Bernie Dunn is working to create artist and veteran artist networking groups at Center Place Fine Arts & Civic Association in Brandon.

Bernie Dunn is an artist, wife, mom and veteran.

“I moved to Seffner with my family 25 years ago,” Dunn said. “I started creating art to help me reconnect. I love experimenting with new techniques and colors. Some of my other interests include hiking our beautiful parks, gardening in our backyard food forest and reading.”

Dunn is very involved at Center Place Fine Arts & Civic Association in Brandon. She is involved in various art programs at the center and is one of the featured artists at Center Place’s Artist Night, which is held on the first Friday of every month at the center.

Dunn is now looking to create a weekly artist group that will meet at Center Place.

“One of the ideas I have is to form an artist’s group to share ideas, resources, knowledge and brainstorming,” Dunn said. “I want to help create a community to help each other become better and happier artists.”

Since Dunn is a veteran, another idea she has is to create a group for veterans.

“Local veterans can bring an original work or craft to work on with other veterans so they can connect with each other,” she said. “I want local veterans to have an opportunity to heal through art and connection.”

Art therapy has numerous benefits, including improving self-management, alleviating depression, improving communication skills and addressing past traumas.

“I feel Center Place is the perfect place to host these artist groups I’m trying to create,” Dunn said. “I truly feel Center Place is a place that is all-welcoming, and the Brandon community needs a place that is the art hub for the community.”

Dunn would like to get feedback from the artist and veterans in our community on what days of the week and times would be the best time for these two groups to come together.

“If anyone is interested in helping me form these two groups, please contact Center Place at 813-685-8888 or email me at”

To learn more about the art programs currently offered at Center Place, visit Center Place is located at 619 Vonderburg Dr., Ste. B inside the Brandon Regional Library.

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Libby Hopkins
Libby Hopkins has been a part of the Brandon community for more than 30 years. She is a graduate of USF with a degree in journalism. She has been a freelance writer for The Osprey Observer Newspaper since 2008. She also the Executive Director of Center Place Fine Arts and Civic Association. She is a dog mom to her rescue dog, Marshall. She loves being a part of the Brandon Community and she loves sharing positive news about our community.