Blog Archive

Sunday, April 22, 2018



Terri Brooks' winter paintings
 Following the "Journaling" Event in mid-February, (see previous post) we had an official opening of our "Good-bye Winter, Hello Spring" exhibit February 23, featuring the Winter we were living in and the Spring we were ready for.

Winter to Spring: lots to talk about
Of course we had a snow storm that day, but neighbors and friends who lived close came any way...the advantage of living in a small town.

Friends to talk with.. 

And much to see
March 9th event: Peg Scully at work
The set-up...

Intent audience listening to Joel Rhymer's presentation
Next event, March 9, was Freedom Artist Peg Scully demonstrating portrait painting with live model, Diane Claveau. Peg's painted portraits of many Freedom residents, but during her live demo, "Here's looking at you," we were able to watch as she explained the steps of going from white paper to an almost complete portrait in less than two hours. Watching the portrait evolve was magical. 

Photographer,Joel Rhymer, March 24

Then, March 24th Joel Rhymer did a power point presentation, "Seeing with a Photographer's Eye," explaining five important points for consideration to add interest and drama to our own photos.
The power point presentation, which made use of both Joel's own work and the work of famous photographers,  was followed by discussion and a critiquing session of photos the event participants had brought with them.

Joe Viger gives pointers before the photo walk

Finally, with the weather "on the upswing," Joe Viger led a photo walk April 13, "What Do You Look For? What Did you See With Your Camera?" Beginning inside Joe gave us some pointers on "What do you look for, explaining that we can learn from each other as well as from him. Let loose on the photogenic street in front of the gallery, we clicked away and then returned to the gallery to share what we actually saw with our cameras.

Photowalk walkers getting Joe Viger's opinion...
Photo walkers checking angles

SUMMARIZING:With the first series of Friday events almost completed (five of the initial eight scheduled),it is fair to say, The Great White Barn, indeed, FREEDOM GALLERY for ART & SPIRIT, has had a successful beginning. 

 YOGA continues, open to all levels, M & TH at 3:45 and 6, Wed at 10:30. Check out Yoga in Freedom for schedule and occasional schedule changes. 

NEXT EVENT:  "Your Turn: Poetry Night" 6-8, Friday  April 27.  April is National Poetry Month, so it's fitting to have a poetry session. Do you write poetry? Do you have a favorite poem? Come and share, or come to hear what others have to read. As before, Call Barbara (610)762-2493, or email her and she'll reserve a seat, or, if you're reading your own work, let her know and she'll put you on the program! 

Thank-you all for your participation, comments and compliments.  Suggestions and volunteers for future programs are always welcome.

Saturday, February 10, 2018



Busy writing, afternoon mini-workshop.
Friday, February 9, Freedom Gallery for Art and Spirit LLC hosted its first in an ongoing series of events on the second and fourth Fridays of the month. This mini-workshop, presented by gallery owner, Barbara McEvoy, began by briefly introducing a more traditional style of journal entry, described in  "Joy Practices" in Book of Joy, by Dali Lama and Desmond Tutu. 

And then the fun! Warm up writing exercises helped participants get into the mode of fluid, right-brain writing (NOT English-teacher correct composing) followed by discussion of and/or actual practice with topics and techniques "OF A MORE EXPLORATORY AND PLAYFUL NATURE."

Evening group thinking.
Listing techniques included lists of goals, aims, bucket and to-do lists, and "crazy things I'd love to do, if money, age and/or time were not a factor." 

Other techniques included "letter writing," "consulting with," and "appreciation of" topics. Since we were discussing writing about and consulting with all manner of people, (real, imagined, historic, deceased, or living) and objects (animal, mineral, spirit!), we also discussed where our information for these journal meanderings might actually come from. 

Just exactly what explains creativity??  A topic we will return to in its many forms...

Discussion is part of the fun!
Be sure to keep in touch and join us at Freedom Gallery for Art and Spirit LLC on second and fourth Friday events continue to take place.

Presenter Barbara McEvoy  in center. 

E-mail comments and suggestions welcome here

Future Events include
February 23, a new exhibit "Good-bye Winter; Hello Spring" two separate times
      Noon to 2:30pmand 6-8 pm. 

March 9, 6-8  "Here's Looking at You," Gallery Artist Peg Scully will be demonstrating portrait painting with a model on hand. Bring pencil and sketch pad, or just come to watch and chat!

March 23, 6-8 "Seeing with a Photographer's Eye," Gallery Photographer Joel Rhymer will have a power point presentation and discussion about why some photographs are more appealing than others. Bring one or two of your own photos to share and critique. 

April 13,  6-8 "Photo Walk with a Professional," Gallery Photographer Joe Viger will do a photo walk starting at the gallery, and discuss photo tips on the way and back at the gallery. Bring photo phone or camera.

April 27, 6-8 "Your Turn," Bring a poem to read, your own or a favorite, or just come to listen and enjoy other perspectives.

May 11, 6-8 "Light, Shadows and Reflections in Our Lives"  Gallery Artist Terri Brooks will talk about her fascination with reflections and light and demonstrate how she does this in watercolor. The artist will work from photos and explain what she does. You are welcome to bring your own paints, (come early to set up) but bring your own photos. 

Monday, February 5, 2018



Before I even moved into the property at 8 Elm Street, I intended to set up "My Great White Barn" as a gallery, but it's history, after barn and carriage house, had included a seasonal gallery, traditional site of the Freedom Old Home Week lawn party, and three years of housing "Freedom Rings in the Holidays" crafts fair which was forced by NH winter weather, to move to warmer quarters in Town Hall.

Peg Scully's Wall
As an artist myself, I knew my great white barn was destined to be a gallery, and my studio, but what else? What are galleries for? First thought is for selling art, yes, of course...but if it were only for  people looking to buy art, it would be a lonely empty place.

A gallery is also for looking and learning! Art broadens our perspectives, soothes us, stimulates us, increases our awareness of the worlds around us.  A business name for my gallery kept parading through my mind. Freedom Gallery for ART & SPIRIT?

Spirit? Where did that fit into Art Galleries?
Terri Brooks' Wall
As the Freedom yoga teacher, a seemingly unconnected thought was, "A warm gallery closer to home than Town Hall? Of course, try it...and so I moved my yoga classes to the Gallery once it was heated. It's been a success. Class participants have commented that the paintings and photographs definitely add to the ambiance. They love Yoga in the Gallery! Of course they do. Art adds! That's why we visit museums...not to buy, but to see, to experience! 
Part of Joe Viger's Wall
These thumb nails show the gallery in miniature. They all look better up close and you don't have to join yoga to see what the yoga class sees*. Visit the gallery, in person, 10-3 Sat, 11:30-3 Sunday, or call 610-762-2493 to make an appointment!  We love to share our art, and we welcome visitors, by appointments or as drop-ins.
(*FYI Yoga is open for all levels, M&Th 3:45 & 6, Tues 10:30)
Sarah Tabor's Wall

Barbara McEvoy's Wall

Nancy Griffin's Wall
Joel Rhymer's Wall

THE NEXT STEPS? Don't miss out!

What more can we do with this wonderful space, besides thanking the artists for sharing their work. The answer is, Gallery Talks, but, since art and spirit are visual and active, as well as discussable, we have set up a series of experiential programs where you can come to look, listen, learn and, yes,  "Do something!" "Participate."

STARTING THIS WEEK We've planned free gallery events for the second and fourth Fridays. Join us for one or more. 

Friday February 7, two separate times, 1-2:30 and 6-8:30
     "Journaling: More than you ever imagined " Bring a notebook 8 1/2 by 11, and pens.
      Call Barbara with questions and to let her know you are coming to assure seating.

Friday February 23, two separate times, 1-2:30 and 6-8,  "Good-bye Winter, Hello Spring"  Exhibit opening with artists telling stories behind some of their works.

Friday March 9, 6-8  "Here's Looking at You"   Interactive Demonstration
Gallery Artist Peg Scully will be painting a portrait with a model on hand, and discuss what she is looking at, seeing, and doing as she paints. Artists can bring pencil and sketch pad if they want to try their hand at pencil portraits. 

Friday March 23, 6-8 PM  "Seeing With a Photographer's Eye" 
Gallery Photographer Joel Rhymer will present a power point explaining what makes some photos more appealing than others. Bring one or two photo's of your own to share, talk about, and/or critique.

Friday April 13, 6-8 "Walking the town with a Camera"  

Gallery Photographer Joe Viger will guide you on a short walk, giving photo tips, and return to the gallery for interactive discussion where we can share. Bring your camera phones!

Friday April 27 6-8  "Your Turn"
     Bring a favorite poem to read, one of your own, or just come to listen to other perspectives. 

As community events, you are welcome to BYOB and/or a snack. Seating is somewhat limited, so BYOC (floor pillow, camp chair) or call Barbara to let her know you'll need a chair and it will be provided. (Call 610-762-2493)

Tuesday, January 30, 2018


Plenty of room for paintings, plenty of room for visitors, plenty of food...

It happened! It really happened! 
October 21 was the grand opening of Freedom Gallery for Art & Spirit, LLC!
(Yes, that WAS a while ago, but when a baby is born, we are often busier than we realize, and Freedom Gallery has been, still is, my baby! )
But, late being said, it still needs to be said...What a wonderful village Freedom is. 
A general announcement and invitation went out and the town showed up bringing the party with them! The giving spirit here in the Village is remarkable, everyone ready to celebrate. Thank you, thank you...

and drink...
and conversation...

Plenty to look at and admire,
from local  award winning artists. 

The many compliments on the rehabbing were both noted and appreciated. Thank you again! ..Intent was to keep as many "barn aspects" as possible, but to have plenty of "hanging space" in a warm and welcoming atmosphere. Notice the "new" ceiling" accents the very old beams, (probably pre 1865) as well as some of the side supports. 

The slider (at rear of photo to right) is an efficient gallery entrance, heat wise, that also allows the original barn door to show through, when we need heat. (Thank you Ed Boyer, for that design idea) while providing excellent gallery space on the ledge above. Old floors were sanded and urethaned, old unsafe stairs replaced, etc. 

Old Glass was maintained in the original windows, but a second layer of inset glass both protects the windows and provides insulation. As an unheated barn originally, it was necessary to essentially build a shell within the shell. In fact, the details of what went in to this "final" show place are too numerous to mention, which probably explains why visitors coming in expect a barn and almost always express surprise. Come and see for yourself!

Friends, Ray Desmarais, the coordinating contractor of this undertaking,
and his artist wife, Joyce are enjoying the exhibit. 
It is indeed a "Fine Arts Gallery" as several guests have commented,  and many thanks go to Ray Desmarais contractor, his son Steve, and his group of workers for a job exceedingly well done.

If you missed the opening and have been meaning to stop by, do so please.
Gallery hours are Saturday 10 to 3 and Sunday 11:30 to 3:30, 
BUT if you are in town or passing through, the gallery phone number is on the sign out front. 
Don't hesitate to call the number. Or make an appointment. Whether I'm in my home or my studio, I'll be glad to show off the gallery and its' artists' works. 

Remember, a Gallery isn't for selling, (though no-one complains if you buy), it's for enjoying someone else's perspective and broadening your own as well.

We're located at 8 Elm Street, Freedom, NH...Next to the church and opposite the Village Store!

Stay tuned, follow the blog. Next installment will tell about the fine art artists and feature their works. 

Check out my artist blog, Barbara McEvoy,, and my website Barbara Mcevoy, Artist of White Mountain Scenes

Friday, September 8, 2017


The Great White Room in My Great White Barn!

Across from the Village Store, My Great White Barn has attracted some attention. No wonder! Cars and trucks coming and going, lumber deliveries, an insulation truck almost as long as my driveway, and endless buzzing and banging...
The news is, the project is nearing completion! Almost faster than I can keep up with the blogs.  Saturday past the insulation truck and a single person worked all day, finishing that portion of the project, so the walls could be finished. This week has been finish the dry wall upstairs and install the doors week! 

Stairwell to the second floor

The completed dry walls, stair well and 2nd floor, have left me thinking of all the possibilities for "the great white room" in My Great White Barn. Funny how much larger the room looks with dry wall...
the first activity will take place in that room next Thurs...6 o'clock yoga has been bumped from town hall because of two meetings starting at 7...Eurika...instead of changing the time, we can change the place.

Slider as seen from interior
Slider from the exterior...
Meanwhile, the slider arrived and has been put in place. Thanking Ed Boyer for the inspiration of an interior slider to save heat AND to save the aesthetics of the real barn doors. It's looking great. 
Front door

Four other insulated doors are also on the agenda, necessary to maintain gallery and the great white room as two separate heating zones. Front door, door to stairwell storage, gallery door to entry way and second floor door from Great White Room to second floor storage area. 
Gallery to entry way

Door to the stairwell storage

Missing still? The official lighting. Wiring is done and fixtures selected, but the electrician is evidently busy somewhere else. It happens.
The downstairs floor will be sanded and urethaned, waiting for the electrician to finish, and the upstairs floor is a question still. 

Assuming all goes as planned, (does it ever?) I'll be posting a photo of the first yoga class in the Great White Room, and soon thereafter I should be able to start hanging for the preview exhibition...scheduled for Oct 14! 

If you see the doors open, you're welcome to poke your head in and see it for real, or wait for the first exhibit when the gallery is all dressed up and ready to go!

Saturday, September 2, 2017

FREEDOM GALLERY: Upstairs, Downstairs


A phrased often used to describe the development of a New England home site is,"Big house, little house, back house, barn...You can't travel far in New England without seeing the big house, little house, back house, barn...with the barn often connected to the big house.   

As the rehabbing progresses, I find myself thinking, upstairs, downstairs, walls and doors.

Upstairs (actually 2/3's of the upstairs) is being dry walled, both walls and ceiling, with the second floor and stairwell insulated and heated separately from the downstairs. Drywalls, taping and sizing are in process. Insulation has been blown in, or fiberglassed, varying with the situation.
Retrofitting barns with insulation wasn't something anyone thought about 30 or 50 years ago.

Downstairs will have a different look. Ceiling beams are maintained and a second "shell" of barn wood creates the inside wall, hiding the insulation. 

Because effectively insulating barn doors and old windows with old glass is difficult if not impossible, several strategies are being used. Window frames are insulated and thermal "interior" storm windows will be installed. The glass next to the open barn door, pictured above, is ready and waiting. 

Of the four sets of barn doors visible from the exterior, the two middle sets will be hidden inside behind insulation and walls...a gallery needs hanging space.

The far end will be left as is, operating as garage doors, and the near end will be left working and visible from the interior, but a thermal 8 foot slider will be inset with  a narrow shelf above it reaching to the ceiling. The structure for the slider is also visible above.

Details waiting!

The garage portion still holds some of the details...rennai waiting to be installed and several doors, furniture displaced, waiting to return.

And so, the Great White Barn is shifting with the times, entering the fifth phase of her life since 1865. Neither connected nor close to my house, by New England standards, she started smaller, was doubled in size towards the back, with her loft out the back and her barn door in the front,  either connected to or very close to the Merritt House which was moved out of town and has since burned down.

At some time after the property switched hands, The Great White Barn became a carriage house with four sets of doors on the side, as pictured to the left.

With Mary Hockmeyer, the barn took on the new role of gallery and meeting place with some fun parties as well, accompanied by an old player piano. And, also started with Mary, the Old Home Week Annual Lawn Party.
Barn, bigger barn, carriage house, gallery and meeting place, and fifth phase, winterized gallery, meeting place for continued fun activities Times change...

No official opening date yet, but aiming for mid-October with an exhibit of regional art...White Mountain Landscapes, Townscapes, Lakescapes! And of course Freedom Rings in the Holidays.  Classes, yoga, and creative workshops in the new year.

Friday, August 18, 2017



Old Home Week over, it's time to go full speed ahead, and so it has begun again.
Turning an old barn (1865) into a full fledged gallery has more steps then the new ones going from first to second floor. Turning one section into a full fledged studio was minimal to that is left, but  I learned the steps...electric wiring, insulation, walls and ceiling to cover the wiring and insulation, floor rehab, heat, lighting...but one learns quickly that a barn is extensive! 
Stacked and ready to go...

Old Home Week with its lawn party and exhibit were coming attractions of the gallery and event space that will emerge from this effort, but far from the finished product. 

Tuesday after old home week brought a delivery truck that seemed as long as the driveway, and a stack of lumber for the next stages. Electricians arrived to string yards and yards of wire. A gallery needs track lights, ambiance lights, storage and workshop lights on the second floor (and more track lighting incase we expand?) and foam board insulation appeared, only of the several types of insulation that will eventually be part of this whole project.
Insulation between first and second floor.

Sorting things out, preparing for insulation.
 With wiring in place, insulation goes in, section by section, and then the coverings.

Of course the old wall had thirty years of seasoning, and the ceiling/second story floor had over 150 years of seasoning and wear, so the new boards to go above the studio door, and on the ceiling, had to get some "artificial seasoning." 

Today, a rainy day, was exactly the right time to have a painting party! 
Not landscapes or portraits or still life's as one might expect of a gallery intended for fine arts, but boards for ceiling and walls!
Rainy days are good days to prepare ahead. Notice the ceiling about half finished...but those 1865 beams and posts are showing!
Wires hanging down waiting for the track lighting...but progress is obvious...and

Next week is another week! 
Coming attractions?  Actual lights? The slider, cleverly disguised from the outside as the traditional barn doors, but maintaining the look inside as well and opening a full 8 idea from friend and Freedom neighbor, Ed Boyer...(Thanks Ed, I'll need help on the second floor as well regarding the work bench area too) Floor to be sanded and polished? 
storage area? wall and floor insulation?   Keep watch here. It's all coming in installments.

And Me?  I'm painting paintings instead of boards, and imaging the next painting in the "hut" series, dreaming of the series after that and stashing notes and ideas for the classes I'm taking and the classes I'll be teaching... 

Keep checking back for progress and announcements!


 WERE YOU THERE? PAST & FUTURE GALLERY EVENTS Terri Brooks' winter paintings  Following the "Journaling" Event in m...