Monthly Archives: January 2014

Good and Bad News

It was a day of mixed news…..lets do the bad news first.  I submitted my painting “Stuck in Neutral” to the American Watercolor Society for acceptance into the art exhibition this year.  In order to be a signature member, I need to be juried into their show twice.  Today, came the unhappy news that my painting was “rejected”.

My Painting Submitted to American Watercolor Society.

My Painting Submitted to the American Watercolor Society.

Surprisingly, I wasn’t as devastated as I thought I would be.  You see, I am taking a workshop with John Salminen, who’s art I greatly admire.   He has actually won the first place award for the American Watercolor Society exhibition twice.  The salve for the wound to my pride was when John announced during the workshop, that he also received his rejection from the American Watercolor Society today.  In that case, I am in good company.

Now for the good news!  In the same afternoon, I also received an email from the Florida Watercolor Society, that my painting “This Little Piggy” was accepted into their online exhibition.  That also helped take the sting our of my American Watercolor Society rejection!  I guess you must take the bitter with the sweet.

Accepted into the Florida Watercolor Society Online Exhbition

Accepted into the Florida Watercolor Society Online Exhbition

Life goes on, paintings will continue to happen, and there is always next year . . . so look out AWS, because I have an entire year to prepare my next art entry.

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What a Night

What an amazing night.  First a big Thank you to everyone who came to the New Member Art Exhibition.  144 people attended the show.  I also have to say, that all the artists set the bar very high, it was so well put together.  Thank you everyone.

As for me, I am so happy to announce that my painting “This Little Piggy” found a new home last night!  There was a big snafu with the cash register crashing, but the client came back this morning and made the purchase.  Thank you Carl, I hope Katy loves her new painting as much as I loved creating it.

My Painting This Little Piggy Found a New Home

My Painting This Little Piggy Found a New Home

On top of my sale, I gave out lots of art bookmarks, and had at least 25 people signup to receive Brushstrokes by Tatum’s Newsletter.  Other exciting news, is that I will have my painting and an interview published in the UWF Newspaper.  It was truly an exciting evening.

The icing on the cake, were all the good friends that came out and supported me.  It was so nice connecting with everyone.  What a night, who could ask for more?

With lots of help from all the artists, we managed to get the entire gallery cleaned, and locked up by 8:30.  Excellent job everyone!

What’s cooking for next week . . . . stay tuned for the next exciting art adventure, and it’s going to be a good one.  To receive the next post, sign up now.



Tonight’s the Night . . . .

Tonight’s the night….the opening reception for the “New at the Q 2014” New Members Art Exhibition.  It is going to be fantastic and I hope that everyone will come out and support local Pensacola artists.

New in the Q 2014 New Members Art Show

New in the Q 2014 New Members Art Show

Naturally, I will be there and will be taking pictures to post tomorrow.  If you can’t make it out tonight, then you can at least get a taste of what your missing by signing up for the next blog post.

The Gourmet Artist

Who says artists only paint?  Today’s post will be a bit different….consider it a culinary art post!

If you have been following my blog, you will know that tomorrow is the opening reception for the “New at the Q New Members Art Exhibition.”  The last two days were spent getting the exhibition up and ready.  Today will be spent in the kitchen, preparing some of the yummy appetizers that will be served at the reception.  I thought it would be fun to share the recipe with you.

I am making delicious Sausage and Cheese Balls, they are to die for good, easy to make and they store well.  Absolutely delicious, the problem with them is that you can’t eat just one.


3 Cups Original Bisquick  Mix

1 Pound Uncooked Bulk Pork Sausage

4 Cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese (1 pound)

1/2 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

1/2 Cup of Milk


1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease cookie sheet.

2.  In large bowl combine together all ingredients.  Shape into 1- inch balls.   Place on Cookie Sheet.

3.  Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown.  Immediately remove from cookie sheet and allow to cool on rack.

Makes 102 Balls

This are sooo delicious and easy to make

This are sooo delicious and easy to make


You don’t even have to make these yourself!  Just drop by the Quayside Gallery tomorrow between 5:00 and 8:00 PM and you can not only taste these wonderful sausage cheese balls, but lots of other goodies, sip on a nice white sangria, and of course, enjoy the beautiful art on display.  Won’t you join us?

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Organized Chaos in the Art Gallery

The first phase of putting together the New Members Artist Art Exhibition is to hang the paintings.  We have 12 artists displaying their art works with each person contributing 5 to 7 pieces each.  Basically, that comes down to about 66 to 70 works of art that needed to be placed on the wall in some reasonable fashion.  Sounds easy, but, it’s not.

My Paintings Waiting to Take Their Place

My Paintings Waiting to Take Their Place

Before I move on, I do want to shout out a big, big Thank you to Dan, Manuel and Patricia for their unwavering patience and help.  The show would not have been hung without them.

Sadly, step one was to make several phone calls and harass some of the artist who had not dropped off their work yet.  After much begging and pleading, everyone managed to get their art to the gallery.  In order to see what we were dealing with, around the walls all the different paintings, drawings, and photography received, was propped up against the walls.  It was a lot.

Lined up ready to be hung on the wall

Lined up ready to be hung on the wall

The most difficult part of the hanging, was trying to merge 12 different styles of art to work together to create one cohesive show.  With lots of climbing up the later (Dan) handing over paintings (Manuel) and then adjustments (Patricia) the art exhibition was hung in 4 hours.  I felt like I had run a marathon.

Even Dan Went a Little Crazy After Hanging Art all Day

Even Dan Went a Little Crazy After Hanging Art all Day

The great news is, the show is up and it is fabulous.  You don’t want to miss the first Quayside Gallery Art Exhibition of 2014.  Opening reception is Friday, January 10, 2014 from 5:00 until 8:00.  There will be white sangria, delicious food, and of course – terrific art.

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How to Pick the Right Mat & Frame for Your Next Piece of Art

 Why does matting a framing a painting or a print have to be so difficult?  It is overwhelming when you walk into a framing shop.  First there are hundreds of mat colors to pick from.  Do you pick a mat color that matches the painting, or maybe you should match your sofa?  Do you want one mat or two? Once you agonize over what color mat to put around your newly acquire painting, the fun doesn’t stop there.  Next you not only have to decide on a frame color, but also a framing style.  Yikes, stop the insanity!

This short tutorial will help you pick the right mat for your work of art.  Just like you I struggle with the agony of making a decision when it comes to matting and framing art.  I find it difficult to envision what the painting is going to look like, when the framer only places a right angle corner of the mat and frame on the print so I can “see what it will look like once it’s framed.”   To make your life a little easier when it comes to matting and framing, I’ve created this short tutorial on how to pick a mat.  I think you will find it helpful.


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Time Crunch

With the New Members Art exhibit fast approaching, I thought it would be nice to give everyone a behind the scenes look at how much work goes into a show or exhibit.

At this point, I have four large paintings ready to be hung.  I would love to get five art pieces up on the wall, but I am really going to be pushing tomorrow to get my last painting done.  Not only does it need about three more layers of painting, but I also need to mat, frame and put the backing on the piece.  It is making me tired just thinking of all the work that is waiting for me upstairs in my studio.  Yikes!  Nothing like waiting until the last minute.  But, I have said it before, I work pretty well under pressure.

It is so frustrating for me when I have a vision in my head of how a painting should come out, and then I can’t translate what is in my head onto the paper.  It is important for me not to get frustrated, and to be able to step back, and enjoy the process rather than be solely focused on the end result – the painting.  I have found that if I am happy and enjoying the process, then usually the painting turns out well.

The title of the last painting is Skinny Dipping and the subject matter are Koi.  I have painted these fish over and over again.  The first version was done in acrylics, just black and white; while I was still living in Puerto  Rico.

Koi painted the first time in Puerto Rico

Koi painted the first time in Puerto Rico

 Then I painted it again as a batik.

Batik Painting of Koi

Batik Painting of Koi

After that, I painted it as a watercolor as a standard watercolor painting with a paint brush.  The last three versions I have been pouring the paint, and I am hoping the last of those three paintings will be framed and hung in the show on Tuesday. You will have to come down and see if “Skinny Dipping” made it into the show : )question

I have always heard that you should paint what you love, I don’t particularly love fish, but I am captivated by the way Koi move in the water, their brilliant colors.  Isn’t it such a nice surprise to see them come up to the surface with their mouths opening and closing begging for food?  A flash of orange, white, red or gold!   Although, I can’t say Koi are my passion, I must confess that I have enjoyed trying to capture their color and movement in my paintings.

Stay tuned for the hectic behind the scenes look at what goes on to get “New at the Q New Members Show” up and running.  Don’t miss out on the next installment, sign up now to stay tuned.

Extra, Extra Read All About It!

It's here .... the Jan. 2014 Artist Newsletter

It’s here …. the Jan. 2014 Artist Newsletter

Yes, the January 2014 edition of Brushstrokes Artist Newsletter is out and available.  If you would like to receive your copy  …. no problem.  Just fill in your email address below and you will receive your very own copy delivered directly to your email in-box.  Never miss an edition again.  Don’t you want to know that latest news in the art scene, be the first to know about cool art giveaways, and read the months inspirational quote?  Then don’t delay – sign up for your copy today.

The Art Forger

Painting and art are my passion, but a girl cannot live by art alone; I also love to read.  Recently I stumbled upon a book “The Art Forger” by B.A. Shapiro and I was in seventh heaven.  It is a sparklicious day when I can combine two of my favorite things . . . art and reading!  The icing on the cake is that the book is fantastic.  The house not getting cleaned and me walking around with my nose in a book is a sure sign that it is a good read.

An excellent read.

An excellent read.

I will not tell you the story as I don’t want to spoil it for you.  However, after reading the book, I did start thinking about some of the bigger issues The Art Forger brings to light.

The first question is, “what makes art – art?”  That of course raises the question of what value and purpose does art serve in our society?  Certainly, the purpose and value of art has changed over the centuries.  Paleolithic Paintings were produced 34,000 years ago by Cro-Magnons and usually were images of different animals.  It is  believed that they were drawn for ritual purposes to ensure successful hunting, or to promote fertility.  Whatever the reason, it is obvious that these cave paintings did not serve the purpose of decorating.  (Honey does this painting match the dirt floor?)  Obviously in the 21st century we not only use art because it is aesthetically pleasing, but also for purposes of investment, and for recording or honoring people, places and things.  Does that take away value from modern day art?  Or the opposite, does that make our modern day art more valuable?

Along those same lines, is a famous painting valuable because of who painted it?  In other words, if you had never been exposed to the Mona Lisa, you knew nothing of it.  Then, one day, someone showed yoCan you separate the painting from the painter? u the Mona Lisa, would you think it is a beautiful painting?  Or does that fact that Leonardo Da Vinici painted it, give the Mona Lisa it’s value?  There is a believe that the Mona Lisa, may in fact be a forgery, as during the 16th century many forgeries were made (hint – hint read the book).  Does that change your view of the Mona Lisa?

As an Artist, I can appreciate the beauty of a painting without giving value to the fact that it was created by a famous artist.  However, it is hard to think of the Mona Lisa without thinking of Leonardo Da Vinci, in fact, in this case, I would venture to say it is impossible to separate the painting from the painter.

I encourage you to read the book, and of course if you have an opinion on “what is art” or “what makes art valuable” please share your thoughts in the comment section below.


The Elements of Art

Whether an art enthusiast or an artist, having a basic understanding of art composition is important and will make the art experience a better one.   Of course, the casual art observer to the most accomplished artist knows if they like a painting, no additional training or information is needed.  It basically becomes a question of taste.  However, to really appreciate what we see when we view a piece of art, a general base of knowledge is helpful.  The basic building blocks for art are known as the Elements of Design.

When an artist skillfully manipulates these building blocks they create a cohesive piece of art work.

An example of the use of line in Art

The first element of design is the line.  It is either a visible or implied pathway connecting  two points.  The line is used in art to move the viewer (you) through the painting.



Next is the design element shape is a representation of a two dimensional object, and it will look flat.

Example of “Shape” being used in composition

Form is another element of design and it is the representation of the look and feel of a three dimensional object on a two dimensional surface.  All objects have either shape or form, with form being three dimensional and shape looking flat.

This is an example of Form

The next element of design is color and is pretty well recognized by the everyday art observer.  However, what is not so well known about color is how strong of an impact it can have on the viewer. 

The color wheel

Value is the next element and it addresses the lightness or darkness of a color.   Many artist consider value to be more important in the composition of a painting then even color.

Use of Value

Use of Value

Texture refers to the qualities of an objects surface, is it smooth, shiny, rough etc….

Use of Texture

Use of Texture






Use of Space. Foreground, Middle ground and Background

Last but not least comes space and this is the area contained between the edges of a painting. It is the space between objects and is all around us.




Not every painting will have all seven elements of design within them, nor should they.  Strong artists, usually will pick 2 or 3 of these design elements to incorporate into their compositions, and if they are handled well the painting will be a strong work of art.

As you can see, being familiar with the elements of design  will help both the artist to compose a strong painting and the viewer to appreciate what they observe in a painting.  In future blogs, I will explore the elements of design more in depth.  You definitely don’t want to miss out on this free educational series that will make your art experience even better.  To receive the next edition simply fill in your email address and subscribe.