Ogden embraces the Harvest Moon Festival – goodbye summer

Ally Nelson

With Halloween approaching and summer coming to a close, the Ogden Downtown Alliance welcomed local artists and organizations to celebrate its annual Harvest Moon Festival on Historic 25th Street.

The festival invited Ogden community members in a variety of fields, such as live music, rock climbing, and pumpkin painting. The ODA also invited businesses to display and sell their art.

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Adam Smith carving an oversized pumpkin at the Harvest Moon Celebration. (Kalie Pead/ The Signpost)

Married couple and owners of the online company Skull of Hard Rocks, Pilar Fielding and Stan Tucker, were eager to set up their booth for the first time at the Harvest Moon Festival.

They displayed gothic, colorful hand-painted casts and woodwork items. When designing the casts, Tucker molds them together then sands them down for Fielding to later paint.

A few of their skull pieces draw inspiration from Fielding’s love of books; some of her favorite books are by American author Anne Rice, including “The Mummy” and “Ramses the Damned.”

At a young age, Fielding felt like the black sheep in her family. Growing up in a traditional family from Spain, her interests were unlike the rest of her family’s. Later in life, she learned to embrace herself and her interests.

Because of Fielding’s belief that she’s a witch, she practices magic, inspired by spirits she comes into contact with; she then asks her customers what colors to use for each of her creations.

The textures on her skull and dragon creations range from glittery to glow-in-the-dark. She applies a minimum of four layers of sealant, which add depth to each color and texture that’s painted.

“Each item we do is individually painted, so no two are alike,” Fielding said. “Each one has its own uniqueness and is truly one of a kind.”

Customers have encouraged Fielding and Tucker to raise their prices, but they’re set on making their creations affordable for all. Fielding believes that anyone who desires to own one of their creations should be able to.

In Fielding’s early life, creating mosaics and stained glass influenced her love for art and creativity. She has since married the man who would support her art and be her life-long partner as well as her business partner.

At another booth, local Ogden community member and artist Vanessa Colunga, drew pop culture portraits and said that customers were drawn to her art that she printed on pins, stickers, magnets and coasters.

Colunga drew inspiration from the movie “The Shining” and the character Pennywise from the original 1990 two-part series “IT.”

Aside from art, Colunga debuted lamp-like terrariums for the first time, called Dreadful Digs. Some were themed around dark, colorless grass and trees while others showcased vibrant plant life.

Creative artists, designers and photographers from Ogden showcased their skills and talents, going out of their way to create something that aligned with the upcoming Halloween season.

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Branson Anderson plays guitar and sings on the main stage at the Harvest Moon Celebration. (Kalie Pead/ The Signpost)

Ogden community member Kathy Carrillo said she loved everything about the festival. After 19 years of living in Utah, it was the first time Carrillo’s family decided to attend the event.

Carrillo contemplated getting a henna tattoo at the festival because she was unsure of how her skin would react to henna due to her autoimmune disease, Sjögren’s syndrome. However, she loved how intricate and creatively-designed all the temporary tattoos were.

There were several shops and restaurants Carrillo hadn’t noticed before attending the Harvest Moon celebration. She believes that the Harvest Moon festival is a celebration for the Ogden community and will make better efforts to acknowledge the local shops and businesses around Ogden.

“As you’re walking down the street, I liked how you could go inside shops and restaurants as well,” Carrillo said. “They had something for everyone.”