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2011  Blog
began March 2007

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To see watercolors created by my friends in Taos last Summer

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Bud's Demo (5/30):
            Yesterday was Bud Edmonson's demo at the WFWS exhibit.  Bud is well known for his landscapes.  He has a great reputation in New Mexico.  

Bud's Demo

Moved Bird Bath
Demos At WFWS (5/29):
            Today, Bud Edmondson does his demo at the WFWS exhibit.  Yesterday, Tricia Love did her demo on painting reflections.  I ran the projector for Tricia's demo. You learn a lot watching another watercolor artist put a brush to paper.

Tricia Love's Demo

            When we went to Santa Fe to see the Stan Herd movie, we stopped first at the Flee Market.  We picked up a replacement basin for our bird bath.  Got to remember to turn this new basin upside down in the winter so it does not freeze an crack.  We moved the bird bath over to the spot where we took out a large Indian Hawthorn plant that our winter killed.

Self Portrait
Getting Ready For Taos (5/27):
            I've stretched several sheets of watercolor paper, dug out old mats, etc - getting my supplies ready for Taos.  It will feel good spending a whole week concentrating on painting.  Then, of course, there is the great food at the Sagebrush Inn and so many old friends to meet again.  I leave for Taos on the morning of June 11th.  
          For now, I've got flowers to plant and a big WFWS watercolor show to take down. There are still 57 large frames to sell.  Seems like too few artists paint a full sheet.  The show ends on June 5th and we take the paintings out of frames the next day.
           Below are two small watercolors (16 x 20) that I dropped off for exhibit at the Friday Painters exhibition at the Unitarian Church.  

Friday Painters Exhibit
Busy, Busy, Busy (5/23):
            I spent most of the weekend doing a powerpoint (128 images) for the Docent Recognition Luncheon today, as well as putting together the June issue of Brushstrokes for the watercolor society.  I did find some time to help cut back several plants and a tree that the winter was not very kind to.  Frani has been very patient with my schedule - even making Tacos the last couple of days to make life easier.  Soon, I'll pack up for my drive to Taos for an intensive week of painting.

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"Rose" Finished
Watercolor Finished (5/21):
            Yesterday morning, I finished my watercolor of a "Rose" on a full sheet of hand made paper.  I had lightly coated the paper with gesso first.  I plan to float the painting, inside a mat, allowing the deckle edges to show.  I think I'm going to like painting on the gessoed surface.

Rose - Step by Step
Refreshing Rain Yesterday (5/20):
            Albuquerque had a refreshing rain yesterday morning as I sat the WFWS exhibit. People visiting the show even had their umbrellas out. We got a total of .05 inches yesterday bringing our yearly total up to .19 inches. Refreshing yes - but, we are still below 1/5 of an inch of moisture in almost 5 months so far this year.
          After sitting the exhibit, I dropped off three watercolors for the upcoming Art In The School Art Auction to be held on June 10th. This will be our second annual art sale to raise funds to support the student art programs. People who attend this sale can go home with some great original art at unbelievably low prices. Don't miss this great opportunity to take home some real art for your home.


the movie
Earthwork (5/19):
             OPENING May 27the and 28th at "The Screen" in Santa Fe
ARTIST STAN HERD will answer questions at the opening.

            EARTHWORK is the true story of real-life crop artist Stan Herd (played by Oscar nominee and Spirit Award Winner for WINTER'S BONE John Hawkes, in his first starring role), told through a single episode of his life.

           In 1994, Stan traveled from Kansas to New York City and risked everything to create a massive environmental artwork on land owned by Donald Trump. The multi-acre piece was made from soil, rock, plants and vegetation near an underground railway tunnel. Over the months it took to complete the earthwork, Stan dealt with the difficulties of bringing his unique, rural art form to an urban canvas and the many costs exacted upon his life. In an effort to show his unique perspective to a larger audience, Stan unexpectedly encountered the true meaning of his art and it's ultimate, lasting rewards.

           Shot almost entirely in rural Kansas, EARTHWORK is director Chris Ordal's feature film debut. Ordal, a University of Kansas alum, was taken by Stan Herd's dedication to his temporary art and found it the perfect story to tell through film, a permanent art form. "It was important to me that my first feature capture a story that needed to be told via the cinema. Stan Herd's art is temporary, eventually returning to the earth after it has lived its life. EARTHWORK is an attempt to share the beauty and truth that Stan creates with an audience through a medium that can last forever. Stan has to get people into a helicopter or a tall building in order for them to see his work, so getting his art on the big screen finally allows audiences to experience his art and discover his incredible story." The filmmakers were determined to exemplify the spirit of Stan Herd throughout production, and thanks to an amazing and supportive crew, EARTHWORK was a production as "green" as the story it told.
Wednesday Balloons (5/18):
             Balloons were in the Albuquerque skies this morning.  Barking dogs will always let us know when there are balloons overhead.


Wednesday Morning Balloons
Watercolor Workshop (5/17):
             As part of our WFWS 36 activities, I conducted a watercolor workshop for 5th graders at the Fine Arts building.  The students were able to paint surrounded by all the beautiful watercolors at our exhibit. The photos I posted on the web do not show the students faces because I do not have release forms from their parents.


Among the Blossoms
Blossom and Poppies (5/15):
             This morning I took photos of Blossom out among the flowers in our back yard.  Later, I went to the Fair Grounds to see Sandy Humphries do her watercolor demo.  While there, I dropped off most of the supplies I'll need for the workshop I'm doing with 5th graders on Tuesday.

Sandy's Demo
Tearing Mountains (5/14):
             I'm getting materials ready for a hands on workshop with 5th graders on Tuesday. We are going to paint in the mist of  the WFWS exhibit.  I did the same workshop for New Mexico art teachers last fall in Ruidoso:

            This is just one of the activities we are doing as part of the 36 annual WFWS exhibitition. Yesterday, Carol Carpenter did her demo at the Fine Arts Building. Today, Sandy Humpries is doing a demo at 1:00 pm. We plan to have demos by artists every Saturday and Sunday for the run of the show.

Carol Carpenter Demo

Progress So Far
Friday The 13th (5/13):
            I think I'm going to like painting on gesso coated paper.  I like the texture I'm getting. I don't know if it is the gesso or the handmade paper is creating the effect - perhaps it's both. When finished, I believe I'll float this painting with the deckle edges showing inside of a mat. It will require a large frame.  This morning, I was painting with my Friday friends at the Unitarian church.
            Taking a break from painting, I went by the exhibit at the fair grounds.  Five of the WFWS paintings have sold so far.  I have an additional 45 requests to buy the frames when we take the show down.  The frames look great - I'm sure I'll have requests to buy all of the frames before the exhibit ends in June.  When ever a painting sells the frame goes with it.

First Poppy This Year
Getting Back To Painting (5/12):
            I'm trying something different.  I coated a full sheet of handmade paper with a light coat of gesso.  I hope it will take 2 or 3 layers of watercolor.  The handmade paper is touchy and must be handled gently.  Perhaps the gesso will give me some latitude.

Gesso Rose
May Roses (5/11):
            We actually found time to walk our usual 3 miles the last couple of days.  We walk early in the day before the winds pick up.  Roses are blooming in most yards now.  I love mine and photograph them to use in paintings later.  Below are photos of my roses that I posted on facebook.

From Our Backyard

Me Shooting Pics
of almost
Stretching Paper (5/10):
            With most WFWS activities behind me - I took time to soak and stretch my watercolor paper for new paintings.  I soak 140 lb Arches rough in our hot tub for 25 to 30 minutes.  Then I staple it around a sheet of gatorboard.  As it drys, the paper shrinks tight.  I love the surface - it's like painting on a drum.

Stretched Arches
WFWS Events Wrapping Up (5/7):
            It's been a whirlwind weekend.  Our Thursday tram ride with dinner at the top of the mountain was a great experience.  I'm told the artist at our "Artist's Brunch", on Friday morning, with Dale Laitinen was a real hit.  I was in our delegate meeting at the same time. The Awards Banquet was well attended followed by the public opening of the exhibition last night. Everyone needs a big pat on the back for a job well done.  Today, many of us went to Santa Fe on the Rail Runner.  It was a relaxing and delightful day. Tomorrow we say good bye at breakfast before rides to the airport.  


Dale Laitinen
Watercolor Demo (5/3):
            Dale Laitinen did a fantastic demo at the May NMWS meeting.  We had a good turnout to learn how Dale approaches a landscape.  His colors are so fresh and clear.  We selected the right combination of juror and workshop instructor this time for sure.  Also, at this month's meeting, we elected next years officers.  I'm going to be president starting in June.  I want to build upon the successes we have had this year with Western Federation this year.  

May NMWS Meeting

Laitinen Demo
May Roses (5/2):
            May should bring a burst of Roses in my back yard.  They love the cool nights here and as long as they get a bit of water from our drip system they seem happy.

Gathering Of Nations:
            On Saturday, we went to the annual Gathering Of Nations at the Pit here in Albuquerque.  It's a yearly Pow Wow of all the indigenous tribes in North America.  I posted a few of the 450 photos I took on my facebook page.

Gathering Of Nations
WFWS - Underway Soon (5/1):
           Delegates and artists begin to arrive, on Thursday, from the other ten societies for this years Western Federation of Watercolor Societies Annual Exhibition (WFWS).  This will be the 36th annual WFWS exhibit.  It opens with a gala awards banquet on May 6th here in Albuquerque. Each year a different society hosts this exhibition in rotation.

           Our juror,
Dale Laitinen is also doing a 4 day watercolor workshop just before the WFWS exhibition opens. From May 2nd through the 5th he will be teaching his workshop at the Hispanic Arts building (Expo New Mexico) here in Albuquerque. Any member of one of the societies can take the four day workshop for $250.00. Also during the run of the exhibit, May 6th till June 5th, several artists will be giving free demos. I personally plan to teach a 2 hour watercolor workshop for 5th graders as well. It's going the be a very busy schedule for the month.

click here for registration form   >>>

Registration Form

Tricia Love
Abq Journal Article:
            This Sunday, May 1st, the Albuquerque Journal ran a great article on the upcoming WFWS exhibition.  A big thank you to Dave Collis who is doing publicity for the WFWS show.  The article was written by Journal Staff Writer Aurelio Sanchez. The article features three New Mexico artists; Tricia Love, Robert Wirz and Bob Gutchen.

click on photo to read entire article

Robert Wirz

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