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September 2013




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Sep. 11th, 2013

Remembering 9-11

In honor of those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001, their friends and family, those nearby that were traumatized, and the brave men, women, and rescue dogs who dealt with the aftermath.  We are a strong nation, and we survive, but not without pain.

It is my own personal tradition to remember this day by posting my painting of the event; I owe them that much.

Dec. 21st, 2012

Happy Solstice!


The Shortest Day

And so the Shortest Day came and the year died
And everywhere down the centuries of the snow-white world
Came people singing, dancing,
To drive the dark away.
They lighted candles in the winter trees;
They hung their homes with evergreen;
They burned beseeching fires all night long
To keep the year alive.
And when the new year's sunshine blazed awake
They shouted, revelling.
Through all the frosty ages you can hear them
Echoing behind us - listen!
All the long echoes, sing the same delight,
This Shortest Day,
As promise wakens in the sleeping land:
They carol, feast, give thanks,
And dearly love their friends,
And hope for peace.
And now so do we, here, now,
This year and every year.
Welcome Yule!

-Susan Cooper.

I love this poem, and think of it every year at this time as the days get longer and the light claims victory over the darkness...as well as my dear young friend Ailsa, sometimes known as tattermuffin, whose anniversary it is.  Have a wonderful day, dear heart!

And oops, I wish I knew how to edit the size of the art...LiveJournal has changed their setup...

Sep. 11th, 2012

Remembering 9-11

In honor of those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001, their friends and family,
and the brave men and women who dealt with the aftermath.

It is my own personal tradition to remember this day by posting my painting of the event; I owe them that much.

Jul. 10th, 2012

Art tip #124 just went out, with the newsletter...

ART TIP #124--Exploring Dip Pens
Last time we played with a variety of fountain pens to see what they would do...this time we take a step back in time to versatile, inexpensive dip pens, and a bit about their history.
Join us for Part 2 of pen comparisons, as always in the Art Tips at upper left, here: http://cathyjohnson.info.
We've archived past entries to the right of every tip--you can find ideas on 124 subjects now! 
Save them, print them out, keep them on your hard drive, share them with friends...that's what they're there for. 
(They're also archived on inexpensive CDs and the NEW download form for your convenience--some people don't like to wait!)
* If you know someone who might be interested in ALL our offerings, feel free to share signup info for this newsletter or forward this email!  The signup form's on my website, too...address in the sidebar at right.

Free Art Tip # 125, since we're on a drawing kick, will be on unusual drawing tools--watch for it!

And in other news...downloads!

We just jumped into the 21st Century, and ALL of our latest downloads are finally available, for those who prefer that format rather than ordering CDs--it's especially handy for our overseas art friends, but we're delighted with the wonderful response from people on THIS side of the pond, as well.

The Watercolor Pencil Workshop remains our most popular offering--that's a challenging medium!  Click the link above to learn more about what's included.  I'm happy to note that Keeping an Artist's Journal is a very close second, with the other workshops not far behind.  THANK you all who have ordered from us!
We've also added downloadable versions for a couple of our little living history booklets from Graphics/Fine Arts Press--they've been in print for well over a decade now, and we're test-driving them as eBooks.
If you're as fascinated with pirates as many of us are, you might get a kick out of Pyrates in Petticoats, above! 
Check out all our offerings--art books, living history, nature, in our book catalog: http://www.cathyjohnson.info/books.html.
JETPENS featured my work on their blog this past week--thank you Lily and David and all!  You can find the mini-interview here: http://blog.jetpens.com/2012/07/artist-highlight-cathy-johnson.html
I had no idea they had such an interesting blog, with interviews and features on a lot of artists worth checking out.  You may want to bookmark the site, I did!
If you haven't ordered from JetPens.com before, I'm happy to be able to tell you their customer service is LOVELY.  Nice folks, fun offerings.
...upcoming at the Ackland Museum at Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
Correspondents of the Urban Sketchers blog have donated works to benefit the organization, help with future symposia and workshops, and generally advance the cause of urban sketching.  I've donated three, myself!
The show opens August 10 and promises to be an exciting peek into urban sketches across the globe.

Jacqueline Newbold offers a free drawing tutorial on her blog--with excellent examples of  measuring with your pencil.  You'll find it here: http://djnewbold.blogspot.com/2012/07/drawing-lesson-part-i.html
Charles Reid, one of my all-time favorite watercolorists, is now on Facebook.  You can browse his wonderful paintings and journals here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Charles-Reid-Watercolor/358463624182022
If that doesn't inspire you, nothing will!
Pamela Outersky Smith, a good friend of mine, was recently featured in the Best of Missouri Hands newsletter, and she DESERVES it.  Beautiful work that shows her deep love of horses and nature.  You can see the PDF here: http://www.bestofmissourihands.org/newsletter/BOMH_newsletter_2012-July.pdf
You'll like some of the recent posts from our correspondents.  If you've been considering binding your own sketchbooks, here's Vicky Williamson's latest entry--her journals always look so professional!
One of our recent interviews, Catriona Andrews, uses glorious inks--take a peek at her explorations here:
And remember, our poll is still open, in the sidebar at right...feel free to let us know what you'd like to see on the blog!
If you're a journal keeper and you'd like to join us, we also have an active Facebook group  and a Flick group--you'll find it here:  http://www.flickr.com/groups/artists-journal-workshop/ --check them out!
We've had some wonderful additions to the group blog lately!  Don't miss Don Gore's visit to Colonial Williamsburg (that's one of his sketches, above), Vicky Williamson's travels in Kansas, Marcia Milner-Brage's delicious backyard scenes done with NeoColor II crayons, and our recent sketchcrawl at Belvoir Winery in Liberty, MO.  
You'll find Urban Sketchers Midwest here: http://urbansketchers-midwest.blogspot.com/--the blog is invitation only, but we're always looking for new members.
Check out the sidebar on the right on the blog--there are some wonderful opportunities for learning, including the 3rd International Urban Sketchers Symposium, in Santo Domingo, almost ready to begin, and a workshop in Portland, Oregon in August from Marc Taro Holmes of the wonderful Citizen Sketcher blog and Shari Blaukopf, whose "The Sketchbook" blog will surely inspire you. 
(More information on the Symposium here: http://sdq2012.urbansketchers.org/)
If you're an urban sketcher and you live in the Midwest, join us on Flickr, here: http://www.flickr.com/groups/urban-sketchers-midwest/ or on our Facebook page, here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/291703234226829/
More art supplies, CDs, and other goodies as I continue to follow Thoreau's advice and "Simplify, simplify"--the other day I took time to write a list of all the art supplies I use constantly and wouldn't ever want to be without.  Everything else needs to go!  (And sigh, yes, I do have more of the set shown above!)
Feel free to check them out at my eBay store, Kate's Treasures: http://stores.ebay.com/Kates-Treasures


We appreciate your suggestions and impressions--on art tips, on classes, and on this newsletter.  If you have ideas for future tips or requests, write me!  I'll add them to the list.  (Sorry for those who paint in oils--I can't, because of allergies, so I just try to pass along useful links to those who do...)
If you want to see something different in this newsletter, we want to know that too.  THANK YOU!

You can reach me at kate.cathyjohnson@gmail.com.
I've been doing more urban sketching, when I get the chance--it's HOT by afternoon!  I hope you've had the chance to do likewise!  
Best wishes
from Kate

Thanks for visiting!   Feel free to forward this email to a friend...

May. 4th, 2012

April's art tip newsletter...

I forgot to post this here...and the art tip itself is on my website, as always, http://cathyjohnson.info.


In answer to questions that came up in the class, I made a video on Watercolor Brushes and Waterbrushes that you may enjoy.  It's on my YouTube channel, here: http://youtu.be/2uDM19TCPdI
There's lots more on my YouTube Channel, though--check it out here: http://www.youtube.com/user/KateJosTube.  You'll find videos old and new--and the Strathmore videos will be there after August 1, too. 
I'm still learning a lot about video editing and exploring...it's fun, if a bit challenging at times!  Lots more planned for the future.
I did a post on relative sizing of round brushes on our group blog, Artist's Journal Workshop...you can find it here: http://artistsjournalworkshop.blogspot.com/2012/04/its-all-relativebrush-sizes-that-is.html
Notice in the image above, the 12 is just a bit smaller thank the 8 in a different brand...LOTS of revelations in this post!
Alvaro Castagnet's watercolor demos on YouTube are marvelous!  This is the one I found first...it's fun and intimate.  You feel as if you're right there watching.   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QgVpJ6lLV0U
Did you know that Etsy offers instructions in their How-to Tuesday series?  Our friend and fellow Urban Sketcher Veronica Lawlor did one recently--it's still up for your enjoyment!  
--and now I'm itching to try a monoprint!
Our friend Marc Taro Holmes offers gorgeous prints on Etsy...his watercolors are stunning.  I'm the delighted owner of one of his prints, myself! Check out his fresh, juicy watercolor technique here: http://www.etsy.com/shop/citizensketcher
My newish shop got off to a great start, and then I got all busy with the Strathmore class and all the preparations!  
So now I'm back working on it, offering original art, prints, demos, sculpture and handmade jewelry. I hope you'll visit me there!  Drop by Cathy Johnson Art & More, any time--I'll be adding more goodies soon.  And add me to your circles, if you like!
Our new group blog is off to a flying start.  If you enjoy the incredible beauty and variety of this part of the country, check out the blog (and if you know someone whose work would fit, please let me know!)
--the blog is invitation only, but we're always looking for new members.
If you're an urban sketcher and you live in the Midwest, join us on Flickr, here: http://www.flickr.com/groups/urban-sketchers-midwest/ or on our Facebook page, here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/291703234226829/

Our group journaling blog is active and vital, and full of great ideas from our co-authors!  If there's something you'd like to see discussed, please let us know--and don't miss the poll in the sidebar at right!  That's a great way to let us know what you want to see
New interviews, new product reviews, new classes, all right here:
--please join us! Bookmark the site, "follow" the blog, share it with friends, but do be sure to visit to see what the buzz is about!  
We also have a very active Facebook group  and a Flick group you may want to join, if you're a journal keeper--you'll find it here:  http://www.flickr.com/groups/artists-journal-workshop/ another addition to our group Artist's Journal Workshop blog
I'm astounded at the wonderful work and generous souls we see there...I learn something myself, often!
Please feel free to join us, share your art, ask questions, make comments...

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