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Artist Bios – Nov. 11

Marlayna Demond graduated from UMBC in the spring of 2011 and since has been trying to figure out what comes next. Photography has been her passion since she was a kid, following in her mother’s footsteps, but ultimately she is just happy to create in some way or another. She has been a Marylander her whole life, but loves to travel the US and abroad, and has been especially inspired by her study abroad experience to Paris, France. When it comes to photography, she finds herself most often drawn to understanding and connecting to people through more documentary/journalistic approaches. Other than that, she also loves to read a good book and play ultimate frisbee! You can see more of her work at

Born in Windsor, Ontario in 1960, Gregory Gunn grew up in towns throughout Ontario before moving to London in 1970. A graduate of Fanshawe College as an electronics technician. Writing for over thirty years, he is most passionate about poetry. Other interests include music, astronomy, philosophy, photography, foreign languages, and gardening. To date, Mr. Gunn has had poems published in Inscribed Magazine, Green’s Magazine, The Toronto Quarterly, Yes, Poetry, Wordletting Magazine, Songs for Every Race, Ditch Magazine, One Earth, Ascent Aspirations, Aim Magazine, Psychopoetica, and Cyclamens and Swords. Also published are five collections of his selected poetry.

In 2004, F. Rutledge Hammes earned his Master of Fine Arts in fiction from Old Dominion University, where he worked closely with several National Book Award winners, NEA and Guggenheim fellows as well as New York Times Bestsellers, like Janet Peery, Sheri Reynolds, Bob Shacochis, Dorothy Allison and Bret Lott. He is a contributing writer in the recently published book, Postwar Literature 1945-1970, which is now one of Amazon’s top selling resource books. Over twenty of his short stories, essays, articles and poems have been published in various journals around the country. He won the Cypress Dome Fiction Award, six Addy Awards and was a finalist for both the Montage Poetry Award and the Paul Laurence Dunbar Award for Poetry. He was also recently named “The Writer to Watch” in Charleston, SC, and is currently shopping his first novel. He has worked as an advertising copywriter and a speechwriter, and is presently a Writer-in-Residence and award-winning Creative Writing Instructor at the Charleston County School of the Arts.

Jen Karetnick is the author of the poetry chapbooks Necessary Salt (Pudding House Publications, 2007) and Bud Break at Mango House (Portlandia Press, September 2008), which won The Portlandia Group’s bi-annual chapbook competition. Her third collection, Eve and After, was a finalist in the Women of Words chapbook competition. She is also the author of Around Miami with Kids (Random House, 2000) and co-author of Raw Food/Real World: 100 Recipes to Get the Glow (HarperCollins, 2005) and Born-Again Vintage (Potter Craft, December 2008). An accomplished cook as well as poet, writer, restaurant critic, musician and educator, she is currently working on Romancing the Mango: Recipes for the Obsessed for University Press of Florida (2013). She is also finishing her first interactive play, How Does It Taste, Dear? A Marital Farce in Six Restaurants, which will be produced locally in 2011-12, and has completed editing an anthology, Enopoetic: A Collection of Poems about Wine. She is in the process of writing two full-length books of poems, Landscaping for Wildlife and Early Onset. Jen’s poems, essays, drama and fiction have been widely published, appearing in journals including Alimentum, Barrow Street, Carpe Articulum, Cimarron Review, Gastronomica, Georgetown Review, Greensboro Review, North American Review, River Styx, Sou’wester and Tigertail Anthology. She is a 2005 recipient of a Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Award for a lyric poem and a finalist in the 2009 Patricia Dobler, Consequence Magazine and Earth Vision prizes. She was also a finalist in the 2010 River Styx Poetry Prize (for which she won Honorable mention in 1997) and the Knightsville Poetry Award from The New Guard, as well as Honorable Mention for the 2011 UNO Study Abroad Program in Arts and Writing. She recently won the 2011 Piccolo in Your Pocket Poetry Prize from the Alaska Flute Studies Program for which she won—yes, a piccolo—for a poem about flutes or piccolos, and was named one of the “33 Top Emerging Creative Minds” in 2010-11 from SOFI Magazine. Jen holds an MFA in poetry from University of California, Irvine, an MFA in fiction from University of Miami and will begin doctoral work in expressive arts therapy at the European Graduate School in summer, 2012.  Jen is the Creative Writing Director for Miami Arts Charter School, where she teaches poetry, fiction, creative noon-fiction and playwriting to grades 6-12. She also works as the dining critic for MIAMI Magazine; neighborhood columnist for Biscayne Times; and is an award-winning, food-travel-lifestyle writer for publications such as Florida Travel & Life,, Porthole Magazine, Southern Living, Vegas Player and more. She has formerly worked as a food critic and columnist for the metropolitan weeklies Miami New Times and Broward/Palm Beach New Times (1992-2004), and as the features editor for niche/collector magazine Wine News (2001-2010). She lives in Miami Shores on the last remaining acre of a historic mango plantation with her husband, two children, three dogs, four cats and fifteen mango trees.

Dina Karkar is a graphic designer living in Baltimore. You can see more of her work at

Jenny O’Grady writes and makes books in Baltimore. By day, she works in alumni and development communications at UMBC, where she also serves as associate editor of UMBC Magazine. Some nights you’ll find her teaching book arts or electronic publishing in the University of Baltimore’s MFA in Creative Writing & Publishing Arts program, from which she received her MFA in 2006. Jenny was one of five Baltimore writers featured in the 2009 “Emerging Artists” issue of Urbanite magazine. In addition to the Urbanite, her poetry has also been published in the Little Patuxent Review, Welter, and online in Everyday Genius and Splotches: Visual Pulse. Her book, “Autobiography,” was included in the 2009 Bind-O-Rama on, the Book Arts Web.You can see more of her work at She is editor of The Light Ekphrastic.

Susan Payne graduated from the University of Southern Maine with a B.A in History, and she uses her historical knowledge to influence and create most of her work. As a child, Susan started with only a crayon; now she works in digital media, paint, markers, and plastic dinosaurs. Her work has appeared in various galleries, including Two Point Gallery in Portland, Maine and The Siena Art Institute in Siena, Italy, and on streets here and abroad. Her pastimes, besides making art, include making snowmen, eating candy corn and watching Ancient Aliens. She currently lives in Portland, Maine.

Carrie Perkins is a Vermont artist who transcribes her memories and emotions through oil paint and photography. She is a summa cum laude graduate of Castleton State College in fine art, where she studied with Bill Ramage, Rita Bernatowicz, and Gary Fitzgerald. She spent a year in Florence, Italy refining her skills while studying under Lorenzo Pezzantini and Paul Beal. Carrie also holds a masters degree in Arts Administration from Boston University. Her work has recently been shown at the Atlas Theater, Washington, D.C., the Emile Gruppe Gallery’s En Plein Air Festival and at the University of Vermont’s Davis Center.

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