(L to R) Susan Carter Morgan

Water Street Studio Trio Creates Dynamic Arts Center

by | Dec 13, 2014 | Around Town, Arts and Entertainment, Business

Story and photos by Larry Faulkner

Downtown Fredericksburg has many hidden treasures worth seeking.  Water Street Studio  is one of those.

Up a flight of steps at 915 A Sophia St., then a hard right turn at the top leads you to a dynamic arts center created by a trio of equally dynamic artists.

It is not necessarily the physical location on Sophia along the Rappahannock River that makes Water Street Studio a hidden treasure; it’s what the artists have created inside this space. One of the first differences you notice between this studio and other studios or galleries in downtown Fredericksburg is that these three artists work here full-time.   Together, the partners’ collaboration has created a business that is a working art studio, a creative writing center, an art gallery, an art learning center and a special events location.

The unofficial leader of the trio is Susan Carter Morgan. Susan is an accomplished freelance writer, teacher, writing coach and now a visual artist, thanks to the influence of her two partners.

Susan Carter Morgan leading a writing group at Water Street Studio.

Susan taught English and journalism at the middle school, high school and college levels. Now, she leads writing groups at Water Street Studio and coaches writers who want to improve their skills. “Working around artists inspires me and motivates my writing,” Susan said. You can read Susan’s most recent works (poems) in Emory Literary Magazine and Vine Leaves Literary Journal. Susan also has an essay in The Nearest Poem Anthology, which is a collection of writing by Virginians about their favorite poems.

Lynette L. Reed at Water Street Studio.

The second artist in this trio is Lynette L. Reed.  Lynette has a fine arts degree and is a fine arts painter, writer, teacher and fabric artist.  Her empty nest re-motivated her.  “After the kids grew up — on the spur of the moment — I completed a painting,” she said.  “I knew immediately that I had missed painting.  Art is what I have been doing full-time since then.”

Lynette designed and routinely teaches a very popular scarf making/fabric class for both individuals and groups.  She was recently invited to display work at the BlackRock Center for the Arts in Rockville, Md., in a show entitled “It’s Abstract.”

Elizabeth W. Seaver at Water Street Studio.

Elizabeth W. Seaver rounds out this trio.  She is a teacher, photographer, fine arts painter, printmaker and writer.  “I absolutely love to teach,” she said.  “I want to create a place where we help people develop their own style of art,  unique to them.”  Elizabeth is currently preparing for an August show at Bistro Bethem, 309 William St., in Fredericksburg.   The show reception is 2:30 – 4:30 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 10, 2014.

The trio met at LibertyTown Art Workshop several years ago and felt they could come together and create something special.  One of their primary goals is to provide extensive mutual support to each other as they pursue art on a full-time basis.  Students in the gallery also encounter a friendly and supportive environment.

New ideas are constantly discussed, planned and executed at the studio by the owner-artists and students.  Courses and projects are constantly evolving.  The trio’s encouragement of teach other, encouragement of their students, and their full-time engagement with the visual arts and literary communities in Fredericksburg makes Water Street Studio a hidden treasure.
Read another recent article by Larry Faulkner:  Rocking the Chair Transforms the Old into Chic Home Furnishings

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