I have the pleasure to meet some neat people every weekend. Over the past weekend, I had the pleasure to meet Joe and Julie Marshall, owners of Hill Country Mesquite and Art. Selling their art at Trade Days in Fredericksburg, Joe and Julie combine their own individual talents to make items that are truly unique.
Joe, like me, is a woodworker. Joe however, starts his woodworking with the actual tree. Milling the lumber himself, he creates mesquite slabs that he uses for tabletops. Slabs that are not big enough for table tops, he gives to his wife who found a unique way to put them to great use.
Julie is an artist. Working with colored pencils, she creates wildlife art on the mesquite slabs. Whether it is deer, fish, or something else, I didn’t think that the colored pencil would show against the mesquite that well. Without the finish on the wood, the colored pencil is a little light against the mesquite.
This is where Joe comes in again. Using a resin, he applies a high gloss finish to the slabs that Julie has drawn her artwork on. With the mesquite, Julie’s art, and Joe’s finish, the end product is absolutely amazing. The finished product is a work of art that would fit in to many shabby chic or rustic decors.
Joe and Julie are retired. They are selling their art works in part to help make money until their retirement income begins. Once that happens, I’m sure they will still be selling their pieces at Trade Days. For now, they sell their art not only for the enjoyment it provides, but also provides a couple thousand dollars every month to use for bills.
As a vendor, it is awesome when a married couple can find a way to work together to bring their craft to market. It gives a couple goals to work on together and provides a great opportunity for them to work closer with each other.
If you ever make it out to Trade Days in Fredericksburg, Texas, go in the front entrance and turn to the left. You can find Joe and Julie in the open covered stalls in the front. Stop in and say “Hi”.