Convention: Paintings At Museum

WSO Spring Convention (Part One)


Hi!  This article is about the Watercolor Society of Oregon’s Spring Convention as a precursor to an article about a watercolor figure demonstration.

Just to clarify, I wanted to talk to you about the lessons I learned while participating in a demo for the Watercolor Society of Oregon’s (WSO) Spring Convention.  However, as I started writing I found myself talking as much about the convention as I did about the demo.  Maybe I needed context for the demo, or maybe the larger effort was a story I wanted to talk about too.

Convention: Paintings At Museum

A Blog Posting In Two Parts.

As I was writing about the convention and found myself approaching 1000 words, I realized I still wasn’t finished.  Hmmm, perhaps it was time to make this a two part blog post.  And, this will be Part One: About the WSO Convention.  Then, my next posting will be “Part Two: About the Three Artists, Three Approaches, One Figure Demo”, which was a demonstration I participated in at the Convention.

Part One:  The Big Convention.

So, let’s start with the big picture first:  The Watercolor Society of Oregon’s Spring Convention 2017.

And, may I say that it was a big “to do” in the world of Oregon watercolor.

To elaborate, the reason for the bigger than usual convention was that the WSO hosted the Western Federation of Watercolor Societies’ (WFWS) Annual Exhibition. This was the first time that the Western Federation came to Oregon so, naturally, WSO’s committee worked hard to put on a first class, extra special convention. They selected a theme of “Pour It On”. Most appropriate, I think, because the committee did “pour it on” by putting together an excellent convention.

Convention: Ruth & Margaret At the Museum

About WSO Conventions.

To explain, the Watercolor Society of Oregon holds an exhibition together with a convention approximately every six months. That is to say, there are meetings, art demonstrations, vendors, and mini-workshops in addition to the awards ceremony for the artists at the banquet. It is quite an event. Add to the usual amount of work an additional exhibition of the paintings selected for the WFWS 42d juried show. You might imagine that there are lots of people involved.

Huge Congrats!

I pause here for a special “congratulations” to all who worked on the committee to bring Western Federation here. Oregon artists Ruth Armitage and Margaret Godfrey led the effort. This was a multi year project that involved lots of behind the scene work. It was a gift to all the artists who came to the convention or exhibition.

Three Shows; One Museum.

So, let’s consider this: three shows hung side by side in one museum!  I’m referring to the paintings in the WFWS juried exhibition; paintings in the WSO exhibition; and a special showing of the Juror Jeannie McGuire’s work.  The results?  Stunning!

The paintings are on display at the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art on the University of Oregon campus in Eugene, OR. This exceptional show will be at the museum through June 19th, 2017. If you would like more information about location, hours and admission, please see their website.

Convention Volunteers

Wait!  There’s More!  Mini Demos and Workshops.

In addition to the exhibitions, the WSO convention includes mini demonstrations and workshops. In my opinion, these provide benefits to member attendees in two major ways: those who attend may learn something new or different; those who teach or demonstrate gain experience.

I went to some of the sessions and was particularly impressed by the amount of preparation done by the presenters. Remembering that we’re all volunteers, I was doubly impressed! Imagine, so much work just for the love of creating art, watercolor painting and our fellow artists!

A Word About The Vendors

Several vendors were present during the convention to talk about their products and generously share samples.  I would like to extend a special “THANK YOU” to Mr. Steve Gallisdorfer from ColArt Americas, Inc.  Mr. Gallisdorfer and ColArt represent many fine art brands, including d’Arches artists watercolor paper.  I received a block of 140lb watercolor paper (3.9″ x 9.8″), just perfect for outdoor painting!

I was pleased to meet Northwest Watercolor Society artist Ron Stocke who was doing a demo for Oregon owned M. Graham & Co paints.  Fun!

Thank you to all the vendors who gave so generously to WSO.

Convention, sampling of paintings at the museum


Sharing Ideas.

I’d like to share with you some ideas I gathered from two of the presentations I attended.

  • Create a PowerPoint–style slide presentation of your paintings. From a presentation Jeannie McGuire, Juror.
    • The slide show helps you get a feel for where you are as an artist and where you’ve been
    • Can help you explain your process, vision, or passion to others.
    • You can do a “retrospective” of your work, or maybe create a slide show of your latest series. Either way, it’s like a portfolio in PowerPoint.
  • Select and review your paintings with the design principles in mind. From a presentation by Oregon artist Linda Rothchild-Ollis.
    • You might create a small slide show of some of your work.
    • Select some of the design principles to focus your evaluation.
    • Look at your own slide show and evaluate how you’re using the design principles.

A Special “Thanks”!

I would like to acknowledge and thank Lynda Hoffman-Snodgrass and Ruth Armitage for sharing photos.  Please note that several of the photos are courtesy of the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, via Ms. Armitage.  Thank you!


So, now I’ve set the stage and given you a bit of context about the WSO Spring Convention and WFWS 42nd Show.  In my next posting, I’ll continue in Part 2 with a discussion about the demo I participated in along with Deborah Marble and Chris Stubbs.

Stay Tuned For Part Two.

WSO Convention Spring 2017 Three Artists



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