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Highlights Newsletter March 2021

President's Palette

Photograph of BWS president Sherry Morell

Here it is March ‘21, and for a whole year, all of our monthly BWS Board meetings have been done by Zoom instead of in-person at Howard County Center for the Arts in Ellicott City. We normally meet at 7pm on the first Thursday of the month and usually all the members are fairly prompt signing in. For our February meeting, however, there were three stragglers (Sabine Yeager, Stacy Levy and Cheryl Himelright) who all arrived late with the exact same excuse: "We are sorry we’re late, but we are taking a workshop with Thomas Schaller who is teaching in California and it is on Pacific time." One minute the three of them were painting with Thomas Schaller and the next minute they were attending our Board meeting. As I thought about all the changes going on, the corny, old song from Roger’s and Hammerstein’s classic musical "Oklahoma" flashed thru my my mind –

"Ev’rythin’s up to date in Kansas City,

They’ve gone about as fur as they c’n go,

For up to then, I didn’t have an ‘idy’,

Of what the modern world was comin’ to."

How true. It’s enough to make your head spin – I know mine does sometimes. Things are changing rapidly with digital innovations that allow artists to teach live classes that reach hundreds of artists rather than just 10 or 20 at a time. If your email inbox is anything like mine, you are being inundated with emails from local, national and even international art organizations with ads to join them in online art classes, seminars and demos. All taught by the top watercolorists across the country and the globe– artists that a person could only dream of studying with a year ago, are now just a keystroke away from your studio or easel.

Out of curiosity I queried our BWS Board members what workshops, classes, and demos they had attended during this shutdown and WOW – my inbox “overfloweth”! I had 11 Board members respond within just a day and they had attended over 50-60 workshops online, some attending only 2 or 3, but several attended over 14, painting with artists worldwide from here to China to Florence and back. While most of the Board members painted with artists familiar to us such as Schaller, Zhang, Bird, Tanabe, Evanson, Abgott, Holter, McAndrews and Quiller (just to name a few) several, such as BWS Secretary Deb Cohan, went international, studying with 3 artists in Europe. Board members painted landscapes, seascapes, cityscapes, winterscapes, portraits, still lifes, abstracts and even with tea (!) – anything their hearts desired. What a way to spend the lockdown.

Sometimes the workshops reached far beyond their expectations. One of Deb’s classes was online instruction by George Politis (RI, AWS, AWA, IAF, HS) whose studio is located in Thessaloniki, Greece. She and 6 other students studied his techniques for painting textures. A Facebook chat group was set up and now the instructor has been meeting with his class, every two weeks, giving feedback as they finish their works in progress. Talk about personal attention. On the other hand Kathy Dawalt and, I think, several others, stayed closer to home, attending online figure drawing sessions (hosted by the DC Art Model Collective) featuring live, professional models dressed in leotards or costumes, to hone their "people" skills. Members utilized "Watercolor Live" with demos and workshops, Cheap Joe’s workshops, Dillman’s workshops, "Paint with VLAD" by Vlad Yeliseyev, "Arty" from the UK, even the Florida Watercolor Society Convention, and that’s just a few of the art ones. In addition, they took multiple seminars on the "Business of Art"- conducting webinars, marketing your art and Zoom, Zoom, and more Zoom. Whew.

It’s a whole new world out there, folks, and I’m sure that this aspect of virtual art education will remain a part of the "new normal" of the art world even after the pandemic is over. Galleries and organizations are getting more professional in also putting their exhibits online, so that they can be viewed both live and virtually. Yes, we will soon have in-person workshops and exhibits again but organizations will also be able to "reach out and teach" more workshops with artists who were unavailable before (due to distance/travel/expense) by utilizing new virtual technologies. No -"We ain’t gone about as fur as we c’n go" – I think we have just seen the tip of the digital iceberg!

Please stay healthy and well,


    Upcoming Events

    Note: The above Upcoming Events summary only displays the start date for each event. For full details please click on the event, or visit the Events page.

    Welcome New Signature Artists

    Just a reminder that you can become a BWS Signature Artist after being selected three times in the BWS Mid-Atlantic Regional Exhibition. Just contact the membership chair ( with the years you had paintings in the Mid-Atlantic. Once validated you will receive an invoice for your Signature Artist dues. This month we have one new Signature Artist who has met this requirement. Welcome to our BWS family.

    Leigh Culver of Washington, DC

    Welcome New Associates

        Joanna (Joanne) Barnett of Brookeville, MD

        Ellen Bonnell of Silver Spring, MD

        Jane deGruchy of Mohnton, PA

        Joey Heuisler-Ward of Costa Mesa, CA

        Leah Laird of Windsor Mill, MD

        Tony Neville of Arlington, VA

        Ginto Pottackal of Elkridge, MD

        Sue Pitsch of Stephens City, VA

        Carol Starr of Rockville, MD

        Membership Dues

        As of February 1st dues were overdue. If your payment had not been received you received an automated e-mail telling you your membership is lapsed. As you may know USPS mail delivery has taken up to a full month to deliver in some cases. Recently it has gotten a bit faster, but two weeks is not unheard of. If you sent a check recently it is very likely the check has not arrived yet. If you are comfortable with paying online, please do so and pay with a credit card. The new payment system that we have been using for about two years accepts a wide variety of credit card types. If you have not paid and prefer to mail a check, make it out to BWS and mail it to:

        April Rimpo – BWS Membership
        14032 Howard Road
        Dayton, MD 21036-1020

        Signature Artist dues are $35 and Associate dues are $25.

        If I do not receive payment by late February you will receive a second "lapsed" notice. You will still receive e-mails from BWS for a period of time, but if you want to register for an upcoming event you will need to pay prior to registering.

        I hope all of you are well.
        April Rimpo, Membership Chair

        2021 Mid-Atlantic Exhibition

        Submit your best work for consideration by juror Anne Abgott (AWS, NWS) for the 2021 ONLINE Mid-Atlantic Regional Watercolor Exhibition that will be co-hosted by BWS and BlackRock Center for the Arts. Each website will have a full display of the 100 selected paintings so we can reach an even wider viewing audience.

        Photograph your painting. Check out the instructions under Member Resources on the BWS website or any of the readily available YouTube videos.

        Using you can create your free artist login where you will upload your jpg images and register for this event.

        Please review the prospectus requirements and the entry link here.

        Your jpg images must be at least 1920 on the longest side, and the file may not be larger than 5MB. There are numerous programs and apps that can do this, but help is available for a promised donation of $5 toward the catalog expenses. Please e-mail Sharon Green at for directions and assistance.

        When you register, don’t forget to use the BWS Coupon Code (2021MA) for the member entry fee rate of $30.

        The deadline is April 5, 2021.

        Online BWS Member Meeting

        With Lecture from Artist/Historian Leigh Culver and Demo by Artist Peter Ulrich

        Save the Date: May 27, 2021

        Zoom open for Member Social Time at 6:30 pm

        Presentation begins at 7:00 pm

        BWS has a treat in store for members. Everyone is invited to attend on Zoom—free of charge! Artist and art historian Leigh Culver (BWS), PhD, will present the lecture she would have given at our 2020 Annual Dinner (cancelled due to COVID-19).

        "An Evening with Whistler"

        Leigh will discuss Whistler’s art and the scandals surrounding his most well-known works. Explaining Whistler’s decision to turn to watercolor, Leigh will introduce us to what Whistler called his “lovely little games.”

        Artist Peter Ulrich (NWS, BWS, PVW) will then demo a painting in the style of Whistler, using the pigments and papers Whistler used.

        Leigh and Peter, together, will share insights about Whistler’s techniques and the history of the watercolor medium.

        Registration will be open to Members on Wild Apricot from Sunday, March 14th through May 20th or until we reach the maximum number of 100 attendees allowable in our Zoom account. Please plan to join us.

        Questions can be directed to:

        Member News

        BWS members may submit a 60-word announcement gratis to be listed under the heading "Member News." Images will be included as space allows. Submissions are due by the 15th of the month preceding publication date, and may be edited for length or clarity. Please e-mail your submissions to the Newsletter Editor at

        Boxed off featured ads are available for $25 and may include up to 100 words and one image. Contact the Newsletter Editor at for details.

        April Rimpo’s watercolor painting "Full Swing" was selected by Keiko Tanabe for the Watercolor Art Society of Houston’s 44th International Watercolor Exhibition. It will be hosted online beginning March 8 through April 1. Her watercolor painting "Beach Vacation" (below) was selected by John Salminen for the Georgia Watercolor Society’s National Exhibition to be held April 5 through May 14. 

        The watermedia painting "Beach Vacation" by April Rimpo, four colorful beachfront houses with three figures."Beach Vacation" by April Rimpo

        Peg Sheridan is teaching a one day workshop, "Make Your Watercolors Sparkle By Using the White of the Paper," on March 6 at the Beverley Street Studio School in Staunton, VA. More information is here.

        Annie Strack’s paintings were juried into the Mid Southern Watercolor Society 51st National Exhibit and the Western Colorado Watercolor Society 31st National Exhibit, earning her Signature Membership in WCWS.   

        Anni Matsick’s painting “Dreamscape With Wading Pool” received a Sponsor Award in the Fallbrook 12th Annual Signature American International Watermedia Exhibition. The exhibit runs February 13-April 11 and can be viewed online. Anni’s watercolor painting “Daydreamer" (below) is one of 75 works accepted into the 2021 Richeson75 Small Works International Exhibition in Kimberly, WI, February 18 – April 17. View the gallery online.

        "Daydreamer" by Matsick, a watermedia painting of a young person with long hair looking to one side with a pensive expression and high key palette."Daydreamer" by Anni Matsick


        West Virginia Watercolor Society
        Aqueous 2021
        Stifel Fine Arts Center, Wheeling, WV
        Entry Deadline: May 31, 2021

        Virginia Watercolor Society
        Annual Exhibition
        Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center, Portsmouth, VA
        Entry Deadline: March 15, 2021

        In Memoriam

        Donald Lord of Clarksville, MD

        Member Discount Codes

        20% discount with code BWCS at checkout

        American Frame:
        5% discount with code Alliance2018 OR free shipping on orders over $99 with code Alliance99 (may not be combined)

        Board of Governors and Committee Chairs

        Baltimore Watercolor Society, a 501c3 Nonprofit Organization

        President: Sharon Morell,, 443-465-1863

        Vice President:

        Secretary: Deborah Cohan, 301-977-6212

        Treasurer: Gaye Holcomb, 410-442-1922

        Assistant Treasurer: Cheryl Himelright, 301-829-2331

        Mid-Atlantic Chair: Sharon Green,, 410-363-1922

        Workshops & Programs: Sabine Yeager,, 410-245-0366

        Webmaster: Bob Coe, 410-877-3730

        Newsletter Editor: Joanna Barnum,, 410-428-3432

        Newsletter Committee: Carolyn Murphy, 443-578-8343

        Archivist: Karen Norman, 301-622-3770

        Hospitality Chair: Karen Schuster, 410-531-5768

        Hospitality: Bonita Glaser, 301-498-3946

        Hospitality: Joan Orcutt, 240-381-9309

        Membership/Database: April Rimpo,, 443-766-0148

        Membership/Jurying: Stacy Levy,, 410-446-2714

        Mid-Atlantic Awards Chair: Dana Kleinsteuber, 410-917-7935

        Mid-Atlantic Awards: Janet Arsenault, 410-713-0248

        Exhibits Chair: David Drown, 410-971-9769

        Exhibits: Jeffery Turner, 410-964-8282

        Exhibits: Kathy Daywalt, 443-695-4008

        Publicity: Harold Walpert, 410-358-9543

        Social Media: Annie Strack, 610-925-2815

        © Baltimore Watercolor Society

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