Watercolor on Canvas Board

I've been painting on Arches cold press or rough 300# papers since 1990. I love it. That said, when I saw Fredrix canvas boards, I was tempted. How would the paints flow on this linen surface? Could I frame it without glass?

The Produce Aisle
16" X 20"
$295 (unframed)

I chose a rather ambitious and atypical subject for my first painting on this new to me product. I found the darkest darks hard to achieve, but being able to lift the paint back off was a fair trade for that problem. On paper, it would have been necessary to mask off the roots or carefully paint around them.

With this canvas board, I was able to paint the solid color of the shadow and then after it dried, I went back in and lifted the paint off. I was very pleased with this effect and when I have an image that this would work particularly well with I may choose to use canvas again.

Granulation and wet on wet techniques still work fairly well on the canvas.

I have sprayed the finished product with several coats of Liquitex Archival UV Protectant Varnish.(Matte). I am planning to frame it without glass.

Do you paint with watercolors on canvas? Leave your experience in the comments. I would love to hear what you have to say.

Wine Tasting Trip Memories

"Napa Riverfront"

It is our anniversary month around here, so what would make a good subject to paint? How about a scene from the vacation that we took to celebrate our 20th year of marriage?! It was such a fun trip! For once, my husband made ALL of the plans; each time he consulted with me, I would say, "Don't ask my opinion, surprise me." We stayed in a charming bed and breakfast, ate at one of Iron Chef Morimoto's restaurants and spent a day in a Packard limo visiting three vineyards (Frank Family, Bremer & Keever) and having a picnic lunch on Deer Creek. I'll never forget it!

I took the photo that I used to paint this photo from one of the bridges crossing the river on our walk to the Oxbow Market. What a great suggestion that was! It was definitely worth a visit. We had lunch at the Hog Island Oyster Company. (I don't remember what I had; I don't eat raw oysters.) Dwight fell in love with their "hog wash."

This is my second painting from that trip. My first, I titled Old Bike in Bloom and it was based on a photo I took on the top of a hill at Keever.

"Old Bike in Bloom"
18" X 24"


Contest? Why not?

26" X 18"

Audi of Arlington (VA) is holding a Grand Opening Art Showcase at their new building on Columbia Pike. The invitation to participate was extended to the students at the Art Institute of Washington and to the Arlington Artists Alliance, of which I am a member. The AAA received the invitation at a rather late date, January 24, but I decided that I should go for it anyway. The prize money is quite enticing and I always love a challenge.

As I understand it, up to 30 of the online submissions will be asked to display their work in the showroom and customers will then be given the opportunity to vote for their favorite. Five prizes will be awarded. Granted, I do not have thousands of local friends that will be willing to go and talk to the salespeople in order to vote for my artwork, but it would be great if I managed to get into the top 30 works. (I'll begin pleading with local friends to help me out at that point.)

If you happen to own an Audi and are interested in purchasing the painting, there is no mention in the Call for Entry that the dealership will be purchasing the piece. Clear instructions are given about picking the artwork up on February 16, so express your interest and I will contact you after that date.

UPDATE: My work tied for first place in the competition!


Free Art, Would You Like Some?

Have you heard of Free Art Friday? There may be a group near you. FAF is a worldwide movement to give away artwork in public places, started by My Dog Sighs in Bristol, UK. (I might have a heart attack if I came across one of his cans!!)  In August, I decided to start a Free Art Friday Group in Northern Virginia. (DC has a group, but sadly, I don't get there all that often.)

This was my first art drop. I like to post a picture of where I left it as a clue. Of course, when I started we/I had no followers, so  there was no real reason do it, except to give future participants the idea. I sometimes post a photo of the artwork by itself:

My Free Art Friday pieces are a little more street art-like than other things I do. I took a few things to the group in Albuquerque, including a "crossing guard" sculpture that just happened to end up with a real crossing guard. Hmmmm. 

The group in Albuquerque is flourishing in part because of the enthusiasm of Stephanie Galloway.

We had coffee and I learned that she just happened to grow up as the neighbor of another friend of mine that I met in 2009 or so. Crazy, small world...

Back in NoVA (Northern Virginia, if you haven't spent time here), I continued dropping pieces over the fall:

Along the way, Jessica Kallista started "dropping art" and others here and there. Bryan Jernigan has been consistent lately, while I have not. It's great to see something happen each week. Anyone is welcomed to participate. Sometimes we hear from the person who finds it. More often than not, we don't, but that is okay. It adds to the mystery!

There is a group in Atlanta, if you live there. There are no groups in the state of Alabama, at least on the FAF list. I would love to see one in Birmingham, my friends. ;)