Mary Ann Byrne-Walker

Mary Ann Byrne-Walker display-1

Cornerstone’s Artist of the Month for April 2017

Below is a recent Q&A with Mary Ann Byrne-Walker.

Tell us briefly about your background & how you got started in your medium.
I am an instructor at Penn State in a medical field. My art has always been for fun but I have done art commissions all my life.

How does your medium inform your viewpoint? Or what do you like most about your medium?
I have worked in all media. My most recent one in last 7 years is oils. We travel frequently and I will occasionally paint plein aire. When I can’t paint plein aire then I am taking tons of reference photos. It was suggested that I try water soluble oils for one of those trips. I haven’t gone back to traditional oils because I love the ease of use and the lack of chemicals in clean up.

Who or what have been your artistic inspirations?
My artistic inspiration is the beauty in National Parks

What would be your advice to artists just starting out in your medium?
If someone wanted to try oils but wasn’t fond of the smells and slow drying time, I would suggest trying water soluble oils.


Christopher Inch

Cornerstone’s Artist of the Month for March 2017

Below is a recent Q&A with Christopher Inch.

How does your medium inform your viewpoint? Or what do you like most about your medium?
I spent much of my younger life outside in the forested areas of Pennsylvania, Often hunting or fishing in the beautiful mountains or streams of northern PA. As I grew into an adult I was less excited to kill or catch the animals but I still loved the hunt. So I began using the a camera to capture the animal without bringing harm or death.

Who or what have been your artistic inspirations?
I have always enjoyed the shows Wild America and Wild Kingdom. Now we have such beautiful imagery from series like Planet Earth. How can someone not be captivated by the beauty and freedom of nature????

Do you have a favorite piece in your portfolio?
I love the close up of the saw-whet owl. It was taken in well below freezing temperatures on an island in Lake Ontario.

What would be your advice to artists just starting out in your medium?
Love what your looking at when you don’t have a camera in your hand.


A Variety of Great Music Coming to Cornertstone

2017 MMC at CStone

The 21st Annual Millennium Music Conference & Showcase (MMC) takes place this weekend (February 24-25, 2017) with Cornerstone Coffeehouse hosting two nights of music from talented artists. Over these two nights there will be eight distinct performances by seven artists drawn from talent across the country.

Founded in 1997, the MMC has become the Harrisburg area’s biggest overall music festival held each February. It features music business panels, clinics, and workshops during the day, with the 2017 headquarters at the Best Western Premier Central Hotel & Conference Center on East Park Drive in Harrisburg. During the nights of the festival, some 300 original acts will perform at 30 live music venues and Cornerstone Coffeehouse is proud to be one of those long-running venues involved with the MMC each year.

Here is this year’s lineup at Cornerstone Coffeehouse:

Cyndi Washburn

Nashville, TN
Performing 7:00pm Friday, February 24th

Cyndi WashburnOriginally from Pennsylvania but now based in Nashville, Cyndi is a folk-singer songwriter who studied voice in college and has performed in everything from cover bands to operas before following her heart and soul and focusing solely on folk. Here, she draws influence from classic artists like Peter, Paul, and Mary and John Denver and has been compared to Joni Mitchell and called a “modern day Joan Baez.”

Cyndi Washburn online

Cyndi Washburn on Twitter  Cyndi Washburn on Reverbnation Cyndi Washburn on Facebook
Cyndi Washburn website


New York, NY
Performing 7:45pm Friday, February 24th

GenerationsGenerations is the father and son duo of Mike and Aleksi Glick, both of whom compose and provide guitars and vocals. They label their music progressive urban folk and draw influences from American folk traditions, urban blues, jazz, Afro-Cuban music and more to form an interesting and diverse musical experience.

Genertions online

Generations on Reverbnation Generations on Facebook
Generations website

Jeff Ruby

Nashville ,TN
Performing 8:30pm Friday, February 24th

Jeff RubyJeff Ruby grew up on a farm in rural Indiana where he was introduced by his oldest brother to American and British rock music from the 1960’s. Since he was 6 years old, Jeff has been acting and singing in musicals and choirs, later taking up the guitar in high school. In 2016, he released his fourth album, Battlefield.

Jeff Ruby online

Jeff Ruby on Twitter  Jeff Ruby on Reverbnation Jeff Ruby on Facebook
Jeff Ruby website
Buy Battlefield

Sinclair Soul

Middletown, PA
Performing 9:15pm Friday, February 24th (on guitar)
& 7:00pm Saturday, February 25th (on keyboards)

Ric Albano, Sinclair SoulSinclair Soul is an original music project by composer and performer Ric Albano, who is also the MC and sound provider for the MMC music . A semi-regular performer at Cornerstone, Sinclair Soul will perform two distinct sets, an acoustic guitar set to close out Fridy night’s performances, and a piano/keyboard set to get things started on Saturday.

Sinclair Soul online

Sinclair Soul on Twitter  Sinclair Soul on Reverbnation Sinclair Soul on Facebook
Sinclair Soul website

Kayla C.

Monroe, NY
Performing 7:45pm Saturday, February 25th

Kayla CKayla Katelyn Cariaga, known as Kayla C, fell in love with music at a very young age, has been deeply involved in every aspect of musically affiliated opportunities and plays several instruments including the guitar, piano, xylophone, and drums. Kayla’s process of creating music is driven by her surroundings and feelings; she draws inspiration from her art. She enjoys using forms of art as an outlet to turn any sorrow to joy.

Kayla Cariaga online

Kayla C on Twitter  Kayla C on Reverbnation Kayla C on Facebook
Kayla Cariaga website

Kayla Avitabile

Phillipsburg, NJ
Performing 8:30pm Saturday, February 25th

Kayla AvitableKayla Avitabile started playing guitar at age 8, started singing at 11 and she started performing at age 12. In the five years since, Kayla has played dozens of music festivals and conferences. Kayla’s music sensibility and instinct drives the way she writes original songs and transforms alternative/rock covers into inspired reinterpretations which have earned praise from artists and audiences alike.

Kayla Avitabile online

Kayla C on Facebook

Spencer and Sequoia

Stamford, CT
Performing 9:15pm Saturday, February 25th

Spencer and SequoiaSpencer and Sequoia started by sending music to each other from across the world before finally meeting, gelling and marrying and forging a “beautiful band”. Spencer is a vocalist, guitarist, and trumpet player originally from Seattle while Sequoia is a diverse songwriter originally from Auckland, New Zealand.

Spencer and Sequoia online

Spencer and Sequoia on Reverbnation Spencer and Sequoia on Facebook

Millennium Music Conference online

Millennium Music Conference on Twitter  Millennium Music Conference on Reverbnation Millennium Music Conference on Facebook
Millennium Music Conference website

Jennifer Ettinger

Jennifer Ettinger display

Cornerstone’s Artist of the Month for January 2017

Below is a recent Q&A with Jennifer Ettinger.

Tell us briefly about your background & how you got started in your medium.
My father and my grandfather were both high school art teachers. Growing up I was always interested in making things and looking at how things were made. I should have known based on my family history that I would end up being an art teacher as well, but it took me a few years of college until I realized my passion for art would lead me into teaching.

How does your medium inform your viewpoint? Or what do you like most about your medium?
I have always loved looking at old photographs and letters. My grandparents were great story tellers and I never minded hearing the same memories shared over and over again. For me, creating a collage is like collecting bits of the stories, memories and pictures together in one place. Collage can combine the old with the new and also leave room for the future with new meanings and interpretations.

Who or what have been your artistic inspirations?
My inspiration definitely comes from people and memories. My family and childhood always play a big role in my own story telling. I teach elementary art at Hershey Elementary School and I am continually inspired by my young students. Their curiosity, freedom and excitement are contagious.

Do you have a favorite piece in your portfolio?
My favorite pieces are the ones that are the most personal to me or tell deeper parts of my story. Others may not know the difference when they look at a piece but they are the ones that speak the loudest to me.

What would be your advice to artists just starting out in your medium?
Have fun! Don’t quit. Don’t try to make things look right or make sense. Try something new, make mistakes! Layer! It’s in the layering and piecing together that my artwork unfolds before me. There is never a set plan, it just unravels and reveals itself as I spend time working and enjoy creating.


Joe O’Donnell

joe odonnell display

Cornerstone’s Artist of the Month for December 2016

Joe’s passion for art began when he was a young boy living in Iowa. His mother was creative and poetic and she inspired him to draw and paint. Living in the heart of the Midwest influenced his landscapes and he was also inspired by the works of masters La Tour, Pissarro, Millet, Renoir, and Van Gogh. Joe enjoys working with acrylics and deep impastos and says utilizing sharp scrafitto incisions adds dimension to his work.

He has also been a commercial pilot for more than 30 years and says that flying has influenced his artwork from another perspective. His artwork has been juried in several shows and has been awarded a judges citation award at Founder’s Hall in Hershey, Pennsylvania.

Below is a recent Q&A with Joe o’Donnell.

Tell us briefly about your background & how you got started in your medium.
My mother encouraged me at a young age to draw … and each day when Jon Gnagy (America’s original television art instructor) came on, she’d call up to me in the morning when he came on TV and I’d come down and draw along with him. I have used oils, but over the course of years I’ve been painting, acrylics seem to be easier to work with, and drying time is significantly shorter.

How does your medium inform your viewpoint? Or what do you like most about your medium?
I’m not sure what you mean by “inform”…but I like using acrylics for its color retention and predictability.

Who or what have been your artistic inspirations?
I have been inspired by nature, growing up in the Midwest …and by the masters Vermeer, VanGogh, Rembrandt, Monet, and Camille Pissarro.

Do you have a favorite piece in your portfolio?
Yes I do …I’ve always wanted to paint “Girl With a Pearl Earring” (1665) by Johannes Vermeer — and this year I did. Very happy with it!

What would be your advice to artists just starting out in your medium?
What you think is an awful mistake could just be a happy accident. Don’t fret, and never give up. Go to museums every chance you get … absorb as much as you can about what you like to paint (or want to paint) – books, videos, etc.
Read: Drawing on The Right Side of The Brain by Betty Edwards