Sunday, October 05, 2008

Pot Luck, Pie and Paint

Day 3 of Ray Hassard's visit. We were invited by Sharon Weiss to attend an annual pot luck lunch on the farm of two artists, Paul and Nora. Many of the artists represented by Sharon Weiss Gallery came and invited even more painters and friends. I invited Edie Dean. And there were also patrons of the arts, and small children searching for the farm cats.

Food galore . . . but, the prize for beauty (and not to mention great taste) was this gorgeous French apple raisin pie. Just look at the art of that crust! I had to add this one to my folder of fabulous food photos.

After eating and partaking of a little wine, out came my easel. I attemped an 8 x 16" oil of Paul's orange barn. I am not sure that it is finished, but Ray had to get back to Cincinnati, and Martin and I had to pack for tomorrow's drive to Canada. It was perfect weather - again.

I am going to try and figure out how to post to the blog from Stratford. Until then, have a piece of pie!

All hail the pumpkin!!!

One of my favorite places is Lynd's Fruit Farm, just 5 miles from my front door in Licking County, OH.

The day after my friend, Ray's art opening, we decided to go out painting. The day was clear and a little crisp, perfect for painting, but we were a little worse for wear after a long night of "fun and games" at the Sharon Weiss Gallery and beyond.

We thought maybe there'd be a painting at Lynd's Fruit Farm. There would certainly be a lot of color in this season of plenty. But there was more than color, there were tons of people. We may as well have been back in India. We couldn't paint in the way of hundred's of people picking out their fruits and veg and waiting in line to pay.

Lynd's had a new sales tent, a startling lime green and white striped one; but, as thrilling as that color was with the outside light shining through it, inside it gave everything a strange green cast.
We decided to take it easy on yourselves and paint somewhere else.

I next suggested Granville, about 8 miles further east. Ray and I both like to paint urban stuff, and Granville has a great Main Street with a lot of activity in town on a Saturday.

We drove up to the top of the hill where Denison University sits. I'd hoped to get a view of the town below. Too many trees, we weren't excited.

So Main Street here we come! We headed down, parked, grabbed the cameras and "cased" Main Street. My eyes were excited by the site of two umbrellas, red and light bluish green. I knew that was a painting. But we restrained ourselves and walked around a little before making the final decision to give that busy stretch of sidewalk filled with people and umbrellas a shot.

I painted over an old painting. Should have taken a photo of that painting, since the landscape in it is no more, but instead is now a Chevy dealership. As I set up my easel, I thought about how to simplify that busy scene. It took me quite a while to sort it all out, but in the end, the painting had a glow about it, and it had the publics seal of approval.

Will post it later, I am off for bed as we leave tomorrow for Stratford, Ontario and the Shakespeare Festival - and of course - some painting in between plays.

Now at the Sharon Weiss Gallery

Ray Hassard and gallery owner, Sharon Weiss, flanking Ray's wonderful pastel painting. His exhibition entitled "Fun and Games" is on this month at Sharon's gallery in Columbus, OH. A real treat for the eyes and soul! Especially in the strange times we are living in.
Congratulations Ray, on your first solo exhibition. Job well done.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

ViewPoint 2008

"Morning Ritual" • 16" x 20" • Oil on Canvas
has been accepted into Cincinnati Art Club's Annual National Juried Exhibition ViewPoint 2008.

Juror is Dr. Julie Aronson, Curator of American Painting and Sculpture at the Cincinnati Art Museum.

Exhibition opening:
November 7: 6:00 - 9:00 PM

Exhibition continues on Saturdays and Sundays, 2:00 - 5:00 PM until November 23, 2008.

Cincinnati Art Club • 1021 Parkside Place • Cincinnati, OH 45202

Further information:
ViewPoint 2008 Chair, Jim Effler • 513.821.0459 •

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

New Blog Site Announced

Posting a photo of me at my easel during the OPAS competition in New Philadelphia, OH.
Below is a link to a new blog just established by Mary Spires for The Collage of Women Artists. We are 40 women artists in Central Ohio who come together each month for lunch and a program on art. It's brand new, but check it out!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Thanks Edie for the Photo!

At the end of the OPAS plein air competition, with artists scrambling left and right to pack up and start their drive back home, I asked Marc Hanson if he'd pose for a photo with me and the painting he awarded 2nd Place.
Thanks to my good buddy, artist Edie Dean, for sending me this photo, and to Marc for the award.
Taken Sunday, Sept. 21, 2008 in the Courthouse Square of New Philadelphia, OH.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Contemporary American Realism: 2008

"Do You Know Your Place" 30 x 40" Oil on Canvas
Copyright 2008 Debra Joyce Dawson

I am pleased to announce that the above painting was chosen for inclusion into the national juried exhibition Contemporary American Realism: 2008. The biennial exhibition is on display at the Ft. Wayne Museum of Art, in Indiana, opened September 3 and continues until November 2, 2008.

The Museum has published a high quality, four-color catalog to go with this exhibition featuring one work by each artist in the exhibition. Catalogs are for sale, and so is the art.

Admission to the Fort Wayne Museum of Art: Free to members $5 for adults $3 students (K-college) and $10 for families.
Hours: Tuesday – Saturday 10am - 5pm; Thursday – open until 9pm Sunday Noon - 5pm. The galleries are closed Mondays and major holidays.

Marc Hanson Workshop and OPAS Competition Winner

OPAS Plein Air Competition
"Breakfast on the Hoof"
8" x 10" - Oil on RayMar Panel

My good friend Edie Dean and I made the drive to Traverse City, MI in June 2007 to take a 5-day Marc Hanson workshop. Marc gave us an overload of information to digest: in writing, through lectures, and by watching the 7 demos he did in pastel or oil. My favorite part of that workshop was Marc's value to color exercise. Edie and I came away from the workshop with plenty of new ideas and all pumped up to paint.

When I heard that our statewide organization, Ohio Plein Air Society (OPAS) was going to host Marc to do a 3-day workshop in advance of our annual plein air competition, I decided to participate. It's the first time I have repeated with a workshop teacher, and I am certainly glad that I did.

Day 1: Marc condensed the things that he'd taught the year before into an intense three days. We started with an overview of materials, went on to a demo of the value to color exercise, and then we painted that exercise ourselves in the heavy duty architectural atmosphere of Dennison, OH, home to the historic Dennison Depot.

Day 2: We were in the lovely countryside of Tuscarawas County, heart of Ohio's Amish country, beautiful rolling hills, cows, fields, barns, and weather to die for. 16 students - beginners to professionals - watched Marc do a demo on color relationships, asking us to not get bogged down in details, but to concentrate on the values and color relationships that we saw in nature. Sounds easy enough, but it didn't feel that way.

Evening of Day 2: 9:00 PM, the class convened on the Square in New Philadelphia to watch Marc demo a nocture. A real treat for us, and flash photography was not appreciated by his painting eyes!

Day 3: A new and exciting exercise: painting from memory! Marc said that the great teacher Frank Riley had used this exercise with his students. I'd been exposed to some of the ideas of Frank Riley during my classes at Captial U with Michael McEwan . But, I'd never done this memory exercise, and frankly I felt pretty charged up about doing it! I think that everyone was surprised at how well we did, including Marc.

I commend Marc for taking each student in the class out of their comfort zone, since that is when you struggle and learn the most. You can read more on Marc's experience in Ohio on his blog:

Marc went on to jury the 5th Annual OPAS plein air competition. The painting here is one that I completed just an hour or so before the jury. Entitled "Breakfast on the Hoof" • 8" x 10"• Oil on RayMar Panel. Marc awarded it 2nd Place and my peers voted it Artists Choice.

Thanks to my good friend, and fabulous artist, Ray Hassard for asking me to paint with him that morning. He won 3rd Prize and just a couple of hours later, he won the Quick Draw.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

"The Puzzler"

I love this little painting!
At the January '08 Collage of Women Artists juried exhibition at the Lyle Gallery, in Columbus, OH, I received the purchase award for a 6" x 6" painting entitled, "The Puzzler".

The painting is of my husband and was completed as a quick draw at the Ohio Plein Air Society 4th Annual Plein Air Competition, held last year in New Philadelphia, OH.

One Painting, Two Awards

My painting of a solitary barque on the river Creuse in midwestern France hung in the National Arts Club in New York City as part of the Hudson Valley Art Association's National Juried Exhibition.

November 2007, this painting entitled Soirée sur la Creuse (24 x 30", oil on canvas) was awarded the Cincinnati Art Galleries Award at Cincinnati Art Club's annual juried exhibition, ViewPoint 2007.

January 2008, this same painting won Best of Show at the Collage of Women Artists exhibition at the Lyle Gallery, in Columbus, OH.

Create Better Paintings Interview

Recently I had the pleasure of conducting an interview with one of Columbus’ finest artists, Michael McEwan. The interview has been published online at

Thanks very much to the Editor in Chief for this opportunity to write for her new online publication, and also for enthusiastically embracing the idea of interviewing an artist who is not widely known. Along with the article are several wonderful images of Michael McEwan’s work, his bio and a little something about me as well.

You can use this Guest Pass to view the article, as well as access all of the other content of interest in the March issue. Please share all of the following instructions with anyone you wish:

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