Mission Statement

The Rocky Mountain Society of Botanical Artists is an open and diverse group of artists, collectors and admirers who share a love for the practice and perpetuation of botanical art and illustration with a fond focus on plants in the Rocky Mountain Region.
We encourage and participate in educational outreach, juried and non-juried exhibits, lectures, workshops and regular chapter meetings. The RMSBA is proud to be the very first chapter affiliation of the international organization, the American Society of Botanical Artists.

Friday, June 3, 2011

What a great time we had!

Sunday's meeting opened with some clever storage suggestions and a bit about the value of art journals by Susi Olson. Carol Till discussed the logistics for participating in RARE II, and Libby Kyer presented information about our blog, and how to particpate.

Then, Libby demonstrated Caran d'Ache pencils, a Swiss manufactured colored pencil with intense hue concentrations. Members had the opportunity to test a variety of colored pencils, including Pablos, SupraColor Softs, and Neocolors I and II  on 4 substrates: Fabriano #140 Hot-pressed watercolor paper, Yupo, drafting film and colored stock. We used wet and dry techniques.

Registered participants received samples of Caran d'Ache's product line. Carol Till won the 30 pencil set of SupraColor Softs, Caran d'Ache's watercolor colored pencil. Congrats to Carol and many thanks to Caran d'Ache!!

Libby Kyer demonstrates some great pencils from Caran d'Ache

A broad sampling of products and substrates allows members to test and enjoy products

We broke for a light and tasty lunch, then continued the program with Dorothy DePaulo providing members with a folder that contained instructions, photo reference and film for creating colored pencil paintings on drafting film. Step by step printed instructions led members to use both sides of the film, and finishing suggestions included use of white paint, colored backing papers and more.

Dorothy also shared some of her paintings on drafting film, including a magnificent crow. Heidi Snyder was unable to attend, but sent some of her artworks on film also, including a water lily on a scintillating dark background, with painting on both sides of the film with colored pencils.  Members had time to begin a painting of a fall oak leaf with support from Dorothy.

Dorothy DePaulo's Oak Leaf, colored pencil on drafting film, which served as the basis for a workshop about working on film and techniques uniquely suited to it.

Many thanks to our instructors and to Caran d'Ache. 

Our next meeting is on Sunday, 26 June 2011, Koelbel Library. M. Graham Watercolor will demonstrate their products during this meeting. They create formulations taken from a time when artists relied on natural materials. They have created a watercolor with exceptional amounts of pigment in an old fashioned binding medium of pure gum Arabic and natural blackberry honey. The result is watercolor of extraordinary strength that is easily diluted for smooth, controlled washes and deeper darks. Alive with strength and intensity, watercolor made with honey absorbs moisture from the air, preventing hardening on the palette or in the tube.

"Watercolors" by M Graham Watercolors artist Frederick Graf
The vital stats for this meeting are under Events. This will be our last meeting until Autumn, so don't miss the opportunity to learn a great deal about watercolors, mingle with peers, and catch up on the activities of RMSBA. We'll be asking for your input on the new RARE II project, and for your help and input on the 20th ASBA Meeting and Conference, to be held in Denver in 2014, hosted by RMSBA. We can't do this without you!

Kaye Hurtt captured these two tulips in her garden, and they are the embodiment of Spring. I would love to have more members' artworks. Are you out there?

RMSBA members Carol Till and Maria (MaryJo) Ramsdale will be sharing a booth at the Summer Art Market, the Denver Art Student's League annual art fair. Visit them in Booth #15 on Third Avenue between Sherman and Grant Streets, in Denver June 11 and 12, 10 AM to 5:00 PM.

Carol will be selling her original etchings of plants, animals and six new bird nest etchings. She's also cleaning out the art closet and will have some colored pencil botanical art on sale. Mary Jo will be displaying her portraits and botanical watercolors. This is their fourth year doing the fair together. Only members of the League can exhibit and only original art can be sold at the Art Market.  

For more info about the market see http://www.asld.org/ or the artists' websites: http://www.caroltill.com/ or www.mariaramsdale.com 

Sonoran Sinita, etching by Carol Till

Under Calls for Entries, you'll find the call for our fall exhibit, The Colorado Garden, to be held in September and October. Be sure to make your plans to participate in the exhibition and the opening! 

Check out the Preliminary Call for Entries for the RARE II Exhibition. Yes, it's early, but it will give you lots of time to plan. The list of imperiled plants is there also. Select one from the list to participate in this event. Review the possibilities, select the plant you want, and email Libby at rmsbartists@gmail.com. I'll enter your choice. This is a first come, first served listing, so select early to get the plant of your dreams.

As summer barrels in, don't forget to check out workshops. You may find one perfect for your summer art needs. Making art under warm summer skies has to be about as perfect as life can get.

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