RIVERVIEW – Brien Hockman said a pink full moon last year inspired him to paint his acrylic piece of a cow eating grass.
“It’s a de-stressor to paint,” said Hockman, who also volunteers with his wife, Katrina, for the Winthrop Community Garden. “As a kid, I used to tell people I wanted to be an artist. My wife encouraged me to pick up a paint brush and pursue my dream.”
Hockman said volunteers found cow artifacts on the former farmland while digging up the soil for the community garden.
Katrina Hockman, the volunteer coordinator for the community garden, helped sell homemade strawberry, peach and traditional salsa March 22 and 23 at the Winthrop Town Centre.
The event showcased the work of about 100 artists. Local charitable organizations, businesses, food vendors and musicians also joined the festival to promote art appreciation.
“We designed a community garden in which people could gather together,” she said. “We are growing broccoli, cabbage, black beans, red beans, green beans, chickpeas, tomatoes, cabbage and carrots.”
Katrina Hockman said much of the produce, which is grown without chemicals, is donated to ECHO of Brandon, which provides food for needy families in the area.
Lisa Rodriguez of Brandon, the marketing director for Center Place Fine Arts & Civic Association, helped children make art projects at the organization’s tent.
She promoted the Center Place’s 30th annual Patron Party coming up on April 12 as well as summer camps.
“It’s a great community event and a way for us to meet new people and let them know what we have going on,” she said.
Marcia Ferraro of Riverview brought her 8-year-old daughter, Isabella, to the event. Isabella made a flower at Patty Sisco’s Sketch & Sip art booth.
“I love supporting the community from an arts perspective,” Marcia Ferraro said. “We do a lot of art at home – craft and arts projects. It fosters her creativity and confidence. When she creates something, she sees what she can do besides watching TV.”
Sisco of Lithia said her Sketch & Sip classes take place in Suite 11242 of the Winthrop Times Building at 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday. She guides people with a step-by-step process designed for anyone, including beginners.
“A lot of people say they can only draw stick figures and they end up with a real painting,” she said.
A member of the Greater Brandon Arts Council, Sisco said it was her fourth year participating in the Winthrop Arts Festival.
“Winthrop is very art-friendly,” she said. “They are very balanced with family, community and art.”