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June 2006
Letter From The Editor

June is here and so is summer. The weather has been wonderful in Florida all spring, but now with the increasingly warmer summer days also comes the afternoon thunderstorms that roll in off the Gulf of Mexico to cool things off every evening. Sometimes it's just a shower and sometimes it's a full blown storm.

We do experience frequent power outages with our thunderstorms this time of the year, but they are thankfully brief and should not interupt access to our website at all. Our website servers are located in Texas and Georgia, so we should be almost always up no matter what.

There are, however, occasional delays in accessing out Email but once we are back online our first concern is checking for customer inquiries. One of the joys of this business is being able to share information about Limited Edition Collectibles with our website visitors, so never worry that we might be too busy to answer your questions.

We are hearing from quite a few website visitors who have recently inherited collections of Limited Edition Collectibles and who are interested in knowing their value. We do offer an appraisal service on our Appraisals page and, as always, we are happy to do one free mini appraisal for anyone who has never used our Appraisal service before.

We are also getting a lot of Email from people who have run upon hard times and must sell their Limited Edition Collectibles to make ends meet. We are always happy to help sell Limited Edition Collectibles. We list the collectibles for free and then notify the seller when we have a buyer. It's that simple. To find out how to sign up for this service visit our Contact Us page.

Morgan Weistling is our Artist of the Month for June. You can read his Profile below and you can see some of his artwork on our Star Trek / Star Wars page. We have also included in this month's newsletter three articles on Father's Day. The first one is "Father's Day Facts" which includes some interesting statistics about fathers. The second article is "Fathers' Emotional Ties To Their Families" and it discusses the changing attitudes of men due to their increased involvement with helping to nurture their children. The third one is titled "Be The Man On Father's Day - And Every Day" and it discusses the changing roles of fathers within the family unit.

We hope you enjoy this month's newsletter and find a way to honor your own father on his special day. The Plate Lady™ ® of Tampa Bay Staff wishes you a Happy Father's Day!

Artist's Profile: Morgan Weistling

Morgan Weistling was raised in Southern California. Best known for realistic figurative paintings of adults and children, he regularly participates in both the Prix de West Invitational and Masters of the American West Exhibits.

Morgan won the 2000 Patron's Choice Award in the Masters of The American West show at the Autry Museum of Western Heritage and the 2001 Prix de West Award at The National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City, OK. He also won the 2001 Nona Jean Hulsey Buyer's Choice Award for his painting, The Dance, and the 2002 Trustees Purchase Award from the Autry Museum .

Morgan learned to draw at a very early age due to encouragement from his father, who was a student of art. He enjoyed imitating his father's drawings and they spent many happy hours sharing their love of art. By the age of 12, Morgan was using his father's art books to teach himself more formally. He went through one entire course on his own in which he studied anatomy, drawing, and painting.

His mother was also very supportive of his interest in art and decided to enroll him in the Brandes Art Institute at the age of 15. He attended the small school in Resuda. It was run by Fred Fixler, a retired illustrator, who is credited for teaching Morgan how to paint. Morgan studied there for three years, during which time he worked part-time as a janitor for the school to pay his tuition.

While still a student and working at an art store, Morgan met a prominent illustrator who came in to buy supplies. Morgan showed him some of his artwork and the next day he found himself employed at a movie poster agency. For the next 14 years, Morgan painted illustrations for every movie studio in Hollywood. He became well-known in the film industry for his illustrations and amazing celebrity likenesses.

Morgan was often required to work as long as 48 hours at a time, reworking his paintings to please his clients and setting up props to recreate scenes authentically. In addition to movie posters, he designed several collector plate series that include science fictions scenes from Star Trek and Star Wars. His designs were also used on Sega pinball machines, numerous magazines, books, CDs, and video covers.

After many years of being art-directed, Morgan decided to start painting for himself. On the advise of a friend, he took his paintings to Scottsdale Arizona and the first gallery he walked into, Trailside Galleries, signed him on the spot. His paintings sold quickly and his first one-man show had 26 paintings that all sold on the opening night. The following year, at his second one-man show they sold out on opening night, as well.

Morgan’s oil paintings have been published by Mill Pond Press since 1998 and Greenwich Workshop publishes his paintings as giclee canvases

Father's Day Facts
The Journal Record, (Oklahoma City) by Journal Record Staff

Father's Day dates back to 1910, when it was conceived by Mrs. John B. Dodd of Spokane, Wash., and proclaimed for June 19 of that year by the mayor. The first presidential proclamation was issued in 1966 when President Lyndon Johnson designated the third Sunday in June as Father's Day. Father's Day has been celebrated annually since 1971. Here are some interesting holiday facts, courtesy the U.S. Census Bureau:

* 105,000 - The estimated number of "stay-at-home" dads. These are married fathers with children under 15 who are not in the labor force primarily so they can care for the family while their wives work outside the home. These fathers cared for 189,000 children in 2002.

* 2 million - The number of preschoolers cared for by their fathers more hours than by any other child-care provider while their mothers are at work. This amounts to about 1-in-5 preschoolers of employed mothers.

* 25.8 million - The number of fathers who are part of married- couple families with own children under 18. Of these, one in five are raising three or more of their own children under 18. One in 10 are raising their own infants under age 1. One in eight are under 30 years old, while 4 percent are 55 or over. Two percent live in the home of a relative or a non-relative. Six in 10 have an annual family income of $50,000 or more.

1. * 2 million - The number of single fathers, up from 393,000 in 1970. There now is one single father for every six single parents, compared with one in 10 in 1970. Among these, 10 percent are raising three or more of their own children under 18. Ten percent are raising their own infants under age 1. Twenty-two percent are under 30, while 5 percent are 55 or over. Their marital status breaks down as: 45 percent are divorced, 34 percent have never married, 17 percent are married with an absent spouse and 4 percent are widowed. Thirteen percent live in the home of a relative or a non-relative, while 24 percent have an annual family income of $50,000 or more.

Copyright 2003 Dolan Media Newswires
Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning Company. All rights Reserved

Fathers' Emotional Ties To Their Families
USA Today (Society for the Advancement of Education)

The emotional value of men is becoming more important on Father's Day, according to Robert Billingham, professor of human development and family studies, Indiana University, Bloomington. "Once mothers began working outside of the family, fathers became more involved inside of the family. We began to see that, as men and women became more alike in the workplace, they also were becoming more alike in terms of their emotional connections within the family? Fathers are thus being viewed more broadly than as the primary breadwinners and disciplinarians.

Meanwhile, Father's Day is now seen "more and more as an emotional day rather than as a `gag' day when dads receive a bad tie or silly gift." Billingham praises the emergence of Father's Day cards for stepfathers as a social recognition that the man living with the children may be someone other than the biological father. "This is a positive step because it helps create a society in which both fathers and stepfathers are valued. It takes pressure off the stepfather so he does not have to `become' the father, and, more importantly, the child can form a relationship with both as valued adults?

Be The Man On Father's Day - And Every Day
Ebony, by Kevin Chappell

We are often told that fatherhood is the greatest experience of a man's life, full of smiles, laughter and camera-ready moments. We are told that we need only be ourselves and the role of being a father will come naturally.

That is, until we become fathers. Then the game changes, and it seems folks never miss an opportunity to tell us how to be better fathers. This bait-and-switch catches us by surprise, keeping us constantly on our heels, feeling unbalanced by our new title, out of sorts with our purpose in life, forcing us to fumble and bumble our way through fatherhood.

As a result of this feeling of inadequacy, more and more of us have given up on the old-school notion of the traditional father. And perhaps, who can blame us? Often ridiculed and seen as second-class parents, fathers, particularly Black fathers, have always, had to fight to prove their worth to the family unit. In fact, our worth is so questioned that some family psychologists even jokingly refer to fathers as a "biological necessity, but a social accident."

While the fathers of old left us with a legacy of bringing toughness and grit to the family structure, many fathers today have found it easier, and less antagonistic to smooth out their rough edges, soften their hard ways, become what I call "mommy clones." Quick studies, these men take their queues on how to be a good father from their lady. This is especially true with Brothers, who have historically watched Black women play a strong role in raising children, and defining the roles of others within their family.

Without the maternal connection that comes with months of labor, and hours of giving birth, fathers are primed for the makeover. After all, the very things that society has deemed important in parenting are normally vacant in a father. There's not much soft about a father's touch, not much gentle about his caress, not much soothing about his voice.

When all is said and done, what a father has that is uniquely his own is his masculinity. To a child, a father has always been a protector, a supporter. To a child, a father has always been a provider and even a nurturer. To a child, no one is stronger, no one bigger, no one can scare away monsters better than daddy. To a child, a father is the ultimate shielder of evil, guardian of safety, keeper of comfort.

So why not cherish that truly masculine role more deeply?

Fatherhood can only be a "social accident" if we let it. In an effort to invent new models of behavior for us to emulate, society sometimes not only forces us to lose who we are, but causes the child to lose an invaluable part of his or her healthy growth. Male traits, attitudes, and tendencies (even the lying-on-the-couch-watching-football-all-day tendencies that we possess) have their purpose in a family.

Men bring their basic natures to the family, just as women do. Who's to say which is more useful, more important? We as fathers should feel freer to follow our male instincts. Men should become even more aware--not less--of their maleness after becoming a father. Fathers don't have to be "second mothers" to be important in a child's development.

So what if a father changes diapers a little differently than the mother does. So what if he prefers giving knee bounces to singing lullabies. So what if he sees nothing terrible in putting mix-matched booties on the baby or the baby's onesie on backwards. So what if he plays a little rough with the baby, uses incorrect grammar when talking baby talk, forgets to put the bib on at feeding time.

This Father's Day, we should harden our resolve to carve out and define our role as fathers ourselves, to show that our worth as men is important in the raising of healthy children, to put more father in fatherhood. If we just be ourselves, and don't give in to societal pressures to be something we're not, more of us would see fatherhood for what it is--an institution of honor and dignity. And in its rawest form, we would see it as a great complement to motherhood.

COPYRIGHT 2003 Johnson Publishing Co.
COPYRIGHT 2003 Gale Group


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