Monday, April 30, 2012

My week of nervous apprehension about my subject for Quick Draw was realized when I did my practice
painting on Thursday. Despite my working as quickly as possible I was still about 5 minutes over the time on only one hour for the painting. It crossed my mind that I could still change my subject but that was highly impractical since so much effort had gone into my first choice. So I rehearsed the painting once more in my mind, streamlined the techniques,premixed the paints and hoped for the best.
Sat. came and I packed all my gear into the van: overhead mirror, lights, extension cord, one hour kitchen timer and all the familiar watercolor tools.
I set up my table and overhead mirror with everything ready and at hand. The starting whistle blew and I began to paint following the steps as I had planned them. My assistant, Teresa, handled the hair dryer, drying areas for me as I moved through the washes. I had planned to do the painting in three time periods so from time to time I would ask Teresa how much time I had left. I was so efficient that I found that I was ahead of schedule and allowed my self to relax slightly although I was so focused that I didn't hear or see the audience only moving from palette to paper with the brush. To my surprise I was finished several minutes ahead of time! It was exhilarating, nerve racking and fun.
Teresa prepared the painting for the auction as I packed up all the gear. I had drawn the 5th spot in the auction of the paintings. You don't want to be first and you don't want to be last. With a sell-out crowd of about 250 people spirits were high as the professional auctioneer took the mike. My painting was held up as the auctioneer began his pitch. Nine thousand...eleven hundred..and finally two thousand dollars. It was the third highest bid for the night!
I'll be back next year!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Blog #1. Being of the generation of a 'certain age I have come slowly to the computer and digital age. But with the help of children and spouse here I am with a web site and a BLOG. So instead of sharing my successes and challenges with only my family and friends I will now be communicating with you and the world.

Next weekend on April 28, I will participate in Quick Draw in Waynesville for my (and their) 11th year. In this event we artists create a piece of art in just one hour then prepare it for the live auction. The guests drink, eat and watch the artists work. I have had the good fortune to have had the highest bid seven out of ten years. The funds raised go to art scholarships and art supplies for teachers. It is not a casual undertaking for me as I try to do a complex painting in the given time. With much mental planning ahead then a practise run through I have succeeded so far. Wish me well!
Much of the past three years my energies have gone into paintings for a up-coming one woman show at the North Carolina Arboretum, Asheville. Five years ago I was granted a show as the first exhibit in the then new Baker center exhibition hall with 86 pieces of art. I will have almost that number again at the opening of the Jan.2013 show. With state funding cuts into staff and programs at the Arboretum I have sought to raise money for the Arboretum by looking for painting sponsors for individual paintings in the show. I am pleased to say that many people and businesses have agreed to participate but will welcome any newcomers. Just ask me.
A number of these new paintings have been exhibited in competitions statewide, regionally and nationally. Several have taken awards in the Watercolor Society of NC the most recent being, 1st place in the juried annual exhibit ion in Cary in the Fall of 1011. Another, is presently in Los Angles in the National Watercolor Society all member show. A third has been accepted in the Southern Watercolor Society show to open this summer. I love the competition, rejoice when accepted and look to do better when rejected.
Stay tuned in as I work my way through matting and framing those 80 plus pieces of art and my progress in future endeavors.