Monday, December 12, 2016


President Kathy Lang called the meeting to order with Greetings of Merry Christmas! She said we would have a rather short meeting today so that we could get on with the real business of the day — the Party! It was very nice to see some members who had not come for a while, attend today. Members also voiced some concerns about some whom we have not heard from lately. Please let us know how you are doing.

We had one guest - Jennie Kim - recently moved here from Minnesota. She found us online, and was brave enough to come into a roomful of strangers to see what we are about. We certainly hope Jennie felt like we were no longer strangers after enjoying the meeting and party. Jennie has been painting for about ten years, using both acrylic and watercolor. She does beautiful work.

There will be no Watercolor Society meetings in January or February - due to worry about the weather, except the Leadership Teams will have a meeting - Feb. 8 to plan for the coming year. Tom Schroeder has agreed to serve as Secretary, and the members enthusiastically voted him into office.

Treasurer, Carol Fencl gave her report. Our finances are good, but since our account has dropped below a certain level, we will have to pay a checkbook fee for the next couple of months. We did spend more than we took in lately, but when everyone pays their yearly dues in March, hopefully this will be rectified. We do have some fundraisers today - profits from the items on the front tables will be given directly to the Club. Members have also brought in their personal items to be sold; those profits go to the member.

Deb Ward, Blog Chair, encouraged everyone to send in any interesting information about you or your work - to be put on the Blog - to keep it up-to-date, and interesting. We have a number of new, wonderful, members who found out about us from the Blog, and hope to attract more. It is also possible to be a “Featured Artist” by sending her a photo of a few of your paintings, and filling out an “information about you” form. Go on the Blog and read some of these interesting features.

There are many good DVDs in the Club Library. All you need to do in order to borrow one or two, is to sign them out. When you return them the next month, please sign them in. If you have any at home, please remember to bring them next time.

Next year’s Annual Exhibit Chair, Mary Fleischmann reminded us that she will be needing lots of help, both before, and during, next August’s Show. Whether you have a particular talent that you could use, or whether you have a particular challenge you would like to face, we want you to volunteer.

Robert Thornburgh, one of our newer members, wanted everyone to know that he truly appreciates all the help, support, and encouragement that he has received from members of the GCWS. He feels that he has been able to progress much more quickly in his endeavors than he thought possible. He said he values everyone’s knowledge and friendship.

Members also acknowledged and appreciated Marilyn Bishop’s efforts in beginning and supporting for all these years, the Greater Cincinnati Watercolor Society!

Members who were not able to attend this month’s meeting/Party really missed an amazing diversity of delicious food and snacks (some nutritious and some not :) )

We’ll see everybody on the first Wednesday of March!

Submitted by Joyce Grothaus, outgoing Secretary, Greater Cincinnati Watercolor Society, December, 2016

Monday, November 21, 2016


Bob Thornburgh
How long have you been a member of the GCWS and why did you join?
I have been a member of the GCWS for two months.  I joined because I recently retired from government service in Washington D.C and moved to the Cincinnati area.  I used to teach art and thought it would be fun to reengage in the art community. I truly have a passion for painting.  
Going For The Gold
What are some of your artistic achievements?  
My work is included in several prominent collections including Whirlpool Corporation, Marion Power Shovel, Wyandot Popcorn, the Cellar Memorial Art Gallery, the Law offices of Brent Harraman and former Manager of the New York Yankees, Billy Martin. I won “Best of Show for my painting “The Family Tree” from the Marion Juried Fine Arts Festival. I have received rewards and recognition in various juried art shows in the Central Ohio area.  Currently I am working on private commissions and preparing a body of work for my upcoming show in Middletown, Ohio.  
Gold Cup
Describe your usual procedures for creating a painting.
My work is a response to and an exploration of the vibrant multicultural experiences from my youth.  I grew up on the South side of Cleveland, Ohio at a time when everyone lived in ethnic neighborhoods.  The beauty and excitement of the diversity I witnessed infuse its energy into all of my expressions as an artist.
These impressions from my childhood find me consistently searching for variety and color in every corner of my life.  Reflections of these moments are at the core of my work. 
I use watercolors as the primary pathway to connect my inner life and experiences with the outer world; they provide a fluid medium that always surprises and delights during the creative process.  I don’t feel bound by convention and use multiple techniques and experimentation; even occasionally cutting into the surface of the paper.  I allow the looser nature of the paints to provide enhancement or counterbalance to the tighter elements of the work.  I love to layer the colors so that their luminescent character shines through while still allowing the viewer to see and feel the brushwork. 
While working, I am engrossed in the process.  Every brushstroke is a decision, a counterstroke, a correction or enhancement, or the start of a new visual pathway.  I want the viewer to join me on a journey to see not only what I see, but to discover some visual elements that bridge an emotional resonance with the piece.
Point Counterpoint
How long have you been painting?
I have been painting all of my life.  I painted professionally for approximately 15 years, before going to work for the Federal Government.  I took a 28 year hiatus and have re-emerged two months ago to pursue a professional career while feeding my passion to paint and create.
In what medium, other than watercolor or acrylic, do you work?
Pen and Ink.
Where do you get your inspiration for paintings?
People, places and things.  Inspiration is everywhere.
Are you a teacher?
Yes.  I taught art professionally for 17 years.
The Mayor
Where do you see yourself in the future?  (i.e., is painting a hobby; will you enter shows; do you see yourself teaching?)
I want to be in professional shows and organizations.  Ultimately I would like to see my works in institutions, galleries, museums, and collections.

Your website:
Your blog spot:

Wednesday, November 16, 2016


Nancy Neville
Claudia Taylor, Program Chair, introduced Nancy Neville, our presenter for this month. She is from Cincinnati, and studied at U.C. Nancy loves watercolor, but also paints in oils. She gives classes at the “Barn” on Mondays. She and her husband, Bruce, also an artist, travel to Michigan often to paint. One day she picks the place where they will do their “plein aire”, and next day, it is his turn. They like the spontaneity. Nancy usually uses an Arches “block” for outdoor or in-class painting, as they are easier to handle in these circumstances. She told of some interesting differences in how a female artist and a male artist work (in general). Females can usually paint a bit, throw in a load of laundry, paint, answer the phone, paint, and put away the dishes - and usually male artists concentrate completely on doing their painting.

Early on in the history of GCWS, Marilyn Bishop, president at the time, asked Nancy to be a presenter. Nancy was so proud of herself that she was able to say no - as she was extremely busy at the time. However, four days later, she was at an event with Joan Miley - who preceded to “coerce” her into the doing the workshop. Nancy also was “roped in” to teach at the Barn years ago - “just for 5 weeks” as their resident artist would be out. She has been there ever since.

As Nancy started, she said “It’s all about the Whites”. She believes that negative spaces are very important, and tries to leave quite a few in each painting. An artist wants the audience’s eye to rotate around the painting. This can be done by having “balance” in the painting, especially having some of each color in more than one place.

After one picks the subject that is to be painted, “forget” what it is, and just paint the “Shapes”. She likes to have the paints mix on the paper. She said everything doesn’t have to be totally defined. Have more detail at the edges; the mind fills in the rest. Look for “common lines” - that is, places where two shapes come together and are the same height or same direction. Change one of the shapes so they are different.

She puts out fresh paint almost every time, and doesn’t usually use masking. As we watched Nance paint, it was interesting to note that she holds the brush far away from the bristles, saying that it gives you a much lighter, looser, touch, using your whole arm. She used to always stand to paint, but now sits more often. Be sure to walk away from your painting from time to see it from a distance.

Nancy starts with the “lights”, but establishes her darkest dark fairly early on. Allow things to happen on the paper; this is the fun of watercolor! She says that watercolor is the hardest medium to work in - but it also has the most “sparkle” and “interest”. She usually paints wet on dry, but sometimes adds more paint before the first is dry.

Some important points that Nancy wanted us to take away: Limit mixing of paints on palette; let them mix on paper. After getting a good start, put your photo away and let painting guide you. Be sure to have hard edges and soft edges. Do not overwork. Slow down and take your time doing your painting.


Nancy told us that she first practiced “teaching” to her Water Spaniel. It must have worked, because she was certainly very capable of painting and teaching at the same time. Everyone enjoyed watching the beautiful “dreaded basket” (inside joke) with bittersweet branches, be created right before our eyes.
After the presentation, Nancy did some Critiques for members who brought in their almost finished paintings. All members are welcome to bring in a painting for Critique.
A "show and tell" painting from the Guy Magallanes workshop

Submitted by Joyce Grothaus, GCWS Secretary, November, 2016

Saturday, November 5, 2016


President Kathy Lang called the meeting to order. With the beautiful November day, we had a good turnout of members. Kathy told us that today’s presenter had donated a small painting to the club so that we could sell raffle chances to increase our Treasury. As it turns out, somebody pulled out Kathy’s name as the winner of the painting. (We all think it was rigged!). :) :) :) There was a small number of people who indicated that they were staying after the meeting for Open Studio. All members are welcome to participate, and pizza is served for lunch.

A guest was welcomed - Myrna Twitty, who has been taking lessons at Baker Hunt. We hope that Myrna will join the group, loving watercolor like we do. Pat Deis-Gleeson who joined us for the Oct. workshop, has become a member. Welcome, Pat.

Carol Fencl, Treasurer, gave her report. In October, we spent more money than we took in, but does not include the money from the Workshop; our finances are sound.

Lydia Rittinger, Membership, said we have one new member, Pat, and one returning member, Howard Krauss.

Some of the folks that attended the GCWS Workshop gave glowing reports of the weekend, stating how much they had learned, and how much fun we had, - and how much we all ate! Dianna Duncan, Chair of this event, did a marvelous job, had everything well planned and well prepared, and contributed more than we know to the success of the Workshop. Guy Magellanes did a great job, giving good directions, and working hard to make sure he gave everyone personal help and attention. It was absolutely fascinating to see how different all the paintings turned out. He also sent a step-by-step instruction to workshop participants’ emails, through Drop-Box.

We will need a new Workshop Chair next year, as Dianna is stepping down. A huge Thank-You to Dianna for chairing this event for the last two years.

Remember to sign out and sign in any DVDs that you borrow from the club. All members are encouraged to try some of them; they’re very helpful.

Howard Krauss - will have paintings displayed at “Memories of Oxford”, on Dec. 9, at the Oxford Community Art Center, 10 S. College St., Oxford, OH 45056.
Judy Reed - Queen City Art Club is presenting w/c by Roger Ross at Saxby’s Coffee Montgomery. Reception Nov. 12, 2016; meet the artist; exhibit until Jan. 15, 2017. 9321 Montgomery Rd.
Diana Marra - Middletown Art Center; “The Orient - Expressed”; Meet Artist Nov 17, 6-8; Exhibit Nov. 17 - Jan. 19, 2017, Middletown, OH.

For December, we will have a small meeting, and a big Party! Each member is asked to bring your favorite hors d’ouvres or snack to share. We will have some games or activities, and a white elephant sale. See details in the Dec. postcard.

Submitted by Joyce Grothaus, GCWS Secretary, November 2016

Monday, October 17, 2016


Deb Ward
Claudia Taylor, Program Chair, introduced our own Deb Ward. She has held many positions in the GCWS, including President, and at this time, is responsible for our Blog.

Back by popular demand, Deb agreed to give the Program and critique members’ paintings. Before Deb started, Claudia gave us just a partial list of Deb’s experiences and accomplishments. Deb started painting watercolors in 1995. She started teaching in 2004. She holds weekly classes in her home (in God’s country), and sometimes in other places.
Deb points out composition placement in "Blueberries and Pears"

Deb talks about her award winning painting "Silver Harvest"
Deb has won many awards, including National Shows. She is a Signature Member of OH, GA, PA, and IN Watercolor Societies; has had paintings in the Indianapolis Museum of Art, and national magazines. Deb brought in some of the books and magazines in which her paintings are shown, and also a display of her beautiful greeting cards. She has a painting in the Ohio Watercolor Society’s Show in Columbus at the Riffe Center, opening October 27, 2016.

Many members brought in one or two paintings, either finished, or almost finished, so that Deb - drawing on her experience as an instructor and nationally recognized and published artist - could guide us on ways to improve our paintings.

There was some amazing work brought in. Members truly enjoyed seeing what other people are painting. Some excellent suggestions were given - most by Deb, but sometimes from the “audience” also.
Each painting was talked about as it was placed "under the mirror" -  audience participation was welcomed.

With use of a plastic sheet and water soluble crayons, Deb made changes to help
enhance the paintings brought in for critique.
Some of the specific suggestions:
-  Use more “color” in your shadows - they are not always gray, or blue. Remember to show the light source.
-  Add a bit of color in your reflections.
-  Don’t empty your “dirty” water too soon; it might be just the perfect color that is needed to tone down something.
-  Be sure your shadows are dark enough.
-  Don’t be afraid to “scratch out” with an Xacto knife.
-  Use a piece of plastic to lay over your painting, and use a crayon, etc. to try out a different color or a darker value, etc. without messing with the painting itself.
-  Step back and take a good look at your painting from time to time.
-  Don’t be afraid to “Play/Experiment/Try Something New” — Enjoy!

Submitted by Joyce Grothaus, GCWS Secretary
Photos by Joan O'Leary

Wednesday, October 12, 2016


President Kathy Lang called the meeting to order. A new member was introduced - Robert (Bob) Thornburgh. Bob is new to the area and found us on our Blog. He used to paint and teach; has not been doing much of that lately, but is very interested in becoming involved again in the Art world. We were able to see a bit of Bob’s talent during the Program part of the meeting, and it is considerable.

There were a few people who stayed after the meeting for Open Studio. Everyone is invited to participate in this activity each month.

Announcements: Judy Reed — Queen City Art Club has an Exhibit at the Sharonville Fine Arts Center, on Reading Road, with Opening Reception on Sat., Oct. 8, and continues through October 29. Judy and Dot Burdin have paintings in the exhibit. Jo Hogan told of an Exhibit in Finneytown at the Centennial Barn on Nov. 11 and 12. Nancy Wisely - The Women’s Art Club Exhibit at the Barn, Mariemont on Friday, Oct 8.  Deb told us Carolyn Hibbard is to have a heart operation. We wish her the very best.

Awards - Tom Schroeder has been accepted into Viewpoint 48. Congratulations, Tom! His painting is entitled “Vermont Stream”. This Exhibit runs from Oct. 20-Nov 10. In the Ohio Watercolor Society Show, Tom’s painting titled “Where’s Your Child?” won the F&W Publications/OWS Choice Award.

Workshop News - Dianna Duncan has been hard at work helping attendees be ready for the October Workshop with Guy Magellanes, who is flying in from the West Coast. She held a mini workshop to help us prepare our canvas. All members who are coming to the Workshop need to have their canvas ready before the Workshop starts. Flyers were given out to those who will do their prep work at home.

Carol Fencl, Treasurer, sent word that we have sufficient money in our Treasury.

The Leadership Team will have a meeting after today’s Program in order to discuss the Budget for next year and the Team for next year. Kathy asked all members to consider running for an office - particularly, Secretary, as Joyce Grothaus - Secretary for three years, will step down next year. GCWS will also need some members to step up and take Leadership roles for specific Activities and Programs. We will also need people to “help” the Leaders. If everyone does “something”, someone will not have to do “everything”.

Submitted by Joyce Grothaus, GCWS Secretary

Friday, September 30, 2016


Among the paintings hanging at Dutch's Restaurant in Hyde Park are several charming watercolors by Member Claudia Taylor.

Claudia's charming flower "portraits" compliment a large acrylic painting.

Dutch's is a restaurant/bar/deli located at 3378 Erie Avenue - right at the corner of Erie and Marburg. Stop in for lunch or dinner and enjoy a delicious meal, glass of wine and Claudia's art!