Posts Tagged ‘Dick Blicks’


Fish Creek Plein Air

September 12, 2018

Weekend Getaway – Watercolor on Arches 140# CP – 7″ x 11″


Habored at Fish Creek – Watercolor on Arches 140# CP – 11″ x 7″

Had a great time leading a Watercolor workshop at the Peninsula School of Art. Fun and challenging group of artists. What a joy!

The workshop completed, we  decided to venture into Fish Creek. I took time to paint while my wife relaxed (which is to say, she read a little bit, walked into town to check out a couple shops, got some lunch for us, etc.). The dog slept. I decided to try painting on a new paper. New to me that is. It is paper from Dick Blick’s. In this small size, I found that it acted very similar to Arches. Working watercolor en plein air is an extra challenge. Although I managed my time and paint application well, there is still that test of patience when having to wait for the paper to dry adequately before applying more intense colors into key spots.


Autumn Woods 1

February 29, 2012

Autumn Woods 1, Oil on Canvas 16" x 20"

February 29. An event that occurs once every four years. Too tempting. I couldn’t resist that desire to ensure that I entered a post on this date. Okay, so maybe it sounds as though I have nothing better to do. WRONG.

Spent a chunk of Monday delivering watercolor paintings to the Norris Cultural Center for an exhibition in St. Charles Illinois. Tuesday, it was delivery of a couple oil paintings for the exhibition at The Next Picture Show in Dixon Illinois. So that equates to some lost painting time.

Classes are in full swing. My first group will be throwing and splashing a lot of paint over the next few weeks, to learn about techniques, before we start creating actual images. My second level is gaining confidence as they work through our chart paintings and understanding the connection between my weekly demonstrations and the paintings which they created during our first session. Third level is busy working projects in conjunction with the second level and helping to keep a level of humor and fun that ensures that the class time flies by.

I have my ideas in place for the demonstrations which I will be conducting this weekend for Dillman’s Creative Arts. Now I have to get all the prep work in place. We are only allotted an hour to conduct our demos, so it is important to plan it right. Watercolor Friday night and Oil on Saturday so that makes for a lot more prep work. Friday’s demo is at Dick Blicks, an art supply store, or to this artist – a toy store. Either way, I am certain to stop and purchase a few necessary, or possibly unnecessary, supplies before leaving. Saturday’s demo is at the Addison Village Hall. The best part about Saturday is going to be following the demo. Across the street from the village hall is a Portillo’s – a restaurant with really good food (not necessarily heart healthy – but very tasty).

Autumn Woods 1 was created from a photo taken a couple autumns ago. I like the design and anticipate creating this in a larger size.


Illinois Watercolor Society Demo

October 3, 2011

Starting my painting demonstration .

Completing the initial outline of my painting.

The completed watercolor painting.

I had the opportunity to demonstrate my watercolor techniques for the Illinois Watercolor Society on Saturday October 1. The demonstration was scheduled to run from 12:00 – 2:00 pm at the Dick Blicks Art Supply in Wheaton.

Unfortunately, it was a beautiful early fall day. I say unfortunate because I would have preferred it be rainy and/or a few weeks later. But this was a beautiful early autumn day. The sun was bright. It was warm. No rain in sight. The colors of the landscape were awesome. Painting opportunities were everywhere I looked. The hour and a half drive to Wheaton was distracting. Rather than the expressway, I took two lane roads for as long as I could. Scene after scene was screaming to be painted. I would have loved to be working my oils to capture the October sunlight hitting the early color changes on the landscape. But duty and obligation called.

I arrived early at Dick Blicks early and set up my gear. I took a few minutes to tour the store. What a great cache of art supplies. If you are looking to find art supplies in the western suburbs of Chicago, this is the place to be.

As my students know, for me to complete a 14″ x 21″ watercolor painting in less than two hours is a stretch. I worked out a fairly easy composition and created a small, thumbnail painting to give me the best chance of completing, or nearly completing, a watercolor scene within the two hour time frame.

After the IWS president made a few announcements to the two dozen or so attendees, I dove into the painting. I attempted to discuss my techniques and art philosophies while I painted but found that, at times, I was so into my painting that I was not speaking about the process, or anything else (again, something which my students know is a stretch for me). Thank goodness, the attendees and the IWS president would occasionally ask a question to bring me back to the presentation.

I had paint splashing all over the place, brushes flying around the table. It was a great aerobic routine. About all that I was missing was some music to help my tempo.

About an hour into the demonstration, we gave the attendees an opportunity to stretch their legs, come up to the table,  check out my equipment and supplies, ask additional questions. I could not help myself, I kept painting. With about ten minutes to go, I decided to charge into a few details to help pull the painting together and at least give it a “nearly” complete  feeling.

All things considered, not a bad way to spend a Saturday afternoon. A nice group of people, a great facility (sorry about all the paint on the floor), a chance to spend a day painting, even if not, en plein air.