Guaranty Media has partnered with Artist Tony Bernard and Musician Wayne Toups, owners of Toups/Bernard Musical Brushes, to turn its first floor into a “makeshift” Tony Bernard Art Studio. Tony Bernard’s tributes to Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, The Blues Brothers, and several other musical greats can be found throughout the Guaranty Media building in Baton Rouge.
Toups/Bernard Musical studio opened in December of 2015 and can be found at 2823 Johnston Street in the heart of Lafayette, a 1,000-square-foot store in the South College Shopping Center, is tentatively scheduled to open Nov. 28. In the meantime, thousands of eyes will see the store’s logo near center ice at IceGators games in the Cajundome.
The Toups-Bernard store has signed on as a team sponsor. Bernard painted the store’s logo on the ice Tuesday in a matter of minutes.
The logo is déjà vu for Bernard, who painted the first IceGators logo on the Cajundome ice 20 years ago this week. An artist since junior high school, Bernard studied under famed “Blue Dog” artist George Rodrigue, who guided him to an award-winning career.
Bernard won the Louisiana Duck Stamp competition in 2007 and ’14. He has produced original art for numerous local festivals, along with professional and college sporting events.
But Bernard’s dream of his own gallery has eluded him until now. He painted Toups and his band five years ago at the Rice Festival in Crowley. The artist and musician remained friends with Bernard painting live portraits of Toups on stage at a recent Downtown Alive! and the 2015 Festivals Acadiens et Creoles.
Bernard said his gallery lets him share what he does best.
“George (Rodrigue) was my mentor and he taught me to love what I do,” said Bernard. “I treat every painting like my child. People ask me which is my favorite and it’s the one I’m working on.
“It’s a passion. I love what I do. I don’t look at it as work.
“It’s something new for me,” said Toups, 57. “A person tries all his life to be an accomplished individual. I’m like everybody else. I don’t have this big fund where I’ve been saving all my life.
“It’s another little thing my family could lean back on if something happens to me. It’s small steps. We go to church every Sunday and ask the good Lord to bless us. He continues to do that.”
Visit their facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ToupsBernard-Musical-Brushes-451694061689516/