performers who play solo shows all the time, other times we get to bless someone who hasn’t been honored this way and they get to grow.

So where are we now? Mid 2010 and the shows have been incredible lately. Last night Josh Dryk produced an Art & Coffee that I thought was just fantastic, everything it should be: a strong group of diverse artists, great crowd, incredible open mic with excellent features.

The show goes on. I’m producing the next Art & Coffee myself (July 2nd, 2010). It’s a veteran show. Given that it’s only one week before girlShow, I needed to staff it full of Art & Coffee vets who already know what they’re doing (including people like Justin Nygren, Eddie Walker, Rachel Deniger, and Tim Dugger).

Josh and Kelsey are lined up to produce an upcoming Art & Coffee, as is Michelle McSpadden. We’ve talked about doing a “family” Art & Coffee that would happen mid-day and focus on stuff kids and adults can do together. We’re talking about bringing back the “painting with coffee” interactive that was so popular at Saxbys. We’re looking for new talent that want to create, sing, recite, and produce. All in all, we’re loving it.

Art & Coffee continues to happen first Friday of every month at It’s A grind. It’s a great show, a very welcoming show, and I’m proud to say it’s become an important puzzle piece in this crazy story that is ArtLoveMagic. Come hang out with us and see if you love it to.



It’s A Grind – New Venue, New Shows!

Posted in Shows, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 30, 2009 by artlovemagic

December 11th, 2009 ArtLoveMagic had our very first show at It’s A Grind Coffee in Deep Ellum.  We called it, “Unplugged Fireside Sessions” to honor the four acoustic acts and the toasty fireplace that warmed the hearts and fanny’s of many attendees.  All were feeling festive, most partaking in the delicious Christmassy beverages that were offered, while being attentive to the amazing live art and music happening all around them.

Our music lineup for the night included the jazzy Lenny’s New Legs, singer/songwriter Zachary Scott Pohl, The pop-duet GaydenLee, and the folky-zombie goodness of Parallel Play.

The live art was a unique blend that featured Conor Muldoon throwing pottery, Joe Townson painting, and Jen Sulak doing live portrait photography.

And we’re doing it again…

This time we are featuring live art from:

Eddie Walker – Air Brush

Josh Dryk – Fire Painting

Carissa Battaile – Vintage Portrait Photography

Sarah Brown & Keanna Pohl drawing/watercolor collaboration

and Aaron Garcia – Painting

Live Music will be powerfully performed by:

photo by Jen Sulak

Lenny’s New Legs


and Arianne Patty

ArtLoveMagic presents Art & Coffee at It’s A Grind, 2901 Indiana Blvd, Dallas, TX 75226 January 8th, 7:30pm – 10:30pm *FREE*

Arts Goggle – Review!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 5, 2009 by artlovemagic

On Saturday, October 3rd ArtLoveMagic’s first infiltration of Fort Worth was unmistakably ArtLoveMagicy.  A photo collection of some of the night’s badasses:


Trayce Cochran


Elizabeth Trosper


Eddie Walker


Zach Scott Pohl


and of course, Riki Johnson

Riki Johnson, David & Nicole Rodriguez, and Keanna Pohl were the producers on this event, and they really kicked butt.  All the artists and musicians were happily creating and performing inside of a chill vibe and colorful atmosphere.  One of our newest volunteers, Sara Brown took the time to relate her experience to Keanna & me.  As one that has been involved with ArtLoveMagic for a couple of years now, I always find it refreshing when new folks come in and share their love with us.  Here were some of the cool things Sara experienced:

“The Goggle Event was my first real exposure to this type of creative outlet.  I love the honesty, caring and spontaneity of the artists.  Josh Dryk (right) was the highlight for me, as he showed us how painting with fire could be done.  I love the smell and feel of fire, as well as the visual effect!joshdryk

I found this a healing experience for me, moving into this large city. It is so nice to know there is such angelic folks like you to make life feel so alive! It would benefit so many people that need to know they matter….”

Welcome, Sara.

I really dug the fire art, too.  Conor Muldoon (below) throwing pottery live is always one of my favorite’s, and there were plenty of people who agreed with me.  I had the honor of performing the classic “Four Women” by Nina Simone with Kelly Nygren at my side, and the entire main stage was hosted by Fort Worth’s own Mike Guinn.  National Spoken Word champion Nnambdi Orakpo (below) was the feature poet of the evening and when he spit his piece, “Play Pretend” my eyes couldn’t help but leak and my soul couldn’t stop it’s speak…as Malcolm Jamal-Warner of the Cosby Show said, “Nnambdi is pure fire.”  I was the greatful recipient of his new book, Avant-God, Vintage Poetry Collection, which he was kind enough to sign for me. The Texas Red Legs rocked me to the last drop at the end of the night with their smash hit, “Black Sky Growl”, and so much more lie in between, you had to have been there.  I do hope that we continue to do shows with our friends at Arts 5th Avenue.  What nice people!  Art on, Fort Worth.  We’ll be seeing you.


photo of Josh Dryk fire painting by Jenice Johnson, photo of Nnambdi Orakpo by Sondra Beamon, all other photo’s by Amber Nix Matthew’s.

photo by Sondra Beaman

photo by Sondra Beamon