April 2022

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DRINK OF THE MONTH

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DRINK OF THE MONTH

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magazine

Publisher Tammy Clark tmclark225@gmail.com Editor Heather Page heather@vipmagsc.com Office Manager Tiffany Skipper jtskipp35@gmail.com Advertising Executives Julie C. Tyler juliectyler@yahoo.com Creative Design Tuesday Taylor Ashley Rogers

Contributing Photographers Tanya Ackerman Steve Camlin Erin Daniel Phillip Guyton Fred Salley Matt Warthan Contributing Writers Brian Blaker, MD, FACC Erica Buffkin Mark W. Buyck, III Laura Clements Cynthia Ford Dana Jones, FNP-C Cameron Phillips Melissa Rollins Stacey Severance Doug Smith Chad Thurman, MD

Serving Florence, Hartsville, Darlington, Marion, Mullins, Lake City and the surrounding areas 2011-B Second Loop Rd, Florence, SC 29501 FIND US ON FACEBOOK

For advertising rates, call 843-687-4236.

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ISSUE 77

ABOUT THE COVER

Painting by Matt Cook, page 48

SHAND JOSEY & GREG JOHNSON BRING HOME TOP SCAAA AWARDS At a recent statewide ceremony, the South Carolina Athletic Administrators Association named Shand Josey the 4A Principal of the Year and Greg Johnson the 4A Athletic Director of the Year. Florence 1 Superintendent Dr. Richard O'Malley praised Principal Josey and Coach Johnson for their hard work in helping to establish strong academic and athletic programs at their schools. See page 10 and 11 for the full story.

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CONTENT: APRIL 2022

BUSINESS 10 Shand Josey and Greg Johnson Bring Home Top SCAAA Awards

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12 Mark W. Buyck, III: The Charleston Convention AROUND TOWN

14 Scented Hug Candle Co.

30 Pee Dee Land Trust Oyster Roast

HOME 32 Murray-Mitchell Lighting Company: What's New With Lighting? 34 7 Ways To Save Money On Food Shopping

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HEALTH 16 HopeHealth: Preventing Falls - Tips for Seniors 18 McLeod Health: Robotic-Assisted Knee Replacement

ARTFIELDS 36 Ashley Warthen 38 Adrian Smith 40 Julie Mixon 42 Joshua Redfearn 44 Stan Diel 46 André Boyd 48 Matt Cook

AROUND TOWN

50 Colleen Kennedy

20 A Night In The Round

LIFEST YLE 22 Good Shepherd: The Resurrection And The Life

DRINK 52 La'Quantia Goodman: The Cottontail Martini

24 Cynthia Ford: 5 Ways To Boost Your Financial Health 26 Circle Park: Don't Let Underage Drinking Ruin Your Prom

CALENDAR 28 April 2022: Fun Days and Events

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BUSINESS

The Charleston Convention story by Mark W. Buyck, III

In 1860 Charleston hosted the Democrat National Convention. This is the only instance in which a major political party would hold its nominating convention in the state. The decade of the 1850s is noted for a glaring vacuum of responsible political leadership in the country. The Southern planter and political classes were nearly united in their contention that slavery was constitutional, not only in the South but in the Western territories. Northern abolitionists had deserted the Whig party in the 1850s and formed the Republican party. Southerners, with the exception of a brief dalliance with the Whigs in the 1830s, were solidly Democrats. The Democrat party in the Northern and border states were pro-union, recognized the economic role slavery played in the South and disfavored abolition. These Northern Democrats were pragmatic, recognizing that most Northern voters supported, at a minimum, self determination of slavery in the Western territories.

The Dred Scott decision immediately became a hot political topic. Slavery became the main issue in the 1858 Illinois Senate election between Democrat Stephen A Douglas and Republican Abraham Lincoln. Douglas argued that the residents of territories and new states should determine by vote Dred Scott whether it should be slave or free. Lincoln proposed that slavery not be allowed in any new territory or state; however, he did not argue that slavery should be abolished where it existed in the Southern states. Douglas won reelection; however, regional strife only increased on the national political level.

The Supreme Court issued the infamous Dred Scott decision in 1857. In this opinion, the Supreme Court held that slaves were not “citizens” as defined in the U.S. Constitution. The implication of this holding was that slaveholders should be free to take their slave “property” into any state or territory they wish without fear of confiscation from local authorities. The decision also overturned the 1850 Missouri Compromise limitations on slavery in the Northern territories.

In an attempt to foster unity and discourage Southern defections, national Democrat leaders chose Charleston as the site of the 1860 Democrat National Convention. This decision proved anything but unifying. Charleston was already a hot bed of secession sentiment. The loudest voice for disunion was the Mercury newspaper. The Mercury was a local Charleston organ with a nationwide circulation, particularly among the more radical Southern secessionists.

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Delegates came to Charleston from all over the country. There were 333 delegates representing 32 states along with thousands of additional visitors and press. They arrived by sea, railroad, and overland. The Pennsylvania delegation sailed from Philadelphia with 500 barrels of spirits and 300 kegs of beer. The Charleston Hotel laid in provisions for 4,000 guests per night. When the convention began on April 23 at South Carolina Institute Hall Stephen Douglas was favored to receive the nomination. The visitor’s gallery at the Hall was packed with pro-slavery spectators during the entire proceedings. The pro-slavery delegates managed to gain a majority on the platform committee. When the platform was initially presented to the convention it was pro-slavery, endorsed the Dred Scott decision and called for slavery in the territories. These Fire-Eaters were convinced that the Northern delegates would not approve of the platform. The Northern delegates were equally convinced that they would not carry a single Northern state if the platform was adopted. On April 30, a vote was held on a substitute Northern platform which disavowed Dred Scott and was more palatable to the Douglas supporters. The convention approved the Northern platform in a 165 to 138 vote. At the conclusion of this vote, the Alabama delegation announced that it was withdrawing from the convention. They were followed by the Mississippi delegation. The South Carolina delegates then followed to wild cheers from the gallery. Florida, Arkansas, Georgia and Texas all left along with assorted delegates from Arkansas and Delaware. The departing delegates paraded down

Douglas

Breckenridge

Meeting and Broad Streets to St. Andrew’s Hall to what the Mercury referred to as the “seceding convention.” The Southern delegates snub of the convention and dramatic exit was greeted with excitement and celebration among White Charlestonians. The delegates who remained with the convention attempted to cajole the Southern delegates into returning. Unsuccessful, the remaining delegates then began voting for a nominee. Although Douglas was a choice of a majority of the delegates, the party rules required a two-thirds majority for nomination. On May 3 after 57 ballots, the convention adjourned with Douglas 50 1/2 votes short of nomination. With their beer and spirits depleted, the Northern delegates departed Charleston and agreed to reconvene six weeks later in Baltimore. There, Douglas was nominated with very few Southern delegates in attendance. Five days later, pro-Southern delegates also convened in Baltimore and nominated then Vice President, John C. Breckenridge as their candidate of choice. In a 3-day convention in Chicago the Republicans nominated Abraham Lincoln as their candidate. A fourth Presidential candidate, former Senator John Bell of Tennessee, was nominated as the candidate of the Constitutional Union Party, mostly made up of pro-slavery unionists in the border states. When the votes were cast in the November general election, Abraham Lincoln won the popular vote with less than 40% of the vote. Lincoln carried 18 Northern states and 180 electoral votes. Breckenridge received only 18% of the popular vote but carried 11 states from Texas to Delaware. Bell carried 3 border states with 39 electoral votes. Stephen Douglas received 29 1/2 % of the popular vote yet carried only 1 state, Missouri. Lincoln did not receive a single vote from any of the Deep South states. The Fire-Eaters had gotten what they had sought.

248 West Evans Street | Florence, SC | 843.662.3258 2050 Corporate Centre’ Drive, Suite 230 Myrtle Beach, SC | 843.650.6777

Business Law, Litigation, Real Estate, and Federal Criminal Defense Attorneys April 2022

Mark W. Buyck, III VIPMagSC.com

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BUSINESS

uniquely blended, hand-poured candles

SCENTED HUG CANDLE CO. story by Cameron Phillips Great success comes to those who don’t sit idle but instead embrace the situations placed before them and push forward. Saran and Lacie Jones met the pandemic head-on and were divinely inspired to live through it. Instead of becoming stagnant in this season, they believed God intended for them to thrive. Two years later, the couple is recognized for their incredibly aromatic candles and prayer bowls. During the pandemic when we were discouraged from hugging the people we loved, Saran and Lacie were inspired to offer a way for family and friends to share the warmth and love of a hug. They branded it Scented Hug Candle Co. When asked, “What is it like working with a spouse?” they responded, “You learn to embrace the ‘process’ of oneness. Like marriage, being good business partners requires work. It requires commitment and patience. And it can be stressful at times, in that we don’t always agree. We don’t always like the same things. And we certainly don’t always want to facilitate things in the same way. But is there anything more beautiful than the joy of accomplishing things together? When we became business partners with Scented Hug Candle Co., we gained new opportunities to dream together, build together, fail and win together, and spend more time together.” Through this stressfully beautiful process, as they call it, of owning a business together, the pair have established responsibilities. Saran is Scented Hug’s Candle Fragrance Engineer. She is responsible for blending different oils to create the unique scents they offer customers. Then, not only does Lacie become involved but their three kids as well, making it a family affair. They have smell tests, vote on which scents are the best, and name those that make the cut. Lacie handles the business side of things. He is responsible for marketing, branding, and retail and wholesale relationships. Scented Hug candles are unique in that each candle is hand poured in small batches and each fragrance is created from a blend of several different fragrance and essential oils. Saran explains, "Many people don’t realize that some of the candles they buy are essentially just duplicate fragrances. That isn’t the case at Scented Hug. We never make candles that are ‘exactly like’ other fragrances. You may smell something we make that reminds you of something else, but it’s not the same! We pride ourselves in ‘blending’ oils! We believe the aroma of a candle is the product of an intentional rendezvous between art and science by the creative mind of an artesian in the craft of candle making. To the candle lover, fragrance is everything! And this is what sets a Scented Hug candle apart from others.” 14

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ABOUT THE OWNERS: Saran and Lacie were high school sweethearts and have been married for 25 years. Saran is a graduate of Francis Marion University and has been in the South Carolina educational system as a teacher for 24 years and counting. She is currently inspiring young minds as a Montessori teacher at McLaurin Elementary School in Florence. Lacie is nearing 20 years as a minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He is currently the Pastor of the Historic Round O Missionary Baptist Church in Darlington, SC, where he has served for six years. They have three children, Zhana, AJ, and Jordan.

Scented Hug candles are made of 100% soy wax coupled with wood wicks that give a robust sound while burning. “The wood wick crackles as it burns, giving off the feel and vibe of a cozy fireplace. Our candles are sure to add a warm rustic ambiance to your home or workspace,” says Saran. While they each have scents they gravitate towards, Saran and Lacie share in their favorite product - the Jireh Prayer Bowl. Saran states, “The preparation of pouring these bowls begins with anointing them and prayers both written and spoken over them for each home they will enter. My husband and I believe in the power of prayer and we count it as an honor to pour with prayer, on behalf of our customers.” In the near future, Saran and Lacie hope to add sprays, diffusers, air fresheners, hand soaps, and body wash products to their selection. You can see the full line of Scented Hug Candle Co. products on their website, www.scentedhug.com, at the City Center Farmers Market in Florence every Saturday, F.E. Pops in Florence, Soulift Yoga, Pilates, Barre in Florence, and The Studio and Co. in Florence.

JIREH PRAYER BOWLS April 2022

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HEALTH ++ WELLNESS WELLNESS HEALTH

PR EVENT ING FALLS:

TIPS FOR SENIORS

If you are a senior, a person with limited mobility, or a caregiver for someone at risk for falls, there are some things you can do to help prevent falls while promoting an overall healthier well-being.

story by Dana Jones, FNP-C, HopeHealth

As we age, our bodies wear down and become easier to injure. While a tumble in the kitchen in our 20s or 30s can be painful (and maybe a little embarrassing), the same fall for a senior living alone can be devastating, potentially leading to declining health, loss of independence, or worse – death. If you are a senior, a person with limited mobility, or a caregiver for someone at risk for falls, there are some things you can do to help prevent falls while promoting an overall healthier well-being. If you have a history of falls or a fear of falling, explore causes and patterns. Ask yourself: · Are the walkways uneven? · Do you have to navigate a dark room or hallway to reach a light switch? · Are there frayed rugs or carpeting that may trip you? · Are walkways clear? MAKING YOUR LIVING AREA SAFER · Use lighting and assistive devices like walkers to create a safer home environment · Get repairs made where possible · Replace light switches with sensors that can turn the lights on for you · Remove trip hazards, such as rugs · Clear walkways of obstacles like boxes and stacks of magazines Staying healthy and active can also help prevent falls. Getting enough sunlight, eating enough, and maintaining a healthy weight all help lower fall risk. Communicate with your providers to best manage your health and let them know about any changes. · If you get up frequently at night to use the restroom, consider using a bedside commode to shorten the walk

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· Drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration, and ask your healthcare provider to check for osteoporosis to help prevent broken bones if a fall should occur · Ask your health care provider if a Vitamin D supplement can benefit you MEDICATION MANAGEMENT While medications are a common and necessary tool for helping seniors manage medical conditions, they can also contribute to falls. When possible, avoid medications that are psychoactive or have side effects that may cause dizziness, blurred vision, drowsiness, confusion, or sudden drops in blood pressure when standing. · Take all medications as directed · Talk to your provider about stopping any unnecessary medications · Review your medications annually with your pharmacist and health care provider during your annual wellness visit · Always talk with your provider before stopping any medication · Medication alternatives such as yoga, massage, and meditation can help manage anxiety, pain, insomnia, and other conditions as well as help you maintain balance


BE ACTIVE Engaging in regular exercise and activity can help you stay independent and capable of everyday living activities like using the restroom, brushing teeth, dressing, and undressing. Low-impact exercises such as Tai Chi, balance exercises, the Otago exercise program, and resistance bands can be done in the home, often with a DVD or online video routines. BE SOCIAL Isolation is unhealthy for people of all ages, both physically and mentally. When able, spend time with friends and family, and participate in group activities at your church or senior center. Continue doing things you enjoy and seek behavioral health or counseling services if you are feeling depressed or anxious. By following these recommendations, you can improve your quality of life and safety. While falls are sometimes unavoidable and do affect millions of people every day, making some easy changes to the home environment, diet, and daily routines while partnering with health care professionals can make all the difference. If you would like to learn more about services for seniors, contact HopeHealth at Bethea Retirement Community at (843) 432-2960 or visit hope-health.org.

157 HOME AVENUE, DARLINGTON 843.432.2960 | HOPE-HEALTH.ORG

Dana Jones, FNP-C

Dana Jones is a family nurse practitioner certified by the American Association of Nurse Practitioners. Originally from Marion, S.C., she is a member of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners and Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing. Jones began her nursing career more than 25 years ago and serves patients at HopeHealth at Bethea Retirement Community.

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HEALTH + WELLNESS

Robotic-Assisted Knee Replacement: Enhanced Precision and a Faster Recovery story by Dr. Chad Thurman

A knee replacement is a very effective treatment for many patients with arthritis, which is one of the most common causes of knee pain in adults and can lead to poor mobility. The addition of robotic-assisted orthopedic surgery to the outpatient joint replacement program at McLeod Regional Medical Center gives us the opportunity to bring the latest in orthopedic technology and innovation to Florence. Just like in traditional knee replacement surgery, robotic knee replacement surgery involves removing the damaged cartilage and abnormal bone and replacing all or part of the knee joint with an artificial joint. The goal in knee replacement surgery is to give patients a new knee that fits as close as possible to their original knee prior to their arthritis pain or degeneration. Robotic-assisted knee replacement lends fine-tuned precision and consistency to the procedure, giving patients the most personalized knee replacement possible. After surgery, physical therapy is often part of a patient’s recovery to help restore the strength and range of motion of the knee. Most individuals are back to their everyday activities within two to three months after surgery, but recovery depends on many factors such as age, weight, and activity level prior to surgery. In a robotic-assisted knee replacement, patients often require less time in therapy and can return to activities even more quickly, because of the enhanced accuracy and precision. Other benefits of robotic-assisted knee surgery include reduced blood loss and reduced soft tissue damage, which translates to lower narcotic use. 18

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optical trackers provide real-time feedback as the surgeon continuously adjusts the robot during the procedure, leading to an extremely well-balanced and accurate knee replacement. For the patient, this means a precise and personalized fit, which leads to a greater range of motion, less pain and a faster recovery than with traditional joint replacement surgery. Before deciding that a knee replacement is the best option for you, your doctor may try more conservative treatment, including non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as Motrin or Aleve, steroid injections into the joint, physical therapy or weight loss. You may be a candidate for a knee replacement if you have the following symptoms: knee pain that keeps you awake at night, knee pain that sidelines you from activities, and knee pain that limits daily functions such as climbing stairs. If your conservative treatment of chronic knee pain is no longer working, then it may be time to consider a knee replacement. The first step is to have a medical exam with an orthopedic specialist. Weight-bearing X-rays can usually help your doctor determine the condition of the knee. Knowing the condition of the knee prior to surgery helps your doctor determine how much improvement you can expect after surgery. With robotic-assisted surgery, there are significant improvements in recovery and post-operative pain management for knee replacements, with patients often being able to discharge home from the hospital the same day as their procedure. Dr. Chad Thurman performs robotic-assisted knee replacement surgery at McLeod Regional Medical Center.

Robotic-assisted knee replacement surgery allows the surgeon to perform complex procedures with more precision, flexibility and control than is possible with traditional techniques. We often think of robotic surgery as the physician being outside of the operating room or away from the operating table, controlling the robot from a distance. However, during robotic-assisted knee replacement, the surgeon’s hands are on the equipment the entire time, directly maneuvering the robot’s every move while at the operating table. Before the surgery begins, the robot can analyze the knee’s unique size and anatomy, and communicates the exact alignment, angles, and rotation of both the knee and the saw before making any incisions. An infrared camera and

Knee replacement is one of the most effective and reliable medical procedures performed. It can significantly reduce pain and improve your ability to move. Determining if robotic-assisted knee replacement is right for you requires careful evaluation and consultation with an orthopedic surgeon.

Visit mcleodhealth.org to learn more about knee replacements and other options available to patients.

Dr. Chad Thurman is an orthopedic surgeon at McLeod Regional Medical Center and cares for patients at McLeod Orthopaedics in Florence and Hartsville. He specializes in total joint replacement of the knee and hip and performs robotic-assisted knee replacements. Dr. Thurman is accepting new patients. For more information, call 843-777-7900.

April 2022

Dr. Chad Thurman Orthopedic Surgeon at McLeod Regional Medical Center

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AROUND TOWN: A NIGHT IN THE ROUND

photos by Phillip Guyton

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A Night in the Round

A Night in the Round was presented by McLeod Volunteer Services is a new fundraising event which will benefit the McLeod Children’s Hospital. The event was held on Saturday, March 12, 2022 at Roseneath Farm in Florence. Jebb Mac, Gary Hannan and Wynn Varble were the artists who shared their singing and songwriting talents. The evening was a fun, casual night in a rustic setting, with the artists giving a sneak peek into their creative processes and sharing their stories behind the featured songs. Florence native, Floramay Holliday, was also playing during the VIP Reception. 5

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LIFESTYLE

SERVICE: 10:30AM EVERY SUNDAY MORNING 2301 SECOND LOOP RD, FLORENCE STACEY SEVERANCE, PASTOR

The Resurrection And The Life

story by Stacey Severance

Humanity has many enemies. Among them are disease, blindness, deafness, paralysis, poverty, hunger, disastrous weather, and the powers of evil. During the earthly ministry of Jesus, He demonstrated miraculous power over all of these to show that He was from heaven and that He was, in fact, God come to earth. But the raising of His friend Lazarus from the dead in John 11 is a different kind of miracle, because by resurrecting this man, Jesus showed His power over humanity’s greatest enemy: death. It was a sign of things to come; the resurrection of Jesus would be far greater. After being raised, Lazarus was still able to get sick and would one day die again. Jesus, however, was raised unable to die again, untouchable by the effects of sin. And yet at this lesser resurrection, Jesus says something very important about His greater resurrection to come and about the resurrection for all who trust in Him. He says, “I am the resurrection and the life.” What does He mean? Well, when Jesus says that He is “the resurrection,” He means that though our bodies die, our souls can be raised from their state of spiritual death through Him. And when He says that He is “the life,” He means that all who are spiritually resurrected by Him are forever alive in Him in both body and soul. Let’s look closer at this. Genesis 2 states that, “God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature.” God gave man physical life, just as He did all other living creatures; but, being made in His image, God gave man another kind of life. It is the human soul, the spiritual part of a person, something resembling God Himself which gave man the ability to reflect God’s character and His ways. 22

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But sometime after their creation, the man and woman rebelled against God. The image of God within them was not totally destroyed, but it was severely tarnished. Sin invaded their souls and plunged them into spiritual death. The Scriptures teach that as a result, they and every person since are spiritually dead in sins. Our souls are corrupted throughout by evil, and we physically die as well. And we cannot, in our own efforts, get that life back. My wife and I were watching a singing competition on TV, and I saw something that made me laugh. There was a young man, an outstanding singer, wearing a turtleneck shirt. Turtleneck shirts were stylish in the 90s, so I asked my wife, “Didn’t turtlenecks go out of style?” She confirmed this to be the case. But I looked online and apparently, turtlenecks are making a comeback. If you still have one, you can help bring them back! Understand this: the gospel of Jesus Christ proclaims that He brought life back. By the power of His Spirit, Jesus Himself resurrects us. I want to point out that when Jesus says these words in John 11, He speaks to a woman who had just lost her dear brother. Death was on the forefront of her mind. Death is so stunning, isn’t it? We feel powerless in the face of death. Of course, we have wonderful medical technology today, and we can do various things to delay death, but still it comes for everyone. However, resurrection and everlasting life are available. Have you experienced the resurrection Jesus describes? Do you have this life in Him?

Join Good Shepherd for Easter Service on Sunday, April 17 at 10:30am!


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LIFESTYLE

5 ways to

BOOST YOUR FINANCIAL HEALTH story by Cynthia Ford

A part of the American dream is to have a stable financial life that would allow one to live comfortably. How financial stability and wealth are shared among us may vary depending on our family dynamics and educational path. The month of April is National Financial Literacy Month. Financial literacy is more in debt than the printed paper and coins that we trade in for purchases. A healthy financial state involves understanding the value of money beyond what you physically see. There are multiple ways to boost our level of financial literacy. In this article, we will review five.

CHANGE THE NARRATIVE It’s imperative to change the way we think about money. Before the existence of printed money, the world depended on a system of trading one item of value for another. There are several theories as to why we began printing money. We now have several other ways of making payments, such as electronic transfers, digital currency, and even making payments using apps on our smartphones. This shift in the value of printed money shows that printed money is not always the ultimate solution to everything. When we begin to see money as the object that it is, our thoughts will shift. Our focus should be to determine our value and position ourselves in a situation where our value matches the value placed on money. As we increase value, the reciprocated value increases as well. We should focus on finding ways to let our money work for us instead of working for money. 24

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ACTIVELY INCREASING KNOWLEDGE If you want to hide valuable information from some, most people say to put that useful information inside a book. One who reads leads. The art of reading can transform the trajectory of one’s life. Boosting financial literacy by actively acquiring knowledge includes reading material relevant to your economic growth. All material may not be relevant or timely. Utilizing the internet is a quick option for active engagement. Other options include purchasing material from your local bookstore or visiting your local library. Reading increases your vocabulary, knowledge, and performance. Begin your journey of active increase by scheduling between fifteen to twenty minutes per day to read. Building and maintaining wealth requires staying up to date with today’s financial trends. Invest in reading material that will teach you how to invest, strategically increase wealth, and books on financial maintenance.

SMART INVESTMENTS Invest in yourself with the expectations of receiving a return. For many years we have taught our children to attend school, go to college, obtain a good job with benefits, and save. One crucial part that is often overlooked is investing. Investing is a priority and a necessity for maintaining a financially healthy life. Consider the money you have saved at home or in your savings account. Most of the time, you receive very little interest for money in that account. However, if you make smart investments with some of the money, you will then be able to see how money can work for you. You cannot take all your income and throw it into any investment. You must thoroughly research to determine if and when to expect a return.


DECREASE EMOTIONAL SPENDING

DIVIDE AND CONQUER

Reduce emotional spending and increase smart spending. Emotional spending is spending funds based on your current emotional state without thoroughly assessing if you should spend at the time. Smart spending involves knowing if you can afford the item you are purchasing, if it is necessary to buy it, and if it would negatively impact your financial health. One way to keep track of your spending is by maintaining a budget. Budgets are monitored on printed budget calendars, via apps or other devices, or with the assistance of a hired professional. The art of budgeting includes writing down your monthly income and expense and subtracting the expenses from the income. Modify your expenses and eliminate any cost that is not a necessity.

It would be best to designate a portion of your income to ensure your basic needs and required expenses are satisfied. A percentage should also include savings and investments. As you divide your income, remember that your goal is to make your money work for you.

Increase your current income by earning additional income. Explore options of starting your own business by selling a product or service that would prove to be needed and lucrative in your service area. How can we produce more income if we’re already committed to another job? First, know that it will take some sacrifice and extra time and effort. If you’re committed to a position that consumes every ounce of your time and it does not satisfy your basics needs, you may want to consider exploring other employment opportunities. Everyone has a skill or talent. One way to increase your incoming income is to explore ways to monetize your talent. This increase may be through a part-time job with another entity or by establishing your own business.

It is a simple equation. Live off the money you earn. If you are barely living off of the money you earn, adjust how you’re using what you have and decide if it is necessary to make more. Having more money isn’t the core of the problem. Many people think having more money will automatically solve the problem. At the center is your mindset about money. Financial literacy advances economic stability. It is a win-win for the economy, the buyer, and the consumer. Consider the five suggestions shared as you set your financial foundation. Be committed to living a wholesome and financially independent life. Invest in yourself, and expect a return.

Generating multiple streams of income is a phrase that has been echoed a lot recently and even more since the pandemic. Some people have misinterpreted that to mean working numerous jobs. You can laterally generate multiple streams of income from one source without having to separate into different entities. For example, if you desire to get into the restaurant industry, you can expand in multiple directions with this platform. These streams may include your main restaurant, a catering option, food truck, apparel, renting out space, or selling products. Being in a centralized area where there is a demand for these services will help to ignite growth.

March 2022 VIPMagSC.com VIPMagSC.com April 2022

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LIFESTYLE

Don’t Let

Underage Drinking

Ruin Your Prom

story by Erica Buffkin, Community Prevention Specialist Circle Park Behavioral Health Services

With COVID-19 restrictions declining, many teens have renewed dreams of their high school years being full of traditional and memorable events. Few are as eagerly anticipated as Prom Night and Spring Break and their associated rituals. Unfortunately, many teens and parents feel that including alcohol with these events is an acceptable rite of passage. Underage drinking, by far, continues to be the most common risky behavior challenging youth today. Although overall drug use by teens has been declining, underage alcohol use remains a significant threat to the health and safety of teens. Though alcohol use in teens has declined, during the pandemic, alcohol remains the number one drug of choice for teens. Statewide, nearly 50% of high school students will consume alcohol at some point during their high school years. Even though a lower percentage of youth are drinking today than in years past, those that are consuming alcohol are doing so at an alarming rate. In fact, the latest research shows that many young people are participating in the growing epidemic of binge drinking, which is defined as consuming 4-5 drinks during one event causing the BAC (blood alcohol content) level to rise to dangerous levels. Those that participate in this activity are more likely to be involved in risky behaviors including acts of violence, reduced sexual inhibitions, and they’re also more likely to drive a vehicle and be involved in a crash. Surprisingly to many, females participate in binge drinking at a higher rate than their male counterparts, leaving them particularly vulnerable. In order to minimize the potential dangers and consequences involved with underage drinking during the prom season, Circle Park Behavioral Health Services and the Florence County Coalition for Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Prevention, along with local law enforcement agencies have joined forces to support the “Don’t Let Underage Drinking Ruin Your Prom” Campaign. This campaign emphasizes the illegality of persons under the age of 21 purchasing, possessing or consuming alcoholic beverages. Prom night parties and Spring Break activities tend to provide an opportunity for many high school students to participate in this dangerous activity. In an effort to address and minimize these potential incidences in our community, the 12th Judicial Circuit Alcohol Enforcement Team (AET), a multi-jurisdictional team of various agencies throughout Florence and Marion Counties, will be utilizing a series of enforcement activities during prom nights that may include:

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• Source Investigations – AET members will be utilizing their resources to identify the source of alcohol that is being possessed or consumed by underage youth at prom activities. Those found to be providing alcohol to minors will be charged and prosecuted. • Party Patrols – AET members will be patrolling neighborhoods, rural areas, bonfire sites, etc. where before and after prom parties may be taking place. • Parking Lot Patrols – AET members will patrol parking lots of local establishments and locations where prom activities may be occurring to ensure that underage alcohol possession and consumption is not taking place. • Restaurant Walk-Throughs – AET members will be visible making walk throughs at local restaurants popular with prom goers and interacting with them to ensure that they understand the importance of having an alcohol free prom night.


• Compliance Checks – AET members will be checking local establishments to ensure that alcohol is not making it in to the hands of underage consumers. Underage youth also need to be aware of the constructive possession statute in which anyone under the age of 21 can receive a citation or be arrested for possessing alcohol products, having them in their car or being at a party or event where underage drinking is taking place, EVEN if they are not drinking themselves. We hope that all youth and parents participating in this year’s prom events will work together to make smart, legal and healthy choices to ensure that this year’s prom events in our community are fun, safe and alcohol free.

843.665.9349 www.circlepark.com To speak with a counselor after hours, please call 843.687.6738.

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APRIL 2022 CALENDAR sunday

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monday

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Vitamin C Day

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National Siblings Day

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Kiss and Make Up Day

Day of Hope

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Dancing For Our Future Stars SiMT, Florence

Taste of Darlington Darlington Raceway

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Big Wind Day

Open Mic Night (every Tues.) F.E. Pops, Florence

thursday

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Deep Dish Pizza Day

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Tax Day

wednesday

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Harlem Globetrotters Florence Center

Easter Sunday

Pet Parents Day

tuesday

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EVENTS

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Find A Rainbow Day

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Scrabble Day

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Trivia (every Thurs.) Southern Hops, Florence

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Trivia (every Wed.) Seminar Brewing, Florence

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Earth Day

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Administrative Professionals Day

Taste of Briggs Briggs Elementary, Florence


Send in your events to heather@vipmagsc.com! friday

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2 Mustang Car Club Show (1st-3rd) Florence Center Florence Wine + Food Festival (1st-3rd) Downtown Florence Darlington Marathon Downtown Darlington

April Fools' Day

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Blue Jeans, Brews & BBQ Thomas Hart Academy, Hartsville Hoppin' Around FloTown Easter Hunt (8th-10th) Downtown Florence Rodney Carrington Florence Center

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Cook-off & BBQ Fundraiser (8th & 9th) near Palmetto Peddler, Florence Arts International Francis Marion University

16 Growlin' On The Green Charity Golf Tournament Country Club of SC Eggstravaganza Moore Farms, Lake City

Good Friday

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23 ARTFIELDS (22-30) Lake City

Pee Dee Plant & Flower Show (21st-24th) Farmers Market, Florence

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National Arbor Day

Evening Wine Stroll Moore Farms, Lake City A Knight to Remember Mother - Son Dance American Legion Post, Darlington

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Newsboys in Concert Florence Center

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AROUND TOWN: PEE DEE LAND TRUST’S 16TH ANNUAL OYSTER ROAST

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Supporters from across the state joined PDLT on February 26th at Silver Hill 1734 in Georgetown for the 16th Annual Oyster Roast. It was a gorgeous afternoon along the Sampit River where attendees enjoyed steamed oysters, Lowcountry boil, live music and wonderful fellowship. Proceeds from the celebration will help PDLT continue their work to preserve significant conservation resources. PDLT has permanently protected over 37,000 acres across the Pee Dee Watershed.


photos by Tanya Ackerman Photography

1 Woody Swink, Erin, Katherine & James Johnson, Julie & Rob Honeycutt, Brandis Swink 2 Jennifer & Kip Hicks, Mary Kathryn & Charles Moren

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3 Mary & Drew Chaplin, Jeff Chaplin, Pam King 4 Renee & Johnson Atkinson, Bryant & Amy Sansbury, Joan & Clay 3 Ward, Allison & Carey Middleton 5 Karla & Jay Jenkins 6 Mary Caroline & Wallace Vaught, Clare & Bradley Callicott

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7 Susie & George Goldfinch, Meghan Hayden, Kimberly & Brad Courtney, Seth Hayden 8 Aimee Cox-King, Deborah Cox, Jennifer Heusel, Becky Askins 9 Catherine Rogers, Corey Craig, Keith Williamson, Gwen Strickland, Diddy Anderson – Current and Former PDLT Board members 10 Megan Hinton, John Brand, Braely Brand, Buddy Brand, Kinsey Brand, Kendall Brand, Janet Brand, Liam Brand

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11 Ida & Alva Whitehead 12 Jami & John Parker and Jess Nance 13 Cameryn Brand, Asa Godbold, Ginny & Hugh Wilcox, Janice Baroody 14 Kathi & Marshall Flowers, Neal Swann

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15 Michelle & Ed Blackstock, Charles Jackson, Jay Ervin 16 Anne & Ed Jenkins, Nancy Clifford 17 PDLT Staff – Farris Lupo, Erika Cook, Seth Cook, Ashley Scott, Lyles Cooper, Shannon Copes, Andrew Harlan, Hughes Page 18 Milli & Percy George, Mary Kendall & John Bittle 19 Jami Marchant, Deetz Mullins, John Baden, Terry Tobin

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20 Joe Rice, Catherine Rogers, Steve Nichol 21 Johnny Hoover, Thomas Rogers, Collin Brown, Ross McMillan, Joey McMillan 22 Silver Hill 1734

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HOME

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WAYS TO SAVE MONEY ON FOOD SHOPPING Get more from Doug Smith by following him on Facebook and Instagram at "Doug the Food Guy".

How do I eat healthy on a budget, despite the rising cost of food? This is a question I get asked all of the time, especially now that inflation is at an all-time high. So I thought this would be a good time to remind everyone of my February article about food waste as well as look at a few other tricks that will keep you within budget and eating well.

make sure they're for items you would buy anyway. Sunday newspapers are full of coupons and sales circulars to get you started. You can even sign up online to receive coupons and email alerts from your favorite grocers. It's also a good idea to stock up on staples when they're on sale. Use your freezer to store sale items that can be used at a later date.

1 PLAN AHEAD

5 SAVE ON PROTEIN FOODS

Take inventory of what you have on hand so you don’t overbuy. Create a shopping list based on your needs and weekly menu plan, and take into account how you plan on using leftovers. Have a light snack before you go shopping, this really does help, and stick to your grocery list to avoid impulse purchases.

2 MAKE HEALTHY CHOICES – THEY’RE CHEAPER

Eating healthier foods can actually save you money, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association. The researchers found that when families choose healthier eating habits they not only lost weight but reduced their food budgets. The savings came from reducing portion size and from buying fewer foods that add calories but little nutritional value, like sodas, candy, sweets, and chips.

3 BUY PRODUCE IN SEASON

Check out the local farmers' market for in-season fruits and vegetables. The local market will be full of items grown in or very near your town so prices won't be as impacted by high shipping costs. Not only are you helping your food budget go further, but you’re also helping your local community. If you can’t get to your local farmers' market most grocery stores have a good selection of inseason produce that is usually priced to sell.

4 TAKE ADVANTAGE OF SALES AND COUPONS

Planning meals around what's on sale can lower your grocery bills, especially if you also use coupons. Just

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When possible, substitute inexpensive protein sources such as beans, eggs, tofu, and legumes for more expensive meat, fish, or poultry. Try vegetarian meals once a week to increase your consumption of healthy plant foods while saving money. Eggs are an excellent, inexpensive source of protein that can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. You could also try using a smaller portion of meat and extending the dish with whole grains and vegetables.

6 USE LEFTOVERS

Before you toss food into your grocery cart, think about how you plan to use it. Thinking back to my February article, our food waste is estimated at between 30 to 40 percent of the total food supply. That’s approximately 133 billion pounds of food. Using leftovers to make casseroles, soups, or to top a salad will lower your weekly grocery bill. For example, have a roasted chicken for dinner one night and use the leftovers for topping a bed of fresh greens with vegetables. Add a slice of bread and you have a nutritious meal in minutes. Even when going out to a restaurant for dinner I like to set some aside to have as my lunch the next day. It’s the little things that add up to make a big difference.

7 BUY AND COOK IN BULK

Bulk purchases can be a great way to save money. As long as they get used! Cooking in bulk sometimes called batch cooking can save both time and money. We try to set aside one afternoon, typically Saturday afternoon, to cook the items we brought home from the farmers' market.


ROASTED CHICKEN Ingredients: • Olive oil • 3 to 4lb whole chicken • 1 large onion • 4 whole carrots • 2 cloves of garlic • ½ bunch of fresh rosemary

• • • • •

1 tablespoon plain flour 10 oz white wine 6 oz chicken stock 1 lb small potatoes Few sprigs of fresh flat-leaf parsley

Method: • Preheat the oven to 375ºF. • Cut the chicken into 8 pieces. Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Sauté in batches until golden all over. Set aside on a plate. • Peel and cut the onions into wedges, chop the carrots, then peel and finely chop the garlic. • Add the vegetables to the pan and gently sauté for about 15 minutes over medium-low heat or until soft. • Finely chop and add the rosemary, then stir in the flour. Turn up the heat to medium-high and leave for a few minutes. • Return the chicken to the pan. • Pour in the wine and bring to a boil, then lower the heat and let it reduce by half. • Roughly chop and add the potatoes, pour in the stock, and bring it back to a boil. • Cook in the oven for 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender and the chicken is falling off the bone. • Finely chop and scatter the parsley leaves. • Serve warm. April 2022

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ARTFIELDS 2022 Photo by Matt Warthen of Warthen Media

ASHLEY WARTHEN Ashley Warthen is a Columbia, South Carolina, native that has taken a childhood passion and developed it into a lasting career. After receiving her undergraduate degree from the University of South Carolina in Art Education, she taught a variety of subjects including art in different capacities for the next few years. Ashley later opened her own art studio and gallery where she taught private art lessons. She later transitioned from business owner to puppetry arts at the Columbia Marionette Theatre. From there Ashley began her first real job at the Richland Library and went on to receive a Master’s of Library Science degree in 2015. For 13 years Ashley has worked for the library and is currently the Arts Coordinator. “I’m lucky that my full-time job encompasses what I love – art, teaching, community, and uplifting and supporting other artists trying to make their way,” she says. Read along to discover what drew Ashley into perfectly placing paintbrush to paper.

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Ashley and her husband Matt reside in Cayce with their “two crazy-smart and loving humans, three beautiful and productive chickens, and one perfectly sweet puppy dog.”


"The ‘earth’ without ‘art’ is just ‘eh’" - author unknown

Q: Based on your career history, art was the primary goal from start to finish. As a child, what got you started towards this career path?

Q: What inspires your art?

A: Surprisingly, Victoria’s Secret magazines. I learned to draw

and emotion, which I think is why I lean toward portraiture and living creatures. I feel like I am still learning how to art, how to be an "artist", but I know when I see something in nature, or in someone's eyes or expression that moves me, I tend to want to learn to paint it.

the female form from sitting in my room as a kid and drawing supermodels that I admired from magazines like Victoria's Secret. I always loved to draw, but I think I owe it to a couple of great art teachers in middle and high school to see something in me and nurture that ability. It was the one thing I felt like I wasn't terrible at. Unlike math, chemistry, and every other awful subject in school, art felt like home to me so I stuck with it.

A: I am inspired by nature, beauty,

Q: What type of art do you focus on now? A: My work is almost all about process and the process is ever-

changing. I tend to get obsessed with a particular medium for a while and then change it completely when I get bored. Being an artist with ADHD is challenging. I have worked sculpture, ceramics, and in oil and acrylic paints, but I'm currently obsessed with water media, specifically acrylic inks - how vibrant they are, how layered, splashy and fun they can be, and how they interact with other dry media such as charcoal and pencil. I am a very figurative painter and mostly focus on portraits and animals. I also love children's book illustration and strive to one day be good enough to make that a full-time gig.

Q: What is one of your favorite pieces you’ve ever created? A: Tough question. I painted a piece that, granted, was not the best quality painting I've ever created, but the meaning

behind it was significant. It was a self-portrait done with the same composition of a portrait that was painted of my mother in 1975 by a local artist at the time, Randy Hill (who happened to be the father of my friend), and another amazing Columbia artist, Lyon Hill. The painting has been in my family for my entire life and I wanted to pay homage to my mom by creating this piece of myself. I ended up selling the piece to a local art collector and it was the first piece I sold that caused me some real anguish to part with.

To purchase Ashley’s work, visit www.AshleyWarthen.art or visit her on Facebook and Instagram. April 2022

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ARTFIELDS 2022

Since June of 2019, Adrian Smith has shared her passion for art with others while working as the Curatorial Assistant at the Florence County Museum. Originally from Darlington, Adrian made her way to Darlington after graduating from Coastal Carolina University with a BA in Graphic Design with a minor focus on studio art, specifically watercolor painting. Continue reading to learn what drives Adrian's creativity. 38

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April 2022

ADRIAN SMITH "Art speaks where words are unable to explain" - author unknown


Q: How did you discover your artistic ability? A: I've always been interested in photography; I think that was the start. It wasn't until I saw a drawing of my mom's Prince Controversy vinyl cover that made me want to draw. From there, my teachers at Darlington High School and professors at Coastal Carolina University helped shape the artist I am today. Now my art focus is primarily black culture, beauty, current events, and family-inspired pieces.

Q: Do you have a favorite personal piece of art? A: A favorite piece that I created would be Kyleigh and Her Pumpkin. It is a painting of my niece holding her drawing of a pumpkin at age three. It's my favorite because it took a lot of patience getting the drawing exactly right.

Q: Describe the piece you submitted to the 2022 ArtFields competition. A: The piece X that I submitted depicts a black woman being strangled by an American flag at the hands of a white person. It shows the pain that black people were feeling after the murders of Ahmuad Arbery, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Elijah McClain.

Q: Have you ever won an award or been recognized for your artwork? A: Yes, actually! I have an emerging artist grant with the South Carolina Arts Commission. It is grant funding and a six-month mentorship. I will be making more art for all to enjoy with that assistance! Also, being chosen as a contestant in ArtFields is a significant award to me.

If you are interested in purchasing Adrian’s artwork, visit her at www.adrianrsmith. myportfolio.com or on her social media accounts: Instagram, @adrian_art.design; Facebook, Adrian R Smith Art & Design; or Tiktok, @hecallmed2. April 2022

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ARTFIELDS 2022

JULIE MIXON Art was not always at the forefront for Julie Mixon. Or at least she hadn’t recognized its presence yet. Julie grew up in Calabash, North Carolina, where she spent many hours exploring the woods and local ponds with her father. She began her college career at UNC-Wilmington studying Marine Biology. It was there that her path took a drastic turn as she began pursuing art instead. Julie is a graduate of Barton College in Wilson, North Carolina, with a Bachelor of Fine Arts with a concentration in photography and she received her Master of Fine Arts from East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina. Follow along to learn more about Julie’s art.

A PICTURE IS A POEM WITHOUT WORDS - HORACE

q: What is your medium of art and what inspires it? a: I create image-based art and concentrate mostly on alternative photographic processes that include hand-applied lightsensitive chemicals, image transfers, and processes that combine digital and analog photography. I love experimental photographic processes that merge the science and art of photography. I have always had a love and respect for nature and tend to draw inspiration from Biblical passages that are rich in symbols that describe God’s relationship to us. And, now that I am a mother of two children, themes surrounding motherhood have naturally worked their way into my artwork.

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To view more of Julie's work, visit www.juliesmixon.com.

q: How did you get started in art? a: As a child, I enjoyed making things. My mother has always enjoyed making things too, we just never really called it art. Growing up, I also spent a lot of time outside with my father, exploring the woods, local ponds, or whatever interesting things I could find in the yard. I was one of those kids that brought everything home and wanted to keep it as a pet. I supposed my mother’s love of “making things” and the time I spent outside with my dad merged into a love of art.

q: What did you submit to the 2022 ArtFields competition? a: Envelop(e) is an image of myself and my daughter that has been transferred onto an envelope using Purell Hand Sanitizer. The title Envelop(e) is a play on words as the physical piece is an envelope while the idea behind the work takes on the definition of “envelop”. As an artist who is also a mother, it seems that themes surrounding motherhood naturally work into my art. Envelop(e) is the result of works completed during the COVID-19 pandemic. It was a time when, like many other mothers, I was spending time at home juggling a full-time job while taking care of my children. The envelope in the piece represents a form of shelter or protection, something which was on the forefront of my mind during the pandemic. The image was transferred to the envelope by using a hand-sanitizer, which somehow seemed appropriate and meaningful to use at the time. PREVIOUS AWARDS: • 1st Place – 2021 Pee Dee Regional Art Competition, Waters Gallery/Florence County Museum, Florence, SC • Juror’s Award – Diptych, A. Smith Gallery, Johnson City, TX Julie resides in Florence with her husband and two children. She is the Associate Professor of Photography at Francis Marion University where she teaches photography courses that range from digital to analog. April 2022

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JOSHUA REDFEARN A TRUE ARTIST IS NOT ONE WHO IS INSPIRED BUT ONE WHO INSPIRES OTHERS - AUTHOR UNKNOWN This isn’t Joshua Redfearn’s first attempt at celebrating his artwork at the South’s most engaging art competition, ArtFields. In 2014, Joshua won the Peoples Choice Award for 3-D artwork for his piece called Think. “Winning this award was so nice and it helped motivate me to continue to create,” he commented. Last year Joshua entered a piece titled Jayden dedicated to his oldest son who was 17 and getting ready to graduate high school at the time. While he didn’t win an award this year, this piece remains his favorite personal artwork to date. Continue reading to learn more about Joshua’s journey in the world of art.

FAVORITE PERSONAL PIECE ABOVE: This was created using wood, paper, gold leaf, and epoxy resin. It includes over 70,000 paper circles (the kind you have when hole punching paper). The circles are a variety of colors but when placed together form a coherent image. Hidden within the piece is an image from every year of Jayden's life with the final image being of his face. When viewed closely, the hidden images do not appear as clear, but when you step back you begin to see them one by one. It took around six months to complete. The golden scratches are meant to let Joshua’s son know that even though he'll make mistakes in his life, he is still more precious than gold. 42

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Q: Tell us how you got started with art. A: From what I remember, I began drawing at the young age of five or six. I have memories of my mom drawing with me and me being amazed at her drawings and wanting to get as good as her someday. I was amazed at how she could stay within the lines when coloring. She would always go around the part she was going to color with an outline of the color, then begin filling it in. It would always look so beautiful to me. I continued in school but didn't get better at drawing until around middle school. In high school, I competed and won our yearly Christmas Card Competition. I believe that is where I learned I like to compete with my art. There's something about competing that draws the best out of you and that's what drives me – the competition.

Q: What inspires your artwork today? A: I enjoy creating mixed media pieces. Pieces that are colorful and draw the viewer in to see more than expected. The love of Jesus Christ and things that I am passionate about inspire these pieces. I often think to myself, ‘Why hold it in? Share these ideas with the world.’

Q: What did you enter into the 2022 ArtFields competition? A: This year my piece is titled Eyes of Innocence. It amazes me how children are inherently innocent, bouncing back from adverse situations without grudge and malice. Without hate. They just ‘are’. They’re here in the moment, present. Unaffected by their future. Seemingly unaware of all there is. They’re innocent. This piece was inspired by children, my youngest son especially. They see the brightest things in this life, mostly the positive. It comes so easy to a child. They are trusting and excited. That intrigues me. They are so light in their lives when there are so many (adults) who are weighed down. Eyes of Innocence was created using charred pieces of wood that are painted and formed to show the eyes of a child. When viewed at a distance you will see eyes staring back.

If you are interested in seeing more of Joshua’s work, visit him on Facebook at Joshua Redfearn Official or Instagram @joshuaredfearn. Joshua and his wife, Shakeeka, reside in Cheraw, South Carolina, and have three wonderful children. He is the owner of Triumphant Designs where he delivers graphic and media designs to clients. April 2022

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ARTFIELDS 2022

STAN DIEL Stan Diel’s favorite pastime, art photography, could potentially be considered an extension of his career. As an Associate Professor of Mass Communications at Francis Marion University, photography certainly pertains to portions of his day-today curriculum. Through images, history is recorded and journalistic research is documented so that mass information can be communicated. Stan learned his love of capturing images in black and white at a young age. His childhood home had a dark room in the basement. That’s when he began teaching himself how to photograph and develop images. Today, black and white photography remains his medium of choice.

"ART IS NOT WHAT YOU SEE, BUT WHAT YOU MAKE OTHERS SEE." - EDGAR DEGAS Q: What inspires your art? A: My inspiration comes from nature and

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my goal is to create images of the natural world that rise to the level of art. Most recently I’ve been been working on a series of black and white, mostly abstract images of swans. The photo I’ll have in ArtFields is from that series.


Q: What did you submit in the 2022 ArtFields competition? A: The image I submitted is

of a swan at Swan Lake Iris Gardens in Sumter. There are several places there where swans float through the cypress trees. When a swan floats through a beam of sunlight but is surrounded by shade, the light is similar to what you see when a spotlight illuminates someone on a dark stage. Sometimes a swan will fall asleep as it drifts, and then they relax completely. That’s the ideal situation. The image I entered is of a swan as it drifts (literally and figuratively) off to sleep.

To see more of Stan’s art or to purchase a swan images, visit stanleydielphotography.com.

Q: Do you have a favorite personal piece? A: My favorite piece is a photo of my dad fishing. He’s in Arkansas’ Little Red River fly casting in the fog. I shot it with an early digital camera and the resolution is so low it won’t reproduce well. But it’s my dad.

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ARTFIELDS 2022

ANDRÉ BOYD “We are all artists with different mediums. Some paint with colors and others with words. Some shape the lives of children while another keeps a home or facility clean so that we can truly admire the architecture. I believe we were all made in the image and likeness of our creator. Our creator was and is an artist. We were born artists with the ability to pull inspiration from anything, anywhere, and even from nothing,” words spoken by a true artist - André Boyd. André was raised in Darlington by his loving parents Dr. Bill and Mrs. Patricia Boyd. When not serving as a public educator in the Pee Dee Area and enjoying time spent with his wife Kandy, André finds it therapeutic to form and shape clay. Continue reading to learn more about André’s journey in art and what led him to submit to the 2022 ArtFields competition.

"EVERY ARTIST WAS FIRST AN AMATEUR" - AUTHOR UNKNOWN

q: First off, tell us how you became an artist and how you specifically became interested in sculptures. a: While I am new to visual art, I have had a strong interest and formal training in music. I began playing the alto saxophone at age 12. My parents purchased me a keyboard with a built-in drum machine and sampler at 13. While I recall being so curious and fascinated about visual art, music managed to secure most of my time and attention for many years. In 2014, I had a virtual reality (VR) app that allowed me to sculpt in a VR environment with only a headset and controllers. After learning the mechanics of sculpting in a VR environment, I purchased actual clay from Hobby Lobby. I experimented for hours at a time. Not only did it seem to come naturally, but it became one of my greatest interests and forms of therapy.

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q: Do you use other materials when sculpting? a: Sculpting is how I communicate my art. While I have sculpted for confectionery use or even carved wood or stone, there is something therapeutic about forming and shaping clay. However, the challenge of sculpting with uncommon ingredients is pleasurable. I tend to use primitive methods involving few tools, other than my hands.

q: What is one of your favorite pieces you’ve created? a: I often remind myself that my best work is yet to be made, but my favorite piece was entitled, Only in Eden. I consider this my favorite piece because it was the first life-sized figurative piece that I had ever completed at the time and it was a sculpture of my wife. While my skills could not capture her beauty, I want to believe I captured a part of her likeness.

If you’d like to learn more about André’s work, visit his Instagram at @iamandreboyd or email him at andre@ hapandharper.com.

q: What will you have in the ArtFields competition? a: It’s called Flour Girl and is sculpted from homemade clay with the base being all-purpose flour. Other than selecting a medium, I do not like to give much thought or planning when I create. Before beginning this piece, I only knew that I wanted the sculpt to be made with ingredients found in a kitchen. I have made sculptures of rice, chocolate, and other edible treats. I decided to go with the least expensive and available option. My wife enjoys cooking, so I used some of her fancy organic flour. Please do not tell her.

André and Kandy reside in Darlington. For 25 years he has worked in public education with several districts and in many different roles including classroom teacher, principal, superintendent, consultant, and now as a higher education STEM and Healthcare program director at a local institution. He is also a full-stack developer for a creative firm.

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MATT COOK Matt Cook’s talents cover a wide spectrum. A prolific artist, he is not only proficient in oils and acrylics, but he is also a talented printmaker. His formal training in art began when he attended East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina, where his primary focus was communications and graphic design. Matt was first introduced to woodcut in college when he took a couple of elective printmaking courses. The woodcut is a technique of relief printing in which the artist cuts away from the surface of a block of wood. The areas that are not cut, the relief, will then be inked so that an impression can be transferred to paper when pressure is applied, either by hand with a barren or wooden spoon, or in a printing press. Upon finishing college, Matt worked at several advertising and internet firms in Virginia and North Carolina. He continues to pursue his creative interest in both painting and printmaking. 48

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The piece accepted into this year's 2022 ArtFields competition, NOLA Second Lines, is a woodblock print inspired by the New Orleans brass band parades. Matt's work will be displayed in Sip Co. Beer & Wine, 116 North Church Street in Lake City.

MATT'S PREVIOUS AWARDS: Columbia State Fair 2019 • First Prize Printmaking Columbia State Fair 2021 • First Prize Printmaking • Niles Storrs Merit Award North Charleston Artsfest 2021 • Honorable Mention • Purchase Award

"A true artist is not one who is inspired but one who inspires others." - Salvador Dali


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ARTFIELDS 2022

q: Tell us about the piece you’ll have in ArtFields. a: My ArtFields piece uses

COLLEEN KENNEDY Cypress swamplands, when captured in any capacity, have a way of appearing like art. While many locations, textures, and materials inspire the work of area artist Colleen Kennedy, these swamplands make her feel alive. They bring out her most creative self and transform an idea into a reality. Follow along as Colleen shares her most intricate moments in art.

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watercolor, acrylic paint, resin, and local materials placed on a board. It’s called Furrows and is 4.5 feet tall and 8 inches wide. Like a farmer preparing fields for planting, we sometimes unknowingly change our surroundings; leaving our subtle impressions behind us. The dirt beneath our feet carries a hidden and softly spoken history of cultures and people long past; a memory that though we may change the earth, the minerals remain the same, just refashioned in different places and ages. People immerse themselves in and become ‘rooted’ to their surroundings or ‘homes’ where they feel as though they belong. Just as the environment we each grow to call ‘home’ is changed, carried like the soil in the tread of our boots, we eventually shape people and the places that we interact within subtle ways, slowly transforming them over time. Furrows is a reflection of the subtle impressions I may have left on others during my travels throughout my life and in the many places I have called ‘home’. Using a combination of earthy materials sourced from South Carolina, including local river silt, farmed cotton, river water, chaff, natural dyes, and other media, I produce works combining unique textures and materials, creating art that integrates my current environment and my passion for uncovering the beauty of the dirt between our roots.


To see more of Colleen’s art, visit colleenkennedyart.com or you can visit her on Instagram at @zoracol. q: What is your foundation in art? a:

I have been drawn to creating since I was a little girl; drawing things like landscapes, flowers, dragons, ballerinas, and birds to start with. I have always enjoyed reading, especially mythological, adventurous, or exploratory stories. As a young girl, I painted, drew, sculpted, and used anything I could get my hands on to make art, while continuously searching for new mediums to create works with and interesting ways to apply those mediums. Through trial and error, I gained an understanding of myself, my professional artworks, and began to look inward to bring my current ‘home’ of Florence, South Carolina, or a little Southern history out in my works. Often walking the line between nature and humanity; appreciating our differences as well as our similarities.

I use materials or themes within my work that represent the home that I find myself in. My work is deeply connected to place, nature, and what we leave behind, physically and metaphysically, once we leave our homes for something more. Textures, interesting materials, history, philosophy, culture, food, and places inspire me. I constantly find myself drawn to the deep history of the South, especially the cypress swamplands. I am drawn to the ‘fantastical’ which is why nature and the swamplands fascinate me so much – the roots of nature intertwine and set the foundation for our world. It is there where I feel most alive; as though nature is talking to me or through me. Nature is very important to me and it helps me realize that we are all connected – animals, plants, and people.

Q: What is one of your favorite personal pieces? A:

q: What would you consider your art outlet? a:

I do a variety of different types of art in various mediums: watercolor, pen and ink, mixed media, pencil drawing, paper, printmaking, alcohol ink, resin, plaster, utilizing natural or found materials, and anything else I can get my hands on that bends itself to the idea of the piece that I am working on at the time. I am a very texture-oriented person, and the look or feeling of ‘touch’ is important to my artwork. I love creating art that resonates with people, especially when

I do not have a favorite artwork, as each piece I have created was made with a purpose at the time, whether it was to tell a story, make someone happy by immortalizing their favorite pet, or to allow people to reflect upon their homes and their environment. I love each equally, though perhaps some works a little more than others because of the considerable amount of time I invested into them, and they inherit more of ‘me’ within them. Though if I were to pick one, I suppose it would be my work called Line That Divides. This is because it is an artistic accumulation of all that I have learned throughout my life leading up to the moment I graduated from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, as well as encompassing and incorporating my love of using found/ natural/local South Carolina materials and history into one artwork.

Colleen Kennedy has lived in various locations throughout her life, including a four-year stint in Ireland but found her way back to South Carolina in 2006. She is a graduate of West Florence High School, Francis Marion University, and Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. She currently works as the visual arts teacher at West Florence High School and also teaches an Introduction to Oil Painting class at Francis Marion University. April 2022

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