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

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