Spring Art Festival

You are invited to the 7th Annual Spring Art Festival and Sale at Le Chêne French Cuisine Gardens, Sunday, April 28th , 10am-4pm, for one day only. Forty-five artists, including this writer, will be represented. With warmer and drier weather on the way, the event is expected to be a smashing success. I’ll be there the whole day to greet guests so come keep me company, enjoy Sunday brunch, meet some people, and pursue your artistic curiosity.

Le Chêne, or “The Oak” in French, located on Sierra Highway, is host for the show and has been a French cuisine fixture in the Santa Clarita Valley area for 30 years. With a prior business history going back to the early 1900s, film star Clark Gable is said to have frequented the bar with friends during his motorcycle years. The restaurant has been host to countless weddings, anniversaries, and other celebrations when only first class will do.

While no prior registration for the show is required, a reservation for brunch is recommended (661-251-4315). Be sure to request your 15% art festival discount when settling your brunch bill.

The Santa Clarita Artists’ Association (SCAA) comprises local artists of varying genres, meeting together monthly for demos by other artists. The SCAA also creates and manages events year round including hotels, hospitals, libraries, and other restaurants. Membership is a reasonable $50 per year. For more information about the SCAA and this show, visit the SCAA website or on Facebook.

Design by Jojo

Jojo Leviste headshot
Jojo Leviste

Designer, Joven “Jojo” Leviste, has the skill, aptitude, and experience needed to excel in today’s industrial design world. A Bachelor in Science graduate with honors from the Art Institute, N. Hollywood, Jojo received certification as a graphic designer from the Simi Valley Adult School. Prior to that, he was degreed in interior design by the Philippine School of Interior Design.

Kiosk. Before/After

Jojo’s education and his experience show in his work, used here in the Los Angeles area in conceptual designs for new industrial applications at Reeve Store Equipment Co.  Typically, these begin as renderings that eventually become  products produced by his company, such as an intricate kiosk.

Portable Microwave Appliance
Portable Microwave Appliance

A recent sketch has ended up as a portable microwave and drink dispenser. Jojo often uses hand-drawn sketches to develop his ideas. Once he has approval of his sketches, he uses 3D computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) software,  Autodesk Inventor, to flesh out and finalize his artwork.

“Autodesk Inventor uses internal hyperlinks embedded into assembly, drawing, and presentation files in order to ensure proper updating of files as the modeling and subassemblies change. This is similar to object linking and embedding (OLE) in that when the referenced file changes, the corresponding document updates accordingly” (cadalyst.com/IMAGINiT Technologies).


Artimusi. How would you describe the artwork you do?
Jojo. Unlike fine art of painting or art in music, the product of my work is not a derivative of my own personal interpretation. It is an artwork that is being conceptualized through a design process originated from an information provided by a client.

Artimusi. What tools do you use in your art from concept to finish?
Jojo. It would start from different sketches and finalize a concept using 3D model software.

Artimusi. What are your best art subjects: people, objects, or both?
Jojo. Mostly it is an object being used for Visual merchandising purposes.

Artimusi. Who or what helped you the most to get to this point in your career?
Jojo. It is my affection towards design and its engineering process.

Artimusi. Where do you to do your artwork?
Jojo. I am employed and has been employed by several companies

Artimusi. Do you render your artwork at home as well as your workplace?

Jojo on bass guitar
Jojo on bass guitar

Jojo. Yes, the technology we have now allows me to do this.

Artimusi. Do you sell your artwork on the side?
Jojo. No. As an employee everything I do in behalf of the company is its property.

Jojo Leviste
Jojo with acoustic guitar

Artimusi. Are you also a musician? If so, what is your chief instrument(s)?
Jojo. Yes I would like to say so. Besides singing in the choir I also play acoustic guitar and electric bass.

Artimusi. What are your future, long-term plans?
Jojo. It has been my aspiration to have my own company and I hope that someday God would grant me that desire for His glory.

Gigi and Jojo

Jojo is married to Gigi. Together they have two sons and live in Santa Clarita, California.

Jacey Dean Gets Closure

Jacey Dean

Jacey Dean, a determined multi-talented actress, writer, and director, is getting closure with her latest film by the same name.  Closure is a multi-award winning short film drama with a serious storyline.

“An unwanted victim of rape attempts to move beyond her lifelong secret, only to find that the past catches up with you” (IMDb).

Closure’s current award and activity standing for 2018:

  • Fourth Laurel: Official Selection, Berlin Flash Film Festival
  • Semi-Finalist at Los Angeles CineFest!
  • Winner Bronz Award for Best Short Film
  • Closure @ the Palm Springs International Shorts Fest & Market

Jacey at water edge
Jacey loves the water, a prominent element in one of the film scenes

Closure, Dean’s latest work, is built upon an acting and directing foundation of other films, including Solatium (2017) and Call Me Luke (2015).  Earlier works include The Son From The North, Hollywood Rookies Trailer (Episodes 1, 2, 3). She is also a Mezzo-Soprano vocalist, as noted in her 2013 recording, Bendiciones.



Artimusi. Was there something special about this film that you wanted to convey?
Jacey. The driving force behind this short film was my personal awareness of several true-life stories that parallel the story.

Artimusi. IMDb lists 12 actors, but who are the main players?
Jacey. We were fortunate to have Douglas Sidney accept the role of leading antagonist, and he did an excellent job. During the course of a single shoot day, Doug played two versions of his character that spanned a 28-year age gap. The difference is so convincing, multiple viewers asked me if it was the same actor! Another mission-critical performance was given by spokesmodel Claudia Verela, who portrayed an assault victim.

Artimusi. What was the making of the movie like?
Jacey. Jacey with hatThe most challenging part of this production was putting together the cast and crew; having spent most of the past dozen years in Los Angeles, I had very few connections to people in the arts here in the Northland. God really pulled this project together.

Artimusi. Without explaining everything or revealing the ending, describe the main character and plot.
Jacey. The most I can say is that the story centers around a young university professor, Jacinda Ramirez, who struggles to deal with a sexual assault tainting her history.

Artimusi. What was the key, climactic moment, or something especially interesting about the film?
Jacey. I would have to say the ending; both in pre-production reads of the script and comments after seeing the film, many people said they never saw the end coming.

Artimusi. Is the film primarily along mature themes (sex, language, etc.) Comedy, funny moments? Violence? What is the expected rating?
Jacey. This film is definitely for adults. While most of my works in progress are family friendly or even kid-centric, this film veers strongly from that norm. It’s a drama, with some true-to-life violence (assault) and is rated Mature, produced for both men and women, but primarily women.

Artimusi. How long is the short film? When did the project begin? When was the release?
Jacey. The short film version of Closure runs 12:34, or 13 minutes. Work on the original feature screenplay began several years ago, but the short film version began script production somewhere around January 2017.

Artimusi. Are there any credits or attributions you’d care to make.
Jacey. I really appreciate the local businesses, talent and contacts who came together to make this film a reality. From actors driving 3 hours to an early morning shoot, to a local business employee giving up his Saturday off to come stunt drive a semi-truck, this project represents the effort of many individuals.

Artimusi. Do you have anything further to add?
Jacey. As it says in the ending credits, Closure is dedicated to victims of sexual assault who are unable to tell their own stories. I pray it does some good.

Jacey, headshot

“Dean trained in the Meisner method of acting at the Joanne Baron/DW Brown Studio in Santa Monica, CA. She also studied Accounting at the University of California Los Angeles – Extension. She currently resides and films in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.” FilmFreeway

Congratulations to Jacey Dean. With Closure already a successsful short, it seems well on its way toward a promising feature film.

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