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Artist captivates students with cool colors

As the sounds of jam-bands emanate from a weathered cassette tape, earthy green gives way to brilliant yellow, electric blue blends into cherry red, which breeds a regal purple that battles a feisty orange against a deep navy background.
The gazebo between West Hall and Nevins Hall has a received a vivacious temporary makeover from tie-dye entrepreneur Josh Farmer.
The budding artist returned to the VSU campus on Wednesday with 122 uniquely designed, colorful cotton creations. Today Farmer’s unique designs will be on display from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Initially Farmer tie-dyed in high school for friends for fun, but as his skill improved, the lifelong Deadhead realized his work could generate a profit, and ultimately became his sole income source.
Time was the only factor Farmer would reveal, keeping secret the techniques he inherited from his father, who sold tie-dye to the original hippy generation.
Farmer was asked what motivates his work, where he channels inspiration.
“Inspiration?” Farmer repeated. He paused, smiled. “Good times, good friends, and really just meeting new people.”
From afternoon to evening on Wednesday, VSU students, staff, and professors drifted in and out of the gazebo as they were drawn in by the summery spectacle.
“I like it,” said Christina Lynch, sophomore English major and one of the last customers of the day. “I’ve tie-dyed a few times myself, but this is the best I have seen. It’s artwork. Each one varies.”
Lynch walked up intending to purchase only one shirt, but left with two. She said she would
Farmer stopped in town on his way from McDonough, Ga. to Live Oak, Fla. for the Wanee Music Festival later today.
Farmer assures shoppers that his artwork’s wearable canvases are 100 percent cotton and don’t shrink or fade. Shirts, all sizes, cost $15, and tapestries, full-sized sheets, cost $30. A shirt takes him about ten minutes to fold; tapestries take 15. His work can be purchased online through Facebook and his contact information is on the business cards his mother designed for him.
As can be expected from someone who travels with a trunk full of tie-dye, Farmer couldn’t choose a favorite Grateful Dead song, but after some contemplation, he was comfortable naming “Stella Blue,” “Liberty,” and “Terrapin Station” as his top three.

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