August 31, 2011

"Well Worth Waiting for-"

 I had 2 weekends of great pastel time this past month. The first was of course being a participant in the Mile High Invitational  for pastels here in Denver. The judge as I mentioned before was Richard McKinley. If you are a pastelists and ever have the chance to take a workshop from Richard I highly recommend you do. I was unable to get in as there was quite a long waiting list. I did however go at 4:30 PM on the evening of the show opening to hear Richard  talk about the pastels he had selected for the show. I truly enjoyed his comments and the manner of respect he showed for the variety of ways the artists expressed themselves with pastels. I asked him when he was through talking to the group to talk to me about my two pastels which he had selected. His comments were thoughtful and affirming.
"The Banana Seller"
The above pastel was the second one of my pastels in the Mile High Invitational. If you live in Denver I recommend this show, it is at the Curtis Arts and Humanities Gallery and is open Mondays through Fridays.
The quality of the work is high and the styles are diverse. If you would like to learn more about Richard McKinley please look at the article "Pastel Pointers" which is located in my blog  list on the sidebar. If you would like to see his work it can be found at
The exhibit was sponsored by the Colorado Pastel Society and they did a very professional job. If you would like to know more about the Colorado Pastel Society you can find out more at its website;
Now for the second week of  pastel adventures in my next post.

August 16, 2011

Pastel Exhibition Anticipation

I had two paintings selected from 200 pastel paintings by the nationally known pastelist Richard McKinley , to be included in an Intertnational Pastel Exhibition. "Flower Thoughts", and "Banana Seller" will be on exhibit at the "Mile High International Exhibition" sponsored by the Colorado Pastel Society, August 20,2011.  That's coming up and soon, this Friday! Here's a preview-

"Flower Thoughts" 17"x 23"
I think it's really an honor to be included with all the other pastelist's that have been selected by Richard McKinley. (*1) This is a special collection of paintings from artists around the country and showcases the best in contemporary art in the pastel medium.
Both of  my paintings which were selected are from my "Guatemalan Suite". If you have been following this blog you know I have been influenced by my volunteer experiences in Guatemala. The above pastel is based on the flower sellers I saw on the cathedral steps at the Chichiconstenango Sunday Market, on the first Sunday of Lent. I will show you the second pastel in a later post.

The Exhibition is open to the public and can be seen at the Curtis Arts and Humanities Center, 349 East Orchard Rd, Greenwood Village Colorado Mondays through Fridays from 10 - 4. Admission is free and the art is available for purchase. The Exhibition begins with an Awards Ceremony on Saturday August 20, 2011,from 5:30 to 7:30 PM. The exhibit is available for public viewing until September 15.

Do stop on in, I would love to see you and based on the beautiful pieces I saw when I took my art work in, I know you are in for a treat.
*1-- Check out Richard McKinley's art blog "Pastel Pointers" on my side bar of this blog. He always has interesting observations and ideas.

August 7, 2011

Studio Voyeur

I know I am a voyeur - I.E. observer, investigator of - other artist STUDIOS. I confess I have studio -envy. In early July I got to visit the studio of LaVonne Tarbox-Crone,

I first met LaVonne in Guatemala. She and I worked as volunteers on the culinary crew of the Cascade Medical Team. That is we chopped and prepared dinners for the Medical team from primarily the Portland and Eugene, Oregon area. LaVonne is one terrific chopper. She also is an upbeat personality who is up for a a challenge. On those rare moments of time off at our Lake Atitlan location she could be found with sketchbook in hand creating quick water color sketches. If you would like to see her finished studio pieces definitely check out her website.  LaVonne is an accomplished water colorist and artist teacher. I got to check out  her home base as I said in July.
LaVonne says she lives "in a bouquet"! Indeed she does, she is an accomplished gardener as well as artist. Check it out!

The garden pulls you out into its center whether you are inside or out on the terrace. Her  studio/workshop/great room peers into her garden.

Take a trip to LaVonne's website and look at her art work it is a trip well worth taking.

August 1, 2011

Simplicity - Structure

Out on the southern edge of Denver there is a beautiful iconic building.

St Philip in the Field, Episcopal Church
7 miles west of castle Rock and 5 miles south of Sedalia

It was built as a house of prayer in 1872 by residents of what was known then as the community of West Plum Creek Valley. My friend Suzanne introduced me to this beautiful little building in June. I vowed then to return and paint it. I got to do this last week. Suzanne came with me bringing her lawn chair and summer read while I pushed pastels around on Wallis paper.
I plan to come back in different seasons to study this building and catch its form in the light of different seasons. It also sits on a ridge which looks out toward Pikes Peak, and oh, an old cemetery surrounds it.
As we left the property we noticed this silhouette on the edge of the cemetery. On investigation we learned it was homage to a jazz loving musician, a cool metal bass viol. It spoke well of the singular, creative and individualistic people who lived, worked and made a simply elegant place to think about life, nature and time.
Ah also some of the best tamales I've had since my favorites from an Arroyo Seco store in Taos can be found in Sedalia. A frozen dozen will go too fast!


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