By Jessica Tuggle
SEBASTIAN -- Creativity cannot truly be contained, but an artist's studio comes pretty close.
The community is invited to take a peek into the studios, and therefore the minds, of several Sebastian artists during the second annual Sebastian art studio tour on Feb. 9 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
While the tour is not presented by any club, many of the participating artists in the studio tour event are members of the Sebastian River Art Club, which celebrated its 75th anniversary last week.
Ten artists have signed up to open their studios, and in some cases, homes, to the public for the free, self-guided tour event, said Judy Burgarella, one of the artists.
Ms. Burgarella often works with oils and takes inspiration from everything she sees around her, animals, people and landscapes.
Mary Ann Hall and Richard Ramirez are two other artists on the studio tour, each bringing their own talents and creative flair to the table.
Ms. Hall's favored media are watercolors and encaustic painting. Her garage has been converted to a studio and the wall space will be decorated with large paintings for people to see.
Encaustic is a Greek word meaning "to heat or burn in," and creating encaustic paintings involves heating beeswax and crystallized tree sap to about 200 degrees Farenheit and covering a surface, Ms. Hall said.
The medium can be transparent or colored, and its adhesive qualities also allow three-dimensional objects to be placed on the work surface and stay firmly in place.
"You can do it like a painting, adding layer after layer, or like a collage," Ms. Hall said.
Her love of art goes back as far as she can remember, and moving between the media of watercolors and encaustic allows her to stretch her creative limits and imagination.
"I started as a young girl on my parent's back porch. I took a 25-year hiatus while I was working to make a living, but I'm back and I love it," Ms. Hall said.
Mr. Ramirez also has a long-standing history with his chosen medium of ceramics.
While living in California, he taught ceramics at the high school and community college levels, and now he enjoys physically carrying out everything he taught his students.
Mr. Ramirez has his own pottery studio at his home complete with a firing kiln and area for mixing colored glazes.
"My main concern is do the work that I enjoy and decorate the pieces and if I happen to sell something, I'll be happy and use that to buy more clay or more equipment," Mr. Ramirez said.
Working with clay is always experimental and no two pieces come out exactly alike, he said.
Many of his pieces are utilitarian in nature, bowls and pots, though he sometimes does special carvings and painting on his pieces to add some decoration.
He is excited to open his home and studio to the public and he along with some other artists, will be providing refreshments for those who stop in to visit and browse. Artifacts from Mr. Ramirez's travels will also be on display during the studio tour.
A list of addresses for all the artists participating is not yet available, but will be made available online soon, Ms. Burgarella said.
For more information about the studio tour, call Ms. Burgarella at (772) or visit www.sebastianartstudiotour.com.