These paintings are from last week’s Watercolor and Drawing class at the Senior Center. This was the sixth day for the Thursday morning class, and the class felt confident that they were on their way to a pretty good painting. Their work shows strong values and composition.
My painting of trees at the Senior Center to demonstrate layering and value
Our work “in progress” with underpainting a neighborhood scene, echoing colors, dark against light, and variety of values and greens
Fabric painting at Ecumenical Towers
Here’s the Ecumenical Towers Art Club painting on fabric to make pillows or wall hangings. Some members didn’t own a sewing machine to finish their pillows, so the others offered to sew for them.
We’ve been building community through art including painting, jewelry making, mixed media, journals, poems and music.
Making a floorcloth with a roller, stamp, printing, etc.
These photos are from the floorcloth workshop at Hen & Chicks Studio this past Saturday. The painted canvas can not only make a floorcloth but also pillows, placemats, chair covers, table runners, journal covers, etc. We apply a base coat, mark the hem and sew, begin second background or layering (by masking out, stencils, stamps, sponges, direct brush work, wet-in-wet techniques to name a few), and have fun experimenting. Finally a protective coating is applied and a rubber backing is sewn on the back to prevent slipping.
The workshop has inspired me to add a splash of color in my home! My next project is to make canvas slip covers for my small sofa and chair using this process. You can find more pictures from the workshop on Heidi’s blog:
It is always a pleasure to stop by Hen & Chicks, check on the door room dividers I painted and see what creative projects are going on, maybe even spend the night.
Dorothy showing off her floorcloth, using stamps and sealed with Polycrylic®, a clear protective water-based finish
Hen & Chicks owner Heidi showing off her floorcloth, using sketches from her Art Journal
Class members at The Center and their artwork
Here’s my winter Watercolor and Drawing class at The Center in Iowa City, admiring their work on the 8th week. Several of them were taking a painting class for the first time, and they were amazed looking at the progress in each other’s work.
Update: Spring classes are now in progress, and there are some openings in the evening session. Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to join us! See the Classes and Events page for details.
Iowa Watercolor Society
Winter 2013–2014 newsletter
(cover art by Ken Harskamp;
click image to visit IWS website)
The Iowa Watercolor Society’s Winter 2013–2014 newsletter includes an item about my Assisi pilgrimage and paintings, along with other watercolorists’ artwork, ideas, and articles on technique, and news about IWS events. You can download a copy from the Newsletters page of the IWS website.
As the newsletter mentions, I’m planning a trip to Rouen, France later this year (update: mid-September to mid-October 2014), to immerse myself in the culture and to paint. I’d like to have a few people join me for about 10 days during that time, to paint en plein air at nearby sites, including the Rouen Cathedral. Send me an email (email@example.com) if you’re interested!
Six journal makers joined in
These photos are from a recent journal-making workshop in a private home, where we used an artful meditation process to create 8-page pop-up journals on “Painting the Inward Journey.” We focused on our Treasure, Daring the dark (Sister Moon), Creativity meditation (with Brother Sun), and our Transformation into the light.
Even though I was leading the journal making, what a gift they all were to me as I learned how to celebrate our oneness. I could feel the Spirit move through these delightful people.
A page out of a meditation journal
Getting into the 3D!
Cathedral of San Rufino in Assisi
Another scene from the trip to Assisi — this painting shows us outside the Cathedral of San Rufino, where Francis and Clare and several other Brothers were baptized. This was the only baptismal font in Assisi until 1924. I was baptized while we were there, as were all the Pilgrims in our group; it was very meaningful for me as sort of a new beginning in my spiritual life.
Clare’s family may have lived next door to the cathedral, on the left. She worshiped there and heard Francis preach, and on Palm Sunday of 1212 she was inspired to leave home and journey to Porziuncola where she dedicated herself to a religious life.
My Christmas tree this year was made from painted slumped acrylic, shown below left with some of the crèche figures. St. Francis is credited with starting the tradition of the Nativity scene in Europe, portraying the birth of Jesus Christ using living people and animals for the first time in western Christianity. In 1223 he had the people of Greccio, Italy come up the mountain to a cave, carrying torches to light the way, to see the manger scene illustrating Jesus’s birth while Francis preached.
Below right, the evergreen tree is going back into the Christmas bag to come out next time with more animals I hope.
Christmas tree and crèche before Jesus arrived (I gave some of the animals to my grandchildren)
The crèche figures lend a hand in packing up the Christmas tree into the bag
With Louise O’Donnell
at the Maquoketa Art Experience
It was a cold wintry night on December 13th for the Artist Opening of my show with Louise O’Donnell at the Maquoketa Art Experience. Thanks to David Voy for this photo — you can visit David’s blog for more photos and a video walk-through of the exhibit (update: January 11 was the last day of the exhibit).
Artist Rose Frantzen, a cousin of Louise, came to the opening and afterward we visited her studio in a high-ceilinged old building with artwork all around. She was working on a beautiful large canvas, and I was so inspired to go home and start work on a full sheet!