Cold steel, warm craft

Machines might seem to be merely cold steel, cut gears, flowing grease and winding pulleys. But in the hands of a craftsman like local elf Shadi Ayoub, a machine can seemingly also possess a soul.

Act 3’s Jim O’Hare was looking for a family gift that could be local, one of a kind, and passed around world wide. And although the end product could be delivered by a drone, it would instead head out on planes, trains, automobiles and UPS trucks to be delivered to London, New York, Chicago, and San Francisco.

Shadi is The 961 Collective’s founder, artist, craftsman, entrepreneur and citizen of the world. Here’s a quick look at just part of the process leading to one of a kind printing and embossing of thick paper stock. Stationary design by Act 3’s dynamic Ron Hill. Take a look.

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Farewell, Maria!

Farewell, Maria!

A version of the old bromide serves as a salve: “If you care about someone, it’s OK to be both sad and happy when they leave.” So, when Act 3 designer/producer Maria Ahmad stepped onto the company soapbox to announce she needed to pursue her teaching career full time, all of us were happy and sad. 

Man, Machine, Mission

Man, Machine, Mission

As the Delta variant reminded us who’s in charge (hint: it’s not us), we donned our masks in order to meet a remarkable man with an infectious spirit – and an incredible machine.

Mindful wishes


A surprise Father’s Day visit and startling presentation of a neon masterpiece from Artistic Neon…