summertimeqwaitssmHow are you doing with negative painting? Have you read and worked on it as described in the June, 2011 Technique Corner? I hope so. You use it any time you want to bring things out and forward – by painting the adjacent shapes darker. Let’s do some simple exercises to gain more confidence.

IMG_6903My life has been like a watercolor I thought today on my way to the art
class…unpredictable, colorful, full of surprises, and sometimes
uncontrollable.  But now that I am of vintage years, I love my life and
thought, gee, I am glad that the powers that be put me in the company of such an unusual person …myself!  Ever think things like that?

dorcus2Maybe you are considering entering a juried show? Or maybe you have tried, not been accepted and now feel discouraged about your progress as an artist? I would like to share some of my thoughts on the importance (?) of juried shows. When is a better time than now? I am jurying a show this coming weekend and just had a painting accepted in the NWWS Open (see below, March 23).

Dorcus Harb,  Spoof on Picasso

teachingWhile we are still on new year’s resolutions let’s talk about that “secret” some have of copying or tracing photographs in preparation for painting.

Let’s make this the first day of NO MORE tracing.You make a face and say,”But I don’t draw well enough.”  I know.  I have seen that face time and again in classes.   I have a question for you.


Ruby My Dear

After sending one on-line student to the Technique Corner to look up Helpful Hints (10/10) in answer to a question, and another student to Stretching Your Paper (6/09), I thought I would suggest a New Year’s Resolution to review the older posts.  You might focus on one a week, skipping the ones that don’t “speak to you.” But just when I thought that would be my January post, I became aware of a problem I want to share with you.

Ruby signature

I am going to go ahead and suggest that you review the older posts, finding ones you wish to study . However, I just had a phone conversation with another student…


Before the year’s end I want to share with you a gift given to my husband by Jan Politeo, this portrait of me.

Jan has been part of a winter series I have been teaching for a number of years. This group has an annual seminar on Orcas toward the end of September. When we were sharing what we had painted since the last time we were together, Jan took out two portraits. One was of me.

vs4  to  TG2_5

We have spent a lot of time this year on color.  In watercolor, after you have mastered the basic processes you spend much of the rest of your watercolor life refining your understanding of color and composition.  There is much to learn and there are always further nuances for these complicated subjects.