Friday, November 25, 2016

Love you always!

This time of year finds me purging my closet of summer clothes (especially, unfortunately, those I've outgrown), and welcoming my warm woolies.

It also finds me with the desire (and, truly, the need) to clean out some of the emails I've subscribed to over the past 12 months.  I need to be painting more, not reading more.  So...I hope no one takes it personally if I've unsubscribed from your list(s). I didn't do it lightly.  I'll love you always!


Monday, November 21, 2016

Penguins rule!

Yesterday I should have been painting.  Instead, I took my flashlight into the attic and dragged out ornaments for our tree.  

I've decided (again) that I'm really some kind of Perfectionist.  How many times can you turn those penguins so that they look good from all angles? 

The good thing is I got to revisit some of the ornaments that the Grands have made for us. I love how their eyes light up when they recognize something they created!

My Venice workshop is 5 months away.  Want to come?
Check out my excursion packages for both Painters and Non-Painters HERE.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Give me another piece.

I took a watercolor workshop from Milford Zornes (a leader in the California watercolor movement) in about 1982.  Milford died at the age of 100 in 2008.  That means he was 74 when I took the class from him.  I had only been painting about 1 year when I studied with him, and boy did I ever take a bunch of notes! (p.s. for his 100th birthday, he did a watercolor demonstration for the National Watercolor Society and they filmed it....I kid you not.  I bought the DVD as soon as it was released. He died shortly after that.)

I was reminded of him this past week when I called my artist friend, Diane P, who had just moved into her new place.  I said "what are you doing right now?".  She said, "I'm sitting back, enjoying my Milford Zornes over the mantle."  It turns out she had also taken lessons from Zornes (unbeknownst to me) and she owned 3 of his paintings!

After I hung up the phone, I headed over to Amazon and bought one of his books.  I simply wanted another piece of him.


Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Tippette #31- Unstick your Caps

Watercolor paint tubes seem to be more flimsy than ever.  Didn't caps used to be made of metal?  How often have you twisted a tube to bits, just trying to get the plastic cap off?  

Well, my TIPPETTE (*) for today is to simply boil 1" of water in a cup in the microwave, then drop the tube (head first) into it, and within a minute, you'll be able to twist off that cap very nicely (do NOT boil the water with the tube in it, and use a paper towel when you grab the tube from the water!). It's likely that this will also help if your paint itself has hardened in the should come out nice and fresh.  

Note: Not long ago, I bought some new tubes of paint and, within 6 months, the tube CAP on one of them actually broke off in 2, at the neck! So I emailed the manufacturer and showed them some pics (I told them I KNEW they'd want to know about it!).  They immediately sent me a replacement tube! THAT's good Customer Service!  And, as a follow up to this story, I had the cap break in two, from a totally different manufacturer. When I called them, they said they were sorry but there was nothing they could do.  I then relayed what the other manufacturer had done, and in the end, they sent me a couple of new plastic replacement caps (I was totally ok with that).  Honestly, they should know not to cross an artist who spends hard-earned money on their products, right?  How often have you had trouble with YOUR caps?  I can't be the only one!

(*) TIPPETTE = Snippet of a Tip (in watercolor)
In April 2013, I posted 30 Tippettes (1 per day) on my Blog.  Find the 30th one HERE. When you scroll down after reading that one, you'll see Older Tippettes. When you can't scroll down any further, look at the bottom right hand side under the last post, and look for the words OLDER POST. When you click on that, you'll see the rest.  Just thought you'd want to know. Do you have a favorite watercolor tip of your own?  Please post them as a Comment below, or reply to my email if that's how you receive my Blog posts, and I'll post it for you.  (Tips can refer to tools, techniques, habits,...anything that helps YOU might help someone else too.  Let's be Sharers).  Happy Painting!

It's time to think about Venice in 2017.  Come with me!
I have a week set aside for NON-PAINTERS too! 
Check out my excursion packages HERE.


Sunday, August 14, 2016

Are YOU in these pics??

The Fall finds me doing what I love to do the most...teaching.

I came across these photos this morning, and they brought back so many random memories! Do you recognize yourself?  (Please leave me a Comment today and tell me what you're up to!)

Brand new workshops are lined up for this fall, starting August 27 for Beginners and more intermediate or advanced classes running through October.  Check them out HERE!

2009 Florals and Landscapes Workshop
2009 Art Camp for budding artists.
2009 Skies, Water and Reflections Workshop
2010 Nature's Textures (Mixed Media)
2010 Beginners' workshop (through Sculpture in the South)
2011 Yupo workshop
2012 Beginners' Workshop
2012 Acrylics Workshop
2012 Florals and Landscapes
2012 Watercolor and Acrylics
2012 Watercolor Explorations
2012 Watercolor
2013 Charleston Plein air
2013 Venice Workshop
2013 Venice Workshop
2013 Beginners' Watercolor Workshop
2014 Yupo Workshop
2014 Magnolia Plantation Plein air workshop
2014 Beginners' workshop
2014 Charleston Garden Plein air
2014 Beacham Boot Camp
2015 Florals Workshop
2015 The Art of Architecture
2015 Yupo
2015 Venice 8-day workshop
2015 Charleston Plein air
2016 Venice
If you've studied with me in the past, I have a special Facebook Group that I'd love for you to join (it's called Beacham Watercolor Students)...I give tips and techniques, free critiques if you ask for one, and it's just a way for my students to connect with others who love what you love!  Ask me to be added today if you've ever studied with me!

It's time to think about Venice in 2017.  Come with me!
I have a week set aside for NON-PAINTERS too! 
Check out my excursion packages HERE.


Thursday, July 28, 2016

I'm now a U.S. citizen!

On July 18, I became a proud U.S. citizen!  I'm in good company apparently. According to the booklet in my Welcome Packet, these well-known people were foreign-born and subsequently became Americans!

Alexander Graham Bell -  (Scotland)
Joseph Pulitzer - (Hungary)...yes, of Pulitzer Prize fame.
Albert Einstein - (Germany).  Easy one.
Irving Berlin - (Russia)
Frank Capra - (Italy)
Marlene Dietrich - (Germany)
Bob Hope - (Great Britain)
Igor Stravinsky -  (Russia).  He's buried in Venice, on the cemetery island of Isola di San Michele!

Igor Stravinsky is buried here, on the cemetery island of San Michele, right across the lagoon from Venice.  This was my 20 minute sketch (created during my 2013 trip to Venice) in my Stillman & Birn Beta sketchbook (8.5" x 5.5", which I opened up to paint an 8.5 x 11 sketch).  The paper takes very well to water, paint and ink lines. 
It's time to think about Venice in 2017.  Come with me!
I have a week set aside for NON-PAINTERS too! 
Check out my excursion packages HERE.


Monday, July 25, 2016

Google Alerts

I have certain topics I like to stay aware you?  One of mine shouldn't be a shocker for you.  It's Venice.

By using GOOGLE ALERTS, I get to find out about a lot of things I'd never dream to look up otherwise.  Here's how to CREATE AN ALERT.

Today, Google showed me the most fabulous 38" x 27" reproduction of a 1770's oil painting of Venice, priced at only $75.  If only I lived in the Seattle area, it would be mine!

But seriously, you should set up Google Alerts for your own name(s) at want to be aware of what's being said about you out there, right?!

It's time to think about Venice in 2017.  Come with me!
I have a week set aside for NON-PAINTERS too! 
Check out my excursion packages HERE.


Friday, July 15, 2016

A Love Letter?

I "imagine" handwritten letters arriving from...whom?
Venice, May 2016.


Saturday, July 2, 2016

To Sketch or not to Sketch (?)

I'm itching to use my new Venetian hand made (!) sketchbook, given to me by Kim Minichiello who came with me to Venice this past May.  She surprised me with it as a "thank you" for hosting her (and my other WAM friends) in Venice.

My dilemma!??  Do I use it for all kinds of everyday sketches...or do I SAVE it for Venice drawings? I'm so torn! (What should I do? I won't be back in Venice till spring of I / can I wait that long?)

The Lion is the symbol of St. Mark who is the patron saint of Venice.
The sketchbook measures 7"h x 5"w and is bound with the softest Venetian leather.

The paper is handmade and each page seems to have a texture of its own.  As Kim cautioned me "you won't know what you get (as a result) until you give it a try".  That's going to be the fun of it!

As you can see, the sheets of paper are bound into the book with this string!
Believe it or not, there are 64 single sided sheets to sketch on!
Thank you, Kim, for my special treat!

It's time to think about Venice in 2017.  Come with me!
I have a week set aside for NON-PAINTERS too! 
Check out my packages HERE.   
And please leave a Comment...should I wait till Venice to sketch in it?


Friday, June 24, 2016

Let's go to Venice! (special week set up for non-painters too)

I just got back from Venice on May 11 and it's time to sign up for 2017 now!

Grand Canal, right in front of the Santa Maria della Salute church
and near the Peggy Guggenheim.
Artists are encouraged to sign up for my Sketching Workshop (8 days & 8 nights).  Click here for COMPLETE DETAILS.  Take advantage of the Early Bird offer!

But here's also an opportunity for Non-Painters to come with me!  I've set aside a separate 8 days just for you!   I'll be your Escort and show you the sights and sounds of my most favorite City!  Click here for THOSE DETAILS!

Hopefully, you've already LIKE'd my Facebook art page (find it HERE).  If you did, I know you saw all of the pictures I posted every day on this last trip.  That was just a hint of the beauty that is Venice. I can't wait to show it to you in person too!

It's time to think about Venice in 2017.  Come with me! 
Check out my classes HERE.   
Please leave a Comment...I'd love to hear from you!


Sunday, May 22, 2016

Do you want to host your own Studio Open House?

3 of my students (mentees?) recently asked me to join them in showing our most recent artwork, and one of them volunteered to host it in her home.  How could I refuse?  It was a terrific teaching moment since none of them had ever held a Studio Open House.

How did we accomplish our successful event?

From left:  Susan Baughman, Anne Peterson, Donna Boerema, and moi.
1.  We picked the date and time (and picked a catchy title for our show) and we announced it via email to our individual lists as a SAVE-THE DATE about one month before our event.  In our case, we went with "Pre-Spoleto:  Show and Tell".  Spoleto is a Charleston 17-day art festival that I exhibit at, and it starts on May 27 this year (this coming Friday!).  So we held our Pre-Spoleto event on May 21.  (We also announced it on Facebook, but we asked people to ask us for the address, rather than just spell it out.)

2.  We created postcards and mailed them to our own mailing lists (again, about 3-4 weeks before the event).  BTW, we agreed on the front end to share in all costs involved with setting up the event.

Front of our postcard.
3.  I guided them through their thought process of how to price originals, as well as giclee prints.  They spent hours packaging pieces that wouldn't receive frames.

Sharing in the work of pricing and packaging their art.
4.  We decided who would bring which food to the party.  We figured we'd be ready to feed 200 people.  One of our husbands (thanks, Mac!) kept his eye on the table for us.  (One of our guests complimented me on having the event catered when she saw Mac carrying a fresh tray to the table!) This is the time to bring out the pretty tablecloth, hang some party lights, add flickering candles (I like the safety of votives), play some pretty music and even have your laptop turned on, with a slideshow of whatever you're most proud of.  In our case, the 4 of us just came back from Paris, so we wanted to share our time in the City of Lights!

Calories do NOT count on days like this!
5.  We had all kinds of price points available (from $25 for the smallest prints, up to $4800 for a 30x40 original).  Don't pre-judge what your collectors are willing to spend.  Even if they don't buy at that event, the right piece will "stay with them" and could eventually find its way into their collection.  Price tags should be evident.  My advice is to not leave art on the wall if it's Not For Sale (NFS).  Use your valuable space wisely.  

We hung work in all the upstairs bedrooms and bathrooms as well.  These were small originals that we put in clear envelopes and we then taped them to the wall with 5 pieces of blue painters tape on the backs.
6.  Make sure your lighting is adequate.  We supplemented the lighting by adding 5 floor lamps and 2 spot lights throughout the bedrooms and halls.  If they can't "see" it, it won't speak to them.

Supplement existing lighting with floor lamps or spot lights.
7. Designate a table to be your "check out" station.  Our event lasted 4 hours, so we each took a 1-hr shift, manning that station.  Have plenty of change and have a reliable way to take credit cards.  51% of our sales were via credit card. We had a pad with the headings: Form of Payment / Artist / Title / Orig or Print / $, so that we could keep track of who was owed money at the end of the day.

Our checkout station.
8.  We had a Form for guests to give us their email addresses, and we invited them to tell us which of us artists they wanted to get updates from.  My mentees will now be able to start their own email list for future events or announcements!

And here's my lovely family who surprised me with a visit to our Studio Open House.  The kids were all decked out from their piano recitals held off-site.  That's our son, Antoine, with his 4 adorable kids (ages 4-8) and Lauren, the daughter-in-law who is more like a daughter to me.  My husband, Ray, rounds out our little family.  And, yes, the kids all have artistic talent!

I'm hoping you'll now be a bit braver about holding your own Studio Open House.  If you team up with other artists, your workload will be that much less and you'll probably have a lot more fun.  Give it a try and let me know how it goes!  Do you have other tips for my readers about holding such an Event??  

It's time to think about Venice in 2017.  Come paint with me! 
Check out my classes HERE.   
Please leave a Comment...I'd love to hear from you!

Friday, April 29, 2016

Much going on, but....

I've really wanted to post stories and pics while I'm here in Paris and Venice but one small glitch has surfaced! I don't know how to rez down my pics so that Blogger displays them ok.

I promise to share both with you when I can manage to do so! Catch me on Facebook in the meantime! I'm in Venice now, partway into the workshop I'm teaching.... I have SO much to share! P. S. If anyone has tips to give me for rez'ing down those pics (on an Android), send them my way pls!

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Did you know about Venice (#3)?

Let's say you want to mail an adorable postcard of Venice to your jealous friends back home.  Don't bother standing in line at the Post Office (right, Cindy?).

Instead, head to the closest Tabacchi (pronounced Tabah-kee), which means Tobacco shop.  You'll see signs like the one shown below with a big black and white T on them, which usually say "Sali e Tabacchi" (meaning Salt and Tobacco).  

Photo courtesy of:
Curious, I asked the shop owner about it.  It seems that Salt and Tobacco were two products that were controlled by the government in a monopoly.  That's no longer the case, but the signs quaintly harken back to that time (and...they don't want to spend the money to change them).

Inside these Tabacchi, in addition to buying stamps, you can buy tobacco products, lottery tickets, shampoo and other toiletries and sometimes they even have a corner that's devoted to a bar and all that that offers!  You've gotta love these people!  
p.s. be aware that they're likely to close down for their afternoon "siesta" (although I'm not sure what the Italian word for that is....does anyone know?)

It's time to think about Venice in 2017.  Come paint with me! 
Check out my classes HERE.   
Want to be on my mailing list?  Please leave me a Comment...I'd love to hear from you!