I have been a part of a local studio tour, the Falling Leaves Art Studio Tour for five years now. The tour is like the classic Sunday afternoon drive, only you get to visit local artists in their studio, see their incredible art, and in between the stops, take in beautiful scenery adorned by the rich fall foliage that we are so blessed with in Northern Wisconsin.
In the tour, there is all kinds of art to see–painting, drawing, pottery, jewelry, functional silverware, woodworking, alpaca yarn creations, and other things you wouldn’t normally associate with art.
I happen to do painting and drawing. But I hook up with an artist, Ron La Blanc
, who does functional and handsome pottery work and colorful landscape paintings as well. In fact, I stay at his home, and take up residence for two days in his garage, which is transformed into my gallery space.
It’s a little challenging, because the side of garage I use is actually where he stores his wood to get him through the winter. (Well, he stores enough to get him through about 5 winters!) Over the last few years, I’ve gotten a little better each time at converting a wall of irregular wood into a gallery space. You hammer nails into the logs, pivot the framed artwork against the various pieces, and pray that they don’t fall!
Matt Philleos gallery space at the Falling Leaves Art Studio Tour
Some of the tour goers have said the wood wall makes a unique backdrop. I agree.
I really enjoy getting into meaningful conversations with some of the visitors. A couple years ago, a lady looked at one of my paintings, and just cried. She had been going through a really rough time in her life–if I remember correctly–with health issues, and God encouraged her through my artwork. She said “this is the whole reason I came out to the tour today.”
Along the way, I sell a few pieces of art too, which is nice. I also have gotten some commissions for paintings through the tour.
Maybe the best part of the tour is enjoying the warm hospitality of the La Blanc family. They are generous, loving people that put you at ease right away. And man, can they cook! After the first tour day is over, they have a large meal with their extended family at a giant table fit for a king. And they treat me like part of the family.
I am looking forward to seeing everyone at the tour this year. I want to extend a personal invitation for you to come out too this year, if you haven’t already made plans to do so. The tour is Saturday October 3, from 10am-6pm, and Sunday October 4, from 10am-5pm.
"I have inscribed you on the palm of my hands."
"Inscribed," Pencil on Paper, by Matt Philleo
One day, when I was discouraged I read a verse in the Bible, in Isaiah, 49:15-16, where it says, "Can a woman forget her nursing child And have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, but I will not forget you. Behold, I have inscribed you on the palm of my hands." This verse brought such encouragement, that I created this original work of art to share the incredible love of God with others, including you!
Get a free 8 x 10 copy of this drawing that you can use to print, share, or as wallpaper!