Hello Everyone- I hope all of you are able to enjoy this holiday season. I do know how difficult they can be for some, or you are so glad to see everyone but glad when the door closes Here is the link to the TV interview Mr P and I had on Mon. It was filmed at my house. I feel they did a very good story and already had something amazing happen from it. Are there any Fenton Glass collectors here? The news reporter that answered my call to the newsroom was the one that came to my house. He is very close friends with a very famous couple. They design Cameo Glass for Fenton Glass. Before that they designed for 20 years at Pilgrim Glass. She was Hillary Clinton's pick for the White House ornament when Clinton was in office. He had dinner with them the day he interviewed me on the phone Fri. She called me on Mon and wants to donate a piece and will make something just for the foundation. A close friend of hers committed suicide last year. She has several other artists’ friends that will want to donate as well. As if it couldn't get any better, they live about 45 miles from me. They are going to come to my First Fri event in Feb. You can only truly appreciate this if you are a avid Cameo glass fan. Her work ranges from $300-$32,000- that is not a typo. Her name is Kelsey Murphy, google her and see her work, just amazing. http://www.wsaz.com/news/headlines/12664886.html The foundation has a requirement that all Board of Directors to read the book Crazy-A Father's Search Through America's Mental Health Madness" It is written by Pete Earley, a NY Times best seller and Washington Post writer. His adult son is Bi-Polar and ended up in jail, as a father his hand's were tied and the book is his journey where he spent 2 years interviewing those behind bars and the health care system that let them down. It really is a must read for anyone that has a bi-polar loved one or bi-polar yourself. I went to his site and signed his guestbook and wrote about my personal experience with depression and about the Damon and Stella work. He emailed me the most wonderful email, I am just amazed these people are just coming from everywhere. I am sharing all of this you because the best way to get the word out about the foundation is tell every single person you can and tell them to do the same. I hope you know this is not me being all braggy, is that a word, but want this info out there so it can help people understand what a devastating disease mental illness can be. It is also a subject that makes some people very uncomfortable. Those are the people we are trying to reach. Depression is the second leading cause of disability in the US. But some people don't "get" that it is a disease just like arthritis, cancer, ect. They just tell the people to get over it, think about something else. It doesn't work like that and it is time they "get it". Here is an article that was on the front page of my hometown newspaper. I had no idea it would take front page. This has just been the most amazing experience and it's only the beginning. We are still looking for artists of all kinds for our on-line gift shop and art gallery and art donations of course, for the Gala. We also want pictures of the loved ones that are gone and their story. The pictures will roll across the screen fading in and out. So go to www.thedasfoundation.org and click on Awareness Quilt to submit your story. You can also see the Randy Travis PSA by clicking About Us, then View PSA’s. I apologize for the length of this but this is a story that really needs to be told in the hope that just one life may be saved. Thank you if you made it through this and the article below, now hit copy and paste and send it to everyone in your address book- I hope everyone has a Happy Holiday, Merry Christmas and Peace of Mind- Carla Giving their art for life Regional artists donating works for mental health By TIM PRESTON - The Independent CATLETTSBURG — With an intimate understanding of the issue, area artists have contributed thousands of dollars worth of their original creations to help shake stigmas for people dealing with suicidal thoughts and mental illness. “As I talked to artists about this, everybody had a story. They had all suffered loss in some way. They all had a story to tell,” said Carla Ball, a stained glass artist spearheading the local effort on behalf of the Damon and Stella Foundation. “Everybody really wanted to talk about it, but admitted they don’t really talk about it to everyone. It’s like ... taboo.” Ball said she first learned of the foundation’s goal — to change people’s perceptions about mental illness — while she was preparing for a brief appearance in the boardroom scene of the film “We Are Marshall.” “I was getting my hair done and the stylist asked me what I do. I told her I was a stained glass artist and she told me about this foundation being built,” Ball recalled, citing the personal losses of family members for organizers, including Phillip “Mr. P” Ivey. As with the artists who’ve given to the effort, Ball said she has personal experience with depression and mental health concerns within her own family. She was immediately motivated to do everything she could to help. Once she began asking other artists to participate, Ball said she was amazed at the response. “For every door I opened, there were three more doors,” she said, noting members of the Kentucky Creative Arts Club, as well as artists who exhibit at The Upstairs Gallery in Ashland, were among the first to pitch in. “Every day another door is opened.” In a matter of weeks, Ball has collected more than 30 pieces of art including photographs, paintings, carvings and her own stained-glass works, with an estimated total value around $8,000. “We are the only group in the entire country doing this,” she said, explaining the works by area artisans will soon be on their way to Knoxville where they will be professionally photographed and seen by “hopefully hundreds of millions of people” before being auctioned. Funds generated by the auction will be used to pay for public service announcements and other messages aimed at letting people know how to recognize possible suicidal behavior or mental illness and where to turn for help. In addition to helping a highly worthy cause, Ball said participating artists, as well as the overall art community, will benefit from exposure to a considerably wider audience. “My goal is to bring people here to look at our art. The goal is to help the foundation and get our artists noticed,” she said. With the first local load being shipped to Tennessee this week, Ball said she plans to continue her efforts to contact local artists in all genres. “I am going to do this again,” she said, explaining she hopes to gather works by local artists as well as artisans nationwide. “Like I said, we are the first community in the U.S. to do this,” Ball said, explaining she is now in charge of recruiting contributing artists anywhere she can find them. She asks any artist with original work to contribute to the effort to e-mail REMOVED or call REMOVED Looking at the list of those who’ve already contributed their art to the foundation, art enthusiasts are almost certain to recognize familiar names including Mike Rayburn, Mindy Bruce, Gary Eldridge, Laura Moul, Linda Harbison, Barbara Delligatti, David Menshouse, Janet Lester, Caroline Wilson, Bill Kersey, Brinda Estep-Waggoner, Debra McDanald, Diane Smallwood, Pati Payne, Lottie Vallance, Gwen Gorby, Gary Zornes, Ken Hollett, Kathleen Hollett, Larry Sumpter, Ruby Hodge, Debra Richardson, Joyce Steel, Lottie Fraley, Ruth Ann Wilt, Jennifer Spade, Danny Craig and Katie Roberts, as well as Ball. The Damon and Stella Foundation For Mental Health was founded in 2006 by survivors of suicide, and is an alliance of artists and health care professionals dedicated to expanding our cultural awareness of mental disease. With more than 30,000 completed suicides in the United States each year, and 250,000 to 790,000 estimated suicide attempts, their aim is to draw attention to the crisis through aggressive communication, compassion, and community campaigns. For more information visit www.thedasfoundation.org or search for Carla’s Stained Glass Creations on the Internet.