Friday, November 14, 2008


Guest Speaker/Artist

Joan Miley (Programs) introduced our guest artist, Nancy Nordloh Neville. Nancy is a well known artist and teacher in the Cincinnati area, painting in both oils and watercolors.

Nancy began with her drawing sketched on Arches watercolor paper. She said she actually starts with a small thumbnail sketch. In that small sketch, she decides where her center of interest will be. She stated that it was very important to use your lighest light and your darkest dark in the center of interest. She also stressed the importance of watching your negative shapes as closely as your positive shapes.

Putting out dabs of fresh paint on a large butcher tray, Nancy began the painting of sunflowers and silver. She uses mostly Winsor Newton paints and some colors from Holbein and uses Loew-Cornell synthetic round brushes.

She prewet her paper by spraying lightly with a misting spray bottle and worked with the painting flat on the table. She picked this particular still life set-up to show us how to paint color and light in silver.
Nancy said she likes to work in transparent watercolors but doesn’t buy just transparent colors. She began with a mix of Winsor Lemon and Cadmium Yellow on the sunflowers, and then put the dark centers in, using a mix of Indigo and Burnt Sienna. She kept her brushes juicy with wet pigment and the paper was still damp so she kept from getting hard edges. She only uses Winsor Newton Indigo because all other brands she’s tried have too much black in the mix.

Nancy establishes a dark fairly early in her paintings, and she softens edges with a thirsty brush while the paint is still damp on the paper. She holds her brush back on the body when painting. A pet peeve of hers is when students grip the brush like a pencil. She says you need to loosen your grip and let the brush flow, becoming part of your hand and arm.

As she painted, she was thinking about complementary colors and how they work to add variety and interest to the painting. She “painted” the daisies by painting the negative shapes around the daisies and putting in the yellow centers. She then began the small silver pot, knowing that a mix of Cobalt Blue and Cerulean needed warming with Burnt Sienna. Reflected areas of the sunflowers on the silver would be much warmer, so she added more Burnt Sienna.

When the paper was drying, she took the spray bottle and misted the paper again. She talked about how she likes to arrange her composition so your eye is led into the painting and can move freely around the painting. She says an artist should paint what she knows and, therefore, she uses many things around her own home for her many still life paintings.

When painting the shadows, she told us to make the shadow color darkest when it’s close to the object and then fade out lighter as the shadow moves away from the object. She used a mix of Burnt Sienna, Indigo, Cobalt Blue and Permanent Rose for the shadows beneath the silver pot and tray.

She took a very small round brush and painted the strawberry in, leaving whites where the seeds would be. Later, when that paint was dry, she went back in with a pale Cadmium Yellow to glaze over the red.

In the past, she would have a totally preconceived notion of what the whole painting would look like, including the background. Now she lets the painting tell her what it needs in places. But she always paints her backgrounds last, even if the background is only a light toned color. For this painting, she said she’d do a dark background, which would make the silver shine even more, but she didn’t have time to complete the painting. She did place in a bit of dark background behind the daisies to show us how she’d incorporate the background and keep the soft edges of the flowers.

Nancy does three workshops a year, is a member of a plein aire painting group, and she teaches every Monday at the Women’s Art Center. She believes artists are lucky because they see things differently than non-artists, and the more you truly look at things, the better you get at seeing those hidden colors and shapes.

Although she is now painting in oils, Nancy said she thought a good watercolor painting was 1,000 times harder to paint than a good oil painting. She sells only originals, no prints, and considers herself lucky to be able to sell about 200 paintings a year. She said she loves to paint and as long as she can keep painting, that is what she will do, so she doesn’t try to sell prints.

We do hope Nancy continues to create beautiful paintings like this in watercolor for many years to come! And we appreciate her time today!

Administration Reports

Shirley opened the meeting with several quotes:

“When I work, I work very fast. But preparing to work can take any amount of time.” Cy Twombly

“All true artists, whether they know it or not, work from a place of no-mind, from inner stillness.” Eckhart Tolle

“There’s no retirement for an artist, it’s your way of living so there’s no end to it…” Henry Moore
“Believe it or not, I can actually draw.” Jean Michel Basquiat

Mary Jane Noe (Membership) introduced four guests, Joan Rothel, Joan O’Leary, Anita Marshall, and Jan Hay. Mary Jane said the membership directory will be updated and printed again in January 2009. Please get any updated information (address or email changes, etc) to her.

Carol Rekow (Treasurer) reported our current balance is $7,770.90.

Shirley mentioned that we will send out emails if there is a cancellation for bad weather. Also, Shirley will find out about the status of having the closing information listed on Channel 5 news. We did this last year but not sure it is still in effect. Anyone without email, please call a friend if in doubt about a meeting being cancelled.

Shirley reported three positions open beginning March 2009: two positions shared for Membership and one position for Treasurer. Deb Ward has volunteered to hold the Membership position that handles the computer work (membership lists, etc) and Jane Hittinger volunteered to hold the Membership position that welcomes visitors and makes our name tags. Shirley sent a form around for anyone to put down their name for Treasurer.

Deb Ward has volunteered to be the Chairperson for the Evergreen 2009 spring show, and Bonnie Rupe volunteered to be the Scholarship Chairperson for 2009.

Shirley asked any teachers to volunteer to facilitate critiques in the 2009 year by signing up on the sheet she passed around. It would be for one time per year only.

Art Shows/Workshops

Barb Pryor, Sharon Roeder, and Tamara Scantland-Adams have paintings in the Cincinnati Art Club’s 40th Annual Viewpoint show. Tamara also recently received signature membership in the Ohio Watercolor Society.

Howard Krauss reminded everyone interested in the Tom Lynch workshop (June 1-4, 2009) in Oxford to sign up.

Sam Hollingsworth had flyers on the back table promoting his upcoming workshop (January 10-11, 2009). Sam said he hopes some of the members will attend (and there is a discount for GCWS members).

The Queen City Art Club is having a show that runs from November 14 – December 17 at Baker-Hunt (620 Greenup Street, Covington, KY). The reception is Friday, November 14 from 6:00–8:30 pm, and there will be a table at the event with small items priced for holiday giving. Deb Ward and Susan Grogan both have paintings in the show.

Deb Ward also has paintings in the Kennedy Heights Arts Center show (November 15-December 20). The opening reception (Saturday) will be 6:00–8:00 pm. The KHAC is only open on Saturdays from 10:00 am – 4:00 pm.

Marilyn Bishop is part of a group show called, “A Mixing of Media: Samplings of Eleven Artists.” The show is at Gallery Salveo, 3805 Edwards Road, 5th Floor, Cincinnati. The exhibition runs through January 2009 and the opening reception is Thursday, November 20 from 5:30–7:30 pm.

Kay Worz will be giving a workshop January 15-February 26, 2009 at the Cincinnati Art Club. The workshop will be every Thursday morning 10:00-12:00; it is only $100 per person for 7 sessions; and you can contact either Kay or Judi Clubb if you’re interested in signing up.

After Program Paint-Along

Although Nancy had a busy day planned, she agreed to stay and lead the “paint-along” session after the program. Ten members took advantage of the opportunity to stay and get one-on-one teaching of Nancy’s techniques and style.

Critique Session

Taylor Bush facilitated the critique session today.

Jean Soller shared a beautiful acrylic painting of white egrets. The colors were so colorful and juicy it was candy for the eyes, and the poured background created a nice backdrop for the white birds.

Howard Krauss showed us his latest landscape, painted on location in New Mexico. Howard saw the sunlight on the golden aspens, got out of the car, and painted this on the spot. The aspens glowed with a light, transparent yellow that shined brightly against the dark greens of the trees behind.

Rosemary Lennertz shared a high key painting of an Italian piazza. She had added figures to the scene, which were well done. It only needed a bit of darkening in the center of interest to be complete.

Taylor Bush displayed a portrait of one of her granddaughters, saying she had begun the painting as a floral and didn’t like it so added the portrait. The painting worked well with the girl almost wearing the hat of flowers – like it could portray the young girl’s wishes for flowers or memories of flowers in her grandmother’s garden.

Next Meetings Scheduled

Sandy Maudlin will teach us to paint bright red cardinals on watercolor paper. She will bring several drawings you can copy if you don’t want to draw your own, or you can paint from one of your own photographs of a cardinal or other favorite bird. Since this will be our “holiday meeting,” Joan Miley will provide the luncheon. Joan will prepare a variety of sandwiches with cheesecake for dessert. You may bring your own beverage or buy one here. Come and enjoy the artistic camaraderie and bring your appetite.

January 2009:
Barbara Smucker will be our guest artist/speaker. Barbara has a studio at Pendleton Art Center in Cincinnati.

Other upcoming programs will be announced when they are finalized. If you have any suggestions for guest artists/speakers, let Joan Miley know about them.