Monday, April 14, 2014


We sponsored a workshop by Carol Carter on April 4, 5, and 6.

WOW!  What a wonderful experience.  If you ever get a chance to take a workshop with Carol, DO IT!

We worked hard, laughed hard and got great results!  And - we worked up until 3:45 on Day 3 and we were begging for a few more minutes!  When was the last time you attended a workshop that went until the very last minute?  Usually by 3 p.m. it's a ghost town - even the instructor will have packed up!

Here are links to two other blogs with great posts about this workshop:
Rhonda Carpenter - Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Souvenirs
Gaylynn Robinson

And here are some photos from the workshop - enjoy!

Carol starting us off on Day 1.

20 artists - 16 GCWS members, 4 non-members including 3 out-of-towners.
It was a packed house and we worked hard!

End of Day 1.  (Couldn't fit them all into the frame!)

End of Day 2 - we hung them better today!

Day 3 - at 4 p.m.!
This stunning iris was painted by our President using Carol's techniques.
Can you say "Gorgeous"!!!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014


How long have you been a member of the GCWS and why did you join?
Member since the beginning (I missed the first meeting as I was out of town). I joined because I wanted to learn how to paint watercolors and this evolved into my being accepted as an equal.

Have you held any positions with the GCWS; if so, what positions?
No positions as I am not in town on a regular basis.  
What are some of your artistic achievements?
I have been in some local art shows and because of what the members of GCWS have done for me I now teach workshops in local art centers, at lakeside Ohio, at Hobby Lobby, and on cruise ships.

Describe your usual procedures for creating a painting.
Most of my paintings are inspired by places I have visited while traveling. Other paintings are derived from imagination and talking with others. I enjoy Plein Air painting.

How long have you been painting?
All my life I have been drawing and painting. I have been exposed to art in the various museums in New York City while growing up.

In what medium, other than watercolor or acrylic, do you work?
These are the only media I use.

Where do you get your inspiration for paintings?
Everywhere I go I see potential paintings. I am usually intrigued by the play of lights and darks on various surfaces.  I like to explore the various shapes I see around me and mentally move natural elements into pleasing compositions. This is also the main thing I attempt to convey to my students.

Are you a teacher?
Yes, I teach watercolor. I especially enjoy introducing those who have never painted before to the techniques and processes of creating a painting.
Where do you see yourself in the future?  (i.e., is painting a hobby; will you enter shows; do you see yourself teaching?)
I would like to be able to share my paintings with other people. I am not a professional artist but I do gain a lot of excitement whenever someone likes my art enough to buy one. I would also like to be able to join with other artists to have painting sessions and discuss our art, but this far I have been unsuccessful in finding like minded artists.

Your website:  in progress
Your blog spot:  not sure how to do this

Is there anything else you would like for us to know about you and your art?
I have covered all I know regarding my artistic efforts but I would like to add that I imagine a finished painting and would like to be able to translate this onto my paper. This is the number one thing that the GCWS has done for me via the critique sessions at each meeting. I encourage everyone to take part in this. I do this for all my students during every class.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

MINUTES - March 5, 2014

Greater Cincinnati Watercolor Society
March 5, 2014 Meeting/Program
Ken Landen Buck
Harrah!  After being cancelled in both January and February because of snow and bad weather, the GCWS was able to meet on Wednesday, March 5.  Outgoing president Deb Ward opened the meeting with a ring of the bell.  She encouraged us with one of her quotes – “Your mind is like a parachute;  it only works when open.”  We were encouraged along these same lines by our Program Guest – try new things; try new mediums; go places; see new things;  look at objects differently; stir up your creative juices!

First, some sad news – the deaths of Louise Allen’s husband, and also John Howe, and Homer Hacker.

Membership dues are “due”.  Please get them to Sally, our treasurer, as soon as possible so that your name can be included in the Membership Booklet.  Members will have access to many great programs and learning sessions, and fun;  and you can be a part of it.

One of these learning sessions will be a Pouring Workshop on April 26 & 27th, given by Deb Ward, in our regular meeting place, at $120.  You can pour watercolors, ink, or fluid acrylics.  Deb will provide the subject for Saturday.

Announcements of various shows, workshops, and displays:  Evendale Fine Arts Show;  workshop by Yuki Hall at the Womens’ Art Club June 6-8th ($190);  Barb Smucker’s series – 4 different teachers – started March 1, Centennial Barn.  Marilyn Bishop will teach W/C on rice paper on Mar 13.  Each class is $30.  There is an online class (Life Books 2013) with a different teacher each week.  Aureal Williams is taking this - $115)

We will be having just one Exhibit this year.  It will be held at the Womens’ Art Center (The Barn), in Mariemont in August (hang, 13th; take down 26th).     You may want to get those juices flowing, and start to prepare for the paintings you will enter.  More info and details next month.

Deb Ward thanked the outgoing Officers – Kathy Kuyper, Secretary, and Rhonda Carpenter, Program Director & Workshop Director.  We all truly appreciate all that they have done to make our group successful.

She also thanked those Officers who have agreed to stay on in their current capacity;  Sally Wester, Treasurer;  Jane Hittinger & Deb, Membership;  Joan Miley, Facilities & Hospitality; and Deb, Blog.

New Officers were introduced:  President – Marilyn Bishop;  Secretary – Joyce Grothaus;  Exhibit Chair – Carol McAfee; Workshop Director – Jean Vance.  You will notice that we do not have a Program Director.  Rhonda Carpenter has prepared ahead programs until July.  This is an important position, and we need someone to stand up.  You will be given much help, but we need a coordinator.  How about it?

Rhonda then thanked our outgoing president, Deb Ward, for all her hard work and leadership for the past two years.  She pointed out that Deb not only presided at the meetings, but, at various times, was on Membership, Program Chair for 3 years, and Exhibit Chair for several shows.  In addition to the contributions she has made to the GCWS, Deb has won many Awards, is a Signature member of many W/C Societies; her work has been published in Acrylic Works, and is now in Watercolor Artist magazine.  Deb, we do appreciate you!  She was presented with a gift certificate for Daniel Smith, and everyone celebrated with a beautiful cake from Graeter’s.
Chocolate cake, raspberry filling - Graeter's - what more is there to say!

Looks like I need a piece of cake . . . .!
Thanks to everyone who has helped with the GCWS the past 2 years!

Rhonda then talked about our upcoming programs.  In April, we will have a program on Crystal and Glass in Watercolor;  in May, Watercolor and Pastel, and in June, we will have Carol Carter (cancelled in Feb) – Powerful, Evocative Paintings.

New president Marilyn Bishop asked members to stay after the Demo, to have a brain-storming session (details below) about possible activities for the GCWS for the coming year.  Many members stayed and presented quite a range of ideas and good suggestions.  The Officers then discussed all of the ideas at an after-meeting – to try to make some of these things happen in the coming year.  Thanks to those who contributed.

Guest Speaker/Demonstrator for March
Ken Landon Buck – From Dark to Light:  Mixed Media that Works
Ken began by painting dark, vibrant colors over the black ink he had ready,
and painting some of the white areas of the painting.

Ken gradually began building up the colors in paint . . . .

. . . and then with colored pencils.

Ken is a Northern KY artist; an instructor with the Cincinnati Art Academy and also teaches at his Essex Studio; has won many awards, as well as being an entertaining speaker.

Ken believes that your drawing is “key”.  If your drawing is good, your painting will have a better chance to be good.  For this demonstration, he wanted some very, very dark areas, so he drew with permanent waterproof India Ink first.  He completed that part the night before because it takes so long to dry. 
Adding colored pencils in colors . . . 

. . . rolling the pencil to add color . . . 

. . . finishing with white colored pencil.

For the demo, he first did a fast wash, then painted over the ink, and on the available white paper, with his watercolors, letting them mix on the paper.  He used purple, brown, and blue to get his darkest darks, (does not use black paint) which he likes to do first.  He then works with the medium values, and to the light. 

After drying the w/c with a hair dryer, he used colored pencils (good, expensive ones) to add more color, particularly the lighter ones.  He also uses the pencils to soften some of the hard edges.  The pencil work was done with the “side” of the lead, in a rolling motion.  He recommended using the same pencil color in a number of places in your painting.  His finished painting was a magnificent buffalo!

Ken gave us many thoughts, ideas, tips, and entertaining stories.  Some of them:
To get inspiration, wander around and look for new things, in new ways.  Attend art shows; go to museums; take photos; do new activities.  Collect a “chest” of images to paint, so you won’t ever have painter’s “block”.
Only use your own photos for reference, unless you have permission from the photographer.  Keep your photos you painted from to prove you didn’t copy someone else’s work.
Ken uses at least 140 lb Arches paper; uses it as is; loves 300 lb.
He normally paints at an angle, on an easel, so he can step back to look.  Lets his paints mix on the paper; uses a rag to soak up, rather than paper towel.
Paint what you love; paint for yourself.  If it moves just one person, it’s a good painting. 
It’s only a piece of paper; there’s always the other side.  If someone criticizes your painting, consider the source.  If you value the person’s opinion, maybe try their suggestion.  If not, ignore.
If you have a painting you don’t like, don’t throw it away until you have tried all kinds of creative things with it, ink, acrylic, different colors, etc.
If a painting is “irritating” you, go get a cup of coffee, look at it again.  See how to fix it?  If not, put it aside until tomorrow or the next day.

On entering Art Shows – you can only hand in your best work and “let it go”.  Yours may or may not be the best, but the judge picks the winner.

The criteria for today’s shows seems to be Good Composition, Rich Color, and Unusual Subject Matter.

Ken loves to draw and paint, particularly to music.  Music gives you inspiration, loosens your hands and your creativity.   Enjoy your painting!
Ken with his finished painting.

The completed water buffalo painting.

Submitted by Joyce Grothaus, Secretary, GCWS,  March 2014
Photos Joyce Grothaus, Deb Ward 

Sunday, February 9, 2014


Red Paisley Scarf 
How long have you been a member of the GCWS and why did you join?
I have been a member for probably 9 or 10 years.  I joined GCWS after hearing about it from several painting friends.
Japanese Tea
Have you held any positions with the GCWS; if so, what positions?
Almost as soon as I joined, I was nominated for Program Chair and I held that position for about 3 years, perhaps longer, until someone else volunteered to take over.  Since then I have worked on membership (I keep the membership book up to date and have it printed annually; did send out reminder notices until Rhonda began doing that; send out dues forms, etc.).  I update the blog, and have been show chair for 2 or 3 shows.   I’m currently the President (since 2012) until March when my term is up.  In other words, I’ve been pretty active in the organization!
What are some of your artistic achievements?
My work has been included in a number of state and national shows (please see the list below) but I’m most excited about having a painting (Ying Yang Mums - see below) accepted into the National Watercolor Society 2012 Annual Show.  Not only was that painting accepted into the NWS traveling show through the end of December, 2013, it was also made into the postcard for that exhibition! 
Ying Yang Mums

I’m also very excited that my work will be in two books to be released in 2014 and in the Watercolor Artist Magazine in the April issue. 
Red Zinger
2013 Pennsylvania Watercolor Society 34th Annual International Juried Exhibition - “Dragon Mum” (Watercolor)
2013 ViewPoint 45 – “Dragon Tea” (Watercolor)
2013 Georgia Watercolor Society National Show – “Dragon Mums” (Watercolor)
2012 National Watercolor Society 92nd Annual Open Exhibition, Traveling Show and Post Card Image - “Ying Yang Mums” (Watercolor)
2012 ViewPoint 44 – “Flights of Fancy” (Watercolor)
2012 Georgia Watercolor Society National Show – “Farmall” (Fluid Acrylic)
2011 Georgia Watercolor Society National Show – “Industrial Revolution” (Watercolor)
2010 Georgia Watercolor Society National Show – “Blue Pitcher and Pears on Lace” (Fluid Acrylic) – Sam Flax Award
2009 Richeson75:  Still Life & Floral – “Sunlit Pears 2” (Casein), “Apples on Lace” (Casein) and “Grandpa’s Shaving Mug with Roses” (Casein)
2007 ViewPoint -  “Sunlit Pears” (Casein)
2002 ViewPoint – “Line O’ Limos” (Watercolor) – Watercolor Magic magazine Award
Dragon Teapot
2012 Georgia Watercolor Society Juried Members    Show – “Red Zinger” (Watercolor) 3rd Place Award
2013 Watercolor Society of Indiana Annual Juried Exhibit – “Flights of Fancy” (Watercolor) - Award
2013 Ohio Watercolor Society 36th Annual Juried Exhibition – “Red Paisley Scarf” (Watercolor) – Awarded Signature Status
2012 Georgia Watercolor Society Juried Members    Show – “Flights of Fancy” (Watercolor)
2012 Ohio Watercolor Society 35th Annual Juried     Exhibition – “Oriental Roses” (Fluid Acrylic)
2010 Georgia Watercolor Society Member Show –    “Agave” (Watercolor)
2009 Georgia Watercolor Society Member Show –    “Roses on Grandma’s Quilt” (Watercolor)
Dragon Mum
2014 Watermedia Showcase, Watercolor Artist Magazine
  April, 2014 Issue
2014 AcrylicWorks:  Best of Acrylic (Published 2014)
2014 The Artistic touch 6 (Published 2014)
2009  Best of America Watermedia Artists, Vol. II,
   Kennedy Publishing, 2009

Describe your usual procedures for creating a painting.
I used to have a pretty standard way of starting a painting, but lately it seems to change from painting to painting. 
USUALLY (nothing is ever “always” in watercolor!) after transferring my drawing to the paper, I will wet the paper all over and begin painting or dripping light washes of color across the paper.  After those washes dry, I begin building up layers (glazing), working toward the darks and the details.
However, sometimes I will work a painting section by section or item by item - it just depends. 
Industrial Revolution
How long have you been painting?
Since the mid-1990s
Tea With Bee Zee
In what medium, other than watercolor or acrylic, do you work?
Acrylic, fluid acrylic and casein.  I have also recently begun to do some pastels.
Flights of Fancy
Where do you get your inspiration for paintings?
As far as inspiration, sometimes I will see something that just speaks to me and take photos of that subject, but I usually do set ups with my fabrics and objects that I either have inherited from my mother and grandmother, or which I have accumulated over the years.
My forte is still life and florals, and I usually work in a series, which helps me to know what I will be painting next.  Currently I am working on a series based on oriental themed fabrics which I have been collecting over the years, or which have been given to me.  I am also known for my lace paintings.
Shaker Bottles
Are you a teacher?
I have been teaching since 2004 and currently give classes in my home and for the Cincinnati Recreation Commission at Dunham (2 or 3 sessions).  
This year I will be holding a couple of workshops here at the Art Club building and hope that some of the GCWS members will be able to attend them.
I also conduct 4 evening programs throughout the year for the Hansen Center in Batesville, Indiana.
Teapot and Orbs on Pink Silk

Where do you see yourself in the future?  (i.e., is painting a hobby; will you enter shows; do you see yourself teaching?)
I would like to see myself progressing in art competitions – there are a few shows that I aspire to be in but have not “made the grade” yet!  I would like to keep teaching, and would hope that my classes will grow.  I view painting as a part of my life, and as long as I am able to do so, I hope to keep painting for many more years!
Oriental Roses
Your website:
Your blog spot:
Is there anything else you would like for us to know about you and your art?
I love teaching, especially adult beginners!

Please take a look at my blog for more information about me and my paintings. 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014



Due to predicted weather conditions, we are once again cancelling our meeting.

Hope to see you all in March!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014


Due to the extreme cold weather


Hope to see you all in February!

Saturday, December 21, 2013


Let's get this party started!
We had a great turn out for our December meeting which was an art party and sale.

Each year we have a members' sale where members can bring in "slightly used" or new art items for sale.  We thought it would be a good idea to have the sale in December, when we are all in a buying mood, thinking of Christmas gifts for ourselves or other artists we know.  It was a success!  We had a really good turn out.  In addition to our members' sale, we had another sale of Mary Marxen's art supplies.

We played a game that helped break the ice and allowed us to get to know each other better.  The photo below shows some of the members signing each other's game sheets.

At prior meetings we had sign up sheets for food - and boy oh boy - did we have food!  We filled the long table in the kitchen with "entree" and appetizer items - but later when I went to check it was all gone - just a few crumbs remained!  We put desserts on the table in the main room and I just couldn't resist, shall we say, 3 or maybe 4 (or, gee, maybe more!) of them.

All in all, we had a wonderful morning of fund raising, fun and games, great food and camaraderie!

Games, food and fun!
Text and photos submitted by Deb Ward