OK, so let's try this again. I have a real name, Barbara Berney, and I'm an artist in digital collage and jewelry, in addition to a few other things. I'm also an art fair director of two regional shows in my city (really, it's just a very large very small town), Art on the Lawn and Rockford Artists Fair. I've directed AOTL since it's inception in 2000 and as VP of the Rockford Art Guild, just took over the RAF last summer. AOTL is always the second Sunday in June, RAF is the third weekend in September.
I'm an active advocate for the arts, involved up to my earballs with The Element Rockford, a group dedicated to transforming our seriously economically depressed city into an arts destination. I'm working on opening a non-degree granting, non-credit community school for the arts in the downtown area, hoping to expand that into a community arts center at some point in the future. In addition, I plan and coordinate arts events, including the Element's ArtScene in the spring and fall, during which we present performing arts as well as visual arts.
As of Wednesday, I'm a volunteer with Rockford Helps Haiti, a benefit concert planned for late in February, responsible for marketing (with a great committee of volunteers!). Doesn't leave much time to do my own art, but I do some, and am represented in five galleries in northern Illinois and Wisconsin. And today (yippee), I'm represented locally both with my jewelry and my digital art at Cholke DiCapri Photography and Fine Art Gallery.
Totally unrelated to any of the above, I run a non-profit organization for people who have had bad outcomes from LASIK and other refractive surgery. In July 2001, I got toasted and lost my clear vision—cannot drive at night, very poor qualtiy of vision in anything but bright sunlight, and only then with glasses. Glasses don't help the night vision disturbances at all.
A career graphic designer and media supervisor, I specialize in publications design, as well as writing, editing and illustration. I can't take a crisp, clear photo to save my life, but I teach workshops on how to take and optimize photos for entry into art shows. Addicted to beads, coffee and Thai green curry, I also work as a patient representative to the Food and Drug Administration on the ophthalmic devices panel, LASIK complications, and I'm going on Sunday to Washington, DC, for a Monday meeting. Love it when someone else pays for my travels!
I'm *retired.* :)