On Friday I dropped off ten new paintings to hang with the Peace Watercolour Society’s fall 2015 show at the Centre for Creative Arts in Grande Prairie, Alberta. Our society is fortunate in that we show in five different cities in rotation, which is great exposure, not just for us but for the mainly rural communities we show in.
It is special to me to be a part of a community of watercolour artists. Watercolour is different from other types of paint in so many ways, and so we do have unique challenges and perspectives that we are encouraged by sharing with each other. Our watercolour society is small; two of the members showing in this show will be doing so for that last time. Janis Herbison passed away last spring and we will have a memorial wall set aside for her beautiful paintings, and Marjorie Henn, one of my local watercolour heroes, has stepped down due to health issues. Whether or not her name is on invitations in the future, she is will always be a PWS member to me, and to the rest of the society, I know.
When I think about the bond our society shares, I can’t help but think about my own “society” – my watercolour students and the sense of community we share. In sharing my art with the world, and then creating my online school and building relationships with my students through the student galleries, my Facebook page and online art groups, I have made many friends I am proud to name, even if we’ve never met in person. I think painting can be a very special way of communicating and I am so thankful I have this “voice.”
And I’m totally excited to see my dream of teaching watercolour across the country begin to take shape as registration for my Jasper, Alberta workshop is now open, and my Tucson, Arizona course is also taking shape. It’s scary to take a new step in my career, but oh, so thrilling!
Please do come and join me in Grande Prairie, Alberta on opening night, September 4th, 7-9pm at the Centre for Creative Arts. I’d love to see you!