I'm a painter and absolutely agree—an artist's essence is not only embedded, but emits that energy. I can 'dark night of the soul' in literature, but not on my walls. My favorite way to buy art is directly from artists I have made an effort to meet, talk with and determine if I want them (their work) to be the equivalent of a roommate for a long time. Open Studios & smaller art festivals is where you can find affordable originals while supporting a living person whose energy is uplifting and ideals inspire. As it happens, they are most often female artists. The walls of my home are beautiful and happy... bookshelves are where the controversy lies.

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I graduated with a liberal arts degree in 1977. I worked nights & weekends in retail 4 solid years and emerged debt-free—possible back then. Useful contacts? No. Job I qualified for? Flower girl at the Tropicana Hotel. Worth it then? Yes & no. Worth it now? Liberal arts at a…

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Mernie Buchanan

Mernie Buchanan

Mernie paints and writes in Woodstock NY. A signed copy of her memoir The Incompetent Psychic available via www.mernie.com