What a glorious day for the start of our new term! It's warm, bright and sunny. We saw the return of many old friends (and new ones). Plus, we had an early Halloween. Yes, Steve brought treats—donuts and iris bulbs. Can't get much better than that, can it?
Oh, and we happen to be in the middle of one of the most incredibly colorful autumns in recent years—so we had to paint that. Let's get started, shall we? Despite a slow start (we had a lot to catch up on!), we have plenty of paintings you'll want to see.
I know we mentioned the colors of autumn, but we couldn't resist starting with Chicago architecture...especially when it's as colorful as Ken's downtown skyscrapers.
...or Elaine's church facade, which is finally close to finished!
And Greeta is back with a rendition of Mundelein College, a Chicago architectural treasure. Innovative and historic, this deco skyscraper college is as beautiful and forward-thinking today as it was when ground broke in 1929. The former students among us agree this is a great rendition of a beautiful campus.
Spanning our two major themes (fall colors and architecture), Greeta paints changing colors near a cabin on a lake. She's also testing a new color, quinacridone violet and it looks to be a success. (We love the quinacridones!)
Susan also paints changing colors, but on a single tree in the city. (The actual painting isn't as out-of-focus as this—it has all the crispness of a fall day, we promise!)
And Sara's brilliant trees are in Rosehill Cemetery, which is also a Chicago treasure. Incidentally, Sara had a great quote about this setting, but we didn't write it down. Be aware you'd find it as funny as we did.
And Ellen's successfully uses a natural sponge to paint her changing colors. Straight out of the impressionist wing of the Art Institute, this lovely painting has all the sparkle and clarity of the season, along with the beautiful range of colors the season is known for.
Meanwhile, Allen is back, too, painting the view from his back window—a serene lake view with colorful foliage. But, unsatisfied, he starts again! Can't wait to see how this turns out.
He's already proficient at painting water. Just look at the pelican painting below. The water and wood are especially fine.
Hector is also intrigued by wood, but he concentrates on tree bark, finishing up the richly layered abstract below.
...before moving on to a fallen leaf.
Interestingly, Vivian uses the same autumn colors in her tablescape. We're keen to see which direction this painting goes.
Marva is back, too. While she was gone last term, she painted these two abstracts. The colors are beautifully rich and saturated. They make a wonderful pair—and more than one of us wish we had fabric in this print.
Just as many of us wish we were here among the rich saturated colors after the rain on Laguna beach.
We're thrilled to welcome Steve back too from his European concert tour. He returned to add finishing touches to the merman he began two terms ago—plenty of drying time for his watercolors! Still, he hasn't lost his touch. Just look at the fine detail on the hair, fins and tail.
Tony is back too and he's also painting scenes of water and exotic locations. Here, a Greek marine painting makes for an interesting abstract.
But he didn't stop in Greece. Tony also vacationed in Cuba and painted some of the scenery, both urban and rural landscapes. Notice the deckle edges on the paper? That's handmade paper he bought in Cuba.
Here's another rural scene, followed by a beautifully composed portrait of the man laboring in the first painting.
John has finally finished his epic drawing and begun a new drawing—much simpler—of an evil elf who gives charcoal to children.
Here's his previously finished drawing. Every square inch is filled with fascinating story elements.
We also welcome back our newbies, Madeleine and Bill, as full fledged old masters. They continue to amaze us. After a walk in the fall foliage, they each felt compelled to paint the experience, but in their own unique style. Madeleine begins to ink a beautifully composed scene—equally beautiful upside down.
Bill is more influenced by the colors and values of the light. He's moving on to begin "The Plan," a systematic approach to painting that never fails to yield amazing results. Watch this space for more!
And here's a blast from the past! Ellen found and revisited an old painting she did. Remember back when we tried to consciously paint a "bad" painting? Taking her original figure of Pat, Ellen created a mandala. Looks like a stained glass rose window, doesn't it?
Once again, we didn't have an "artist of the day." The library table was full—with live artists and with sweet treats. Steve very generously started our day with Halloween treats...
... and ended the morning with another surprise gift—white iris bulbs for everyone! We predict a spate of paintings of white irises next summer. Watch and see!
Join us next week!