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Meet the artists!

Unlike Downtown Tampa and St Petersburg areas it can be hard to find a good coffee shop in New Port Richey. Of course there is the typical coffee serving chains and little cafes serving Folgers, but artisan coffee is sparse. However, there is the rare exception that is the Oasis Coffee Spot located on the corner of Little Road and Embassy Blvd.

Over the last two and a half years that the Oasis Coffee Spot has been open it has served as a center for events and creativity. While yes, it is a coffee shop where it is not uncommon to open the lid of your latte to find a heart design left by one of the fine baristas on staff, it is and is becoming so much more. The Oasis Coffee Spot in the efforts of being a safe oasis for the community also serves as a platform to display talent that breathes life into the community. Every Friday and Saturday night there is live music. The space has held groups coming together for everything from business networking and idea sharing to art classes to health seminars. Being in a place where the areas most creative people come through the doors it becomes apparent that New Port Richey has more to offer than meets the eye.

In addition to all the excitement at the Oasis the work of photographer Frank Novatsky is now on display. March 29th there will be an opening event for the addition of photographs by Will Glover. Both Novatsky and Glover will be at the location from 10am to 2pm for a meet and greet with the artists.

Oasis employee Gabrielle Hekhuis recently graduated with a degree in Fine Art and in Art History at Flagler College in St Augustine. While studying art she obtained a position in a fine art gallery where she learned the ins and outs of how a gallery is run and the process of doing fine art appraisals. She is now taking what she has learned from the art scene in Saint Augustine and eye for quality work to organized the showing of art within the space at the Oasis Coffee Spot.

Upon first viewing the work of Frank Novatsky, Gabrielle Hekhuis was immediately impressed with the quality of work in Novatsky's diverse yet refined portfolio. She also resinated with his artistic approach as stated in his artist statement: “The driving force behind my photography is to create fine art images of the natural world; I strive to depict the beautiful serenity of the land and animals, as seen through my eyes.”

Frank Novatsky was born in 1961 on the out-skirts of Schenectady, New York and it was there that he lived the first decade and a half of his life. It was there, in the forested hills and along the river banks, that Frank's love of the natural world took root; he often sought out, and found, solace in the quiet of the woodlands.

In the mid-1970's Frank's family moved to Odessa, Florida, and once again he took to exploring the forests and lakes. It was during this time that Frank found an old Canon SLR sitting atop a trash can along side the road. This camera changed Frank's life forever; from that time forward he has a camera by his side.

It was in 1982 that Frank met the love of his life, Gloria, and soon they were married. By late 1983, Frank and Gloria were blessed with a beautiful daughter, Jeanette, and a new set of challenges. During this time Frank was working as a farm tractor operator and the young family quickly realized that, in order to provide for themselves, a change in vocation was needed; in September of 1983 Frank joined the U.S. Coast Guard to be an aircraft mechanic and flight-crew member on helicopters.

Throughout the 27+ years in the service the family moved to North Carolina, Puerto Rico, Miami, Oregon, Florida, Alaska, and finally back to Florida. All of these places offered wondrous opportunities and experiences for the family, but none like Alaska. On June 1st of 2010, Frank retired from the U.S. Coast Guard; by 2015 Frank and Gloria will be living their dream of spending summers in Alaska and winters in Florida.

In 2013 Frank obtained his Associates Degree in Professional Photography; he is focusing his efforts on creating fine art images of the natural world. Frank's goal is to bring the beauty of nature, as he see it, to the world.

While his portfolio consists of photographs from all over, the local ones have been chosen to be on display to create a sense of community and show the beauty in the surrounding places in which many of the customers live. The work by Will Glover that is to be displayed starting March 29th is also of local areas. Particularly of Saint Petersburg and near the Gandy bridge. Glovers work shares the same excellence as Novatsky although there approaches and technique are very contrasting. See there work side by side gives a clearer understanding to photography as fine art. As artists they do more than take snap shots. They each have developed the techniques that they use after countless hours taking photographs and studying the capabilities of the camera that gives them the capability of creating their own unique styles.

In explaining the creative process Glover explains: “When you look around the world what do you see? I see shapes and forms beget by nature and man and use them to create fine art imagery. I visualize the beauty within these shapes and forms using diverse perspectives. The pursuit to bringing this imagery to life is what drives my passion.

There is an undefined moment when I feel the energy and fulfillment of what has been created using my imagination. It is the purest form of appeasement that any artist could feel. An obsession to create and embody an atmosphere of contentment is all that is needed to fuel the fire within me.”

Looking through the lens visualizing what has yet to be constructed only to bring into existence what the naked eye cannot create on it’s own. Capturing a moment in time only to take it through the metamorphosis process in which it yields an interpretation of what is.

Will Glover was born long ago in Florida where he now lives. Before settling down in his home state Will served 20 years in the United States Air Force as a Missile Maintenance Technician. During this time period he lived in California, Missouri, Montana, and has traveled from coast to coast many times over. Upon retiring from the military he worked for the National Park Service and the United State Marine Corp. In the year of 2007 Will was introduced to photographing action sports by a friend, and even though it was just an older DSLR for his first camera and in addition to shooting in automatic, he found enjoyment in capturing sports. By the time he began working in North Carolina his interest grew to the point that he had made a choice to go to school to study photography. He made his way back to Florida and began attending school in Tampa where he went on to achieve his Associates of Science degree in Professional Photography. During his studies, Will discovered Fine Art photography and the obsession began. He is currently serving as treasurer of the Central Florida chapter of the American Society of Media of Photographers.

The chance to meet these two artist and to be able to talk to them about their work on display is great and unique opportunity for everyone in the Tampa Bay area to experience a quality show to the fullest. In a day where the buying process of art is often tainted by commissions and collecting for economical gain it is refreshing to find a place to buy work straight from the artist for the purpose of making quality work accessible to everyone.

 

You can view Frank Novatsky's work at www.FNPhotographer.com and Will Glovers work at www.WillGloverPhotography.com and also on www.UPAGallery.com

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