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Maria CarterHer canvases explode with wild color and she abandons the standard forms of painting in favor of painting what is in her soul. She is a maverick when it comes to her art. What Maria Carter sees first is color, then form, when it comes to her paintings.

“You have to find your voice. Inspiration comes from what you see – patterns of colors and imagery from what is around you. I have found my voice,” she said. Carter exudes energy when speaking about her work and it’s contagious when other artists are in her presence.

Carter’s art would be classified as abstract impressionism, rich with color and form. She is continually motivated by the natural beauty that surrounds her and it’s evident through her translation onto the canvas.

“I am always amazed at the ever-changing landscape that displays different colors and shapes from one day to the next,” she said. She recalled watching the seasons evolve from shimmering water reflections on the lake in summer to the snow encrusted tree limbs of winter. Those images have influenced much of her work.

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Father Mefodii with an icon of Christ and the apostles.To the uninitiated, the icon is beautiful artwork. The colors are rich and verdant – vivid yet transparent – illuminated. Burnished gilding reflects the light back on itself; night-dark indigo and deep vermilion gently glow.

Yet these depictions of saints and holy figures – these icons – are not painted; they are written.  They are not meant to be admired for their beauty – although they certainly are beautiful, they are meant to be engaged with. They are created for dialogue, conversation, and introspection.  According to the Eastern Orthodox faith, these icons are not just the images of saints, angels and holy figures, but their very presence.

Just outside of the village of Palmyra is the Skete of Saint Maximos the Confessor – an Eastern Orthodox monastery and chapel. Two monks – Father Kyril and Father Mefodii – live at the skete and lead services in the chapel there. The chapel is filled with light; sunshine from without pours in through large windows; inside, candles flicker and the gilded icons gently glow. In the company of saints, congregants sing the liturgy in conversation with the cantor and the priest; myriad tiny bells on the censer chatter as perfume fills the air. Icons line the walls; a screen of icons on tall stands divides the chapel.   Add a comment

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Flucos to inbound.  Fluco girls’ basketball Coach Chad White often repeats the axiom that “everything is built off our defense.” His team plays tight and aggressive man-to-man defense most of the time. That was certainly the case on Friday (Dec. 16) when the Flying Flucos hosted the Hornets from Orange County. The Hornets also played tough defense and the officials called the game extremely closely.

As a result, both teams piled up fouls and free throws. The Hornets went to the line on 13 successive possessions in the second half and took 40 free throws in the game. The Flucos’ leading scorer was senior point guard Chaniya Brown. She had 22 points, with 16 from the line.

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Ms. Peters’ pre-K students enjoy candy canes after meeting with Santa.Fluvanna’s pre-kindergarten classes helped to transform the Fluvanna Community Center on Wednesday (Dec. 14) from an ordinary meeting space to a festive hall filled with holiday cheer for the county’s seventh annual Senior Holiday Celebration in Fork Union.

Lively renditions of Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer and We Wish You a Merry Christmas rang in a joyful afternoon for 60 of Fluvanna’s golden-aged attendees – many of whom dressed in bright holiday colors to honor the occasion.

Frances Hill, 91, mom to 11 children, affectionately recalled that one little performer waved to her and called her “Grandma,” when she came in. “I’m not her actual Grandma,” she said. “But I recognize her as a friend.”

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Bill HughesBill Hughes, former trustee of Nassau County, N.Y., U.S. Marine corporal, chef and Fluvanna activist, died on Friday, Dec. 9, 2016, at the age of 70.

William “Bill” McKenna Hughes was born on Dec. 12, 1945, in Brooklyn, N.Y., to William Alexander and Naomi (Jeter) Hughes. His family members described him as a man who acquired the patience and tenacity to win over even the most hardened hearts. Equipped with his mother’s knack for hospitality, Hughes opened his arms to everyone without distinction of status. He exemplified generosity to others – especially those who typically go underserved. Add a comment

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