Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Wild about my wild gray hair!

What a treat! A few nights ago, exhausted from an extended day trip to hike around Dinosaur National Monument (the Colorado side; the hardly-any-people-there-because-there-are-no-dinosaurs-there side), I didn’t even bother combing out my clean wet hair after a very long hot shower before my head hit the pillow.

I knew I’d have to rewet my hair in the morning anyway; to add the normal dose of product to help poof-out my straight fine hair, turning my head upside down hoping to give it even more poof as I blow it dry.

All of that is pointless of course because all that poofed hair is again straight and fine and just hanging there “strangy” as my Granny called it, within 10 minutes of leaving the house. “Baby, your hehr is already strangy; and I just brushed it. Good heavens. Glenna Mae!” Granny would call to my mother in the other room. “Why is this child’s hehr so strangy? What kinda shampoo er you using on her hehr?”

Decades later and I still have a problem with strangy hehr. So you can imagine my surprise -- and sheer delight -- when the next morning, after sleeping on clean wet hair without combing it out or adding poofing product, I sleepily glanced at the mirror and saw… poofed hair! Impossible. I splashed some cool water on my face and looked again. Poofed hair; poofed hair! How is that possible? I had poofed hair. No product. No blowdryer.

The next night, I tried it again. Could it have been a fluke? Next morning, poofed hair again! But something caught my eye. Silver. Wild, wavy. Another one. And another. They were poking out through all the dark brown like familiar strangers. Not a straight gray one among them. All wild and wavy and silver in the light. The gray ones were causing the natural poof, which lasted all day, mind you.

My old routine of wash, add poofing product, and blowdry upside down was taming those otherwise wild gray hairs that seemed to come out of nowhere. I am quite just too pleased about this moment of discovery.

What a terrific and unexpected life cycle treat! Straight fine dark “strangy” hair my whole life. To realize suddenly that I’m transitioning to wavy thick silver hair is just too cool. And I don’t have to do anything. Nothing. No product, no blowdryer, no wet comb-out, nothin’. Brush when dry. Wavy hair; I’m going to have wild wavy hair. And that means I will be able to have those cool haircuts that I could never have because they’re for poofier hair. A whole new look; how fun!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

What is Native Advertising? And what is the difference between it and Advertorial?

I admit it; I love the term “native advertising,” the hottest trend in advertising. No, wait, "trend" is the wrong word. New-and-here-to-stay media content category is what it is. And yes, we at Grand Valley Magazine here in Western Colorado are thrilled about it.

Editorial and advertising have been, for the most part, the two clear-and-different bastions of media for well over 100 years; complete with physical walls separating them. A symbiotic love-hate relationship that have left many traditionalists scratching their heads in frustration and resignation. Tradition.

But recently, especially with magazines because most don't generate hard breaking news, the editorial and advertising folks got together and a hybrid of the two, known now as native advertising, was born. Still in such infancy that it is creating all kinds of philosophical conundrums in the backrooms of publishers and advertisers as they grapple with this strange and curious hybrid.

We absolutely love it at GV Magazine.


Advertorials have been around for ages. Advertorial is an "Advert"isement presented in an edi"torial" format. They are one or more pages produced by an advertiser (or their agency) to tell their story in an editorial format. The advertiser/agency has full control over its content, images, layout, and design. The advertorial pages must clearly indicate that they are paid pages and not editorial pages. We print the following statement at the top or bottom of advertorials in GV Magazine: This is a Paid Advertisement.

Advertorials are wonderful opportunities for advertisers to tell their stories in a reader-friendly format.

Native Advertising

Native advertising, on the other hand, at least in GV Magazine’s policy, is similar to advertorial in that the advertiser pays for it. But that’s where the two advertising types diverge.

With native advertising the advertiser actually partners with the publication so that the publication takes the creative and editorial lead rather than the advertiser, yes even though the advertiser pays for it. This ensures that the piece is cohesive with the rest of the publication and that it has been given editorial care and attention. Our writers and photographers and editor and designers. In essence, the advertiser pays more, but has less creative and editorial control; the reader then knows that the publication staff wrote and presented the story with the reader in mind -- even though the advertiser or sponsor paid for it.

And the advertiser knows he/she is getting a more objective and journalistic approach to the feature designed into the overall look and feel of the magazine.

Sponsorships of pages or features are also forms of native advertising. A university could sponsor an education-related feature, for example. An outdoor business could sponsor a regular adventure feature.

Rather than “This is a Paid Advertisement” at the top of the page (as is standard for advertorial), you will see at the top of a GV native advertising feature: This GV Magazine native advertising feature was photographed by [photographer name], written by GV Magazine staff, and paid for by [company name].

We love both native advertising and advertorials because both offer such tremendous opportunity to share more stories through reader-centric advertising.

Look for an example of page sponsorship in the December GV Magazine and a native advertising feature in the GV Mini magazine "Junction Downtown." (The GV Mini Junction Downtown magazine is packaged with the December GV).

Native advertising is an exciting new hybrid content category. Yep. We love it.

Note: This post also appears on my Publisher's Blog at GrandValleyMagazine.com.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

I heard my daughter sing tonight; and learned a heart-wrenching lesson in the process

My daughter, who is in her early 30s, will sing with the church choir during Sunday morning service tomorrow. For the first time. Ever.

“Mom, do you have a few minutes to help me with something this evening; for about a half-hour or so?” There was something shy and vulnerable in the way she asked; a tone that immediately held my attention. “I need to practice my song parts… and, I want you to help me, if you don't mind.”

I was so tickled when she decided to join the choir a few weeks ago. I had no idea she had an interest in singing. She’s always loved music, was first-chair cellist through junior and high school, and often went with me to recording sessions and gigs from the time she was a baby. But she’d never indicated any interest in singing. Naturally I was eager to oblige her request. But I was still struck by the shy and vulnerable tone.

"I have to do the warm-up exercises first,” she fumbled with a small digital voice recorder. “I recorded my singing lesson.” Singing lesson? “I had a singing lesson from Jim Werner; he’s also the choir director. Will you help me with the first note? Shouldn’t we stand up?” I hesitated, my lazy singing attitude in conflict with the serious focused singing of my younger days. I stood up as she pushed the play button on her voice recorder. She and Jim Werner were running scales. She pushed the stop button.

“You got the note?” She asked, quietly. I repeated the scale as I’d heard on the recording. She started to join me, then stopped, and sat back down. “I’m nervous.”

“About tomorrow?” I asked. “No; I’m nervous singing in front of you,” she said, then looked down at her bare feet. I never expected that.

“Why? Why me?” I listened as she shared; and learned so much about my daughter in those minutes. "When I was four or five years old I remember you told someone that I didn’t have good pitch,” she said, “so, I didn’t sing, but I always wanted to.”

My heart sank. Her name is Melody. Had I so influenced her decision to keep her music inside herself? When she was four, I was ...

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Art: Just have to do it sometimes

"Containment" - collage/mixed media
I was inspired to "just create something" after Friday's local Art Walk here in Grand Junction. Specifically, Faye Timmerman Traudt's three dark gray oils on birch at the Oakley Gallery, Elise's all-red acrylic on yupo at +1 Gallery, and the collages at The Art Center all caught my attention reminding me that it has been too many months since I last sat at my art table.

The past few weeks have been somewhat overwhelming: the outrageous heat, the fires, growing business, moving to our new offices, looming deadlines, a lot of new and interesting observations and discoveries.

Apparently all of this in combination is reflected in the piece I ended up assembling this weekend. I had to use what I had around the house: a lone piece of yupo, some metalic acrylic paint, a foil yogurt top, a piece of textured red paper, a dab of pearl-x powdered pigment, a shiney piece of confetti that Faye picked up for me at a Bette Midler concert, netting from a grapefruit sack, and a piece of turquoise from a broken earring.

I'm calling it "containment" for now. I still can't decide though on its orientation: I turn it all four angles and they all seem to be the right one. Odd.

Glad we went for First Friday. Glad I used creative time and space to channel some stress and overwhelm. Feel much better as a result. Whew. I can focus again. Art. Just have to do it sometimes.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Met up with Grand Junction's Annie Whiteley, Top Alcohol Funny Car Racing Champion

After a light dinner at Tequila's on North Avenue in Grand Junction last night, my husband and I crossed the street to look at what appeared to be a car show in the Teller Arms parking lot. Wishing we had a camera with us, we asked if they were going to be there the next day. We were told no because they're race cars showing before a big race Saturday night at the Western Colorado Dragway (Grand Junction).

Annie Whiteley with part of her 3200 hp Alcohol Funny Car.
Race? What race? That certainly explained why the cars we were looking at had cages inside them and parachutes on the back. There were also dragsters in the lot.

So, this evening, we decided to go check it out. We looked on the dragway's website, Facebook page, even looked in the local newspaper trying to find information on ticket sales, starting times, anything. We found nothing, but our curiosity was growing.

We jumped in the truck, headed to the dragway, figured we'd take a chance. We'd never been to the dragway so had no idea what to expect.

As we drove up the hill, following the signs to the dragway, rounding the corner we were stunned to

Friday, April 12, 2013

Freedom in Limits

Some people hit their breaking point early in life. Others hit it much later. And of course some never hit it at all.

I'd always considered myself a strong person; strong in spirit that is. The problem is, I never knew my limits, so I was always pushing the envelope a little more, a little more, the whole time wondering if I was about to hit my limits. From raising my daughter on my own, putting myself through college after having dropped out of high school, conducting research in international conflict zones, to flying airplanes and riding motorcycles, and yes, starting a magazine in a down economy late in 2008.

That's the problem with not knowing my limits my whole life; the fear of wondering if any second I would hit them. Oops.

And then it happened. Late November 2011. I broke. My daughter lay in a tented bed in the VA Hospital barely alive after a horrible drug overdose. ...

Thursday, March 7, 2013

In loving memory of my beautiful Patsy Jean...

Patsy Jean Hartman 1/99-3/13
My shy loving beautiful whippit-labrador 14-year-old Patsy Jean left us today. She went peacefully, head across my lap, my husband Bob on the other side of her. I feel the loss of her so deeply...

So beautiful, so quiet, so elegant, exotic. Everyone who met her, was enchanted by her grace. She was with me through thick and thin, through... everything.

We weren't ready to let her go today, but we knew it was the right thing to do. I want to write about the wonderful memories, but I'm too overwhelmed with the loss and so many years of memories that I can't right now. I miss her so much...

Patsy Jean? I love you. Thank you for giving me so much comfort, love, joy. For your gentle nature, your awareness. I miss you. I miss you so much sweet puppy.... I love you.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

I have two pieces in the members show at the Art Center!

Oh my goodness! I was so nervous but excited dropping off the two art pieces for the Art Center's members exhibit that opens this Friday evening.

I decided to take the plunge and create bigger pieces per artist and teacher Dianna Fritzler for the exhibit. And it turns out, I loved it! I don't know why I fought it so long and hard!

"Rail Tales" Collage on canvas
The first piece, Rail Tales, was inspired on a Saturday morning at the train station downtown Grand Junction; daughter Melody standing in the doorway of her train car.

That inspiration stayed with me as she sent occasional text messages and photos along the way: Glenwood, Denver, Chicago, and several stops in Pennsylvania. It was her first train excursion and she had a wonderful experience.

"Mom, seriously, this is the way to travel!" Considering she was annoyed when she first learned she would have to take the train rather than fly. Tsk tsk. "You were so right!" Don't hear that very often!

It is a collage with painted brass, powdered pigments, cornhusk (from a really good tamale actually), and alcohol ink on yupo.

The ground is canvas painted wiht copper, gold, antique gold, and ochre metallic paints. I like this piece!

The second piece I put in the show is called, "Quiver." As I was making it, my husband walked past and said, "oh, a quiver of arrows?" I looked at it and thought, yes of course, it does give that sense!

"Quiver" Collage on yupo
I had such fun with the metallic paint on Rail Tales that I decided to stay in the copper metallic theme for the second one.

The ground is antique copper metallic paint on yupo. The collage is made up of cork, painted yogurt top, and of course cut-ups of some of my smaller alcohol inks on yupo, sticks I rescued from the trash bin at collage artist (and teacher) Gayle Gerson's  house during the Rocky Mountain Collage Society workshop on Cornell Boxes.

I smooshed the cork into the wet paint on the yupo before it dried then turned it over to give that mottled effect with the metallic on the cork. I attached the sticks to the cork with scraps of waxed linen thread from our bookmaking projects.

When I accidentally got some of the copper metallic paint on a piece of netting it was love at first mistake! I love tactile art and have sooo wanted to incorporate it someway into my art pieces. I tied the netting to the piece using the same waxed linen threads that I used to attach the sticks to the cork.

Lovin' these metallic paints and inks!!!!! And I am so thankful that we have an Art Center that opens up to member artists -- including us beginners -- from time to time. We are soooo fortunate!

Small collage called "Industrial Evolution"

"Industrial Evolution." Collage 8"x10"
The art piece is only 8" x 10" but it is a step on the road to making bigger art pieces per my homework assignment from artist Dianna Fritzler.

"Go bigger," she said after learning that all my art pieces are only 5" x 7".

I like making the smaller pieces because I can do them in one sitting while thinking or whatnot.

It is a collage using cut shapes from my little alcohol ink art pieces on yupo paper, bits of brass scraps (that I painted), powdered pigments, and some netting from something (I can't remember where I got the netting).

The ground is a mix of copper and antique copper metallic paint on yupo. It was fun!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

GV Magazine, Melody, and Coptic-stitched books

The December issue of Grand Valley Magazine is on the newsstands and subscriptions on their way to readers. The comeback has been nice. I haven't blogged since early October because we had to create a sample issue followed immediately by the November re-launch issue. And of course right after that we were in production on the December issue. Whew. The reception has been wonderful.

I do maintain a GV Magazine blog on topics relating to the magazine at grandvalleymagazine.com/blog/ but I have missed writing my personal blogs here!

Daughter Melody is living with us right now and doing really well. She also helps out at the office and is even doing a little photography for the magazine too. We're so blessed to have her home and getting healthy.

Coptic Stitched book I made in the bookmaking class.
Bob and I so enjoyed the bookmaking class taught by Maxine Buchholtz we took together at the Art Center from mid-September to mid-October.

We made a Coptic stitched book (my favorite;  I even wrote a little ditty about it in the current issue of the magazine), a leather wrapped book, and a mini leather book.

Maxine is a master of handmade books. Such an honor to be taught by her.

I use this book as my "art notes" journal. I also put my small alcohol ink paintings in there. I used a handmade paper with leaves between the paper layers (I did NOT make the paper) over the davey board. The thread is a 4-ply waxed linen thread. Took six needles threaded at the same time to do the stitching.

The technique allows the book to lay flat when open. The technique is quite ancient as far as books go! I love the way the book looks, feels, and it is wonderful to write in. I want to make more but can't remember how to start it, ugh. I'll have to get a review from Maxine.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

My latest alcohol ink and collage pieces

"Moon Over Red Rocks" by Krystyn Hartman
I attended an excellent artist marketing workshop taught by popular Western Colorado artist Dianna Fritzler late last month and my homework per Dianna is to make a 16x20 piece.

Becauase I'm not sure what to make that big, I am making some smaller pieces with the bigger piece in mind.

This one with the dark and cloudy night sky over the red rocks is an idea I'm considering for the big 16x20 piece. The moon in the upper right is actually silver metallic, but its hard to tell in the photo. The dark red is a lot more vivid than came through in the photo.

I'm also making smaller pieces to use as covers for the handmade books we're learning to make in Maxine Bucholtz's bookmaking class.

The black tree with cranberry flowers that will be used for a cover on a handmade book was inspired by the two rhinestones.

Book cover with rhinestones
I had the two rhinestones and wanted to incorporate them into something so I chose the black, purple, and cranberry alcohol inks for the piece, then added the silver metallic circle (an orange juice bottle top), and the two rhinestones. And voila!

I will make the book that it will cover after we get through the bookmaking class. I want to do the coptic stitch book for this one. We've learned three book stitches so far.

Love the class! My husband and I are taking the class together, which is wonderful!

Hope we do another coptic stitch book in the class because I can't remember how to start the stitches. I remember what to do once started, but just can't remember how to start it. We have three more classes left so if we don't cover it again, I'm going to ask Maxine in the last class to show me again!

Friday, September 28, 2012

Only a month away from the re-inaugural issue of GV Magazine!

Wow, so much progress since the last time I blogged about the GV comeback!

Our offices are perfect for us and I love working there every day! We finally have phones and internet, and the temperature is finally close to comfortable in there. And we have a real sign on the door! We still have a ways to go when it comes to furnishings, but we're getting there.

Our test/sample issues for web, iPad, Kindle, and Android tablets have been uploaded to our digital vendor and they are busy getting them optimized.

Most of the stories for the re-inaugural November issue have been assigned. The GV Style photo shoot is complete and the feature will be beautiful!

The special re-introductory offer to advertisers have been sent out and we're already getting a great response!

Our ad agency, RSW Partners, is busy working on our new website at GrandValleyMagazine.com. Had a fabulous meeting with ad agency Cobb & Associates the other day and really looking forward to working with them too!

Am excited about getting the subscriber letters out next...

Sunday, September 23, 2012

My last regular column for the Daily Sentinel and the return of Grand Valley Magazine

This post was published as my last regular column in the Daily Sentinel Sunday, September 16, 2012.

This is my last regular commentary with the Daily Sentinel. Writing a weekly column and publishing a high-quality magazine at the same time is, well, quite unrealistic. Yes, it’s time to bring back Grand Valley Magazine.

I’ve worked in media, directly and indirectly, since high school.

Our cheerleading squad did a fund-raising promotion at a local radio station one weekend, and by the end of it, I practically begged the station manager to hire me. I was fascinated. He gave in, and for more than a year I twisted knobs and pushed buttons for the weekly Top 40 and Denver Bronco football games.

From radio, I moved on to ad agencies, then newspapers, books and magazines. That’s where I discovered the ink in my blood. The in-depth features, rush of a breaking story, ...

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Too big to fail; too small to matter

The official reasons for not including third-party candidates in national and local political debates are based solely on those parties’ small size. This idea of too-small-to-matter has become too much of a cliché these days (and not just in politics either).

I, for one, am curious about what these smaller third parties have to say. Do they have platforms? How are their goals and objectives different than the too-big-to-fail parties? Are their ideas in common with or opposed to the big party machines? Might they have solutions to problems that the big machines have been unable or unwilling to solve? Is it possible that those candidates have something worthwhile to say?

It’s bad enough that the voices of the small are drowned out by the boisterous shouting of the giants, but to deny the smaller parties a seat at the political roundtable in a government by the people seems, well, a bit authoritarian.

Perhaps if the other political parties were given the same opportunity to tell their stories and share their ideas as the two behemoths, they...

Thursday, September 13, 2012

World-renowned innovator has roots in Mesa County; and I got to interview him!

The opportunity to gain firsthand insight from a world-renowned innovator is honor enough, but to find out that innovator got his start at Colorado Mesa University (then Mesa College) is downright exciting.

Thomas W. Osborn, a virtual rock star in the world of innovators as featured in a new book from Stanford University Press titled Serial Innovators: How Individuals Create and Deliver Breakthrough Innovations, entered Mesa College as a struggling student with attention deficit disorder back in the 1960s.

“The quality of Mesa’s undergraduate education gave me a very good base,” Osborn told me. The encouragement from and “the influence of professors like Drs. Lenc and Putnam and Mr. Perry” helped him build a strong foundation for his scientific interests.

From Mesa, Osborn went to Colorado State University, then on to Oregon State University where he earned a Ph.D. in chemistry and studied the chemical evolution...

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Ancient aliens or unfettered human ingenuity?

A series of TV programs aired recently on History's H2 channel called "Ancient Aliens." I listened as countless self-proclaimed alien experts pointed to all kinds of ancient artifacts that defy their idea of our ancestors' capabilities, and most concluded that they must therefore be the work of advanced extraterrestrial visitors. Entertaining thought it was, there was no doubt in my mind that the marvels they pointed to were the work of humans.
Contemplate, if you will, the laser-machined precision of the intricate block cuts of Puma Punku at 12,000 feet in the mountains of Bolivia, the Nazca lines stretching 50 miles across the top of a high plateau in Peru, 2,000-year-old writings describing Vimana flying machines in India, the monolithic statues on Easter Island in the South Pacific, the light bulb-looking Dendera wall carvings and Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt, Stonehenge in southern England, and the Antikythera Mechanism with its 29 finely tuned interlocking gears found in an ancient shipwreck off the coast of Crete. The list of mysterious marvels from antiquity is seemingly endless.

Not counting the effects of sleep deprivation, junk food and pharmaceuticals on our modern brains, the brains of our ancestors were probably little if any different than our own. We can never know of all the extraordinary...

Friday, August 31, 2012

I highly recommend the film "Beasts of the Southern Wild"

Wow, just home from seeing the film "Beasts of the Southern Wild" at the Avalon Theatre in downtown Grand Junction. I really loved this film. There was absolutely nothing predictable or formulaic about it -- nothing at all.

A Sundance Film Festival winner, I hope to see it on the Oscars list. Truly brilliant, timely, and touching. I highly recommend this film.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Cars, refrigerators, TV sets and nuclear warheads

I intended to write a light piece on how we live in the context of the times, beginning with the industrial complex of the 1930s and World War II, which set the stage for the military-industrial complex of the 1950s that spawned the financial, medical, educational and entertainment complexes of the 1980s that led to the interdependent web of today’s global economy. Whew!

For example, in the 1950s, the automobile, refrigerator and television were key consumer products that supersized our economy and secured a large, robust middle class.

In 1955, nearly 90 percent of the cars on our nation’s roads were American-made, with more than 8 million new cars sold that year. From 1945 to 1985, we paved 42,798 miles of interstate highway and bought 300 million cars. As a result, car-related businesses — from petroleum to drive-through restaurants to tourism — sprang up from coast to coast, while refrigerators redefined domestic life.

“A few years ago it took the housewife 5-1/2 hours to prepare daily meals for a family of four,” Time magazine reported in 1959. “Today she can do it in 90 minutes or less — and still produce meals fit for a king or a finicky husband.”

In a nation of 150 million in the 1950s, there seemed no end to...

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Extraordinary rush: Singing with the symphony orchestra!

Wow, what an extraordinary experience! I sang two songs with the Grand Junction Symphony Orchestra during their annual Wells Fargo Evening Under the Stars free concert in Lincoln Park in Grand Junction Saturday evening. I'm still pinching myself to make sure it wasn't a dream.

The symphony kicks off each season with the free pops-type concert. Lucky for me, they included some vintage swing arrangements this year, and invited me to sing with them!

There is nothing like being surrounded by strings, brass, woodwinds, percussion played by wonderful musicians and friends. I still can't believe I got to sing with them!

We are so blessed to have such dedicated musicians who come together as a symphony orchestra in our community. I'm looking forward to the upcoming symphony season! The first concert is in September! Here is a link to the Grand Junction Symphony's website:


Thursday, August 23, 2012

The double-edged sword of Colorado's Gallagher Amendment

I never understood that old saying, “All politics are local,” until recently, when one innocent quest for office space brought it to light — a glaring bright light.

I thought with all this empty commercial space around the valley, finding a smokin’ deal on just the right office would be a piece of cake. Not only did I discover that’s not the case, but I got an instant education on something called the Gallagher Amendment in our state constitution.

“At that rate per square foot, the building owner barely covers his taxes,” said Bray commercial real estate agent Sam Suplizio in response to my offer to lease space in a building that’s been vacant for nearly a year. For all the talk about needing to be business-friendly in a tough economy, that sure sounded like a whole lot of...