Uncategorized

I’m enjoying the ferry ride back from Madeline Island after a wonderful week of teaching.  This Wisconsin island is part of the Apostle Islands in Lake Superior.  It’s a wonderful destination to escape into the world of art!  The Madeline Island School of Art (MISA) has two other locations, Tucson and Santa Fe.  Maybe one day I’ll see you there.

This was my last workshop for the year and with COVID/Delta still looming I won’t be teaching until next March (vaxed and masked).  Until then enjoy your personal creative activities, visit a museum or enjoy the many art videos online.    For me, its’ time to paint.  There are a few big competition deadlines coming up fast.

Keep masked and stay well.  Kathleen

 

 

We can love Art, have a true passion for painting, feel our Muse stirring….and still not quite get in the studio to put the brush to the paper.  What’s that about?!  For one thing, it’s summer, and we want to enjoy it.  With isolation lifting a bit I get to see some family and dear friends (like Carol, who also is my web manager).  Then there is my garden and flowers and a few workshops.  It all nourishes my soul and everyone needs that.

But, nothing gets accomplished if we don’t keep at it!  The discipline of committing to daily Art is very important.  For me, my latest joy is just hanging out with my watercolor sketchbook (140# watercolor paper).  I outline an 8×8” square and do something.  Anything!  I can capture an idea, paint my favorite poppy that just bloomed, do a fine drawing or explore new techniques and materials.  Find your joy!  Kathleen

(I’m not a slave to painting but I sure do something for my art-growth everyday:  reading, visiting an exhibition, watching a video, or photograph new ideas with new perspectives.)

 

The last week of June is Marquette’s (Michigan) Art Week with music, poetry, dance, children’s activities and, of course, visual arts.  Included are exhibitions, open studios and marvelous galleries.  On the last day is the Fresh Coast Plein Air Festival competition and reception.  Artists come into Marquette to paint on location any where they choose.  I chose this very happy decorated public walkway that wanders down to Lake Superior.

Kathleen Conover painting at Plein Air event in Marquette, MI

These lanterns are wonderful, almost “magical”.  Painting underneath them as they swayed in the breeze, sun dappled from light behind tree leaves, I could smell the freshness of our clean Lake Superior, and this painting almost “painted itself”.

This is the pure Joy of Painting!       At the end of the day I was thrilled that my painting, “Color of Summer” had won First Prize and sold immediately!  The Marquette Tourism Planners have asked  to use it on next year’s publications so we just might see it again!

                                                                                             

With many photos taken, I am currently working on another painting from that day…keeping the “Magic Alive”.

Joyfully submitted, Kathleen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After three months of preparation my first on-line workshop came to fruition.  The result was a one week class with the New Mexico Watercolor Society (NMWS) it included pre-recorded videos plus Zoom “attendance” from Florida to New Mexico.  It took vigilant coordination between New Mexico Watercolor Society president, Barbara McGuire, 20 enthusiastic artists and myself to create a wonderfully successful workshop.  The virtual New Mexico public demonstration the night before was a lot of fun also.  There was plenty of interest from the audience and questions about my experimental techniques.  As an artist I love sharing my artistic passion!  As an instructor I am rewarded by inspiring and encouraging other artists.  Here is the finished product called “Dawning”.  You can see the beginning of this piece in last months blog.   This painting will be offered for sale on my website soon.

Dawning

 

Now I am migrating home to Michigan in a vintage 1984 Couchman motorhome.  It will take us about three weeks!  Definitely an adventure, but we get to stop and see gorgeous state parks along the way.  Here I am at Falls Creek Falls, Tennessee.  It’s an almost 300 feet drop and the tallest waterfall in the Eastern U.S.   Kathleen

Migration North

Hello dear Friends, April is the wonderful month of Easter, renewal and Spring!  With so many people getting vaccinations, it is also a month of hope and looking forward to in person hugs from loved ones, soon.

My focus continues to be preparing for my first virtual workshop in May for the New Mexico Watercolor Society.  It has been a steep learning curve as I tried new technical skills and now, 30 videos later, we are almost there.  I am also preparing for them a “Zoom” public demonstration.  I will show how I design, develop and finish one of my wild starts.  Here is the photo of a messy, experimental start (wet paper, plastic on top and lots of watercolor dripped under the plastic).  I am having so much fun painting and “making a mess”!    And, if my muse stays with me, it just might be successful.  I’ll show the finished painting in next month’s Blog!  Until then, enjoy our new Spring, be inspired and do something FUN!  Kathleen

Kathleen painting in her Florida studio. What does she see deep within those artist’s eyes?

Hello dear friends,

It’s been a good month for me since my last blog.  So many family and friends are getting their vaccinations.  Hopefully you are too.   I have had both of mine and feel like I’m wearing a “Superman Cape” along with my mask!

Along with lots of painting, I’m tackling the steep learning curve of  virtual teaching.  Working with a few incredible folks from the New Mexico Watercolor Society (NMWS).  We are learning together.  The results of our hard work will be my first on-line class the first week of May.

I’m thrilled and honored with the news that my painting “Searching for Zen” won the Board of Directors Award (5th place) at the International Watercolor Exhibition in Houston, Texas.  I’m enjoying working in this “Searching Series” and I’m not done yet!

Creatively yours, Kathleen

 

Searching for Zen

 

 

 

Hello my friends in art,

There is no limit to the beautiful Flora and Fauna in Florida, therefore no limit to my inspiration for painting, just not enough hours in the day.  It is a challenge to designate specific painting time for exploring new inspirations.   Last month I focused on my entry for the international competition of the Transparent Watercolor Society of America (TWSA) called “Searching 21”, which you see below.  It was very time consuming but I am pleased with the results.

 

With February at hand, I painted Roses!  Two of these paintings were featured in the newsletter this month.  You can find them on this website in “Hot off the Easel”.  They are both paintings of the Peace Rose, my favorite.   Beginning this week I am painting the beautiful white flowered “Bird of Paradise”,  just for the love of painting.  This “play time” is my teacher in what makes me a better painter.   I hope you will browse through my galleries and enjoy the various styles and images.

 

If you are looking for an inspiring exhibition to view, please consider the 12th Annual International Watermedia Signature Exhibition at the Fallbrook Art Center, Fallbrook, CA.   A painting from my “Searching” series is on exhibit there.

The new year is here and with it comes hope of better times ahead.  I made it to Florida and thankfully have now had the COVID Vaccine.  I look forward to a time when we can all have the vaccine and slowly be together again.   In the meantime, my focus is on “transparency” as I paint a competition piece for the Transparent Watercolor Society (TWSA).  It is consuming all my time and energy.  My goal is always to focus on becoming a better painter.  Being consistent, painting every day is helping accomplish that goal.    Best wishes to all of you in accomplishing your goals in 2021!  Kathleen

A view from my Studio

Autumn, besides beautiful Fall colors, preparation for winter and Holiday anticipation is the season for art competitions.  I will be taking some of my “creative time” and applying it to the computer to navigate the tech world of ever changing on-line entering!  This includes resizing images, filling out forms and mustering patience to wait for results.

There is a very inspiring kickstart to my entering that I am thrilled to share with you.  I just received word from the New England Watercolor Society (NEWS): “Congratulations, you have won the Memorial Award for Innovation in Art” – $500 for ‘Lines of Change‘ featured above.  I’m especially honored to have received this personal critique from the judge, international master Paul Jackson: “Adventurous use of line, playing off the knots of phone and electric cable make this painting energetic and inviting.  The hint of a narrative, limited palette and clever use of detail show the artist’s mastery of medium”.

I’ll be going to the studio today with an extra bounce in my step!

Stay safe, be well and Art often, my friends!  Whatever your creative medium may be from cooking to gardening to making gifts, we’ll get through this together!  Giving thanks for all of you, Kathleen

It’s time to harvest the last of my lovely “crops”, clean up and mulch the garden for winter and enjoy the last of the blooming flora.  I’ve enjoyed my garden more this summer than ever: digging, planting, growing, being inspired and having the time to paint it!  In these crazy times it’s wonderful to be connected to something “real”!  It doesn’t get much more real for me than working in the dirt and, today, eating the last of my home grown peaches.  However, I didn’t paint the peaches, I painted the flora and ate the peaches!  Until next month, stay safe and well my friends.  Kathleen