Wisconsin artist and writer J. Carolyn Liedtke was born and raised in the Chicago area, studied fine arts at the School of the Art Institute, the American Academy of Art and Oakton Community College. After some fifty years painting and drawing at home and abroad, she has written an e-book about her plein air watercolor techniques which is suitable for both beginning and “seasoned” artists. Entitled Watercolor Journeys, it includes not just suggestions, anecdotes and examples of painting from life, but also marketing advice and information about using digital images along with plein air paintings. The book is 120 pages and is available as either a CD or a download.
“Beginning artists will learn more from painting landscapes, figures or still lifes from the real thing than they will ever learn from books or classes. Experienced artists will find new inspiration in nature, and will end up with a series of paintings that can be the story of their lives.”
William Jameson has been a painter for more than twenty five years. After studying with Frank Rampola at the Ringling School of Art in Florida, Jameson continued his studies while teaching landscape painting and life drawing as a graduate assistant at the Instituto Allende in San Miguel de Allende in Mexico.
This year, he is offering six workshops, both at home (in North Carolina) and abroad (Italy and the Bahamas). Students of all levels from absolute beginner to the accomplished and advanced will receive one to one instruction in oil, watercolor, or acrylic and pen and ink sketching.
“There will be six hours of instruction each painting day at sites I have carefully selected for their architectural interest or appealing landscapes. Each day will include demonstrations, critiques and help with photography for use in painting your own work of art.”
Canadian painter Robert Genn is strongly influenced by the Group of Seven. He is known for his genre subjects of Canada’s West Coast, but has also traveled widely in the U.S. and Europe. In 1995, he walked the Robert Louis Stevenson Trail in central France, a journey of over 100 miles, painting the same scenes that Stevenson had portrayed in 1878. He retraced the steps of Henry Bartlett, an English adventurer, artist and topographer, who travelled from Halifax to Niagara Falls via the St. Lawrence River 1839, painting and sketching en route.
So where does he find time to do all the writing? He runs the Painter’s Keys website, which includes his bi-weekly newsletter (and follow-up comments from artist), art quotes, events calendars, and art directory, and he has written In Praise of Painting and Love Letters to Art which are collector’s items, and a smaller book, The Dreamway (posted on his website).
Texas-based landscape artist Julie Davis took her first art class five years ago after a providential encounter with a plein air painter and teacher. She quickly discovered her passion for outdoor painting, and values painting as a daily exercise to further her technical growth as an artist.
“Raised in the open spaces of West Texas, I developed a love of nature and a desire to explore the land at at young age. Plein air painting has brought together so many of my interests, from the compositional aspects of drawing and photography, to the simple ability to tromp around outside and chase nature’s beauty. The excitement of composing a painting outdoors energizes me.”
Trees continue to play a prominent role in Davises’ work. “I am fascinated by their forms; the expression of each is individual. Translating and sharing these quiet figures is a pleasure.” Davises’ dedicated study of trees came from frustration with rendering them well. “If you are weak in an area, tackle it head-on. Study it, and study it, and work on it until you are satisfied. That problem may end up being your favorite part of painting someday.”
Davises’ work is available at Davis Gallery (no relation) in Austin, Texas; small works are available through her blog at jdavisart.blogspot.com. She lives in Austin with her husband, Ben, and their three daughters.
In addition to her blog, she has a Facebook page.