The city is seeking a new poet laureate. Applications are due July 10.

Making great art requires great talent, and a little luck. Whether pressing a shutter release or dragging a brush across canvas, the outcome is uncertain.

“My name is Gary Francis Comoglio, and throughout my whole lifetime, my last name has been butchered,” the artist-turned-gallerist said. So he decided to go with something “easier and more concise” when he launched his gallery.

A heron rises above the water in “Taking Off,” a serene watercolor painted by a man who murdered a woman in her Bakersfield home after sexually assaulting her. The image is being used to advertise “Inside Out,” which opened at REDUX Studios & Gallery on February 14, featuring artwork from some of the more than 700 men on San Quentin’s death row. Is his crime irrelevant, or entirely the point?

Dawn Leigh was flipping channels and came across a documentary about wine making, which included a snippet on an artist painting with wine. “I never seem to have enough red wine left over,” Leigh said, so she went with “her next favorite elixir,” coffee.

"The Song of the Nightingale," with music, lyrics, and book by Alameda resident Min Kahng, expands upon Hans Christian Andersen's classic tale of how the Emperor of China learns the value of inner beauty and how this revelation ultimately benefits his people. The show opens tonight at Altarena Playhouse, 1409 High Street.

Studio 23 Gallery is run by Wesley and Jessica Warren - Wes and Jess - a couple who met in 1994 at Wes’s coffee house/art gallery in St. Petersburg, Fla. when Jess brought her paintings in and had a show there. The couple moved to Alameda from Atlanta a year ago with the intention of focusing more on their painting.

From Small - Rhythmix

Rosie Morales had been up all night finishing installation of “Small Worlds,” the show she has curated in K Gallery at Rhythmix Cultural Works. But rather than resting on her laurels, grabbing a beer and schmoozing, she plucked one of her own pieces off the wall.

“I think I’ll add more text to this one,” she said, and plopped down against a wall.

Contributed photos.

At Spank Salon, getting your makeup done “includes lash application,” according to their price list. Ouch! But that’s not the only reason it’s hard to sit still at this super hip parlor: Compelling art lines its walls, with new work rotated in frequently to keep heads turning.

We’ve come a long way from when redheads were targeted as witches or vampires in the infamous Malleus Maleficarum, but gingerism and its stereotypes linger. Megan Lynn Kott, who describes herself as “a lifelong redhead - in actuality and spirit” and her artistic partner Justin DeVine give some long overdue love to carrot-tops in their show “GINGERLY: an ode to all our favorite redheads,” which opens at Spank Salon on Saturday, March 16.

Hunter House Publishers was founded in 1978 and has made Alameda their headquarters since 1991. Located in a book-filled suite of offices above the Churchward Pub on Park Street, Hunter House employs seven people, most of them local, and publishes 12-16 self-help titles per year. Publisher Kiran Rana has been at the helm of the press for nearly 30 years. He spoke with The Alamedan recently about the joys and challenges of running a small, independent press. You can visit Hunter House Publications online at