Breakfast at Martanne’s

Waking up on a lazy Saturday morning after a fast lane week full of deadlines and quick decisions speeding by, we decided to head out to Martanne’s Cafe. This local hotspot is known for their killer Chilaquiles (Mexican breakfast to die for).  The typical hour wait was spent getting to know other locals, and visiting with old friends that passed by.  Taking time to breath in the fresh  mountain air of community helped Eric and I to unwind.

Finally it was our turn to enter this tiny jewel of Flagstaff, painted in magenta and covered by vibrant Dia de los Muertos (day of the dead) paintings. Turquoise, Burnt orange and purple backdrops show off skeleton pin-ups of roller derby queens in fishnets.  We shared a table with two gals, one of them was named Emma Gardner. when I asked what she did, she simply said, “All of this.” and swept the room with an outstretched hand. Come to find out she’s the artist of all the incredible work I was just dreaming of owning.

I asked her about her fascination with roller derby and found out she wanted to join a team until she went to an open skate night and found out how tough these woman really are. “I could get seriously hurt,” she confided. So she has decided to offer us her sight of unique beauty instead. Peering into her artwork I felt as if I got a much closer look than any front row seats could give me.

She allowed me to interview her between bites of green chilli and buckwheat pancakes.

Me: Were did you study?

Emma: I started out in a junior college and then went to the university of Delaware, because it had all the comfort and closeness of a small school. I got my degree in advanced Chemistry and Art History in the Art Restoration and Conservation program.

Me (actually Eric, I was busy stuffing my face with buckwheat goodness): What brought you to Flagstaff?

Emma: If I’m going to be a starving artist, what better place to live than Flagstaff. People from all over the world come to vacation here, and I get to meet them.

Emma will be showing her art of  H.A.R.D. (high altitude roller derby) in Philadelphia’s Globe dye works in fish town on October 20th and 21st. It is in conjunction with Open studios called, “Taking back the fishnets.”

You can learn more about our fun loving Flagstaff artist and view more of her paintings @ emmagardner.com

How about you?

Any favorite spots you like to go to unwind?

Any new places you’ve wanted to try?

Love to hear about the places you go and the things you do.

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