Collector Spotlight: Sandy & Gary in PA...

Well, it has been about a year since I have posted a Collector Spotlight feature! During the frenzy of this past Ghoultide Gathering, long-standing fans and collecting couple, Sandy & Gary from Pennsylvania traveled in and adopted a few more original delights from me. They promised to send me photos of their collection (even after I mistakenly swopped their bag on them.....eek! :) Fortunately that was resolved, and upon their return, they had a moment to snap some lovely photos and answer a few of my questions. So, enjoy a peek at their sweet and spooky decor along with a fun Q & A! Many thanks to both Sandy & Gary for taking such a special interest in the work that I create and for sharing a glimpse at their decorated home with us :)
(please leave comments for them below...)

J:  How did you learn about my holiday folk art?  

S & G:  It has been so long, neither of us could remember....

(* I thought I would start out by sharing this lovely photo of their mantel all dressed for Halloween! It is such a treat for me to have my art displayed in such an honorable way...)
You can click on this image for a larger view....

(* Perched atop an antique bucket stands an owl original of mine that Gary snatched up at last year's Ghoultide Gathering! Little did either of us know that this owl would appear in this year's Midwest Living magazine!... In surround, 2 other originals, a black cat & and a bat atop a jack keep company with a sweet handmade blackbird by Lori Ann Corelis.)

J:  How long have you been collecting my originals? 
S & G:  It seems like we've been big fans and collectors since you started.  Our oldest pieces are from 2006, so I guess about 5 years.
J: This is a nice span of years to build a collection ~ I actually started making my originals full-time in 2004, but I was still just learning my technique then. I often shudder when I see some of those older pieces resurface today :)

(* Last year's one of a kind, base chamber vase black cat strikes a proud pose on the left end of their mantel. An original bat and older black cat and standing crow share this cozy spot with one of my reproduction owl rattles and a sweet handmade bear by Lori Ann Corelis. Sandy & Gary enjoy mixing in old wooden boxes and buckets to use as risers for their collection. The vintage appeal of both complement one another.)

J: What is it about my creations that captures your imagination?
S & G: Well, this is a rather tough question, as we have never dissected why we like your creations.  So in attempting to answer this question, we agree first and foremost it is the pure artistry of your creations. The medium you have chosen, the whimsical detail of each piece and the folk art style fit into our personal collection.
J: Thank you, that's wonderful!

(* This image takes me back! It's been several years since I have created any one of a kind shelf sitter characters, and this papier mache clown is certainly unique. The mouse is current this year, and was adopted at the Ghoultide Gathering. Peeking from behind, the reproduction black cat candy cup is from my line of Bethany Lowe Designs products.)

(*Due to the complexity of these pieces, I only made a handful of shelf sitters. It looks to me that Sandy & Gary have the majority of them sitting around in their home! :)

(* See look, there's another one of a kind sitter! Wow, that makes four :) The mini-sitter and lumina jack are reproductions, again from my line of Bethany Lowe Designs products.)

J: Where have you had the best luck in acquiring my original pieces;
shows, web sales, Collector's Catch, eBay, etc?
 S & G: We've collected through EBay, web sales and Artist shows.  Our preferred gathering source is Artist shows where we have the opportunity to touch and feel, and of course touch base with you and JP.  These shows also give us a chance to discover new artists and their creations.
J: This is true ~ you along with my other collectors do have the best luck in acquiring my originals via Artist shows. Knowing that you are traveling in just like we are, we want to offer you a nice showing of work to make your trip worthwhile :)

(* These two one of a kind ghosts were snatched up by Gary at this year's Ghoultide Gathering. He patiently waited for several hours in the chilly, wet weather to snag some black & white originals from me, and ghosts were one of my latest additions! Thank you for your determination, Gary!)

(* And speaking of discovering other artists, you will notice that two of my original black cat candy containers here, are in good company with the wondrous wood carvings from The Whimsical Whittler and a handmade crow from Lori Ann Corelis.)

J: Do you have a favorite piece in your private collection?
S & G: After much discussion, we've decided our whole collection is our favorite piece.  Like children you just can't have a favorite!

(* More of my one of a kind cats, made over various years still look as if they are all part of the same family, regardless of when they were created. I can certainly see an evolution in my attention to detail over the years. But, it's a relief that Sandy & Gary still love them all!....)

(* The large cat bust is an older one of a kind ~ look at those long arms & neck! :) The pair of spider and owl kettle cups were created last year and snatched up by Sandy at the Ghoultide Gathering. The wee little owl is a licensed Bethany Lowe reproduction of mine...)

(* A pair of winged companions hang, suspended from an antique sign. These fun characters were new last year from my line of Primitives by Kathy reproductions.)

J:  Is there anything in particular you suggest I try making in the future?
S & G: We are collectors who look forward to seeing your new creations and we are never disappointed.  We know and appreciate your passion is Halloween, but you have created selected other pieces for Christmas and a few Spring offerings.  We would love to see you take a look at other Holidays:  St. Patrick's Day and Valentines for example.  We decorate for each Holiday and would love to be able to display some Original Johanna Parker pieces all year long.
J: Your point noted.... thanks for the push! Your passion for my work and collecting certainly inspires me, and I thank you graciously for that.

*BONUS Feature!... Here's a sneak peek at Sandy & Gary's collection of my Christmas originals ~ It looks like they have 11 more of my characters to share...

(* Ah-hah, I spy yet another sitter! I believe some of the other characters were won on eBay and / or acquired through my web sales. Ah yes, I recall that Santa candy container taking forever to complete with all those dimensional icicles and that whimsically carved beard :)

( * More characters from the red and cream palette make friends with another one of Lori Ann Corelis' mohair bears! {I am seeing a trend!} And there's that one and only "bear" of mine, so far anyway. I know, he does resemble a mouse too.....)

(* These guys must be older ~ perhaps some of the first originals that Sandy & Gary adopted. Thank goodness they took a liking to them!)

I hope you enjoyed this Collector Spotlight feature, and please leave a comment for Sandy & Gary below. They have opened their doors to you, and I know they would enjoy reading your thoughts below....

Now, how about you?  Do you have a budding collection that showcases my folk art? Of course I would LOVE to see it and share it with my readers here. Please EMAIL ME with a message of interest, and we'll take it from there. Thank you!

Happy Collecting!
~ Johanna