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Tag: Art

5 Festivals to Look Forward to this Season

Looking for some plans outside the house this fall? A simple scroll through the calendar will render a long list of possibilities. Here are just a few of the events we’re looking forward to this season.

Charleston Fall Festivals 2016

photo courtesy of Charleston Arts Festival

Charleston Arts Festival | Oct. 5-8

The first annual Charleston Arts Festival is brought to you by the creator of Jailbreak. Though Jailbreak’s technically defunct, the CFA finale will take place at the Old Jail on Magazine Street, so it’ll be like a Jailbreak reincarnated. Also on the agenda for CFA is Pecha Kucha 25 (8 presentations by local members of Charleston’s music community and Women & Radiohead, where local female musicians will perform Radiohead songs. Both of the latter events take place at the Music Hall, while the other facet of CAF, a Culinary Evolution, will go down at High Wire Distillery. For tickets, dates, and further details, go to  

MOJA Arts Festival | Sept. 29-Oct. 9

This will be Charleston’s 33rd year with the MOJA Arts fest, a celebration of African-American and Caribbean Arts. The city will be taken over by isual arts, classical music, dance, gospel, jazz, poetry, R&B music, storytelling, theatre, children’s activities, traditional crafts, ethnic food, and much more. Guess what else — most events are free! Ticketed events are priced modestly.  For further details, see

Charleston Fall Festivals 2016

photo courtesy of MOJA Arts Festival

Lovin’ the Lowcountry Fall Festival | Nov. 3

The Footlight Players will bring their own festival to life on Nov. 3 at Pierce Park Pavilion (1801 Pierce Street, Daniel Island). Celebrating all that is fall, the fest involves a heapin’ helping of Lowcountry boil, plus bee, wine, and a silent auction. The Shem Creek Boogie Band will provide the beach music soundtrack, while SC Shagging Hall of Fame dancer Claude Robertson and dance partner Linda Ouzts cut a rug. Tickets are $35 and will benefit the Footlight Players, one of the oldest community theaters in Charleston. 

Y’allFest | Nov. 11-12

Something for the teens or any young adult fiction lover, Y’allFest celebrates YA fiction, welcoming best-selling authors to the city for a series of events at Charleston Music Hall, the Charleston County Library. This year’s featured authors are many, and they include Beautiful Creatures’ Kami Garcia, Sara Shepard (Pretty Little Liars), and Renee Ahdieh (The Wrath and the Dawn). Check for a complete list and schedule of events, like book signings and forums.

Charleston Fall Festivals 2016

photo courtesy of @colourofmusicfestival

Colour of Music Festival Masterwork Series | Oct 19-23

Colour of Music celebrates black classical musicians. This year’s edition brings renowned artists from around the world to Charleston for the occasion. Some notable events include the debut of18th-Century African-American French composer Chevalier de Saint George’s only discovered opera as well as “The Anonymous Lover,” featuring Magali Leger, native of Saint George’s birthplace, the Isle of Guadeloupe, showcasing the festival’s All Things French theme. The Masterworks series opens with the petit opera on Thurs. Oct. 20 at the Gaillard Center downtown and will also include Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 2, Op. 44 in G Minor.

What are you looking forward to this season?



Donnie Whitaker – Realtor by Day, Photographer by Night


Morris Island Lighthouse as dusk. Photo courtesy of Donnie Whitaker

Donnie Whitaker has been with the dunes properties family since 2005 and specializes in second home buyers and investment properties. He is extremely knowledgeable about Wild Dunes, Isle of Palms, Sullivan’s Island, and all areas East of the Cooper, having worked at Wild Dunes Resort as a tennis pro before joining our Isle of Palms office over 10 years ago.  Donnie splits his time between the IOP and our centrally-located flagship office in historic Charleston.


High Tide on the Creek – Mount Pleasant. Photo Courtesy of Donnie Whitaker

When Donnie isn’t selling homes and showing properties, he likes to spend his time in the great outdoors shooting nature and wildlife with his camera. He has a passion for landscape photography from the mountains to the coast, which he likely inherited from his father. Donnie feels extremely lucky to live in a place with such natural beauty and photo opportunities everywhere you turn, but he also enjoys traveling for photography and fun, especially to his home state of North Carolina. You can view and even purchase his photos at his photography website or learn more about his adventures in Charleston area real estate at 


Donnie Whitaker shooting Black Balsam Range Knob on the Blue Ridge Mountains. Photo courtesy of Donnie Whitaker

In honor of the 10th Anniversary of the Ravenel Bridge, Donnie recently entered a picture in the Post and Courier’s Bridge Photo contest.  His photo was chosen as “Photo Pick of the Week” for Sunday, July 26, 2015.

Ravenel Bridge at Night

Ravenel Bridge at Night

The Real Estate Studio showcases Mark Swick

The Real Estate Studio is currently showcasing local photographer Mark Swick until July 28, 2015. We recently hosted a reception for his beautiful photographs of all things Charleston – window boxes, doors, wrought iron gates, and landscapes that celebrate the beauty of the Lowcountry.  Mark certainly has talent and an appreciation for the architecture and charm of this town.  We sat down with Mark to get the skinny on his photography, and here’s what he had to say…

The Real Estate Studio Mark Swick

Photo courtesy of Mark Swick

Dunes Properties: What inspired you to start taking photos?
Mark Swick: I have no formal background in photography, and it did not become a passion for me until I moved to Charleston in 2012. Living downtown and spending lots of time on a bike, I quickly developed an appreciation for the impressive historic architecture on the peninsula. Previously I had only used the camera on my iPhone casually, but I began to take pictures in earnest – mainly of doors and windows. I found myself seeking out entire neighborhoods and canvassing their entrances, gates and flower boxes. I was hooked, and it was around that time that I became more serious about sharing my photographs on Instagram. The support of the Instagram community propelled my interest further, and in 2014 I began shooting with a DSLR and editing primarily on a computer.


What is your absolute favorite thing to photograph in Charleston?
After all this time I’m still entranced by Charleston’s different neighborhoods and architecture. I love being a part of this city; photographing Charleston homes and sharing them with others all over the world is my small contribution to what makes the Lowcountry so great.
The Real Estate Studio, Mark Swick "Windows of Charleston"

Windows of Charleston

What do you like to do in your free time besides photography?
I spend a lot of time exploring the city with my girlfriend, trying new restaurants and attending local events. I am also very involved in Charleston’s Jewish community.
The Real Estate Studio Mark Swick "Seventeen"


Do you plan on venturing into any other types of photography? 
I am really fortunate, especially of late, that my humble photography beginnings have led to new professional experiences. I recently photographed a couple’s engagement proposal, and have also done album cover and profile work for a local country duo. I hope to gain additional experiences in portraiture and event photography — who knows where that will take me!
The Real Estate Studio Angela Burney Wicke, Mark Swick, Emily Gildea

Angela, Mark, and Emily during the reception at The Real Estate Studio. photo courtesy of

You can purchase Mark’s from his website, in any size or medium that you would like. You can also follow him on Instagram and Twitterdunes properties agents Angela Wicke and Emily Gildea recently caught up with Mark at his Studio reception, and he is featured this week on their blog Lowcountry Love Letters.  Check it out!
Don’t forget to check back in to The Real Estate Studio where we showcase a new local artist every 6 weeks in our space.  We love this town and all the talented people who live, work, and play here.

Watercolor artist Frank Peabody to show at The Real Estate Studio

Here at The Real Estate Studio, we are proud to offer our beautiful space to local artists.  In fact, we allow a new artist to hang work every 6 weeks.  Shar Duffy took down her lush oil landscapes yesterday, and today Frank Peabody’s group is hanging his collection of colorful, dreamy watercolors.  You can check out the progress of the works going up below. He will join us for a reception on November 2 from 6-8pm.  We would love it if you’d join us too.

Peabody is a 1956 graduate of Princeton University and spent most of his life as a busy executive in the professional services industry in Louisville, Kentucky, and later in New York. His talent as an artist did not emerge until after his retirement. Since then, he has aggressively studied and painted locally throughout Vermont, South Carolina, and in a wide range of locations from Burma to Corsica to Venice, throughout Italy, Spain, the South Pacific, and many places in between.

Frank’s inspiration comes from places he travels or the simple beauties he witnesses in nature. His landscapes, still lifes and figures are realistic, yet sometimes possess a humorous, loose quality that reflects his emotions. Other times they simply represent the serenity he experiences while creating. He finds peace in the contemplative process of painting and those around him find joy and wonder in the results.

Frank paints in watercolors constantly exploring new techniques to master this medium. He lives in Vermont in the summer months with his wife, Juliet, and they spend their winters here in Charleston, South Carolina.

Peabody says, “Painting is an adventure for me, having spent my entire career in the business world. In painting, I find peace and serenity. I am drawn by everyday subjects in my life from people to places to things. My challenge is to capture the beauty of these subjects in my paintings and infuse them with emotion, mystery and a dash of drama.”

Stop by the Real Estate Studio at 214 King Street to see Frank Peabody’s show October 24 – December 4, 2012.  Or meet Frank and share a cocktail at his artist reception on Friday, November 2, 6-8pm.

Linda Elksnin hangs her whimsical paintings at the Studio

The Studio was buzzing this morning as local artist Linda Elksnin installed her show. You can check out her colorful paintings on display show at The Real Estate Studio, 214 King Street through May 8, 2012. Linda will host a “Meet the Artist” event on Easter Sunday, April 8 from 11am-4pm during Second Sunday on King Street.  With the street closed to vehicular traffic from Calhoun to Queen, it’s sure to be a beautiful time. Drop in and meet Linda!

Linda’s interest in art began early. Her grandmother, an artist/gallery owner in Alexandria (VA), encouraged her passion for drawing and painting. Her parents signed her up for classes at the Philadelphia College of Art when she was in third grade. Linda earned a BFA in illustration from Syracuse University. However, her career path took a different turn when she taught art to children with disabilities. After earning master’s and doctoral degrees in special education from the University of Virginia, Elksnin came to The Citadel in 1984 to coordinate the special education graduate program. She retired as Professor Emerita in 2006 and returned to painting full time. Elksnin’s work has been shown throughout the southeast in galleries and at juried outdoor art shows.Linda’s inspiration comes from eclectic sources, including textiles, self-taught and outsider artists, and mainstream artists such as Mark Rothko and Romare Bearden. The mixed-media works in the exhibit were created using watercolor, gouache, and colored pencil and include paintings from several of her series. The common thread of all of her work is color and graphically pleasing design.

Linda’s interest in art began early. Her grandmother, an artist/gallery owner in Alexandria (VA), encouraged her passion for drawing and painting. Her parents signed her up for classes at the Philadelphia College of Art when she was in third grade. Linda earned a BFA in illustration from Syracuse University. However, her career path took a different turn when she taught art to children with disabilities. After earning master’s and doctoral degrees in special education from the University of Virginia, Elksnin came to The Citadel in 1984 to coordinate the special education graduate program. She retired as Professor Emerita in 2006 and returned to painting full time. Elksnin’s work has been shown throughout the southeast in galleries and at juried outdoor art shows.

A Photography Exhibit by Dustin K. Ryan

Our good friend Dustin Ryan is having an Opening Reception at The Real Estate Studio on October 21, 2011 to celebrate his photography exhibit that will run through November 29, 2011.  Dustin is a very talented photographer who captures amazing images of the scenic Lowcountry, as well as other landscapes all over the country.  Dustin supplied all the photos for our 2011 Vacation Brochure, which was by far one of the most beautiful magazines we have ever produced.  We’re so happy to offer the Studio for his show and we invite you to join us in celebrating his amazing talent on October 21, 2011 6-9pm. The event is free, but a portion of sale proceeds will benefit the Charleston chapter of the Surfrider Foundation.

Check out the Facebook Invite HERE

Local Charleston Treasure, Mary Edna Fraser, Returns

Many of you who live and visit Charleston are aware of Mary Edna Fraser but you might not know it- you’ve probably seen her batiks  draped from the ceilings at the Charleston airport.  Even before I put a face and name to the art I was taken in by their beauty.  The Real Estate Stdudio is proud to have her return after her last exhibit over a year ago.  At our downtown space- it’s so much more than an office, it’s a showcase of the Charleston lifestyle- Mary Edna will be sharing her new series on narrow vintage kimono silk.  The artist says it’s intimate in scale and draws from the visual memory of her aerial perspective.  The art depicts a floating world.


There will be a Meet the Artist reception Thursday, May 12 from 6-10 at the Real Estate Studio located at 214 King Street.  Please stop by and enjoy the unique ambiance.  If you cannot make the reception, her work will be on display there seven days a week from May 12- June 21.  You can call for hours before stopping in (843)722-5618.  You’ll be glad you met this Renaissance woman extraordinaire.

Mary Edna is one of the most fascinating people I’ve ever met. She  is a devoted artist who spends hours creating works in the ancient medium of batik– a wax resist method of dyeing cloth, she’s also a musician who sings and  dabbles in an assorted collection of instruments (banjo, bass, xylophone, guitar…)  and is the stationary  member (the “Lime” if you will) to a local group of revolving musicans Lime & The Coconuts who can be found playing around town.  She’s also involved in conservation of land in the state of South Carolina.   And she was a Jeopardy question – “1994-95 she was the first woman to be honored with a one-person exhibition at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC”-“Who was Mary Edna Fraser.”

Lime at the Coconuts play a local tea room

She and her art have traveled the world but next Thursday she’s sharing it with the place she calls home.  We hope to see you there!

Past and Present Sizzle Together in Charleston

Those two famous cookbook authors, The Lee Brothers (Matt & Ted) ruminate in Travel + Leisure Magazine about Charleston. 

Yes another great article about Charleston. This city is a top tourist destination and Charleston is frequently featured in magazines, tv programs, blogs and books.  Frequently the content is interchangeable and pretty much says the same things over and over again. Not that we don’t enjoy or appreciate the articles, we do! But I noticed this article by the Lee Brothers, definite Charleston insiders and not just a travel writer here for a week trying to figure out this city. 

Matt and Ted Lee have written the most beautiful ode to Charleston I think I have read yet.  They describe the juxtoposition of the past and present in this town-how it has aged gracefully and grown even more vibrant and relevant. 

Charleston has “contemporary” sizzle as they say and has found a new way forward by reaching to it’s past and embracing the tension that lies between the past and the present.  They make note of how in these times of economic downturn, the citizens of Charleston have focused on what really matters in the world and have dug deep to embrace their roots.  Art, music, food- things in life that feed the soul- Charleston has in abundance. And the quality and diversity is a testament to the home Charleston is.  Dive bars, world renowned chefs, artists from around the world finding second homes in town, historical architecture mixing with the new, home cooking with innovative flair- Charleston has found a new way forward and this city is growing in all ways good.

Did You Know Charleston Has…

I always find interesting tidbits out about Charleston even after 10+ years of calling it home.  I just found out recently there is a Communications Museum.  Now their website isn’t updated (hasn’t been since 2006) so I won’t go sharing it here, but the museum itself  is worth a visit.

It’s located at 58 George Street downtown at the College of Charleston, the Elliott House.  Their four rooms display collections of antique radios, televisions, phonographs, telephones, magic lanterns, motion picture projectors and numerous other artifacts associated with communications and broadcasting.

Occassionally they have special events.  One that I plan on attending tonight  is silent movie night.  Colorful personality about town Noodle McDoodle has selected a few scenes from silent movies and he will be playing alongside local band The V-Tones music to accompany the clips.  I have an inside tip that one of the clips is from the 1925 Wizard of OzThe fun starts at 7:30. I’ll be there.

Since it is a museum, unfortunately I don’t think popcorn, candy and soda will be allowed, but you can always drop by The Patat Spot after for an order of frites or falafel. I’ll be there too.

– Rebecca

Art/Food/Music and You’re Invited: Brian Francis Koury’s The Calling TONIGHT

We are hosting the opening reception of of our new artist/photographer, Brian Francis Koury.
There are events happening up and down King Street tonight for SEWE so dowtown should be THE place to go tonight.

Everyone is invited to drop in between 6-9pm to meet the artist.  Mr. Koury will be providing food, beverages and…… wait for it….. LIVE MUSIC!

Click here for a full preview The Calling

But here are a few pieces to tempt you from his official website

M. Koury is a Charleston based photographer whose work inspires us to reinterpret our relationship to the natural world.  His works making up The Calling will take you from the sea, land and the water’s edge.  If you do happen to miss this incredible event at The Real Estate Studio, Brian’s work can always be found at Charleston Artist’s Guild Gallery, 160 East Bay Charleston, SC 29401.

All here at 214 King St.  The Real Estate Studio

I hope to see you all this evening!