| 22 January, 2018 15:37
Good News! I'm pleased to announce that my pastel "Winter Solitude" was accepted into the Pastel Society of New Mexico's 26th Annual National Pastel Painting Exhibition. The exhibit will be open daily at Sorrel Sky Gallery, 125 W. Palace Avenue, Santa Fe, NM from March 2 - 31. Opening reception and awards presentation is Friday, March 2 from 5:00-7:30pm. The public is invited - so please stop by!
| 13 November, 2017 14:01
I recently took a workshop with Richard McKinley. He likes to work in a high key range and has very few dark pastels in his box. Here's a few photos from the workshop showing his watercolor underpainting and the finished studio piece.
Watercolor underpainting for the studio demo.
Finished studio demo.
This is the palette he used. He likes to work in a high key so there were very few dark pastels. Richard has the ability to talk while he demos and has so much information to share! He's a truly gifted teacher!
| 16 September, 2017 09:26
There is a new gallery section on my website called Small Works. These pieces were all done as part of a "30 paintings in 30 days challenge." Most of them are either 8" by 8" or smaller. I had a lot of fun with these during the month of August and they were done from photographs or memory. Because the intention of these pieces was to experiment, I felt free to do some color variations. Let me know what you think - and thanks for checking in!
8" x 8" Soft pastel on Paper
| 07 August, 2017 16:32
From September 2-28, I'll be participating in a show at the Placitas Community Library with five other local artists. The public reception is on September 8 from 5-7pm. The library is located at 453 NM-165, Placitas, NM 87043. Please call the library at 505-867-3355 for more information. Hope to see you at the reception!
| 24 March, 2017 15:35
The Monday Painters group that I frequently paint with has a show of 50 paintings that can be seen at St. Mark's Episcopal Church on Monday - Thursday from 9am - 2pm. I have two small plein air pieces in the show. The church is located at 431 Richmond Pl, NE, Albuquerque, NM 87106. The show will be up until the end of May. Stop by to see paintings of places in the Albuquerque area where we meet! If you're inspired to paint with us when we begin painting again in April, please let me know.
| 07 March, 2017 19:21
For the past six weeks, the Nature Artist's Guild of The Morton Arboretum has sponsored a Winter Encounter. Members were invited to submit a photo to the Guild's blog of a finished or unfinished work of art on a weekly basis. I managed to do one pastel sketch and three plein air pieces. To see my work and the work of other Guild artists go to: http://natureartistsguild.com and click on Winter Encounter. The blog also has current information on Guild events and shows.
Thanks for checking in!
| 23 February, 2017 19:34
Registration is now open for the workshop I'll be teaching at The Morton Arboretum on April 7 and 8. It's listed as: "Visiting Artist Series: Value and Color in Landscapes."
Learn why value is essential to accurately capturing a landscape. In this two-day pastel workshop, visiting artist Laverne Bohin will show you how to use the correct value and to notice the subtle shifts of value that exist in the landscape. Develop your sensitivity to a color's value so you are better able to separate it from it's hue. During the one-hour lunch break on Saturday, visit the Nature Artists' Guild Spring Exhibit in nearby Cudahy Auditorium for some inspiration.
Visit www.mortonarb.org to register or call 630-719-2468. Hope to see you there!
| 30 January, 2017 17:25
Color and Value workshop
The next workshop I'll be teaching is on April 7 and 8 at The Morton Arboretum in Lisle, IL. We will do a number of exercises exploring the relationship between color and value as it applies to landscape drawing. come with an open mind and prepare to be surprised. See the workshop page on this website for registration information.
| 24 August, 2016 22:35
Tomorrow, I'll ship three new images to Plum Bottom Pottery & Gallery in Egg Harbor, WI. "Spring Fantasy" is a combination of water color and pastel.on watercolor paper. "Summer Breeze" is soft pastel on Wallis paper. I really enjoyed that surface but it is no longer being made.
A "Familiar Friend" was inspired by a birch tree growing on Plum Bottom's property. It is an older tree and has seen better days but I love it's character. Instead of using traditional pastel paper, I brushed a pastel ground mixture onto 300 lb. cold pressed watercolor paper. When the pastel was applied to this rough surface it emphasized the brushstrokes of the dried pastel ground. This is a different direction for me. Let me know what you think of it!
All three pieces are smaller sized, matted and ready to be framed. They also can be easily shipped. Because many people like to choose the frame to complement their decor, I've been trying this format with Plum Bottom.
"A Familiar Friend", 10" x 6.5"
Hope you're enjoying the last days of summer and thanks for checking in!
| 24 June, 2016 18:04
My heartfelt thanks to all the students and administrators at the Peninsula School of Art and The Morton Arboretum. The workshops were so much fun to teach and we couldn't have asked for better weather. A rarity in the Midwest! The students at PenArt were a smart and fun group to be with. We had a great time painting on the grounds of Plum Bottom Pottery and Gallery. Thanks Chad and Anne, for allowing the students to wander the beautiful woods and prairie surrounding Plum Bottom. Plans are underway to teach at PenArt during October of 2017.
The students at the Arboretum did an awesome job learning about the various types of trees that grow on the Arboretum grounds. Then they braved the mosquitoes and curious on lookers to draw outside around the Thornhill Education Center. It is so gratifying to teach returning students! I enjoyed catching up with them and seeing the progress they have made in their pastel art. And I hope to see the new students at the next workshop. The topic might be fall colors or drawing water and reflections. Both of these are my favorite subject matter.
Now it's back to normal and unpacking all the supplies for the workshops.Thanks for checking in - and keep painting!
| 24 May, 2016 17:55
Hello. The Peninsula School of Art workshop is definitely running and there are still a few more openings. For those of you who are registered, keep your fingers crossed for no rain and pleasant weather. The Morton Arboretum Friday class on a Drawing Trees in Pastel needs a few more people in order to happen. Call their Education Department or visit my Workshops/Events page to link to their website if you would like to register. Looking forward to meeting new people and reconnecting with familiar faces soon!
Thanks for checking in.
| 11 May, 2016 12:39
Hope you're enjoying the warmer and getting outside to paint or draw. In June, I'll be teaching two outdoor painting workshops using soft pastel. No worries if you don't have a french easel like the magazines ads. Just a portable chair and a willingness to relax, have fun and learn at your own pace are all that you need. The details on both workshops are below:
Registration for “Drawing Trees in Pastel” at the Morton Arboretum in June is now open. The catalogs may not reach your mailbox until the beginning of June- so go online to register early. The classes meet on June 17 and 18. Below is the description, time and cost. You can register for one or both days. Each class meets from 9:00am – 4:00pm.
“Apply pastel techniques to the challenging subject of trees in the landscape. Join returning artist Laverne Bohlin and learn to recognize three major design characteristics of trees and how to express them in pastel. Depict a tree’s three dimensional form under changing light conditions. Friday’s subjects will be deciduous trees, and Saturday’s subject will be evergreens.”
The cost is $65.00 per class (members) or $75.00 per class (non-members). If you enroll in both sessions the cost is $105.00 (members) or $123.00 (non-members). There is a $20 discount when you sign up for both sessions. Call the Education Department at 630-719-2468 or visit www.mortonarb.org/education.
In a few weeks I’ll be at the Peninsula School of Art for my Pastel Painting “En Plein Air” workshop on June 9, 10 and 11. Pastel is a great medium to use outdoors because of its immediacy and ease of use. In addition to personal instruction and painting outdoors, there will be a how-to session on using a liquid pastel ground to make your own sanded pastel paper. As per PennArts policy, if sufficient enrollment is not reached three weeks before the class starts, it will be cancelled. For this class, that date is May 19. So don’t delay in registering. Visit www.peninsulaschoolofart.org or call 920-868-3455 for more information.
In conjunction with the workshop, the public is invited to a demonstration that will be at Plum Bottom Pottery and Gallery in Egg Harbor. The date and time TBA.
A photo of student work from last year's workshop. They did a great job!
Thanks for checking in and I hope to see you in June.
| 01 February, 2016 22:12
It is so easy for the mats used in traditional pastel framing to become soiled during shipping, As far as I know, the major shipping companies have no way to move framed art without turning it upside down, sideways, etc. This can dislodge the small pastel particles which then settle somewhere on the usually white mat or the glass. Ugh. Once this happens, the frame needs to be opened and the particle removed from the glass or mat. Then the whole framing package, artwork, mat, backing board, glass and dustcover has to be re-assembled. Because of this, I've been slowly trying to switch to a plein air frame which requires no mat.
PSNM's new video shows how to frame pastels with or without using a mat. The video, titled "Framing Techniques", is available for viewing on the their website. This is a great how-to video for anyone who would like to frame their own pastels.To see the video go to: www.pastelsnm.org. Click on "Videos" and then choose the last video at the bottom of the list. It is numbered Volume 2, Number 1. Three signature members of PSNM share their tips on framing techniques. It's worth watching.
| 26 January, 2016 17:45
I don't know about you, but I enjoy watching videos of other artists at work. Many of the videos available on the web are short, 4-5 minute video's made by individual artists to promote their work. As mentioned in the last blog post, I recently joined the Pastel Society of New Mexico. At January's monthly meeting, three members of the group shared their thoughts and methods on framing pastels. Not being familiar with the Albuquerque area, it was very informative and helpful for me to learn about local sources for framing. It was also taped and at some point in the future will be available for viewing on their website.
There are a number of previous demonstration videos on PSNM's site. Many of them feature individual members sharing their techniques and one is about photographing artwork and preparing a digital entry. If you want to enter national shows, preparing digital entries is a way of life now. Go to www.pastelsnm.org and click on "Videos" to see the selection. A cold winter evening is a great time to listen to other artist's discuss their work and learn something new!
Stay warm and thanks for checking in.
| 03 January, 2016 14:06
After not blogging for awhile, I’ve been looking for a new way to communicate what has been happening during the past few months. I always wonder if anyone is reading this blog and if I have anything worthwhile to say. The start of the year gives me an opportunity to begin blogging again and share some (hopefully) helpful information with you.
Recently, I saw a demonstration done by pastel artist Margi Lucero during the Pastel Society of New Mexico’s National Show. I have always admired her work and wanted to see how she creates a loose, but realistic image that accurately depicts the color of the landscape. She began the pastel by blocking in large shapes rather than beginning with a line drawing. That helped to keep the looseness. But the part of the demo I really connected with was when she couldn’t find the color she wanted in her pastel box and simply said, “that’s pastel.” I can relate to that as I am spending the winter in the Southwest and have been frequently frustrated not having the “right color” when working plein air. The color of the earth, vegetation and sky are all different from the Midwestern landscape that I’m used to drawing. The strong Southwest sunlight seems to wash out the colors and make them less intense.
I often preach during workshops that using the correct value is more important than having the right color. Margi also mentioned this during her demo. But there was something comforting in hearing another artist express the same feelings about pastel colors. Unlike oil painting, where the desired color can be mixed, pastels can be layered or applied next to one another in order to obtain certain color effects. It seems like more work, but can create exciting, unexpected color combinations and has forced me to better understand color. Watching Margi’s demo helped ease my frustration about not having the “perfect color” in my pastel box and to focus more on values.
I still might buy a few new pastels, or better yet, splurge on one of those large sets of ‘Southwest colors.” But for now, I’m going to stop fussing about the correct color.
Demonstrations are a great way to learn something new or see a technique by an artist you admire. But during Margi’s demo, it was her casual comment that stayed in my mind and helped me focus on what is really important in pastel painting. Have you experienced the same feelings about not having enough pastel sticks and the "right color?"