I first met Lisa Wicke at a local business speed networking event in January and now am finally writing about Dave and Lisa Wicke of Wicke Works. Their unique style of colorful art on wood really caught my eye, with a great use of materials and color.

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Video: https://www.facebook.com/WickeWks/videos/2004911959549009/

Regan: When and how did “Wicke Works” begin?

Lisa Wicke: A couple of years ago. I'm not exactly sure of the date but it must have been right around one of the more patriotic holidays we all celebrate here in America. Maybe it was Fourth of July or Veteran’s Day because I felt inspired to create something which would reflect my appreciation toward our armed forces and local service members. With that goal set in my mind and spirit, we created a rather large, very Red, White and Blue, Proud~Brave~USA piece of artwork. We used reclaimed wooden slats I had found out back near my husband Dave's man cave. It turned out great! However, it was large (at approximately 4 feet by 3 feet) and we did not have an area large enough to display it. Then we decided to meet with our local VFW and donate it to them to use as a fundraising item. They agreed to a 20%-80% (us/VFW) split of the funds raised. With that, Wicke Works came to life.

R: Lisa, you have a printing background but did either Dave or you go to school for art? Do you take any art classes?

W: Both Dave and I are very creative. He is more technical while I am more artistic. I've always loved to draw. I have a degree in Commercial Graphics and Communications and Dave was in the Army as a diesel mechanic/fabricator, but neither of us really ever took any professional art classes or training. We work really well together.

R: What inspires you? Your theme is “Southern Inspired Creations.” Do you mostly create pieces by request?

W: Remember the saying, "You might not remember what someone has said to you, but you will always remember the way they made you feel." That inspires us! We want to give everyone the opportunity to do just that--To give that perfect thoughtful gift to the one person who already has everything. With respect to our motto, “Southern Inspired Creations”, I would have to say the themes are our military members and the sacrifices they make, the Southern Charm of SC and growing up near the ocean. I am a military brat. My family was stationed in Cuba at the Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay during most of my childhood until we moved here when I was 15 years old.

Yes, 95 percent of the art pieces we create are requests. We create each piece with the recipient in mind. It can be about any theme or subject. I ask the person questions about the recipient of the gift like, what are they passionate about? What makes their world go around? Any favorite teams, schools, pets, and places they have lived? We then create a piece that they will love and cherish for years to come. The finished piece is delivered as a Secret Reveal. No one gets to see it until it is delivered. This helps to enhance the gift giving process for all involved. We can even gift wrap and work within one’s budget.

R: Why wood? Explain how you create the colorful turtle art piece, for example?

W: We do our best to try and use reclaimed materials whenever possible. Everyone seems to like the look of the natural wood. Each piece is created by painting a background and then other items to fit the recipient. The final touch is the colorful metallic foil that I hand lay to enhance the image which was there. The foil shines like neon lights when it is placed in a low-lit area.

R: Which piece seems to be the most popular? I just love your colorful turtles. What is your favorite item?

J: We get most requests from family of military members and first-responders. My favorite items we create are the sea turtles. I think they're very brilliantly colored — just stunning!

R: Will you be at any art festivals or have any exhibits this year?

W: We hope to participate in some events this fall. Right now, we are starting to look for like-minded investors to help move Wicke Works to the next level of sincere expressions of appreciation for people we care about. We are also going to try to test the market to see if folks would be interested in some type of pallet party or home parties.

R: Do you have a store? How can people get in touch with you if they are interested in your work? Your future plans?

W: Contact us today to discuss ideas and details. We are working from our home and hope to one day have a successful storefront. We are on the Facebook link above and pieces are ready in just 7 to 15 days or sooner.

Mary E. Regan, Columnist, is a Publicist with her ProPublicist consultancy. Story ideas? Email: Mary@ProPublicist.com