Our Weekend at SEWE in Charleston

the gala event at SEWE in Charleston, SC
Wes and I in front of our miniature paintings during the Gala opening at the 31st Annual Southeastern Wildlife Exposition in Charleston, SC

Last evening, we returned from Charleston, SC, where we were participating in the Southeastern Wildlife Exposition, or better known as SEWE for short. For the most part the weather was lovely for the four-day event, although it got quite chilly after a cold front pushed through on Saturday. We arrived there last Wednesday, and set up our display of miniature paintings that afternoon. The next morning, we attended their artists breakfast, and then enjoyed walking around town for a while. Since we had never walked down to the Battery, we decided that was the thing to do, with extra time on our hands. So we enjoyed a lovely stroll down the sidewalks leading by an assortment of historic, and I must say quite stunning antebellum homes! Each one displayed it’s own unique beauty and architecture, and sported gorgeous gardens and courtyards, with most showcasing Camellia’s totally covered in Blossoms! I absolutely love Camellia’s, or “Alice in Wonderland Roses” as I like to call them, and was in my seventh heaven while walking and admiring them all.

photo of a historic antebellum home in charleston, SC

photo of a mockingbird in a Camellia bush

photo of a historic antebellum home in charleston, SC

After a few blocks we had reached Battery Park, which is also known as White Point Gardens. White Point actually got its name from the piles of bleached oyster shells, and was occupied by Fort Broughton and Fort Wilkins during the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. The Battery is a landmark defensive seawall and promenade in Charleston, and opened as a public park in 1837 although its use changed during the Civil War. During the evacuation of Charleston, not wanting their ammunition to get into enemy hands, the Confederates exploded tons of munitions here. In addition to the wartime history of the Battery, White Point also has a history of pirates. Numerous pirates were hanged from oak trees and gallows in the early 1700s, and left dangling from their nooses for days as a visual deterrent to prevent other pirates from entering Charleston Harbor. Besides its extensive and rich history, it is a beautiful park, with a stunning Live Oak grove, which covers a couple of acres or more. There are several cannons there, which were placed in the Battery in response to the War of 1812 intended to defend Charleston as a last defense. Needless to say, not only was it a beautiful site to visit, but a very enlightening one historically as well since some of the first shots of the American Civil War were fired from Charleston.

The battery in Charleston, SC
Me beside a couple of the cannons and cannon balls retired at the battery.
The oak trees at white point gardens in charleston
Me with a section of the grove of gorgeous oaks at White Point Gardens

That afternoon marked the official opening of the show, with the gala opening taking lace later that evening, and as usual it was a sold-out event. My beautiful formal gown which I wore that evening, is actually my mother’s which she made and wore to a Christmas Ball during her Sr. year at high school, making it very special indeed! Friday was spent at the show and afterwards, we enjoyed a nice supper that evening at a small pizza place off the beaten path with collector friends and several other artist friends. The 19-inch pizzas appeared to be over two foot across when brought to our table, and ours ended up being a few meals for us! Saturday was spent back at the show, with us enjoying dinner that evening at a nearby Greek restaurant with a few dear friends. Sunday was the last day, and before we knew it the show had ended. Before returning back to the hotel, we enjoyed dinner that evening with dear friends and fellow artists, Tommy and Pat Brooks and Terry and Vicki Smith. As usual with this group there was lots of conversation and laughter, as we enjoyed eating and each others company! We left early Monday morning, enjoying the beautiful drive through the mountains on the way home. There was even a bit of snow left in the shady areas near Asheville, NC and along the Foothills Parkway in TN, which I really enjoyed seeing! Now it’s back to work time here in the studio, as we get ready for the NatureWorks show in Tulsa, OK, weekend after next.

Fresh off the easel: This past week I finished a miniature painting titled Admiring Bonheur’s “Family of Deer”, which features me looking at a beautiful painting by the late Rosa Bonheur, who is widely considered to have been the most famous female painter of the nineteenth century.  Wes finished his miniature painting of a handsome Elk, which he photographed during one of our delightful visits to Yellowstone National Park.

miniature of Rosa Bonheur's "Family of Deer"
“Admiring Bonheur’s “Family of Deer” by Rachelle ~ 2 ½ x 3 ½ inches

Elk painting
“A Roaming Challenger” by Wes ~ 2 ½ x 3 ½ inches

 

Come See Our Paintings This Week:

~ EXQUISITE MINIATURES BY WES & RACHELLE SIEGRIST at The ArtCenter Manatee, Bradenton, FL

Until March 10th

To view all our upcoming exhibits: http://www.artofwildlife.com/exhibitschedule.html

 

 Have a loved one or a beloved pet you would like captured in miniature? Contact and commission us!

Don’t forget to “Sign Up” to receive an email each time I update the blog!

Until next time ~ Rachelle

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