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Snapshot: Sam Bucur



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Occupation: I’m the manager, curator, and digital media director at New Insights Boutique, our family business at 111 Church Hill Road in Sandy Hook! I am also a professional visual artist working in acrylic paint, sculpture, and costume design. You can check out my art at crypticast.com, as well as Instagram and Etsy by searching CrypticastCreatures.

Family: My family lives in Sandy Hook and includes my mom, Sue; my dad, Jim; and my little sis, Jamie.

Pets: My boyfriend and I have two African Clawed Frogs (ACF) and a Cory Catfish who we love so much! ACFs are really cool because they are fully aquatic, grow to be 2 to 5 inches long and we’ve trained ours to take treats from our hands!

How long did you live in Newtown? I grew up and lived in Newtown for 19 years. I’ve recently moved to New Milford, but I still work in the heart of Sandy Hook at our little metaphysical shop.

What do you like to do in your free time? I love the outdoors and enjoy hiking and picnics. I also love making costumes, paintings, and all modalities of art! I attended University of Hartford Art School with a sculpture major, so I’ve had the opportunity to use and learn so many materials and mediums. My most recent costume piece is a pair of wings featuring a magnetic harness that you wear under your shirt, so that only the wings are visible on the outside. I’m pretty proud of them so far; they look like they’re actually coming out of your back!

What has been the greatest influence in your life? Of all the artists and musicians whom I’ve come to admire in life, nature has definitely been my biggest influence. Nothing inspires me more than when I learn something new about an animal, mineral, or plant — and it can be seen in every single one of my pieces. I often compare animals to real-life super heroes; each one with their own unique superpower that helps them survive in the wild.

Who is your favorite musical artist? The sweet girl that works at the crystal shop really loves some heavy stuff. I love music and enjoy many different genres but some of my favorites are Marilyn Manson, Hollywood Undead, and I actually just saw Rammstein at Gillette Stadium in September. What a blast! The pyrotechnics were fantastic.

What is the greatest piece of advice you have ever been given? To practice mindfulness. I have generalized anxiety disorder, and sometimes I get so sucked up in my thoughts about the past and future that I feel as if everything could fall apart at any moment. I worry too much about whether or not I’m doing the right thing, or if I’m on the right path. Practicing mindfulness has really helped calm my thoughts and allowed me to make clearer decisions and live more in the moment, where I want to be.

What is something you cannot live without? I cannot live without the outdoors! As far back as I can remember I’ve always loved walking in the fresh air, looking for animals, and flipping some rocks to determine the weirdest bug I can find that day.

What is your proudest accomplishment? My proudest accomplishment so far is a particular sculptural painting I made titled “Athena.” It was a piece that took days of hours of work, and throughout most of the process it was pretty scary. I really didn’t know if it was even going to come together to be a cohesive piece in the end. It’s the first sculptural painting I’ve attempted and completed. It features a snow leopard portrait surrounded by dewy, succulent leaves and a hand sculpted amethyst crystal wreath. Painted on a large, round canvas with real crushed Amethyst accents, it’s hanging on display at our shop.

What is a meal/recipe your family has passed down to you? Both my grandpa and my dad love liverwurst. It’s one of those things where you either really love it or hate it! I love a simple liverwurst sandwich on my gluten-free cheese bread with a touch of mayo. But one time I tried to make my own liverwurst, and I do not recommend it. Not only was it a mess, but it tasted terrible! I’m sticking with Jones’ Braunschweiger from now on.

What is a tradition your family does that is important to you? Every Christmas since I was a kid, my mom, dad, and sister have watched National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation together. It’s become a cult classic between us. We even have our own set of the glass moose mugs.

What would you like The Newtown Bee to cover in the future? I love when The Newtown Bee covers local artists and small businesses.

Sam Bucur is The Newtown Bee's most recent Snapshot profile. —Bee Photo, Silber
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