New page: Creating for a Cause (sticky post)

Looking for products with a purpose, or the chance to create for a cause? The new page Creating for a Cause highlights a special collection of notecards, scarves, and bags featuring images from my artwork, developed to promote awareness and to raise money for organizations working against human trafficking.

The section Help us “Create for a Cause!” tells about workshops where we make the pouches to bundle the notecards.

(This post is “stickied” to remain at the top of the blog; newer blog posts may appear below.)

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A road map for painting

Photograph of a back yard and the back of several buildings

A photo to start from

People bring in a photo to class of what they want to paint, and it can be scary to look at and try to figure out where to begin. Often a photo is way too busy. Select what’s important — what you want to say — and leave out the rest (maybe adding a few neighbors to the picture!).

We start with a black-and-white sketch, finding the big shapes first, developing a value scale and organizing so it has a focal point and story. After that we paint a small color study the same size as the sketch. Then we’re ready to enlarge and paint the final version. All of the preliminary composition work is done so we can just have fun.

Pencil sketch of house and back yard based on photo

Figuring out what to
leave in and what to add

Watercolor painting of back of a house and back yard by Jo Myers-Walker

The painting follows the “road map”
provided by the sketch and color study

Posted in Studio Snapshots

Watercolor for all seasons

Images illustrating watercolor concepts by artist Jo Myers-Walker

Some examples from day 1 of Landscape class

Watercolor sketch of sidewalk scene by Jo Myers-Walker

Composition gives the eye a path through the landscape

Despite the arctic weather we’ve been having, the new classes are going well because people are staying in and painting!

This session I divided my courses between Watercolor Landscape, and Watercolor Portrait Painting.

Pencil sketch of a young woman and selfie photo by artist Jo Myers-Walker, each with notes about proportion drawn in

Proportions illustrated on a sketch and selfie

View over the shoulder of an artist creating a watercolor portrait based on a photograph

A class member starting from a photo
to creat a watercolor portrait

Posted in Studio Snapshots

Graduation day

Jo Myers-Walker poses with physical therapists Brittany and Lori

My graduation photo. The slate reads: “Because of [Progressive Rehabilitation Associates], I can:
–Walk –Sleep –Get in/out of my car!”

Celebrating my graduation from Progressive Rehab! Physical therapists Lori and Brittany got me back on my feet after two knee surgeries, lower back and hamstring pain. They always made me feel like I could do it — it just hurts a little bit but then gets better.

This February is so much better than last year. Being able to walk to class and sit and stand when needed is awesome, I praise my body all the time. I will continue to do my exercises they taught me.

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With bells on

Group of ukulele players performs amid displays at an art show

The Johnson County Ukulele Social Club
performing last Sunday afternoon at
the East Side Artists Show and Sale

Two women dancing to ukulele music at the East Side Artists Show and Sale 2018

Dancing to the music with jingle bells, celebrating a very successful show.
We helped out Lila Mae, too!

Wishing you times of joy and celebration!

Posted in Studio Snapshots, Uncategorized

Crazy for cardinals

Postcard advertising Iowa City Eastside Artists 2018 show and sale, featuring watercolor painting of cardinal bird by Jo Myers-Walker

(click image to view larger)
The Annual Show & Sale postcard

Watercolor paintings of cardinal birds by several students in a variety of styles

A radiance of cardinals,
by watercolor class members

(Above left)  The postcard for this year’s Eastside Artists Annual Show & Sale features my cardinal painting. I sent them three to choose from, and they picked this slightly frumpy young bird with his feathers a little ruffled.

(Above right)  My watercolor students got in the spirit and painted this splendid array! According to, a group of cardinals may be called a “radiance.”

Posted in Studio Snapshots

Scarf sneak peek

Jo Myers-Walker and friend Eva at Wheatsfield Co-op in Ames, November 2018

With Eva at Wheatsfield, trying out scarves

We had a good day at Wheatsfield on Saturday! I’ve been introducing tote bags and scarves printed with my artwork, to complement the “Notecards for a cause.” Proceeds from all these items will go toward awareness of human trafficking, starting with support for Lila Mae’s House (link is to a Sioux City Journal article; note the “Ways to help” and “Signs of human trafficking” in the left-hand column).

My appreciation to Wheatsfield Co-op for providing the space; to my friend Eva for helping me unload, staff the table, and load back up again; and to everyone who stopped by! I’ll be putting more online about the scarf designs — you can see a sneak peek from the photo shoot below.

Update:  See the Creating for a Cause page to see all the scarf designs, plus notecards and bags!

Tote bag, scarf, and notecards imprinted with images of watercolor paintings by Jo Myers-Walker

Samples of the bags, scarves,
and cards

Jo Myers-Walker adjusting scarf printed with her artwork worn by model at photo shoot

Behind the scenes with a scarf
model at the photo shoot

Posted in Studio Snapshots

A larger perspective

Artist Jo Myers-Walker with stretched fabric prints and shower curtain digitally printed with images of her watercolor paintings

With friend and fellow painter Jeanette
(left) at the Bridgewater show

I had a chance to see my stretched polyester prints in a grand space when I was one of several artists featured in a show at Grand Living at Bridgewater, in Coralville. This room is an area for performances such as speakers or musicians. It sorta blew me away as to the size of the prints; in my small apartment you don’t get the same effect as when you can stand back and see what they would look like in a larger space like a lobby.

(You can also see one of my shower curtains hanging out on the display doors behind me.)

Posted in Studio Snapshots

Janet Rogers workshop

Watercolor painting of a young woman by Jo Myers-Walker

One of my paintings from the workshop

Nationally-known watercolorist Janet Rogers served as judge for this year’s Iowa Watercolor Society (IWS) Annual Exhibition, and I attended one of the workshops she taught in conjunction with the IWS annual meeting. I have been teaching and drawing from a live model for a couple of years and felt I was ready to learn more from a master figure painter like Janet. I immediately felt a kinship between her painting style and mine.

Her teaching style also felt akin to how I teach my classes. We started with drawing. Then a first wash, and let it dry; second wash, and let it dry; then finish off the painting. The drying is important to achieve a layering effect — you can’t get too impatient! I enjoyed learning from Janet, and the camaraderie of seeing my painting friends.

Painters working at a watercolor workshop led by Janet Rogers

During the watercolor workshop at La Poste,
a renovated 1914 former post office
building in Perry, Iowa

Participants at a watercolor workshop led by Janet Rogers, posed with their paintings

Workshop participants with
our artwork in front of La Poste
(Janet Rogers is at the railing at right)

Posted in Studio Snapshots

A few more at the reunion

Painted foamcore figures representing teachers to attend a high school reunion

The “teachers” visiting in my kitchen before the reunion

Foamcore cutout of teacher holding violin by Jo Myers-Walker, posed inside screen door

Konrad making himself at home

I was Vice President of my high school class in 1963, so it was about time I was on the reunion committee! With our high school days getting more distant, I brought along ten “teachers” to help stir our memories at my class reunion in Boone. The cutout figures are made of foamcore, painted with acrylic paint and some acrylic spray paint.

We could talk to the cutouts and let the images bring back old times. Once the stories started flowing, it was a riot what people remembered! Classmates have been sending me photos of the cutout teachers they took home, entering their houses, peeking out, etc. — fun stuff.

Updated to add  the maestro making himself at home in his new abode (at top right). Thanks for the picture, Marilyn M.!

High school reunion attendees posing with photo props and foamcore figure representing a teacher

The reunion committee (at left) and some more of the attendees,
posing with photo props and a photobombing “teacher”
(committee photo courtesy of Fred Westfall)

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