Creative Life

Our series Creative Life discontinued on October 30th, 2017. It has been replaced by Ways of Life

The Creative Life archive lives on this page. Creative Life offered an audio tour of arts, culture, and inspiration on the Cape and Islands. Our region is rich with creative diversity, and so are the stories we tell.

Creative Life is edited by Jay Allison.

Creative Life is made possible by The Circle of Ten, ten local businesses and organizations committed to local programming on WCAI.

Photo by Mitch Borden.

Eric Kaiser started wood carving for a simple reason: he wanted a creative challenge. He  decided to focus on one subject only, over and over. Birds. This fascination gave Eric a career and a passion that has lasted him over thirty seven years.

Fado is Life

Oct 16, 2017
Patrick T. Power

New Bedford is well-known for its vibrant Portuguese cultural scene; more than half of its residents claim Portuguese ancestry. What’s less well-known is New Bedford’s place in the world of fado, the music known as the “Soul of Portugal.” The city is home to two of America’s most established Fado performers, Ana and Jose Vinagre.

Hip Hop and History Team Up in New Bedford

Oct 2, 2017
Photo by Frankie Barros.

The Youth Ambassador Program (YAP) is a project between the National Park Service, and Third Eye Youth Empowerment in New Bedford, Massachusetts. Founded by Ben Gilbarg and Frankie Barrows. YAP members communicate national park themes  and local history through hip hop. 

When Knitting Can Help Untangle Addiction

Sep 4, 2017
Lisa Bruce -

Kaycee Snowden and her mom Laurel have a lot in common. They are both natives of the Cape, they both love making things, and they both battled alcoholism for years. Now they’re both sober - Kaycee for 7 years and Laurel for 37. While Kaycee may never surpass her mom in sober time, she has jumped ahead in one key way: she’s really good at making stuff out of yarn. The student has become the teacher. She knits. She makes hats, scarves, even the occasional tank top. It’s a kind of therapy, creative outlet, and side hustle all wrapped up in one activity.

Courtesy of Jane Fay Baker

Growing up on the Cape, Jane Fay Baker developed an eye for objects and creatures that might otherwise go unnoticed. Later in life, her artwork became a reflection of her own life on the Cape. A recent woodcut  series features navigational buoys.

Photo by Phil Mello.

Phil Mello has been photographing New Bedford’s working waterfront for over 40 years. He started as an amateur, documenting the inner world of the fishing industry in which he worked. His photography has become part of a major Library of Congress project to capture and preserve the faces of New Bedford’s fishing industry.   

courtesy of Lynda Sturner

Cape Cod is a popular place to retire. But for 75-year-old actress and playwright Lynda Sturner, moving to Truro was a chance to start anew. In 2010, she packed up her apartment in Manhattan and moved full-time to her summer home in Truro. She's recently written - with playwright Jim Dalglish - one of the most personal plays of her career. It’s called “A Talented Woman.” 

May 22nd 2006. Danvers, MA. Photo by Brooks Angelini.

Brooks Angelini is a Fall River based photographer and artist. The asylums he photographs were shuttered in the 1970s after public outcry regarding practices like lobotomies, electroshock therapy, and forced confinement. Many of the buildings were left completely intact, like time capsules showcasing a mental health ideology gone by. Through his pictures, Angelini bears witness to the lives and struggles of the patients who were confined to these institutions.

Photo by Abby Madan April 2017

In more ways than one, Mwalim sees himself reflected in blues music. Mwalim is a musician in Mashpee who has a mixed Black and Native heritage. He’s part of a growing number of people who share a curious theory of the origins of the blues—that the genre has both Black and Native musical roots. Through his music, Mwalim is on a mission to share this idea. 

Photo by Lee Romney 2017

Bob Henry and Selina Trieff came to the Cape to paint in the 1950s. For six decades, they thrived in love and art. Bob’s work has always evoked a world that’s constantly shifting. Now, he’s navigating the shift of a lifetime

A New Life in Ice

May 22, 2017
Schuyler Swenson

Chip Koser of Mashpee is a professionally trained chef who has worked in a number of famous restaurants. But Chip spends less time in kitchens and more time in freezers. Schuyler Swenson brings the story of a man who found a new life in ice sculpting.

This piece comes from production partners Atlantic Public Media, through their media training program, the Transom Story Workshop in Woods Hole.

American Icon Alice Brock Might Surprise You

May 8, 2017

Arlo Guthrie’s song  " Alice’s Restaurant" shone a light on Alice Brock and she  became an icon for many during the 60’s. Alice returned to Provincetown and her friend Viki Merrick, also her former employee,  spoke with her about one of her unusual projects. 

From the Ashes

Apr 24, 2017
Sarah Reynolds/WCAI

Kevin King is an artist, and he’s been painting for a long time in his North Falmouth studio. He paints all kinds of things with different styles and techniques, but he uses an unlikely medium.

Kate Nelson 2012

Monika Woods is a classical clarinetist from Transylvania. After studying clarinet in conservatory for over a decade, she fell in love, started a family, and moved to the Cape in 2006. But the move posed a challenge to her plans for a career as a professional musician. 

Photo by Cape Cod Times.

Brianna LePage always wanted to study two things:  music and medicine.  It may seem that these two fields oppose each other and yet she has combined them for nearly twenty years.