Wednesday, February 20, 2019

gestural figures

Last week in my watercolor classes I taught my students how to draw and paint gestural figures. Here's a few photos of their studies! 








I project photos of people on the wall, for my students to use as references. Here, my reference is Susan Kideo -- one of my students in my workshop in Provence. Below is my demo painting of her. 


This photo is from last week's plein air event in Chadds Ford. I was painting out on the Brandywine Battlefield with my good friends Yvonne Mucci and George Gallatig when the event photographer, Fred Weyman, stopped by and shot this photo. 

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Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Chadds Ford Winter Plein Air

This past weekend I painted in the Winter Plein Air in Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania. This juried event is a small one, with less than 30 artists painting over the course of two and a half days. The weather was warm when I painted my first one on Thursday afternoon (I teach classes on Thursday mornings, so got a late start!) and I painted with oils at Brandywine Battlefield.

Lafayette's Headquarters, 11x14 oil $295
Friday was marred by rain, but artists were allowed to paint indoors at some of the approved locations. I enjoyed a nice cuppa coffee while painting the view from inside the cafeteria at the Brandywine Museum of Art. My friend and fellow artist Yvonne Mucci braved the cold rain and was outside, painting on the banks of the river, so I included her in my painting.
The Artist, 12x6 watercolor $165
In the afternoon, I went back to the Battlefield and painted another watercolor on paper. This one is of the public bathrooms in the parking lot -- a lovely building in a lovely setting!

Silver Mist, 12x16 watercolor $295.
The last painting had to be turned in before 3pm on Saturday, but fortunately I only had to do one so I had plenty of time. The temperature never got above freezing, so I stayed in my car and used watercolors to paint the view through my windshield at the Battlefield. This one sold right away at the opening reception, the others are available at the Chadds Ford Historical Society's visitor center through March 1st.
Washington's Hdqtrs (Gilpin House), 11x14 WC on canvas SOLD
 I always host other artists for events in my area, and here I am at the reception with Kirk Larsen, my guest artist for the event.

posted by Annie Strack @ 12:02 PM   0 Comments

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Watercolor Postcards from Hahnemuhle.

I've been playing around with some watercolor postcards from Hahnemuehle, and I'm hooked! These 4x6 papers come in adorable collectible tins, and are just the right size to tuck into a pocket or purse to keep on hand for painting on the go. The paper comes in a choice of two surfaces, Cold Pressed and Rough. I keep one tin in my car along with a tin of watercolors and a couple of pocket brushes, for when the mood strikes!

The Cold Pressed paper is fairly smooth and soft, and lightly sized. The watercolor paints soak in and leave soft edges, and yet colors lift fairly well. The paper has very little texture, allowing for finer details when painting. 

The Rough paper has quite a lot of texture. The texture is also very patterned, resembling a woven linen finish. The paper is marvelous for anyone wanting a coarser surface to create texture in their paintings. 

I used both papers with watercolors, ink pens, and masking fluid. The papers held up to heavy washes, although curled when wet. They also withstood my heavy-handed corrections -- lot's of erasing while drawing, and lots of lifting while painting (nobody's perfect, least of all, me). All in all, I really like the postcard paper, and I'll be using more of it in the future. 

posted by Annie Strack @ 6:33 PM   1 Comments

Sunday, January 27, 2019

new paintings and events!

I'm totally thrilled to announce that I am juried into the 11th Annual Chadds Ford Winter Plein Air! This event is the week after next, and culminates with a reception and sale at the Chadds Ford Historical Society's barn on Saturday, February 9th. Last year it was so cold that I had to paint from inside my car. Let's hope for good weather!


We are one third of the way through my winter semester classes at the Community Arts Center. Here's some of my demos from a couple of those classes: 



These are from lessons on design, composition, color mixing, brush work, values, color theory, pigment properties, substrates, and brushes. 

posted by Annie Strack @ 2:05 PM   0 Comments

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Exciting news!


To start my news off, let me tell you how EXCITED I am to join the Board of the International Watercolor Society - USA (IWS/USA) as the Regional Director for the Northeast U.S.! I'll be curating juried exhibits in the USA and in other countries around the world, so follow closely to learn the latest details as they emerge!

Annie Strack, teaching a painting workshop on the Mediterranean coast. 

As if I didn't already have enough to do, I also volunteered to join the National Watercolor Society's exhibition team and administer the online entry system for the 2019 NWS International Exhibit. Fortunately, NWS is using the CaFE' platform for their entries, which is super easy to set up and administer. As a show chair, I've used a lot of entry management systems over the years, and I've found CaFE' to be the easiest for show chairs, artists, and jurors. So, the job is actually quite easier than it looks. At least for me, anyway. And I look forward to working with the other Board Members at NWS and joining them at events.
Students in Annie Strack's class
My winter semester classes are now underway a the Community Arts Center in Wallingford, Pennsylvania. This class meets until March, then I travel off to South Carolina for two back-to-back workshops in Charleston, and then to Maryland for two back-to-back workshops in Ocean City. I think there might still be one space left in one of the workshops in Charleston, if you want to join me!

Annie Strack painting en plein air at Brandywine Battlefield 
In February, I'll be participating in the Chadds Ford Winter Plein Air. Let's all hope for warm and dry weather!! This event can get COLD! I've only signed up for it a few times in the past, and nearly froze to death both times. I'm hoping for temps to be above freezing this year.

Jon L. Seagull, watercolor by Annie Strack
More big news! My painting "Jon L. Seagull" was juried into Rockies West, the Western Colorado Watercolor Society's 29th Annual National Juried Show. The exhibit is March - April in Colorado. 




posted by Annie Strack @ 3:55 PM   0 Comments

Saturday, January 5, 2019

happy new year!

The New Year is off to a wild start! My studio is a hot mess right now, as I'm preparing to go out painting en plein air with friends this weekend, and packing up my teaching gear to begin my winter semester of classes this week. Add to that, I have paintings in progress to finish up, others that need to be photographed, and others that need to boxed up and shipped off to shows. My book binding equipment is taking up a lot of space right now in my studio as well, as I need to print and bind more copies of my art marketing book for my upcoming art business workshops.


Hopefully I'll have some time soon to finish up more of the paintings that I started during my holiday break. In the meantime, I have to pack up my brushes and palette and to travel to my workshops and classes! 


I almost forgot! Once again, my darling friends at Hahnemuhle sent me some gorgeous new gifts! I love the spiral bound pad of watercolor paper -- perfect for plein air painting. And I can hardly wait to try out the new watercolor postcards in rough texture. Loving the new tote bag, too! The red card in the bottom left corner of the photo is printed on their new metallic paper. My photo of it doesn't do it justice -- it is gives a metallic seen to colors that are printed on it! totally WOWSA!  <3 p="">

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Saturday, December 15, 2018

New Paintings!

Here's a few more recent paintings...

Little White Dinghy, 4x6 watercolor $49
 All of these are painted on Hahnemuehle watercolor paper, one of my new faves. I especially love the Rough blocks.

Mt St Victoire, 4x6 watercolor $49.
 My schedule for 2019 is booked full -- no room to add anymore classes or workshops! Check out my calendar to see where I'm teaching next, and to sign up for an event near you.

St Remy, 12x16 watercolor $195
I'm currently working with workshop coordinators around the country to finalize my calendar for 2020. There are only a few available dates left -- so if you want my to come to your area to teach, you better act fast! Contact me for more information on how you can get my workshops to come to your town!




posted by Annie Strack @ 6:39 PM   0 Comments

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Registration now open for Winter Semester classes!

It's time to sign up for Winter Semester classes! My classes at the Community Arts Center always fill up fast, so don't wait. Space is limited!
Also, there is still a couple of spaces left in one of my workshops in Charleston, South Carolina. I'm teaching two workshops back to back, one is already sold out and the second one is almost full. Check out my CALENDAR PAGE for details about upcoming classes and workshops, and links to registration pages. 
As I posted the last photo, I noticed I forgot to tell you about my latest Signature Membership award! I recently earned Signature Membership in the Niagara Frontier Watercolor Society (NFWS), which is the twelfth organization in which I've earned Signature status! 

Calella de Palafrugell, 4x6 watercolor, $49.

I've added several new mini paintings to my $49 page, be sure to check them out and order now to get one in time for the holidays!

posted by Annie Strack @ 1:59 PM   0 Comments

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Happy Holidays

The holidays are fast approaching and for me, that means I get to take a little break from my work as an artist. I don't have any classes, workshops, shows, plein air competitions, or demos until after the first of the year. I love being an artist, but I always enjoy taking time off from my hectic schedule over the holidays!
Annie Strack with friends at the Unionville Art Gala

Annie Strack with friends painting en plein air a the Brandywine River

Taking a little break to go to the beach!

Annie Strack teaching a watercolor workshop in her studio
 I am shipping orders daily, right up to Christmas. My red value finders are $5, Painting Seascapes in Watercolor DVDs are $29.95, and there is a great selection of small original paintings for $49 and $79. Order now for Christmas!

Wading, 6x4 watercolor $49.

posted by Annie Strack @ 8:41 AM   0 Comments

Friday, November 23, 2018

Happy Thanksgiving!

I am very grateful that my work as an artist keeps me busy, and that I have enough work to keep busy.
Plein Air Brandywine Valley was a huge success again this year, with great sales and marvelous weather.
Blacksmith Shoppe, SOLD. My quickdraw painting from PABV.

Judging the Milton Art League exhibit down in southern Delaware. 

Judging the art at the Unionville Fair.

Demonstrating plein air painting at the PABV exhibit at Winterthur.

St Remy, 12x16 watercolor. One of my demo paintings from PABV.

Visiting the Jerry's Artarama store in Raleigh, during the Art of the Carolinas convention. 

Demonstrating with Chartpak artist supplies during the Grand Opening celebration of Jerry's Artarama store in Newark, Delaware. 

posted by Annie Strack @ 10:33 AM   0 Comments

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All images and content copyright Annie Strack 2018 Although I occasionally receive compensation for some posts, I always give my honest opinions, findings, beliefs, or experiences on those topics or products. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely my own.