The Madeira Beach Craft Festival is just around the corner, and we are glad that you’ll be meeting the amazing crafters who share their talents with the world. To give you a taste of what you can expect, we welcome you to get to know self-taught, multifaceted crafter and our featured artist, Donna Ryan.
From Corporate to Creative
Donna Ryan knows what it’s like to make the transition from the rough and not-so-entertaining corporate world into the fascinating world of the visual arts, and that’s a great thing. Her beginnings as a passionate painter evolved into incredible glass work that captures every art lover and collector that comes across it. Needless to say, Donna’s evolution from career woman to fine artist has benefited not just her, but the art community as a whole.
Donna spent 28 years working for a defense contractor. Once she retired, she decided to move to New Smyrna Beach, widely known as one of the top 100 art towns in the U.S.. There, she began to pursue her passions by taking watercolor, oils, acrylics and pastels classes and workshops at the Artists Workshop. She also became a member of the Florida Water Color Society and the Atlantic Center for the Arts, where she retains membership to this day.
Donna’s interests in the arts community are not limited to the creative. Her corporate chops proved useful as she ventured into gallery creation and ownership, as she assisted in originating — and later became owner and operator of — Flagler Avenue’s Tada Gallery. This enabled her to expand her talents, transitioning into glass painting and clay work.
Donna Ryan became interested in wine bottle lanterns after moving to Winter Park in 2010 and being inspired at one of the town’s local shows. Bit by the “lighting bug”, she started decorating glass bottles and embellishing them with recycled materials. Along with her brother Zeke and her daughter Dawn, she founded 2dah, LLC in 2011. Together they became staples at Winter Park’s eclectic local markets and, soon after, art shows and festivals everywhere.
While her passion currently lies in the beautiful glass creations that inspire and bring joy to art enthusiasts and admirers alike, if you ask Donna what her favorite media is, she simply can’t pick a favorite. “I enjoy so many different types of media it’s hard to settle on just one,” says Donna, “I hope to get back to painting in the near future.” One thing is for certain: No matter which medium Donna conquers, no matter which world she find herself in, she is making her mark wherever she goes.
Meet Donna Ryan at the Madeira Beach Craft Festival, transforming Madeira Way on Saturday and Sunday, July 6-7 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Find out more about this and many other events at www.artfestival.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.