Former Detroit writer looks back at real-life tragedy in “Purgatory”

By Stephanie Sokol for The Oakland Press Bryan Gruley’s advice for writing a novel? Sit down and do it. After years working in a newsroom, the Pulitzer-prize winning journalist, Bloomberg reporter and former writer for the Detroit News says he can write in any setting, with any noise level. It’s really just about getting itContinue reading “Former Detroit writer looks back at real-life tragedy in “Purgatory””

Canton artist brings stained glass paintings to HVCA in Highland

By Stephanie Sokol for The Oakland Press J. Susan Aitken loves the look of stained glass. But instead of working in that medium, she captures its likeness through her paintings. Stained glass became her subject after a trip with her children years ago to Italy and France, where she was captivated by the beautifully ornateContinue reading “Canton artist brings stained glass paintings to HVCA in Highland”

Artist makes butterflies ‘fly off the canvas’ using augmented reality

At first look, Tim Yanke’s butterfly painting feels as if the insects are coming to life. But being an innovator, he wanted to take things a step further. His painting “Peta louthias,” Greek for butterfly, was inspired by a pair of women’s cowboy boots with butterflies on them that he’d seen when traveling out west.Continue reading “Artist makes butterflies ‘fly off the canvas’ using augmented reality”

Detroit photographer exhibits emotional photos, stories of refugees

Stephanie Sokol for The Oakland Press Looking through his lens, photographer Kenny Karpov tries to capture who people truly are — their expressions, their bodies and the light in their eyes. His emotional portraits, paired with written work, tell their stories. In Karpov’s latest project, the book “Despite It All We Never Learn,” he tellsContinue reading “Detroit photographer exhibits emotional photos, stories of refugees”

Six pierogi spots to try at the annual Pierogi Fest in Whiting this weekend

By Stephanie Sokol for The Chicago Tribune Loading up on potato-filled goodness during the last weekend in July has become a Northwest Indiana tradition — drawing crowds for more than two decades. Pierogi Fest in downtown Whiting celebrates its 25th anniversary this weekend, featuring more than 30 food and beverage vendors. People flock in toContinue reading “Six pierogi spots to try at the annual Pierogi Fest in Whiting this weekend”

Silverware artist upcycles cast-offs to beautiful objects

By Stephanie Sokol for Digital First Media We all know recycling is a way to help reduce waste going into our landfills. But for some creative people, it can be a form of art. Christine Yonker upcycles vintage silverware, turning it into something completely different and beautiful. She started out working more with glass, butContinue reading “Silverware artist upcycles cast-offs to beautiful objects”

Paint Creek Center for the Arts introduces new executive director

By Stephanie Sokol for Digital First Media Elizabeth Chilton wears many hats. She serves on multiple museum boards and has held many corporate roles at museums in the Detroit area. She also is a single mother and a yogi. Now, she is taking on a role she is really looking forward to — executive directorContinue reading “Paint Creek Center for the Arts introduces new executive director”

Lathrup Village clockmaker enjoys sharing his works with people

Stephanie Sokol for The Oakland Press When choosing the direction his life would take, Duane Scherer knew he wanted to do something creative. After high school, the Lathrup Village resident worked as a musician and began painting, and a few years later, focused solely on visual art. “I wanted to bring joy and aesthetic variationContinue reading “Lathrup Village clockmaker enjoys sharing his works with people”

Metro Detroit artists bring birds to life through paintings

Stephanie Sokol for The Oakland Press For painter Helena Kuttner-Giasson, art is a way to communicate in more ways than one. When she couldn’t find the words, her art spoke for her, and she took inspiration from her surroundings. “Art is my first language,” says Kuttner-Giasson, of Clinton Township. “I always enjoyed doodling and drawingContinue reading “Metro Detroit artists bring birds to life through paintings”

Local photographer and author release third picture book, ‘Among a Thousand Fireflies’

Stephanie Sokol for The Oakland Press Rick Lieder knows beauty and nature can be found right in your own back yard. In his latest children’s book, “Among a Thousand Fireflies,” created with award-winning poet Helen Frost, the long-time photographer, artist and former photojournalist captured fireflies outside his home. “Helen did a great job telling theContinue reading “Local photographer and author release third picture book, ‘Among a Thousand Fireflies’”