All posts by Karen Tashkovski

Karen Tashkovski is an artist and teacher from Syracuse, NY. She is a graduate of Syracuse University (BFA-Fashion Design & Studio Arts, MS-Art Education).

Rummage Heaven

Amber Road is off Route 20 in what is technically Marcellus, New York. But once you park your car in the lot, pop up the stairs and walk into this former church, you’d swear you were in heaven. That is, if antique shopping is your jam. It is mine.

Rummage Heaven is gorgeously merchandised. It is so fun to peruse the different rooms filled with furniture and accessories while enjoying the light reflecting from the beautiful stained-glass windows. I wanted to live there.

Everything is reasonably priced to sell and I will say that the items depicted in these photos may not be here next week or even tomorrow. There is a high turn-over due to the fact that this off-the-beaten-path shoppe is hardly a well-kept secret.

I’ve been fan-girling Rummage Heaven on Facebook – loving everything they post. I finally got the chance to visit and I was truly blown away. The space is airy and light, easy to walk around (and there were a lot of customers there for a weekday afternoon). It is a magical place. Everyone was so nice. The employees even call it their happy place.

They are open from 10:00 am – 5:00 pm Monday – Friday and 10:00 am – 4:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday. Rummage Heaven is located at 3165 Amber Road, Marcellus, New York 13108. Call for more information –  (315) 272-9236.


Central New York artists are currently exhibiting artwork at Munson (formerly known as the Munson-Williams-Proctor) Museum of Art, 310 Genesee Street, Utica, New York 13502.

Anita Welych (b. 1958) – The former Cazenovia College art professor has created an installation with a focus on printmaking – a study of birds/migration/nature.

Carlie Miller Sherry (b. 1990) – The artist is a visiting professor of art at Pratt Munson. She uses an indigo palette to express a futurism concept – movement that conveys a sense of agitation/unrest.

Lynette Stephenson (b. 1959) – She teaches studio art at Colgate University. Stephenson’s paintings are large scale florals that speak of vibrant color and textural intensity.

Mary Gaylord Loy (b. 1930) – An established painter with seventy years of expertise under her belt, this artist allows herself to unravel the mysteries of mark making. These immense pieces are all new and I am truly inspired – to contemplate such longevity as an artist for myself; to continue to create art and go big – that is the dream of dreams.

Gregory Lawler (b. 1963) – Pratt Munson students can learn from their master – their professor has created puzzles of wisdom juxtaposed as allegory in these visual college oil paintings.

John Loy (b. 1930) – The retired professor is fascinated by the visual language of the elements of art creating tangled paths of line, shape and color to create exciting visual textures.

Ken Marchione (b. 1962) – This Yale graduate and Pratt Munson drawing professor has recently created combines that reflect a sabbatical journey to European cities/museums. There he was exposed to figurative statues and incorporated nameless faces of people he encountered (other tourists and locals) into his assemblages. They are in-progress works as he continues to reflect and digest his time out of the classroom.

Me (b. 1963) – I contributed a work of art to the museum. Bobbi and I had so much fun investigating the nooks and crannies of this amazing place! I drew her portrait in an art activity room.

We stumbled upon a private room with an on-loan from somewhere else Mark Rothko painting. There were also works by Pablo Picasso and Jackson Pollack and so much more!

Thank you, Munson, for inviting us to your Art Educators night out. We loved it.

Generations – Artists of Central New York continues through January 7, 2024. View hours of operation on their web-site and other information such as art classes, museum memberships and other opportunities.


During the summer, I added two dozen paintings to the series called Sensu, fan paintings I’d created in 2019. They are encaustic & collage.

Last week, I bought new frames for the Sensu paintings and re-worked some of them, and I spent the past few days adding collage items to the new pieces and placing them all in frames.

Next up is to give them titles and upload the individual images here. And figure out where I can exhibit them all. There are thirty-six paintings, all 8″ x 8″.

In my head I heard “make sixty of them” – which would require me to buy twenty-four more canvases and twenty-four more frames, pull out the encaustic supplies and find the time to do it (Chrtistmas break?) – postpone exhibiting them until next summer or whenever.

Do I need to make more though? When I feel like I have to do something rather than wanting to do it, it is not fun.

What is fun though – creation. So fun.


Here is a sampling of the finished products from my Francoise Gilot- inspired still life drawing project. Gilot passed away this year – she was 101. I am in awe of her talent as an artist. She was mother to two of Pablo Picasso’s children and later married Dr. Jonas Salk.

Her floral paintings are a combo of real and abstract, which is a perfect fit for my Art-8 students. Some could simplify their imagery and others could go more realistic depending on talent and interest levels.

I gave them a step-by-step instruction “manual” and the majority of students welcomed that.

At the beginning of the school year, I brought in six aloe vera plants and added fake flowers and peacock feathers to them to create the arrangements. I had a variety of tablecloths to choose from for added visual texture. All of my planters are from Lowes. In fact, the aloe started out as two tiny plants I found on the clearance rack for $1.00 each two years ago and I only recently transplanted them.

I am very pleased with the results! Students used Prismacolor colored pencils on Canton paper. The artwork is currently displayed on the wall across from my classroom at Chittenango Middle School.

Lions Den

My Studio in Art 8th graders created these illustrations for the annual Lions Club Peace Poster contest. The theme this year is “Dare to Dream”. I added a component – lions. I wanted lions somewhere in the posters. And I got lions. Beautiful lions! I am amazed at the quality of this artwork. This represents six or seven weeks of work from idea to rendering, to colored pencil application.

Posters will be on display at the Sullivan Library Community Room, Chittenango, New York during November and December 2023. The winning entry will move on to the Regional competition, followed by a State contest and the chance to win the $5,000 International prize.

Can you guess which poster is our winner?

Central Perk Halloween

Yes, Dad, believe it or not. I am pretending to be a waitress today. You can call me Rachel.

I’m actually kind of loving this apron. It is so handy. Today it’s filled with Central Perk straws, napkins and an order pad, but I could easily shove art supplies into it.

I love when an accessory can turn clothes I already own into a Halloween costume for work. (Banana Republic T-shirt, Trina Turk skirt, Rebecca Minkoff boots, Via Spiga tights)

I also love sharing the experience with my colleague, Mrs. C. So fun!

#artteachers #twinning #thetworachels #centralperk #friends

Happy Halloween!

One Dollar’s Worth

Found this seventy cent spill at the bank this morning! Lucky-lucky! I also received a $20 bill with 777 in the serial number and saw a license plate with 777 on it. Nothing else needs to happen to make this rainy day any more amazing, but I will welcome more amazing things/experiences with open arms. Thank you, universe! I am up to $3.62 in found money for 2023!