Lisa Chalian-Rock (FMU 2002)
Director of Darlington Downtown Revitalization Association
Director of Planning and Economic Development for City of Darlington, South Carolina
Editor, The News and Press, Darlington, SC.
Editor, The Messenger, Hartsville, SC.
Visuals Editor / Graphic Artist, Morning News, Florence, SC. Lisa designed feature pages and created infographics, maps, charts and illustrations for the newsroom.
Lead Designer, Carolina Quarterly Newsletter.
Lisa continues to paint and maintains a Web Gallery of her work at www.lisarock.com.
2005 S.C. Press Association First Prize Winner Daily, Page Design.
2005 S.C. Press Association Second Prize Winner Daily, Page Design.
2005 S.C. Press Association Second Prize Winner Open Division, News Graphics.
2004 S.C. Press Association First Prize Winner Daily, Lifestyle/Living Page Design.
2004 S.C. Press Association Third Prize Winner Daily, General News Graphic.
2003 S.C. Press Association First Prize Winner Daily, General News Graphic.
2002 S.C. Press Association Second Prize Winner Daily, General News Graphic.
Ryan Crabtree (FMU 2004)
Ryan’s degree was in Visual Arts with a specialization in Ceramics.
He interned for six months at One Eared Cow Glass in Columbia, South Carolina.
Ryan is now employed as a full-time artist, working with the most famous blown glass artisans in the state.
Colleen Appleton Critcher (FMU 2002)
MFA, Painting, Savannah College of Art and Design
Painter, Florence, SC
Instructor, Francis Marion University
While at Francis Marion, Colleen received the John W. Baker Fine Arts Scholarship and the Peggy Love McLaughlin Art Award. She graduated summa cum laude in 2002.
Colleen actively exhibits her work throughout South Carolina. Her paintings have become part of private collections nationally and internationally. In 2008 Colleen was invited back to Francis Marion to exhibit her recent works in the Hyman Fine Arts Center Gallery.
In 2012 Colleen completed her MFA and returned to Francis Marion University to teach in the visual arts program. She maintains a website of her work at www.colleencritcher.com.
Matthew Donaldson (FMU 2007)
MFA, Graphic Design, University of Memphis
Freelance designer and interactive designer researching content management systems and responsive design and development.
Assistant Professor of Art, Seton Hill University, Greensburg, Pennsylvania
Freelance Graphic Design for Print and Web.
“I have studied everything from branding to print to web, and I consider myself to be versatile in that I am capable of playing the roles of both designer and developer. It is my goal in life to continue to learn and grow as a designer, while also serving as an educator to others.”
Matthew’s design website is at http://www.matthew-donaldson.com/.
Hayley Douglas (FMU 2011)
Hayley Douglas is primarily a ceramic artist, but she also experiments in other mediums. As of May 2013, she received her Master’s Degree in Ceramics at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, SC. She completed her Bachelors of Arts degree in 2009 at Francis Marion University in Florence, SC. She is now teaching ceramics and Graphic Design full time at North Greenville University.
“I recently transitioned from sculptural ceramics to functional. I create my work to be held, experienced, and appreciated as a practical object. Shifting from sculptural to functional has been quite the change, and I have been searching for ways to connect the two bodies of work together.
“I am continually trying to answer questions that arise within my work through the experimentation of form, texture, and surface design. I approach my functional pieces with combinations involving a variety of my design techniques. I create work that showcases little details. Cool blues and greens, sandy browns, and pressed textures dominate my work. I experiment with the duality and cooperation between two glazes.
“Common themes in my ceramics are the ocean and outer space, as I often connect the two. Both are vast expanses that contain a lot of beautiful things, as well as much that is unknown. That beauty is what I seek to capture in my functional work; pieces that are either used or are at least present in day to day life, serving as a little reminder of that which inspires me. I will continue to push my functional work in these directions, primarily utilizing the surface of my pieces.”
MFA, Ceramics, University of South Carolina
On faculty teaching ceramics and graphic design at North Greenville University.
Previously taught ceramics at Anderson University.
Michael Edge (FMU 1999)
MFA, Illustration, Savannah College of Art & Design
Freelance Illustrator/graphic designer
Instructor at The Art Institute of Charleston
Adjunct Professor of Art, Broward Community College, Pembroke, Florida
Crystal Edwards (FMU 2006)
Director of Business Development, Armstrong Wealth Management Group
Principal, Crystal Edwards Graphic Design & Photography
Graduate School, completing her MBA in Business Administration at Francis Marion University.
“It’s so important to establish relationships with your professors and utilize their advice when building a portfolio and getting your name out there. In the long run, a degree will be more valuable than you realize.”
FMU’s student newspaper, The Patriot, ran a feature story on Crystal dealing with the importance of networking in starting her own business.
Leah Gibbons (FMU 2001)
Outstanding Graduating Senior in Art 2000-2001
Florence, South Carolina
Lincolnton, North Carolina
I handle all the graphic design for Showstopper American Dance Championships, which is a national dance competition that hosts over 100,000 dancers each year. I create everything from commercial ads and program books to video design and large tractor-trailer graphics. I am also the company photographer, which is great because I am able to see an idea all the way from concept through set-up and shooting to finalizing the finished product.
Biggest career accomplishment:
I think that the most exciting thing for me was the first time I was able to see my work in a national publication. We advertise in several large magazines, and my photos have been used many times for articles and other things. It’s great to be working on that scale with such a large audience.
Has worked with:
Many current stars have tested their wings on the Showstopper stage. If you look on our website, in the “Where Are They Now” section, you’ll be able to see some of them. We also work regularly with many rising stars and experienced professional performers who teach conventions for us or judge at the competitions.
Favorite thing about FMU:
The challenging problem-solving projects at school definitely helped prepare me for what I’m faced with in my job. I love the fact that I can be creative in my career and am so grateful for the encouragement and inspiration I got at FMU.
— from Spring 2003 Francis Marion View
Amy Green (FMU 1997)
Dr. John W. Baker Memorial Scholarship for Outstanding Junior in Art 1995-1996va
Outstanding Graduating Senior in Art 1996-1997
Creative Director, Chiat/Day Advertising Agency, New York City, New York
Carolyn S. Jebaily (FMU 1993)
Studio Artist and Teacher of Sculpture and Ceramics
Grass Roots Activist for responsible economic development
One-person Show, Kalmia Arts Artist Showcase, Hartsville SC
One-person Show, Francis Marion University, Florence, SC
“Women’s Work” Show, Cheraw, Marion, Florence and Hartsville, SC
Lea Pressley Lewis (FMU 2005)
MFA (Scenography and Technical Production), Virginia Tech
Gallery Manager at The Art Mecca of Charleston. Located at 427 King Street in downtown Charleston, South Carolina, The Art Mecca represents over forty established and emerging artists.
Lea continues to be an active artist in her own right, and her passion is still painting.
Following graduation from FMU, Lea moved to Charleston and worked in interior design. She then embraced the opportunity to work for jewelry designer Felice Killian. Not only did Lea design and make jewelry, she learned how to operate a business in Charleston’s Upper King Street design district. Lea managed the store, designed the website, photographed the works, designed the store catalog, created ads for publications, etc.
Stephen Motte (FMU 2001)
Curator and Interpreter of Collections, Florence County Museum
Museum director Andy Stout says, “(Stephen) and I studied at FMU at the same time, and I admired him as an artist. From viewing his art, I knew that he was detail-oriented and thorough, which are skills he uses in his current position.”
“Children and younger people are especially receptive,” says Motte. “They readily accept the value of what they see, whether it’s prehistoric fossils or painting exhibits. Regardless of the building and location, we always strive for visitors to walk away with an amazing experience. Even if you’ve seen an exhibit before, you can experience it in a new and better way if you visit again.”
Tyler Pate (FMU 2014)
While completing his visual arts degree at Francis Marion, Tyler honed his visual communication skills as layout editor for The Patriot Newspaper and as design intern for established firms in Charleston. In 2017 he returned to FMU to give a presentation for students on the progress he has made creatively and professionally since graduation.
Ellen Victoria “Tori” Payne (FMU 2017)
Curatorial Assistant for the Florence County Museum
Tori’s degree was in Visual Arts with a specialization in Graphic Design. She received the 2016-1017 Peggy Love McLaughlin Award for Outstanding Graduating Senior in Art.
Upon graduation, Tori joined forces with several other FMU expatriots at the recently constructed Florence Museum across the street from the FMU Performing Arts Center.
Russell Petty (FMU 1995)
Muralist, R. Petty Custom Murals.
Since 1999, Russ has been painting educational murals in schools as well as decorative murals for homes, nurseries, restaurants, and other businesses. He also works in auto restoration.
He is on the South Carolina Arts Commission’s Roster of Approved Artists to serve in arts educations programs in South Carolina.
Jaron Sanders (FMU 2007)
Upon graduation, Jaron Sanders became a full time Graphic Designer. After realizing that education was his true passion, he took his B.A. degree in Visual Arts and, through the South Carolina PACE program, acquired the required certification to became an art teacher.
This must have been the right decision: Mr. Sanders began teaching art at Hartsville High School in 2016, and his fellow Darlington county teachers selected him to be 2018-2019 Teacher of the Year for Hartsville High.
Jaron continues to freelance in graphic design. His motto is, “Good clientele refers good clientele — if someone has a vision, time and trust, we’ll do great things together.”
Jim Stephens (FMU 2004)
After working as graphic designer with Campus Outreach Raleigh in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Jim became Graphic and Communication Designer for the Florence County Museum.
Jim joined a number of fellow FMU alumni to staff the museum, which has recently reopened in a purpose-built building across the street from the FMU Performing Arts Center. “Over the last few years, we’ve designed a new museum for Florence County,” says Stephens. “We’re not just moving objects – we’re creating a new experience for visitors….”
Patricia Tallon-Blanchard (FMC 1980)
Office of Cultural Enrichment, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee
Freelance Fine Artist and Consultant, Nashville, Tennessee
Assistant to Director, The Craft and Folk Art Museum, Los Angeles, California
CAFAM Staff Liaison to the Contemporary Craft Council, Los Angeles, CA.
Founder, Still Life With Women studio, Nashville, Tennessee
Melody Thomas (FMU 2010)
Web Designer and Digital Marketing Strategist in Columbia area of SC.
Digital Organizer for DigiDems
While at FMU, Melody worked at the university library and interned as a graphic designer at Hope Health. Upon graduation, she was employed as a full time graphic designer for the News and Press of Darlington, S.C. She soon went on to become a web developer at Denmark Technical College, than webmaster at USC-Columbia.
“I have over eight years of professional experience combined with working as a web designer and digital marketing strategist. I have worked with small business owners, political and healthcare organizations, and higher education institutions. I am also a world traveler and international speaker. My work has been featured in publications such as FastCompany and The New York Times.”
Tiffany Thomas (FMU 2012)
Owner, Tthomasarts – Handmade Ceramics, Art & Jewelry By Tiffany Thomas
Best in Show, Amateur Division, 2013 – The State Fair, Columbia, S.C.
Tiffany Thomas is a native of Florence, South Carolina. She was raised on a farm and experienced the ups and downs of living a farm life. She incorporates her childhood into her paintings by using bright colors, which are associated with playfulness and collage paintings with reclaimed wood that her family discarded from old houses, buildings and dumpsters. Her clay of choice is translucent porcelain, fired with colorful stains and glazes. Her ceramic work focuses on an array of designs; from cups and mugs to light fixtures and table pieces. All of her pieces are hand carved.
Tiffany has exhibited in numerous shows such as the South Carolina Arts Commission Gala, The North Carolina Museum of Art Art of the Auction, Spartanburg Juried Competition, The Heritage Festival and The Pee Dee Regional art Competition.
She’s active in the Florence community. In 2013, she was asked to judge the children’s division of Art Fields. She also sells her ceramics at festivals, Art fairs and local boutiques.
She has been featured in She Magazine (p.50).
Tiffany graduated from Francis Marion University in 2012 with a degree in Visual Arts with concentrations in ceramics and painting.
Cynthia Warden (FMC 1980)
MFA, East Texas State University
Area Recruiter for Armstrong State University, Georgia.
Assistant Director of Student Affairs, then Director of Residence Life, Atlanta College of Art, Atlanta, Georgia