This is as close as we can come to actually singing to our readers on their birthdays! 

We’d love to include yours – and/or your children’s birthdays here.

Just email to:

lynette@stunewslaguna.com

 

Celebrate and enjoy your

birthday!

 

May 23

Denise Puglisi

Jay Strotkamp

Marta Hullihen

Mary Gulino

Millie Herrin

Robb Mitchell

Robert McGraw

Ryan Heimbach

Tommy Kemp

 

May 24

Jenifer Burge

Jordan Kyle

Mandy Flemming

Randy Hunt

Walt Winfield

 

May 25

Cameron Jones

Debra Kubisak

Jack Luster

Kerry Rubel

Michelle Bendetti

 

May 26

Catharine Cooper

Jackie Saffer Miller

Lindsay Smith-Rosales

Mark Meisberger

Regina Hartley

Richard Belyea

Sara Truedson

Vicki Orgill

 

May 27

Jude Hannah

Marcus Sotelo

Suzanne Lilly

 

May 28

Steve Kawaratani

Erica Jones

 

May 29

Bob Earl

Cherish Spalding Craig

Deb Hendrix

Kathryn Mace

Ron Geisman

Sound Spectrum

Faves

 

1. John Mayer, The Search For Everything

2.Thievery Corporation, The Temple Of I & I 

3. Gary Clark Jr., Live North America 

4. Gorillaz, Humanz 

5. Ed Sheeran, Divide 

6. Father John Misty

7. Alison Krauss, Windy City

8. The Claypool Lennon Delirium, Monolith Of Photos

9. Shins, Heartworms

10. Spoon, Hot Thoughts

11. Aimee Mann, Mental Illness

12. Ty Segall, Ty Segall

13. Tedeschi-Truck Band, Live From Oakland

14. Jamiroquai, Automaton

15. Ryan Adams, Prisoner

16. Elbow, Little Fictions

17. Tycho, Epoch

18. The XX, I See You 

19. Depeche Mode, Spirit 

20. Bob Dylan, Triplicate

Since 1967

1264 S. Coast Hwy494-5959

Police Header

Laguna Life And People 012417



Best-kept secret, hidden treasure: that’s Bill Atkins, unique in Laguna for his brilliant graphic art skills

Story by LYNETTE BRASFIELD

Photos by Mary Hurlbut

Bill Atkins’ art is visible all over California, not only on the walls of art- and poster-lovers, but on the byways and highways of our state. Many know his work, but few are aware of the talented man behind the iconic license-plate “whale-tail” image seen around California. 

This achievement came about because the California Coastal Commission chose Atkins to design the license plate graphic after he won the CCC design competition in 2011. He was delighted to be able to work on a project promoting our oceans and sea creatures, a cause dear to his heart.

To be quite clear, Atkins is quick to point out, “I won the contest itself, but along with another artist, Elizabeth Tyndall, from Northern California, who was also then chosen to contribute to the license plate. She did not help in the design, but I included a portion of her painting in the ocean background layer.”

The plate is the newest and among the most popular choices for drivers who are proud of our state and who care about the health of its oceans. (Profits are donated to the Commission’s education program.)

“The design is deceptively simple,” Atkins notes, showing me several of the more than 50 versions that he completed as part of his commission to develop the design. “There are layers upon layers, if you look carefully.” 

The winning design, now adorning many a vehicle, shows a humpback’s fluke against the blue of the ocean and scudding white clouds. “I needed to pay attention to the tiniest detail, for example, tilting the tail to make sure the last two letters of California are visible,” he explains.

Click on photo for a larger image

 

Bill Atkins shelters from the recent rain

“Deceptively simple” is a description that applies to much of Atkins’ work, which requires significantly more artistry and attention to detail than most people realize.

“Marrying images and typography for the kind of result I want, and that my clients want, can be tricky,” Atkins says. “Poster art is sometimes not given the same respect as other art forms, maybe because here in Laguna plein air has ruled for so long, but it has a rich history and demands a lot of focus. I love the challenge.” 

Atkins’ posters depict iconic local places and events, including Crystal Cove cottages and the Festival of the Arts, as well as famous performing artists such as Cyndi Lauper. Atkins is also a long-time teacher, and has taught digital imagery and art at LCAD and Irvine Valley College among other schools.

Posters are unique, he says, because they tend to carry explicit messages through images and typography, images that transcend international and cultural barriers. Think of travel posters, and film posters, or of Atkins’ Sister Cities series, featuring scenes from Laguna’s sister cities: Menton, France, San Jose del Cabo, Mexico, and St. Ives, England. The detailed graphics and colors reflect the commonality and shared appreciation of our ocean-side communities. 

Click on photo for a larger image

 

Bill Atkins contributes his time and talents to many nonprofits

These images are among his favorites, especially as they helped win a grant from the City for the Sister Cities nonprofit, which, as he mentions, “brings an international flavor to our town.” He’s an active member of Sister Cities as well as many other Laguna organizations, including the Garden Club, the Beautification Council and, more recently, helps with Susi Q’s Gallery Q. 

He’s donated his time and talent to graphic arts campaigns benefiting the Art Museum, AIDS Services Foundation and the Human Rights Campaign. His generosity and warm spirit are legendary among those in the know.

Atkins’ love for his work, Laguna Beach, and the outdoors, is evident to me as I chat to him on the deck of his apartment, surrounded by greenery, including native plants and succulents and a plate of fruit that looks ready to be turned into a still-life.

Hummingbirds dart among tree branches in this super-serene setting, and Atkins shows the same high energy as he jumps up and down to find various examples of his art to answer my questions about his award-winning work, which includes attractive bronze plaques honoring legendary figures such as Harry Lawrence, “Mr. Laguna.”

Atkins has wanted to be an artist since he was a young boy. “My father was fine with that, as long as I had a career like a friend of his, a commercial artist who made money – ‘not the other kind,’ my dad said,” he laughs.

Click on photo for a larger image

 

Bill in his studio, holding the whale-tail license plate

His immediate goal is to improve his social media skills and rework his website, www.lagunaposter.com, to raise his visibility locally. “I don’t think many people know about me,” he notes. “That’s partly because marketing isn’t my favorite thing to do. Most of my business comes through word-of-mouth and that’s the way most of my teaching jobs have come also.”

Atkins’ work has been on display on the walls of the Wells Fargo Building and, for the past 18 years, at Vintage Poster Gallery on Coast Hwy, where his work has proved popular among locals as well as visitors looking for vibrant art.

Like so many Lagunans, Bill Atkins, a Philadelphian by birth, says he visited here with a friend and was so charmed that within three months or so, he’d packed his things and moved, back in the early seventies. “Somehow I knew this was my home,” he says.

It’s a decision he’s never regretted. While he would love the time (and resources) to travel more, for the moment he feels content in his secluded eyrie in the woods, his small but cosy apartment inland from Crescent Point and close to Dartmoor, his favorite wilderness trail. 

“Posters are history, they’re cultural icons,” he says. “People need posters. They always will. They fill eyeballs!”

And by extension, the public needs artists who create posters, and plaques, and banners, and who are uniquely sensitive to creating meaningful, beautiful synergy between the written word and images.

Especially artists as talented, generous and sweet-natured as Laguna’s Bill Atkins.

Laguna Beach 

Library Events

May

 

Sat, May 20

Children’s Craft Open House

9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Seasonal crafts for children under 12, adult supervision recommended.

Poetry Class Workshop

2 – 4 p.m.

Participants should bring 10 copies of a poem they wish to have read and work-shopped.  Each poem will be read by the poet and perhaps by another reader. Participants then respond with emphasis on positive comments and constructive suggestions. Recommended for advanced poets—this is not a workshop for beginners. Meets in the Community Room. Contact John Gardiner @949-715-7507 for more information.

 

Mon, May 22

Third Street Writers Group Ink

10 a.m.- 1 p.m.

Serious writers working on projects (short stories, novels, plays) meet to share feedback and support.  Not a workshop for beginners.  Contact library for more info.

Wed, May 24

Children’s Playtime and Crafts

10:30 – 11:30 a.m.

This is an opportunity for parents and caregivers to meet in a comfortable environment where toys and crafts are available. For children 5-years and under.

 

Thurs, May 25

Peapod Academy

Storytime

10:30 – 11:30 a.m.

For babies, toddler, and preschoolers (and their adults). Storytime, arts and crafts. No preregistration required.

 

Laguna Beach Library

363 Glenneyre St.

www.ocpl.org

949-497-1733

Laguna Beach Books

Bi-weekly Bestsellers

 

Novels

A Piece of the World by Christina Baker Kline

The Leavers by Lisa Ko

The Fix by David Baldacci

 

Non-Fiction

Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil DeGrasse Tyson

Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann

Shattered by Jonathan Allen & Amie Parnes

 

Children’s Books

Colores de la Vida by Cynthia Weill

The Book of Mistakes by Corinna Luyken

Pete the Cat and the Cool Cat Boogie by Kimberly and James Dean

 

Staff Recommendation

The Assistants by Camille Perri

 

1200 S Coast Hwy

949.494.4779

www.lagunabeachbooks.com

Sawdust Studio Art

The Sawdust Art Festival, in collaboration with Visit Laguna Beach, offers some exciting new classes to the Award-Winning Sawdust Studio Art Classes’ schedule for 2017.

The year-round art education program includes special classes in glass, fused glass, jewelry and ceramics.

Call 494-3030 for information and to reserve a class.

Students may register for all classes online or by calling 494-3030. 

Visit the website at: 

http://www.sawdustartfestival.org/studio-classes

 

Class Schedules

•••

Friday, May 26

1 p.m.

Oil Painting

•••

Saturday, May 27

10 a.m.

Basic Soldering

•••

 

Shaena Stabler and Stu Saffer are the co-owners. Shaena is the Publisher and Stu is the Editor-in-Chief.

Lynette Brasfield is our Managing Editor.

The Webmaster is Michael Sterling.

Katie Ford is our in-house ad designer.

Allison Rael, Barbara Diamond, Diane Armitage, Dianne Russell, Laura Buckle, Maggi Henrikson, Marrie Stone, Samantha Washer and Suzie Harrison are staff writers.

Barbara Diamond, Dennis McTighe, Diane Armitage, Laura Buckle and Suzie Harrison are columnists.

Mary Hurlbut, Scott Brashier, and Aga Stuchlik are the staff photographers.

We all love Laguna and we love what we do.

Email: Shaena@StuNewsLaguna.com for questions about advertising

949.315.0259

Email: StuNewsLaguna@Yahoo.com with news releases, letters, etc

949.510.5218