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I was five years young when I experienced Boerne, Texas, for the first time. Desiring something different for my sister and me, my parents moved us to this place known as “the key to the hills.” And how magical and exciting it was that our move happened right before Christmas! Little did we know that our new hometown, just northwest of San Antonio, was on the verge of incredible growth. Guess what. We’re still growing.

After all these years, I’m still growing too. My roles as fine art painter, singer, involved parent, and community member, allow me opportunity to live out my gifts and keep active with people throughout our community. Along the way, I also enjoy breathing in our town’s charm. It permeates our landscape, architecture, economy, educational systems, faith, and leisure. Furthermore, I believe growing in awareness of it is essential to thriving here.

An Opening View | charcoal • 10 x13 in • available for purchase

Not long ago (2015), I discovered this picturesque view of Main Plaza. Originally known as the Common Area, it remains an enduring space for community.

This charcoal drawing, rendered within the historic Joseph Dienger Building, eventually led to a lot of involvement with The Dienger Trading Co., including being the first local artist showcased on their walls and part-time barista work. Amidst that time, I thoroughly enjoyed interacting with many I already knew, as well as with those who are newly arrived. All in all, the conversations and connections were enriching.

I’ve moved forward from the Dienger, but this artwork remains An Opening View into something foundational to our community—the worth of who we are, collectively and individually. I believe the charm of our town is found in us—beings so full of value, creativity, and beauty.

Raffaele Martini is a former co-worker and friend who inspired me to be part of the Dienger and more myself. Read my farewell tribute to Raffaele.

The arts have a unique way of compelling us to pause and notice, in unique ways, what is so often taken for granted or sadly overlooked. Opening the heart and moving us deeper into greater capacities of love is the revealing power beautiful art has. And in my estimation, the finest art is that of knowing and loving someone well.

Having said that, my mission in this personal initiative is to utilize the arts in appreciating the charming appeal of our incredible community, particularly the beautiful humans who make it happen. Much of the work I’ve accomplished throughout my life here has fueled this journey into beauty and love, and I simply enjoy expressing it. That my work and other artists’ works are continuously received, convinces me there’s more for us to discover.

Here’s something to ponder… Do you have a special place in town that speaks beauty into your life? Do you have a loved one, friend, colleague, teacher, mentor, or fellow human who makes you come alive? If so, please consider me or any local artist to be part of your effort in appreciating them. How fitting it is to support one another in an endeavor such as this.

Whenever I return to visit the Dienger for a cup of coffee, I’m aware of several spirits swirling around there. (Yes, I’ve got stories.) But the one I enjoy most is the spirit of community. And the really great news is, it’s all over our town; no walls can contain it. Let’s keep sight on that, and do all we can to enjoy and appreciate who we are. #weARTboerne

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