Artists in Action: Anniston native featured on VeggieTale DVD
by Hervey Folsom
Special to The Star
Aug 13, 2010 | 7513 views |  0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Rebecca Walker, a native of Anniston, is the lead voice in the VeggieTale DVD Snoodlerella, a Big Idea production released Aug. 1. This almost-classic story (a twist on the Cinderella tale) is included on the Sweetpea Beauty: A Girl After God's Own Heart disc, Big Idea's latest VeggieTale. Walker, a singer, now lives near Nashville in Franklin, Tenn.

To borrow a phrase from Goldilocks in making her choice of porridge in the fairy tale, voices for VeggieTales have to be 'Jus-s-st right!" According to a VeggieTale commentary, the actors whose voices best reflect the character get the parts in the animated films, and Walker makes Snoodlerella, (the young girl with glasses, braces and wiry pigtails) unique by giving her " a lisp, and reading her really nerdy," as Walker describes the voice over. And Walker's is just the right voice, according to Mike Nawrocki of VeggieTales, who speaks in the commentary portion of the DVD.

VeggieTales is a series of children's animated films featuring vegetables with human characteristics.

Snoodlerella, a purplish character with wings (looking much like a moving eggplant) has developed low self-esteem because she is so ugly. But after getting a complete makeover, she feels glamorous and decides to go to the ball. She dances and twirls the right away, only to have her plain looks return at midnight. Then, the king dances with her, telling her that she is beautiful and perfect just the way she is.

Walker, who attended The Donoho School and the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosca, always dreamed of being a singer, she said in a phone interview this week.

"Nashville seemed to be the place to pursue that dream, and since that move I have performed with many great singers," she added. She has toured with Amy Grant and Vince Gill as a backing vocalist, appeared as a singer on Country Music Television "All Access" TV shows with Susan Ashton; and Walker has headlined numerous shows as an artist around the country, according to her resume. One of the singer's recent accomplishments was singing the lead and backing vocals on the theme song for Disney's movie, Tinkerbell.

Area audiences last saw Walker when the Knox Concert Series presented Amy Grant in concert at Anniston High School. That evening, Grant called her from backstage to come out and sing one of the late Will Owsley's songs.

Cameron, A Portrait Artist

"I love to do portraits of children," Cheryl Cameron told viewers Aug. 6 at the opening reception of Art Works Gallery's current exhibit. "Looking at them seems to cheer people up."

She stood next to her portrait of Shanika Betts, her niece. The painting, titled "Girl in Azalea Bush," won several awards in eastern North Carolina where Cameron lived before moving here to be with her family. Shanika was 4 years old then; to the left is another portrait of a 12-year-old girl, Anna Benson, who Cameron knew in North Carolina. Also in Cameron's collection in her studio is a portrait of a 70-year-old lady, "with beautiful white hair," as Cameron describes her.

"I do all ages, I love the play on color and shading, but I really spend lots of time on my portraits and the still life here," she said. "People tell me I was born with this gift, but you really have to work your gift to be successful."

Recently, she has added fashion to her purpose by creating jewelry, and sold several pieces at the reception. "These may look simple, but it actually takes a few days to finish each necklace," she explained to observers around her table display. "I use silver metallic beads with felt and wool for bright colors. Then, I wait for the glue to dry."

Her portraits and jewelry, along with the work of other artists, will be on display through October.

Beside joining the Art Works Cooperative, Cameron participated as an artist in Freedom Festival in Oxford this summer, and she will be teaching the fundamentals of drawing in the after-school arts program this fall for interested students in Calhoun County.

At Art Works, classes on painting techniques for anyone interested will start Monday, Aug. 16. The painting will be done in acrylics. Techniques covered will be basic design, composition, and mottling. The fee for the classes, which will be given four Monday mornings, is $60. For more information, call Jack Hadder at 256-488-5510.
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Artists in Action: Anniston native featured on VeggieTale DVD by Hervey Folsom
Special to The Star

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