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Henry County Holiday Bazaar

Henry Co.’s Hargrove
a master of ‘One Stroke’
oil painting method

Artists will exhibit at
Henry County Holiday Bazaar

By Helen E. McKinney
Contributing Writer

NEW CASTLE, Ky. (November 2005) – When her children started kindergarten, Debbie Hargrove was looking for something to do. Being a crafty person, she finally settled on a hobby that seemed like her life’s calling.

Debbie Hargrove

Photo provided

Debbie Hargrove uses
the One Stroke method
to create her folk art.

Hargrove became interested in painting in 1989 when she took a class with Henry County artist Betty Prewitt. The lessons were given in the basement of the local funeral home, which may have seemed a bit strange, but Hargrove learned the basics just the same.
Using acrylic paints, Hargrove primarily employs the “One Stroke” method to paint on tin, wood, glass, canvas and fabric with a folk art style. She embellishes her artwork from time to time with florals.
“Folk art puts us back in another era, a more laid back time,” said Hargrove. She enjoys painting angels, which tie in with the primitive country scenes she creates.
Hargrove will be one of many local artists and craftspeople to display their work at the 13th annual Holiday Bazaar from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 12. More than 30 booths will feature arts, crafts, goodies and gifts at the Henry County 4-H Fairgrounds Building on Hwy. 421 in New Castle.
Items for sale include music boxes, hand painted gourds, jewelry, hand turned wooden bowls, honey and beeswax items and various styles of paintings. The Senior Citizens from the Tri-County Community Action will serve lunch throughout the day, in addition to apple cider and fried apple pies provided by Paul Tokosh.
Henry County Extension Agent Maryellen Garrison organizes this event and said it provides “high quality items from very talented craftspeople.” It gives residents the opportunity to shop locally without the hassle and expense of going to a bigger city with crowded malls and packed parking lots.
There is something to fit every budget, said Garrison. A shopper can find the perfect holiday gift or personal home décor items to suit their needs.
“There is such a variety of things to browse or buy,” said Hargrove, who is originally from Trimble County. “We have many talented people in our county.”
Hargrove had taken a year off from her artwork when her two daughters married. She also went back to work full-time for a while, which didn’t afford her much time to paint.
Hargrove said the One Stroke method is “a fun, fast way to paint. It’s an almost instant gratification for the artist,” she said. An artist can blend, shade and highlight in one stroke, compared to the old method of using several steps to achieve the same result.
When compared to a layered folk art style or tole painting, One Stroke is faster and easier. Everything can be accomplished in one step, and there is no drying time. Anyone trying his hand at the method can paint wet on wet because the paint is very thick.
She had discovered the creator of this method, Donna Dewberry, through books and on TV. Hargrove learned to master this method by attending a 2001 seminar in Cincinnati, where she became an OSCI or One Stroke Certified Instructor. She took a follow up 3 1/2 day course in Orlando, Fla., in 2003 that was attended by 550 artists.
“This is a real good style for beginners to learn,” said Hargrove, “to see if you like to paint.” One Stroke painting takes the complexity out of painting, so that beginners don’t feel intimidated to try their hand at something new.
Dewberry, mother of seven children, created this method because she wanted a style of painting that was fast, easy and creative all at the same time. One Stroke concentrates on loading the brush rather than applying colors one at a time to create light and dark, shading and highlighting. Dewberry advises students to load the brush and then push, wiggle and lift to achieve the desired effect.
In the past, Hargrove has taught classes at the Henry County Public Library on the One Stroke method. She has been a member of the Henry County Arts and Crafts Guild since its conception in 1999.
Members of the Guild participate in many local activities such as the Holiday Bazaar, which is a source of exposure and revenue for their artwork close to home. According to Garrison, last year 35 local entrepreneurs and craftspeople earned more than $10,000 with some participants reporting residual sales throughout the year.

• For more information on the Holiday Bazaar, contact Maryellen Garrison at (502) 845-2811.

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