Sharing love of art – straub design

straub design

The concept for Frances Buckmaster’s art studio as a business was a long time coming. As she outgrew her studio space at home, she started scouting the downtown Puyallup area for larger spaces. Just one year later, Buckmaster’s studio is thriving. She credits her success with her undying love for art, combined with her strong work ethic, extensive commercial and fine art training, and her background in business and marketing. “Art is my keystone,” Buckmaster said. “I do not do art for enjoyment, fun or relaxation. It is not my hobby. To me, art is hard work that is deeply satisfying. At my core, I have always been an artist.”


Buckmaster describes herself as “a blazing extrovert,” explaining how being surrounded by others energizes her and feeds her in a way that nothing else can. “I do not want to work alone in my studio. That is why I decided to open up the space as a business.”


Programs she offers include a Monday morning group, where beginning to intermediate artists work on their oil or acrylic projects while being coached and mentored by Buckmaster.


On Wednesday and Thursday evenings, the studio holds figurative painting sessions. “We have professional models that hold the same pose for the three consecutive weekly sessions, giving artists nine hours to complete finished pieces of art,” Buckmaster said. There are a few openings remaining in both the Wednesday and Thursday night sessions.


In addition to her in-studio programs, Buckmaster coordinates a plein air program, which means painting outdoors. Her plein air calendar has included events in Puyallup, Tacoma, University Place, DuPont, Olympia and Enumclaw. Artists have painted cityscapes, parks, waterfronts and the Meeker Mansion at night. Four times a year, Buckmaster sponsors a “Sketchcrawl,” where artists, both experienced and inexperienced, gather in downtown Puyallup to sketch. This not only connects artists and their art with the community, but gives participants a chance to see downtown Puyallup businesses in various and new perspectives. A self-described “doggedly persistent perpetual learner,” Buckmaster enjoyed an illustrious and varied career prior to devoting herself full-time to her art. She has a degree in English, with minors in history and psychology, three years of post-graduate work in business marketing, as well as a master’s in divinity. She has worked in retail sales, as a commercial real estate broker, a marketing and communications director, a chaplain and a Unitarian minister.


Although it is hard to believe the warm and outgoing Buckmaster was once shy, it is true. “I was painfully shy when I entered seminary, but I learned a very important lesson from sitting with a woman in a hospital during her final hours,” Buckmaster said. “I learned from her that all I have to do is simply be exactly who I am and love people.” This pivotal experience allowed Buckmaster to put her shyness behind her and excel in the public requirements of her ministries. These lessons and these experiences have served her well, as it is her dynamic personality, as well as her artistic talents, that draw in the artists with whom she works.


Buckmaster is heavily rooted in the community. She has volunteered extensively with several non-profits, including the Crisis Clinic in Seattle and the International Partner Church Council, and was a member of the board of Helping Hand House in Puyallup for seven years. She is also an active member in the Puyallup Main Street Association and serves on its Design Committee. Buckmaster is involved with Valley Arts United in Puyallup, the Eastern Pierce County Open Studio Tour and Gallery 3, a cooperative gallery in Puyallup.


More than mistletoe – straub design


Flowers aren’t just for Valentines Day, weddings or funerals. The professionals at Fife Flowers in Fife know bouquets can also liven up the holidays by offering dazzling displays for parties and gifts.


This season, the shop launched a new special selection of festive floral designs.


“We love Christmas,” owner Mike Seeger said. “Nothing beats the look on the recipient’s face when they receive their flowers and nothing is more personal than opening the card and reading that special message, which is why a floral gift is so special.”


Items include classics such as a Christmas-themed bouquet or festive wreath, Poinsettia plants, candle displays, and fruit baskets. Prices range from $29.99 to $150, depending on size and detail.


Cuddly toys, chocolates and balloons are available for delivery too, helping you to make this Christmas one to remember.


Fully trained professional florists at Fife Flowers can make even the dullest tables sparkle this season using the freshest flora to create custom-made, spectacular design created exactly to customers’ requirements.


The shop’s florists can pull out all the stops, but planning ahead is always important. Orders are expected to increase closer to Christmas, said Seeger’s sister and shop employee Sarah Seeger.


“Ideally a day or two notice is preferred, but we can do last minute designs, too,” she added.


Orders can be picked-up at the shop or delivered, with no courier van or unsightly cardboard box to be seen anywhere. Fife Flowers can also send flowers to loved ones across the United States via the Florist2Florist network of professional florists.