Ann's Colored Pencil News & Stuff!

A subscriber recently sent me an image of her "finished" piece. A day later, she sent me another image of the same artwork, saying she'd worked on it a little, and now it was really finished. Today, I got version three of her "finished" piece! 
It's been kind of cracking me up to tell you the truth...since even now, I fully expect that she'll tweak it a bit more and send me her final, final "finished" image!  Especially since I suggested a tip that has worked wonders for me in the past.

See things you haven't seen before.

A subscriber recently sent me an image of her "finished" piece. A day later, she sent me another image of the same artwork, saying she'd worked on it a little, and now it was really finished. Today, I got version three of her "finished" piece!  It's been kind of cracking me up to tell you the truth...since even now, I... View more
Manila is under water.  Flooding from monsoons have left nearly 300, 000 homeless, with a death toll of 500 and climbing. It's pretty bad...

But what does that have to do with you?

For the past two years, CP Magazine has been expertly and beautifully designed each month by Garry Dimapilis...who happens to live in Manila.

We are all connected...Flooding in the Philippines

Manila is under water.  Flooding from monsoons have left nearly 300, 000 homeless, with a death toll of 500 and climbing. It's pretty bad...But what does that have to do with you?For the past two years, CP Magazine has been expertly and beautifully designed each month by Garry Dimapilis...who happens to live in Manila. I sent Garry the raw materials... View more

As dry media artists, we all know how important our choice of paper surface is - toothier papers will grab more color, but really eat up your pencils.  Smoother papers tend to make a very even coverage harder to achieve, since every little stroke shows up.

But did you also know about the huge, huge difference printer paper can make when printing out a reference photo, or when printing one of our Digital Download Kits?

Same image printed on different printer papers.

Printer Paper Pointers

As dry media artists, we all know how important our choice of paper surface is - toothier papers will grab more color, but really eat up your pencils.  Smoother papers tend to make a very even coverage harder to achieve, since every little stroke shows up.But did you also know about the huge, huge difference printer paper makes when printing... View more

I spent Saturday morning judging the Drawing category of the Fine Art Exhibition of the Washington State Fair.  I learned that our state fair is the 7th largest in the nation!  1.2 million attend, and about a quarter of a million see the Art Exhibition.  Wow.  That's a pretty big deal.

I also learned that...OMG...you better be careful about how you frame the work you enter into a show!

I'll start at the beginning.

Judge not, lest ye be judged...Unless they ask nicely!

I spent Saturday morning judging the Drawing category of the Fine Art Exhibition of the Washington State Fair.  It is the second time I've been asked to judge at the Fair, and I have felt equally honored both times! I learned that our state fair is the 7th largest in the nation!  1.2 million attend, and about a quarter of... View more

Judging an art show is more than just choosing your favorites...I've given awards to pieces that I don't personally love and wouldn't much want hanging in my home - but I can still appreciate the skill, composition, technique and idea behind a work that is a cut above the others.

But I digress!  I actually just wanted to talk about some of my favorites that didn't win awards.  I have loads of favorites...but here are a handful:

Janice Norton's Rosemary in Winter

Mood, mood, mood.  Janice's work always feels to me like it comes so directly from the heart that it almost feels like voyeurism to look at them.  Of course, her lighting is gorgeous and her values are wonderful, and her drawing skills are excellent - but somehow her style is so emotionally laden that it feels like peeking into a gentle soul.

A Few of my Favorites...

I've spent most of today moving this year's CP Magazine Member Show from the old website to this brand spanking new one. It's meant that I've really had a chance to re-visit the show...and I just felt like I had to say a few things about a few of my favorites.  I didn't envy Julie Podstolski at all, for her... View more

I never tire of looking through these pages, or showing it to others not familiar with colored pencil...just to watch their jaws drop!  With my iPad I have shown the book to countless folks seated next to me on a flight...just for the sheer pleasure of watching their eyes widen and their sounds of disbelief.  Oh, I do love seeing folks instantly change their minds about the "lowly" colored pencil!

What makes it a Treasure, anyway?

CP Treasures - A Collection of Master Colored Pencil art from around the Globe  If this gem were just a coffee table book, it would be amazing, inspirational and well worth owning...but it's a whole lot more than table candy!   I mean, don't get me wrong...pretty picture books are great, too...it's just not the sum total of what CP Treasures... View more