Trending Articles

Friends of SOAR

For great posts about the business of art, check out The Artsy Shark HERE!
ArtistsBillofRights.org reviews competitions and appeals seeking creative content, listing those that respect your copyrights and highlighting those that don't. Art Matters! publishes calls to artists, and not all of them may be compliant with ABoR's standards. Visit their site to learn more.
We support the Embedded Metadata Manifesto.  Metadata is information such as copyright notice and contact info you can embed in your images to protect your intellectual property, save time when uploading to social sites and promote your art. Click to visit the site and learn more.

Henry Goes Wine: THE GRAPE ESCAPE Has Something for Everyone!

Virtue in the Vines 16×16 acrylic ©Sandi Whetzel

Henry Estate Winery has pulled out all the stops this year to make HENRY GOES WINE: the Grape Escape the place to be, Saturday, August 17, 2013.  See sensual art and awesome wine shirts designed by Artist, Sandi Whetzel.  Listen to mind-blowing music groups.  Enjoy wine, delicious food, miniature golf play, wagon rides through the Vineyard, Wildlife Safari animals, horse rides, magic by Chuck, face painting, a petting zoo and summer market booths. You will be entertained.  On the main stage Lee Koch, (appeared with The Voice), Joni Harms, Aulani Hula Halau and The Stone Foxes perform throughout the day and evening.

For ticket information, click or call 800-782-2686.  Advance purchase of tickets are discounted from Gate Admission prices. Henry Estate Winery is located at 687 Hubbard Creek Road, Umpqua, Oregon.

Schedule of Events:

Music on the Main Stage:

12:00 – 2:00 pm     Lee Koch (Appeared on the Voice)
  2:00 – 6:00 pm     Joni Harms
  6:00 – 7:00 pm     Aulani Hula Halau
  7:00 – 9:00 pm     The Stone Foxes

Other events:

  3:30 – 6:30 pm      Smoked Salmon and Tri Tip BBQ $15 (or purchase in Advance, $13)
 12:00   pm             Amateur Horseshoe Tournament
   1:00   pm             Miniature golf play
   1:00 – 7:00 pm     Bouncy Houses and Petting Zoo
   1:00 – 9:00 pm     Wagon rides through the Vineyard
   2:00 – 4:00 pm     Wildlife Safari
   5:00 – 6:00 pm     Falcon Display

Other events include Winery Tours and Barrel Sampling, Dutch Bros Coffee, Douglas County RC Flyers, Fisherman’s Grotto Seafood, Summer Market Booths and Wine Art by Sandi Whetzel.  Be the first to see her art printed on sleek, shiny metal.  You won’t believe the depth and richness of colors on metal until you see them for yourself.  Right next to Sandi’s art booth see her wine shirt designs in Pour Accessories booth.

See more of Sandi’s art .

   

Continue reading Henry Goes Wine: THE GRAPE ESCAPE Has Something for Everyone!

An Artful Valentine to My Art Fans: Abstraction, Romance, Elegance and Simplicity Revealed in My Recent Art

An Invitation to Romance 12×24 acrylic © Sandi Whetzel

How can abstraction and romance, elegance and simplicity all be used to describe my most recent paintings?  These terms may seem somewhat contradictory, but they are all revealed in my three most recent paintings.  Let me explain…

The first one, An Invitation to Romance, definitely suggests romance with the strewn rose petals leading the way to the elegant goblet and bottle of wine, waiting to be served up.  The drama of the elegant evening colors against the black and atmospheric blues is devoid of distracting, extraneous elements. This drama and simplicity, exude romance and eleganceby design.

Wine Dream 16×20 acrylic ©Sandi Whetzel

The second image, Wine Dream, is an abstraction of a wine pour in a delicate goblet shape that forms a woman bathing in wineful bliss.  Yes, the goblet itself is actually missing; adding to the abstraction of the piece.  The simplicity and drama of the red, gold and black, as well as the shapely woman could inspire romance. This concept, so minimal in design, needed more elements.  I decided to add the metallic gold and red ribbon-like strips and the red sentimental  words to add some more simplicity, elegance, romance and abstraction elements to the piece.

The third image, Simply Wine!, an abstraction of a wine bottle and goblets is a simple, contemporary design with minimal detail.  It’s that simplicity of design against the dramatic black background that gives it abstraction and elegance.
                                                          

Simply Wine! 12×24 acrylic ©Sandi Whetzel

So, to all my loyal art fans, I want to wish you a happy Valentines Day.  I hope I’ve inspired you to put a little romance into your life; even if it’s only to look at some contemporary romantic art.  That’s my Valentine’s gift to you.

I’ve included the fourth image, Grape de Menthe, because it is an abstraction of grapes and because the Umpqua Valley Winegrowers have selected it to promote the “Greatest of the Grape” event March 2nd.  To learn the inspiration behind that painting and details of the “Greatest of the Grape”, http://bit.ly/14TuaXk

To see more of Sandi’s art and order originals and reproductions in various print options,  visit Sandi’s website

 Follow @artistsandi

 wine bottle art

Continue reading An Artful Valentine to My Art Fans: Abstraction, Romance, Elegance and Simplicity Revealed in My Recent Art

Welcome Oregon’s Newest AVA, Elkton!

Elkton Oregon became the state’s newest American Viticultural Area after receiving approval from the U.S. Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau this week. The new Elkton Oregon AVA is entirely contained within the Umpqua Valley AVA, which is entirely within the Southern Oregon AVA. Oregon has a total of 17 AVAs.


By gaining AVA status, winegrowers and winemakers within the Elkton Oregon AVA can better describe the origin of their wines and consumers can better identify wines they may purchase. The TTB ruling is effective March 7, 2013. The AVA may be referred to as Elkton Oregon or Elkton OR.

The newest Oregon AVA is the fulfillment of wine pioneer Ken Thomason’s dream of growing world class cool climate Pinot noir and white grapes near the small town of Elkton, which has a population of 170. Thomason began planting grapes in 1972 on a west facing bench two miles east of Elkton at a site now owned by Mike and Vonnie Landt of Rivers Edge Winery.

The climate in Elkton is quite different from the prevailing perceptions of the surrounding areas. Southern Oregon is most often thought of as warmer and drier than winegrowing areas farther north in the Willamette Valley.

Due to its location on the Umpqua River and only 36 miles from the Pacific Ocean, the geography allows for a strong marine influence with daily sea breezes and fog penetrating into the Umpqua River Valley. This gives Elkton its unique climate – cool, maritime and temperate – which is ideal for the varieties that Thomason originally planted.

The local group which mounted the effort for the AVA’s approval called out Greg Jones of Southern Oregon University for his efforts in preparing and submitting the successful petition for AVA status to TTB.

Continue reading Welcome Oregon’s Newest AVA, Elkton!

Troon Vineyard Named One of the Top 10 Hottest Wine Brands by Wine Business Monthly

Troon Vineyard has been named one of the “Top 10 Hot Brands” in America. The well respected industry publication Wine Business Monthly announced the list in its February 2013 issue. This prestigious award is perhaps the most impressive accolade this…

Continue reading Troon Vineyard Named One of the Top 10 Hottest Wine Brands by Wine Business Monthly

Wine Spectator Recognition

Harvey Steiman, the Oregon reviewer for the Wine Spectator recently wrote these highly encouraging words about the Southern Oregon wine region.

From a regional standpoint, Southern Oregon’s rapidly advancing wine growing region also received recognition from Steiman. He said producers from the south are starting to push the traditional boundaries of Oregon’s primarily Pinot noir culture. He noted that the wines from Southern Oregon “hold true to the same style that Oregon Pinot noirs have established: relatively light, lively with acidity and focused on clarity of flavor. Someday these Rogue Valley releases might even challenge Pinot noir for prominence in the state.”

Continue reading Wine Spectator Recognition

SIMPLY WINE! Most recent wine-themed painting by artist, Sandi Whetzel

Simply Wine! 12×24 ©Sandi Whetzel

Simple elegance, simply wine! And if there was any doubt, the cursive written wine design on the abstracted wine bottle literally spells it out. The inspiration for this abstract wine painting was the placement of two dining forks facing together so that their combined shape resembles a wine goblet, with hints of the fork tines serving as highlights.

First I sketched the design and decided that leaving out the top rims of the goblets and letting the goblet stems and wine bottle bottom fade into the background added to the simplicity of the design. The open feeling from the goblet stems up through the open rimless goblets was a calculated decision, as was making the one goblet stand taller, thinner and longer than the other one and making the tops and bottoms of the designs fade back to red. I chose the rainbow of colors ranging from red, orange, yellow orange and yellow to pop against the black background. It’s a simple, elegant design that took more thought than you might realize to create a simple, elegant, contemporary abstract painting. Because this well-thought design took less effort to execute, it will sell for less than other more complicated detailed paintings of the same size. It looks great on my sun-washed clay wall until somebody scoops it up from my next wine exhibit event.  Until then, I’m really enjoying its elegant simplicity and its getting rave reviews.

In other news, the Umpqua Valley Winegrowers of Oregon have once again picked one of my art images to promote the 2013 Greatest of the Grape event.  They chose my Grape de Menthe  painting of magenta and white striped grapes.  See it here  It will be on the posters, post cards and tickets to promote the event which occurs March 2nd, 2013 from 7-11 p.m. at the Seven Feathers Hotel and Casino, in Canyonville, OR.  I will be exhibiting as the Featured Artist at the event.  A hand-embellished high quality giclee reproduction of Grape de Menthe on gallery wrapped canvas will be auctioned off at the event. For ticket information click

To quickly see more of Sandi’s art, visit

Continue reading SIMPLY WINE! Most recent wine-themed painting by artist, Sandi Whetzel

Alternative Art Venue in Ashland, OR Welcomes Artist, Sandi Whetzel’s Mood Enhancing Art

Kaleidoscope 30×24 acrylic ©Sandi Whetzel

A kaleidoscope of breathtaking color and graceful, animated images will lift your mood as you savor Sandi Whetzel’s vibrant art at Royce Realty’s opening reception during Ashland’s First Friday Art Walk, December 7. Wine and finger foods will be offered at Royce’s reception for the artist beginning at 5:00 p.m.  Although Sandi lives nearly a 2 hour drive from Ashland, she plans to attend the reception and is eager to meet her art viewers.

Whetzel’s contemporary acrylic paintings are distinguished by her passion for curvilinear lines, shapes and harmonious color. The radiant chroma, stimulating motifs and rhythmic movements throughout Sandi’s art works are sure to tickle your senses.  These contemporary art pieces will complement many home interiors exquisitely. Sandi is also known for her signature paintings to promote the Oregon wine industry.  You can see more of Sandi’s art here .  To learn more about Sandi and her art visit here

The gallery space at Royce is a great example of Whetzel’s willingness to explore creative venues for sharing her engaging art.  Royce Realty is located at 145 E Main St., in the heart of downtown Ashland, across from Starbucks and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival Theatres and a short walk from the Art Center, the hub of Ashland art.  The staff at Royce Realty encourages visitors to feel free to stop by and browse Sandi’s art during the month of December, pick up a brochure or a map, get the latest information on the local Ashland real estate market, or just ask for a good restaurant suggestion. 

Royce has requested Sandi Whetzel’s art to enhance and draw interest to their space during the month of December as part of Ashland Art Center’s Art2Business program. Participating Art2Businesses choose art from a large screened pool of qualified, talented professional artists with a variety of styles and media. This alternative art venue benefits the artists with greater exposure to their art, intrigues clientele, improves employee morale and draws exposure to the businesses from participation in the Art Walks. 

Recently the Arts Center has added a free shuttle service to the Art2Business art venues during the First Friday Art Walks.  The shuttle, provided by Cascade Shuttle and Art2B, completes its route covering all the Art2B sites every 30 minutes from 5 to 8 p.m. A list of Art2B stops and the route is available as a handout from the Ashland Art Center where the shuttle begins its route and returns every half hour during First Friday evenings.

Continue reading Alternative Art Venue in Ashland, OR Welcomes Artist, Sandi Whetzel’s Mood Enhancing Art

Alternative Art Venue in Ashland, OR Welcomes Artist, Sandi Whetzel’s Mood Enhancing Art

Kaleidoscope 30×24 acrylic ©Sandi WhetzelA kaleidoscope of breathtaking color and graceful, animated images will lift your mood as you savor Sandi Whetzel’s vibrant art at Royce Realty’s opening reception during Ashland’s First Friday Art Walk, Decembe…

Continue reading Alternative Art Venue in Ashland, OR Welcomes Artist, Sandi Whetzel’s Mood Enhancing Art

Caprice Vineyards Announces Chopin by the Vine Benefit Event

Caprice Vineyards will become the setting for “Chopin by the Vine” on Sunday October 7th. They will bring the Concert Piano sounds of Anna K. Rose performing selections of Frederic Chopin, the fine art of Pegi Smith, the fine cuisine of Chef Jay, and Caprice Vineyards fine wines together for an evening of sensory entertainment. The event, benefiting the International health-care/health-education organization “Project Helping Hands” (PHH) will also feature a short presentation by PHH Founder/Executive Director Jeff Solheim.

Continue reading Caprice Vineyards Announces “Chopin by the Vine” Benefit Event

Southern Oregon Wineries Producing Powerful Tempranillo and Malbec — Signature Grapes of the Future?

From this morning’s Wine Business daily report

Southern Oregon Wineries Producing Powerful Tempranillo and Malbec — Signature Grapes of the Future?

by Dr. Liz Thach, MW


Though most people think “pinot noir” when asked to name an Oregon grape varietal, in the hotter and sunnier southern half of the state, wineries are producing powerful tempranillos, malbecs and other big reds. They are also grappling with the issue of whether or not they should proclaim a signature grape or two – much like their northern wine neighbors in the Willamette Valley have done with chardonnay and pinot noir.

The AVA’s of Southern Oregon

Southern Oregon (www.sorwa.org) is home to 70 – 80 wineries including virtual wine brands. Part of the issue is that the region includes 3 diverse AVA’s which produce 26 different grape varietals, ranging from gewürztraminer and riesling in the slightly cooler Umpqua Valley AVA near the town of Roseburg and massive syrahs and malbecs in the warmer Rogue and Applegate Valley AVA’s near Medford. There is also a possibility of a fourth AVA in the cooler Illinois Valley near Grant’s Pass.

The Pros and Cons of Identifying Regional Signature Grapes

When I visited Southern Oregon last week to participate in the judging of over 180 wines in their World of Wine Festival, I encountered much controversy over identifying a signature grape. “We enjoy being diverse,” said one winemaker. “We don’t want to be known for just producing one or two key varietals. We don’t want to be ‘fenced’ in.”

However, others disagreed. “I think we need some signature grapes to help differentiate ourselves as a region.” And “We make some massive red wines, and are getting some good press on our tempranillo. I think tempranillo should be one of our signature grapes.”

From a wine judging perspective, tempranillo does have a good shot at becoming a signature grape for this region. Not only did it win “Best of Show Red” this year, but in previous years as well. The tempranillos we tasted were massive with huge chalky tannins, dark fruit, complex spice notes, and a very long finish. Definitely not the medium-bodied fruity “crianzas” coming out of Spain, but a different wine altogether. And with summer temperatures hovering near 100 for up to three weeks at a time, it makes sense that Southern Oregon is able to ripen Cabernet Franc, Syrah, Petite Syrah, and Malbec to such impressive lengths.

In terms of white wines, Rhone varietals are doing well with some excellent blends of viognier, roussanne, and marsanne. At the same time, an albarino won the “Best of Show White” this year, causing some people to wonder out loud: “Perhaps we should focus on Spanish varietals as our signature grapes.” Interestingly, both of the Best of Show wines came from the same small producer, Schmidt Family Vineyards (http://sfvineyards.com/) located in the Applegate Valley.

From a wine marketing strategy, it is recommended that wine regions focus on what they do well, and therefore should select one to three signature grapes. This is usually heavily dictated by terroir and what Mother Nature will allow them to grow well. The benefits are the region becomes known for producing exceptional wines in a specific category, versus a wide variety of wines that may just be average or mediocre – the danger of following a muddled strategy. However, once wine critics, sommeliers, and tourists start flocking to a region to sample its famous signature varietals, there is no reason that a smart and creative winemaker can’t also pull out some unique varietals and wow them with something different.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Dr. Liz Thach, MW is the Korbel Scholar and a wine business professor at Sonoma State University in California. She can be reached at [email protected]

Continue reading Southern Oregon Wineries Producing Powerful Tempranillo and Malbec — Signature Grapes of the Future?