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Showing posts from 2018

     The gentleman with the St Johns County Schools who was in charge of the Community Education program has retired.  The program will now be run by the Florida Community Technical College (FCTC)  that's here in St. Augustine.  They are calling it the Community Enrichment program and it will be expanded to offer more classes.  NICE!

     FCTC held a meeting to go over all the plans with the teachers and to find rooms that match the needs of each.  They showed me a room that I really like.  It has water and room for plenty of students.  That is great for me because each student needs an entire table for their supplies.  Even better, there's also a large screen and a projector that can be used to show my canvas work up high and enlarged so everyone can easily see what I am doing.  All in all a very nice arrangement. Needless to say, I am really excited to get started in this new program!

     I also want to eventua…

     One of my galleries decided to move to a new town.  It took them several months to find a suitable location and then move all the artwork.  Actually there was much more work involved than I had thought possible.  Frank Gromling, the gallery owner, also took the opportunity to add several features to the new space.  He added a frame shop, an area to hold art classes, and also a nice viewing room for the possible clients to see the artwork in a quiet and private setting.

     Of course, the new showroom is outstanding and he had room to add more artists as well.  His vision was wonderful and the final result is beautiful.  There was an open house on the evening of August 24th and the turnout was remarkable!  It was so crowded that it was hard to move around, and that's a good thing.  I managed to get a few photos for you to see, but I must go back to get nice photos of the area when not crowded for you to see the g…

     I recently posted on the two types of color wheel.  It is very important to learn how to use a color wheel in order to be proficient in mixing our colors as we paint.  Many top artists work with a limited palette.  The purpose is that when we use just a few colors and mix our paints, everything coordinates and there is harmony in our paintings, and it also saves money!  Some artists work with as few as four colors, others use eight, and then, there are those who use a lot of colors, choosing to purchase the colors already mixed to save time and perhaps out of fear of getting the wrong color if they try mixing.

     I have been studying Betty Edwards book, "COLOR, A Course in Mastering the Art of Mixing Colors".  In it she states the importance of memorizing the color wheel.  Then keeping it close by as we paint for quick referral.  She has a doctorate in art and teaches in a California college, so if we …

     My husband and I recently returned from a vacation to the mountains.  Having grown up in West Virginia, I was thrilled to be going back to my "roots".  We stayed for a week in Snowshoe, WV with average temperatures in the low 70's. And being right on top of the mountain, the sunrises and sunsets were gorgeous! It was such a nice break from our Florida heat.  We also took the opportunity to drive the Blue Ridge Parkway; so beautiful, even in the rain and fog.  In fact, those elements just added to the beauty and mystery of the mountains.  We saw deer galore, and one mama had twins.

     On the trip I took a LOT of photos for reference material.  And, I decided that I want to start painting some mountains!  Of course,  I will have to find a place to sell them.  Florida is NOT the market for them.  So, along with creating artwork, I must represent my artwork by promoting it to dealers.


     We are familiar with the traditional Triadic color wheel, with the blocks of colors and all the arrows to help you set up color schemes, tints and shades, etc.  the color wheel concept was invented by Sir Issac Newton in 1666 and the color wheel was printed 100 years later. It is something that I have alway kept close by when painting.

     However,  I have recently discovered another type of color wheel that is much more accurate and can make our paintings sing with color!  It is called the MUNSELL color wheel. Created by Albert Munsell in 1898, it is actually a color sphere that simultaneously shows all the properties of color: value (light/dark), hue (especially warm'cool), and intensity (bright/dull). Looking totally different from the Triadic one, it requires a little learning in how to use it, but we had to learn the Triadic wheel also.

     I learned about the Munsel wheel while reading a book called…

      Many artists will not start painting until they first do thumbnail sketches for that painting.  Just what is a thumbnail sketch and why do we take the time to do them?

      Thumbnails, as they are typically called, are small sketches of the prospective painting done on paper in order to design the composition. They are also used to determine the values in the painting. If you draw out your scene and it doesn't look like you had imagined, then it's easy to change by simply sketching another one. Often on an 8 x 11 piece of paper an artist can have between 4 - 8 sketches of the scene, each can have only slightly differences, but even small changes can make it look completely different. It is a good way to ensure that your paintings have a strong composition and the light and dark areas are balanced before you even put paint on the canvas. Thus the artist greatly reduces the risk of getting frustrated with their…

     This may be jumping the gun a little, but suddenly after 49 years, I get a friend request on one of the social media sites.  I immediately recognized the name of one of my best friends from high school!  Of course, I agreed to accept the request and she then told me that they are getting the 50th high school reunion plans started for next year.  We got into a nice conversation about where I now lived and what I was doing with my life while commenting that several had mentioned my artwork in our high school yearbook.  Do they even print those anymore?

     I told her that I was now a professional artist and she got excited.  Turns out the class is sponsoring a silent auction during the reunion to support scholarship funds for the school. She then asked if I would be willing to donate a small painting to the auction. Kentucky is a different art world from Florida in that I paint mostly Fl scenes!  But I told …

     There are many opinions on how to price your artwork. Now, I have read these opinions and heard others give their opinions, and they vary widely.  But when we think about it for awhile, we come to the conclusion that what really matters is...Are we making any sales???

     Most artists agree that prices are established by two factors, how good you are and how well known you are.  Of course, better known artists can charge more for their work than lesser known, that's a given.  But how are prices set?

     First of all, paintings are priced by the square inch.  Knowledge of a little math helps here.  An 8 x 10, for instance is 80 square inches. 5 x 7 is 35 sq. inches, and so on.  I read in a book that paintings should be priced between $2 and $5 per square inch.  HOWEVER,  I know very few artists that can command that money.  The person who wrote that doesn't even price the artwork in his gallery at thos…

     It is often said that to improve in our art skills we must keep at it.  In other words, we must paint and paint a lot!  I have always been told to paint as often as possible, meaning every day, even if for only an hour.  The reason is that constant and continual work improves our work quickly.  Just as children go to school on a daily basis, we are going to art school daily when we paint every day.

     Take advantage of painting CD's that allow you to do a painting following step-by-step directions.  This is the same as going to school or doing a workshop, but for a much lower price.  The advantage here is that you can do it over and over getting better each time, and learning more each time as well.  These can be purchased on the artist's website and perhaps on eBay too.  I have quite a few in my bookcase that I have purchased and recorded from educational shows.  The recorded ones cannot be sold, but they can …

     My new gallery REMBRANTZ  here in St. Augustine, sent a nice write-up into a local paper announcing my representation and advertising my work for the First Friday Art Walk.  It prompted a nice response.  (photo of article is below)

     One response in particular was from a friend that I hadn't seen in a while.  Turns out a family member is getting a kidney transplant and a silent auction is being held to help defray the costs of the donor. She asked if I'd be willing to donate a painting for the auction.  I quickly agreed and delivered it the same day.  I asked her to keep me posted as to how it goes and she promised she would.

   This is the painting that I donated and it sold!  I'm glad to have been able to give to a good cause. Hopefully all will go well for my friend and her family.  Below is a photo of the fundraiser flyer and the newspaper article by REMBRANTZ Gallery.


     I just went to a workshop held by Mary Hubley, a well known artist here in St. Augustine, and her focus was on the value system.  My darkest and lightest values are easy for me, but my midtones, or mid values, needed work.  Yes, even professionals need ongoing education.

     It was a full day of work for 10 people.  We spent the morning reviewing worksheets with information on the value system, and how to paint shadows to achieve the most effect.  We were given a photo and questions to guide us.  Most interesting was the difference between warm and cool shadows and values.

                                                         PAINTING SHADOWS

                           Looking at the photo above answer these questions:

1. What is the primary light source?                   Answer:  The sun coming from the left-Warm light

2.  What is the secondary light source?              Answer:  The sky in general-Cool light

3. …

     You are in the middle of an exciting painting and OOPS you get a tear in the canvas!  That is exactly what happened to me one day.  I was really upset as it was a good painting!  The tear was not in the middle of the canvas, but was at least an inch long.  I didn't know what to do.

     It just so happened that I was attending a workshop with a well-known artist.  I happened to mention it to him and asked him if it could be repaired.  He told me to bring it in and he'd teach me how to do it. It turned out to be an easy process, thank goodness!  The nice part about this repair is that if it is done correctly, it is permanent!

So, here is the way to do it:

FIRST:  Cut a piece of canvas that is larger than the hole (1/2" all around is good). You can purchase folded canvas, but it can be expensive. However, you may have an old stretched canvas you can cut up, or just purchase a cheaper stretched canvas to keep…

     My husband and I were "sitting" at the St. Augustine Beach Art Studio and Gallery this month when a gentleman walked in.  That is not uncommon,  what is uncommon was that he asked if there was an artist available to do some sketches for him.  I said that I was the artist and he then told me what he had in mind. 

     It turns out he is engaged to be married and he wanted to do something very romantic for his fiance'.  He described three dates in particular that he wanted depicted and combined into one painting.  He asked for a piece of paper to show me his idea and then asked me to do a couple sketches on canvas for him to then paint.  I agreed, but we had no available canvas, so I sent him to the nearest art store while I played with some ideas on paper.  When he returned with the canvas, I said I'd have the sketches ready for him to pick up by closing time.

     The three memorable dates include…

     At the stores we find many types of varnish, both finishing spray and liquid brush-on varnish.  What should you use and how?   The liquid brush-on goes further, but personally, I prefer the sprays.  The reason being that I have found the brush-on will chip or peel.  Perhaps I am putting it on too thick, perhaps not.  I just prefer to use spray.

     That said,  there are many varieties of spray varnish.  How is each used?  To make it easier for you to decide, I picked up a KRYLON flyer at our local Hobby Lobby art/craft store and took a photo of it for you to see.  I have typed in the explanations as the lettering is too small for you to read in a photo.  Hopefully this will help you to know which will work best for your situation.

Finishing sprays protect from the elements of nature.  Most have UV protection, plus they help prevent smearing, dirt marks and scratches.  Most importantly, they really make a…

     A good friend got hold of me a few weeks ago asking if I would teach an art class at her home similar to "Painting With a  Twist"  I agreed and she got 17 people together for the fun!  Held on her lanai, with wonderful goodies to eat, lots of laughter, and paint on our hands and faces, everyone managed to finish and went home with a painting of their own.  It was so much fun that she has asked me to do it again in another town with more of her friends!

     I may just decide to do more of this type of thing in the future!

     I got a couple photos of the smiles and paintings to share with you.