Up & Coming Weekly

October 26, 2021

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 16 of 24

WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM 16 UCW OCTOBER 27-NOVEMBER 2, 2021 ey say a picture is worth a thou- sand words. Personal fulfillment is the essence of capturing compelling moments in life that tell a story, that have a profound impact and create indelible memories that last a lifetime. As with all matters of the heart, Dara Colón's passion is priceless when it comes to her love of photography. "I own a photography business and I also offer videography and graphic design services," said Colón, owner, Serendipity Creative Media, LLC. "e biggest thing that I want to say about my photos is that no matter how you look, whether you are tall, short, young, old, different nation- alities, ultimately everyone, in their own way, is beautiful and deserving of having a moment where they feel confident in who they are." She is a native of Bronx, New York, and moved to Fayetteville, during her senior year of high school. She is a graduate of E. E. Smith High School and Fayetteville State University, where she obtained a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Master of Business Administration. In 2014, Colón was practicing photography as a hobby and in 2018, she decided to make it legal, form an LLC, and turn it into a professional side hustle. She left her full-time posi- tion at FSU as a marketing and social media coordinator for Student Affairs in March of 2020 to make her photo hobby a full-time business. "It was a great way to make some extra money on the side in addition to my job at the time," Colón said. "It has been going great so far and I love what I do, I love to make people smile, I love to make people feel good about themselves. And being behind the camera gives me an opportunity to do that. " Every photographer has a favorite camera and Colón's favorite is the Canon 5D Mark IV. "My favorite part of my camera is the lens that I use, which is a Sigma 135 mm lens," said Colón. "It gives me a really amazing shallow depth of field, which is when the subject really stands out and the background is blurry so that the focus is on the individual." Her skill set as a photographer did not come from the classroom. "It comes from trial and error, YouTube University and following other local or out of state photogra- phers on social media," Colón said. "I have to give credit to two amazing local photographers, Larry Shaw and Ezekiel Best, for their mentoring and support." e sky is the limit for this rising photographer and her ultimate goals for Serendipity are promising. "I want to have a sustainable in- come where I am comfortable, but I am also growing the business," Colón explained. "Secondly, I want to pay it forward and pour into other up and coming photographers." e studio runs by appointment only. For questions or information about picture packages a visit www. serendipitycm.com or follow her on Instagram @serendipitycm_ and on Facebook at Serendipity Creative Media LLC. DR. SHANESSA FENNER, Principal, WT Brown Elementary School. COMMENTS? Editor@ upandcomingweekly.com. 910- 484-6200. Rising local photographer sets goals by DR. SHANESSA FENNER FEATURE e Joy of Giving: that's Holly Day Fair's theme this year. e fair is the largest holiday gift and craft show in Eastern North Carolina. With over 150 vendors, there will be an extensive selection of unique handcrafted and manu- factured products for the 22,000 visitors expected to attend. e shoppers will shop a selection that boasts the best in holiday decorations, handmade crafts, stylish jewelry and clothes, children's toys, specialty food items and much more. Proceeds from the Holly Day Fair benefit the Junior League of Fayetteville and its programs targeting homelessness and food insecurities. ese funds have a substantial and lasting impact on the community. Katie Crawford, a local artist, has participated in the Holly Day Fair for a little over a half-decade. "It's always one of my better shows for the year. I have done it enough years in a row now that I have people that come to see me every year," Crawford said. "It's great to have a well-known and established show to keep the tradition going." Crawford sells several pieces of her artwork at the fair, including her watercolor paintings, felted sculptures, notecards, and giclee prints. She will also be selling her book, "What the Map Left Out" for the first time this year. "It's a fun show," Crawford ex- plained. "You have a mix of local and out-of-state dealers and food vendors. It's not a traditional "art show" either, so there are a lot of different products for people who are not necessarily into art." Holly Day Fair kicks off on Nov. 4 with Super Shopper hours from 9 a.m. to noon. e Holly Day Fair will also be offering its Sip & Shop event for the third year. Sip & Shop will be held during super- shopper hours but provides an exclusive shopping experience. Sip & Shop guests will be treated to a continental break- fast with mimosas and receive a special commemorative gift. e Sip & Shop tickets are $30 and are limited. Strollers and any rolling carts are strictly prohibited during Super Shopper hours. Regular hours of the event are Nov. 4, noon – 8 p.m., Nov. 5, 9 a.m. – 8 p.m., Nov. 6, 9 a.m. – 8 p.m. and Nov. 7, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased online at CapeFearTix.com, and in per- son at the Crown Complex Box Office, Leisure Travel Services on Fort Bragg, e Pilgrim Gifts in Fayetteville, Junior League of Fayetteville office, Jernigan's in Dunn, Jernigan's in Lumberton and Fabulous Finds Boutique in Fayetteville. ELAINA J. MARTIN, Staff Writer. COMMENTS? editor@upandcom- ingweekly.com. 910-484-6200. Holly Day Fair returns in force by ELAINA J. MARTIN EVENT Katie Crawford, a local artist, poses with a selection of her artwork. She is a vendor at the Holly Day Fair this year.

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