Currently viewing the tag: "Spain"

James Rada, Jr.

Catherine “Cat” Szafran remembers that when her family left Spain, a bonfire at her house burned for four days, for the purpose of consuming her father’s artwork. Years later, when the Barnstones left England, a bonfire burned for a week, again turning Myron Barnstone’s work to ash.

It wasn’t that his work wasn’t exceptional. Barnstone had an excellent reputation as an artist in Europe. The truth was that he didn’t want to pack up the paintings for the move or leave the unsettling images he painted behind. Much of his work visualizes the way he saw the Holocaust and nuclear war survivors.

“He also did floral pieces that don’t slap you as hard,” Szafran said.

Leaving Europe, Barnstone moved his family to Pennsylvania, where he opened the original Barnstone Studios near Allentown. It was a destination for students from around the world who wanted to learn painting and drawing from Barnstone. The self-taught artist had developed a way of teaching art, which is called the Barnstone Method.

When Barnstone died in 2016, Szafran set about to honor her father’s legacy and continue teaching the Barnstone Method. She brought out the remaining works her father painted and opened the Barnstone Studio in Thurmont at 202A E. Main Street last September.

“This is a nice, little town working toward becoming more artistic,” said Szafran, who lives in Frederick.

She also noted that commercial space is much more affordable at the north end of the county, and that the location is a half hour closer to Philadelphia and the Lehigh Valley, where a lot of her customers live. The studio has about five hundred pieces of art from Barnstone.

“We are selling his work to fuel the education side,” explained Szafran.

Besides selling art, Szafran continues to teach the Barnstone method to students. Master guides teach the method during classes and workshops. They are available live, on DVD, and online.

For collectors, the Barnstone Studios offers original works, artists’ sketches, and limited-edition prints. For the more-expensive pieces, Szafran offers a program called Home Is Where the Art Is. It allows collectors to purchase the art in twelve equal, interest-free payments.

If you would like to see Barnstone’s work, visit the Artist Angle Gallery at 124 S. Carroll Street in Frederick, which is hosting a Barnstone exhibit beginning February 9, 2019. The show, “A Celebration of Colors: Myron Barnstone’s Palette” will feature some of Barnstone’s brighter art.

Learn more about the Barnstone Studios at

Cat Szafron, owner of Barnstone Studios, sits in front of some of her father’s artwork that is available at the art studio.

Race for Education Ends with Limo Ride to Lunch for Top Sellers

Deb Spalding

Thurmont Elementary and Primary School students who turned in the most address labels to solicit sponsorship for Race Day, held on April 17, 2015, were rewarded with a limousine ride to lunch with their principals on Monday, May 18, 2015. Paige Woods (Kindergarten), Kyle Welsh (1st Grade), Katelyn Bell (2nd Grade), Zoey Whitmore (3rd Grade), Ethan Condon (4th Grade), and Robert Albaugh (5th Grade), were excited for their first-ever ride in a limousine.

Thurmont Primary School Principal Karen Locke and Thurmont Elementary School Principal Christina McKeever were excited for the students and enjoyed their lunch at Pizza Hut in Thurmont. Traci Tatum, president of the TEPS Parent Teacher Association (PTA), said that the event raised close to $27,000. Both schools will be given just over $8,000 during the last TEPS PTA meeting for this school year on June 2. The schools will use their share of the monies towards their designated purposes, which include technology purchases at Thurmont Elementary School and possible marquee improvements at Thurmont Primary School.

If readers would like to contribute towards this cause, please mail your contributions ($5, $10, $15, etc.) to TEPS PTA, Attn: Traci Tatum, 805 E. Main Street, Thurmont, MD 21788.

teps limo2 (1)

Pictured from left are: (front row) students, Katelyn Bell, Kyle Welsh, Paige Woods, Zoey Whitmore, and Ethan Condon; (back row) Thurmont Primary School Principal Karen Locke, student Robert Albaugh, and Thurmont Elementary School Principal Christina McKeever.

Photo by Deb Spalding

Thurmont Students Planning to Visit Europe

James Rada, Jr.

Last year, Tracey Law stood watching her son, Eamonn, who was usually introverted, walk up to street vendors in Barcelona, Spain, and talk with them about their jobs and what they were selling. He would even barter a price for something he liked.

It was a simple thing, done thousands of times a day in Barcelona, but for Law, she saw it as an expansion of her son’s world.

Law and her son were part of a group of students from Thurmont Middle School who traveled last year through Barcelona and Paris, France.

“We wanted to open up a global understanding for our kids so that they could learn about the world through other’s eyes,” said Kelley Fujii, a media specialist with Green Valley Elementary School.

Frederick County Public Schools sponsored the trip, which was operated through Education First Tours. The cost of the package included just about everything, including air fare, hotels, tours, and meals. Fujii added that Education First puts together trips that are specifically tailored for middle school and high school students.

“We were pretty much on the go each day from 7:30 in the morning to dinner,” Fujii said. “We had some free time in the evening, but most of it was organized activities.”

Law decided to go along on the trip, because she had never been to Europe herself and she had always wanted to.

“It was the opportunity of a lifetime,” Law said. “We came home, and I think we saw more (of Europe) than some people who have gone over there for a longer time.”

She remembers standing on a street in Paris, and Eamonn started a conversation with her about how old the buildings around them were and how crowded the city was, but it all seemed to work.

Fujii is now putting together a group that will travel to Europe next year to visit Switzerland, Italy, and France. Because of the cost of the trip (around $4,000 for thirteen days), she wants to give the families who want to go plenty of time to raise the funds.

“Our trip was even better than I thought it would be,” Law said. “Everyone should take a trip like this.”

Fujii is planning an informational meeting for anyone with a middle school student who might be interested in traveling next year. The meeting will be on Thursday, June 11, 2015, from 6:30-7:15 p.m., in the Thurmont Regional Library Small meeting room.

If you have any questions about the trip, you can ask them at the meeting or e-mail Fujii at

Thurmont Students planning to visit Europe

Pictured from left are Tina Mumm, CHS and TMS students Ariel Mumm, Angel Michalski, Eamonn Law-Knotts, Josh Small, and Connor Smoak (laying); (back) Rick Albee, Tracey Law-Knotts, Phyllis Nizer, CHS student Erica Baker, Patty Small, Carrie Clark, and Kelley Fujii.

Courtesy Photo