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2016 Painting WorkshopsWednesday, September 21, 2016 by Steve Hill
Filed under: Exhibits and Events
Fisherman Bay Peninsula Overlook
Fisherman Bay Peninsula Overlook
Teaching workshops in pastel painting techniques is very rewarding and keeps me involved exploring new techniques within this colorful and expressive medium. This is my seventh year teaching pastel workshops at Dakota Art Center, where I do two per year. An indoor beginning level each spring and another working with students on-site (en plein air) which is what I’ll be doing again September 22-24th in Washington State’s beautiful Skagit Valley. www.dakotaartcenter.com

This upcoming class has a full roster, with one student coming all the way from Calgary, Alberta, Canada. I have done many others for the past twelve years, here in the islands, where I live and invitational classes all around the U.S. and Europe. One of the joys of traveling and painting is having an opportunity to explore some pretty exotic painting sites and working with other artists who share a passion for learning.

Whether I’m teaching in Croatia, Belgium, Missouri or the nearby Skagit Valley, there is still something magical about stepping right out my front door and painting in the San Juan Islands! Pictured here is a painting I did just two weeks ago at a favorite site on Lopez Island, Fisherman Bay Peninsula Preserve.

I will end my teaching year with a 2 day beginning level pastel painting technique class at Winslow Art Center, December 3-4 on Bainbridge Island near Seattle. For a full class description and to register go to www.winslowartcenter.com




Post studio Tour 2016 RecapSaturday, September 10, 2016 by Steve Hill
Filed under: Exhibits and Events
Fire in the Water
Fire in the Water
A great big thank you to the hundreds of people who came through our little home gallery on Lopez Island, (Windswept Fine Art Gallery) this Labor Day Weekend for the 20th Annual Lopez Island Artists’ Studio Tour.

We had a record in art sales for this year’s tour, thanks in large part to two new collectors, one who purchased 4 larger originals and another who purchased two, including my award winning painting “Moody Sol Duc River” mentioned in my previous blog. I will re-visit the Sol Duc River, on Washington State’s Olympic Peninsula, just to paint. It’s a very special place to both Judy and me, in so many ways.

I have also been working on new plein air “water-in-motion” pastels from a recent trip to my home state of Idaho. One of those “Fire in the Water” - done along the Boise River 3 weeks ago, is pictured here. The atmosphere around that river was charged with an orange/yellow cast from an 85,000 acre wildfire that was 80 miles north of this spot! I have worked from that exact same river bank on bluer sky days, but that’s what painting on-site gives you . . . a chance to be surprised.




Strokes of Genius 9Saturday, September 03, 2016 by Steve Hill
Filed under: Exhibits and Events
Rain, Sun, Rain Havana
Rain, Sun, Rain Havana
Exciting News just came over the wire and to celebrate the Lopez Artists’ Studio Tour this weekend!

I was just notified by North light Books that all 3 of my entries this year were selected for “Strokes of Genius 9, Creative Discoveries” international contest from more than 1300 entries (33 foreign countries and the U.S.) in the finals round. Moody Sol Duc River and “Rain,Sun,Rain, Havana” made the winners circle and “Sol Duc River Morning” made the runners-up list. The field was pared down to 475 semifinalists, then to 128 artists selected by Rachel Rubin Wolf, awards juror.

Moody Sol Duc
Moody Sol Duc
I am thrilled to receive an award like this and will showcase one of the paintings “Moody Sol Duc River” priced at $5000, at the 20th Annual Labor Day Weekend Artists Studio Tour at our home gallery on Lopez Island. I consider this plein air pastel painting to be my best ever “water-in-motion” piece.

“Rain, Sun, Rain, Havana” priced at $3000, is available for purchase at my Vancouver, Washington gallery, Art on the Boulevard, located 210 W. Evergreen Boulevard, Vancouver, WA. www.artontheboulevard.org

Sol Duc Morning
Sol Duc Morning
The third painting “Sol Duc Morning” is now in our family private collection. “Strokes of Genius 9” will be published in October, 2017 and will be available on-line at North Light Books, museums and galleries, as well as Windswept Fine Art Gallery (that’s me) on Lopez Island.



Havana Traffic Jam
Havana Traffic Jam
The 20th Annual 2016 Annual Lopez Island Studio Tour - Preview Week


New this year, preview week! View my newest works done this past year from Cuba, Belgium, Holland, the San Juan Islands and all over the U.S.!


Canal and Windmill
Canal and Windmill
I'm offering 15% off any purchase in the gallery during the preview week (Monday Aug. 29 - Friday Sept. 2 only) The gallery will be open: 10am-5pm daily.

Windswept Fine Art Gallery
783 Port Stanley Rd.
360-468-2557



Perfectly PastelSaturday, July 02, 2016 by Steve Hill
Filed under: Exhibits and Events
Cojimar Village In The Morning
Cojimar Village In The Morning
I will have 5 new paintings in an exhibit titled "Perfectly Pastel" at the Cynthia McBride Gallery at 215 Main St., Annapolis, MD. Two are pictured here - one from Cuba and one from Carmel, California. Hope any of you visiting Annapolis can see the show!

This summer exhibit runs from July 3-31. For this show, there will not be an artists reception, as most of us are out painting somewhere in the world this time of year!

New Day - Carmel River Estuary II
New Day - Carmel River Estuary II
For me that "somewhere in the world" is Bruges, Belgium, where I am leading a plein air painting workshop with Jackie Grandchamps, owner of French Escapade from June 30-July 7. We will be painting and touring around Bruges, Damme, Flanders, the North Sea beaches and Brussels for 9 days. www.frenchescapade.com.



Announcing “Paint Cuba” special gallery opening Memorial Day Weekend!

Cojimar Marina
Cojimar Marina
We are hosting our First Annual Memorial Day Weekend Gallery opening at Windswept Fine Art Gallery, showcasing my paintings from our recent and historic painting trip to Cuba last February, with Plein Air Magazine’s publisher’s invitational.
Nearly 100 artists from the U.S. were invited to Paint in Cuba, before the inevitable changes that will take place, now that we have an open door policy with a country that has been locked-in-time since 1959!

I will have many framed originals from the Cuba trip, plus more than 150 originals from 9 European countries and all around the U.S. Hope you can make it to the island and see these works this coming weekend.

SPECIAL NOTE: Many blog subscribers are also collectors and patrons of my work. Two weeks ago, we mailed postcards for a special patrons and collectors “Paint Cuba” preview party, Friday, May 27th 6-8 p.m. at the gallery. In an effort to merge our “snail mail” list and blog subscribers we would like to hear from you only if you did not receive a postcard for the preview party in your mail box, to help us update.

Contact me

Memorial Day Weekend Gallery hours and location:
Saturday-Sunday, May 28-30, 11-5.
783 Port Stanley Rd. Lopez Island, WA 09261



Obispo Street Corner II
Obispo Street Corner II
I have 3 paintings form our recent “Paint Cuba” trip with Plein Air Magazine publisher, B. Eric Rhoads in this exhibit at Art on the Waterfront Gallery in Apalachicola, FL, including “Obispo Street Corner II” pictured here. Hope any of you can make the reception Saturday, May 7 from 5-7 p.m. The show runs through June.



New Gallery OpeningsSaturday, April 30, 2016 by Steve Hill
Filed under: Exhibits and Events
I am pleased to announce participation in two special exhibits back east with 11 of my paintings from Cuba.

Red Orange  54 Chevy
Red Orange 54 Chevy
The Cynthia McBride Gallery 215 Main Street, Annapolis, MD is having an opening reception for sixteen artists invited to exhibit with works from the recent “Paint Cuba” Invitational plein air painting event hosted by B. Eric Rhoads, publisher of Plein Air Magazine. The opening is this Sunday, May 1, from 1-4 p.m. I have seven paintings at that gallery and am picturing two here. The show runs through June 24th.


Plaza De San Francisco I
Plaza De San Francisco I
McBride Gallery to see some of my other pieces in this exhibit “Cuba Today: from studies to studio”. Each artist has a couple of plein air paintings done in Cuba, together with larger similar studio paintings.

Art on the Waterfront Gallery in Apalachicola, FL is also hosting artists from the same plein air painting trip to Cuba, with an opening on May7th. That show also runs through the month of June. I have three paintings from our trip at that gallery, with one pictured here. The gallery is located at 117 Market St and is open from 11-5 daily.

This was an historic plein air event and I am still working feverishly on new pieces done from studies in Cuba at my studio on Lopez Island, WA. The most amazing thing I felt about this painting experience was the half-century “time warp” that exists in Cuba! Not just the old cars which number in the tens of thousands just in Havana, but the entire country, it’s people (very friendly) and culture which has developed distinctive styles of music, art, dance and drama, like no other place I have ever travelled!

Plaza De San Francisco II
Plaza De San Francisco II
My paintings done from this trip reflect that unique sense of time and place . . . we will be having our own special opening at Windswept Fine Art Gallery on Lopez during Memorial Day Weekend. Watch for details and invitations to our preview celebration, Friday May 27th!



Lovric's Marina
Lovric's Marina
Art on the Boulevard Gallery in Vancouver, WA, is celebrating ten years with a special anniversary gallery opening, Friday, April 1., from 5-9 p.m. This is one of seven of my new paintings titled: "Boat Maintenance, Lovric's Marina", at the gallery. I hope you can attend the opening, have some champagne and hors d'oeuvres and see my latest works. With my left hand in a cast from a little carpal tunnel surgery two days ago, I decided not to drive down from Lopez Island. I am, however, still painting with my right hand! The best gallery director in the Pacific Northwest, Kevin Weaver, will be there to greet everyone and showcase all new works by 27 of the gallery's artists! www.artontheboulevard.org to preview the show.

Reminder – there are still spaces available in both of my overseas plein air painting workshops, Korcula Island, Croatia June 5-14 www.slikamilina.ca and Bruges, Belgium www.frenchescapade.com June 30-July 7th. Click links to register



Paint Cuba!Sunday, February 28, 2016 by Steve Hill
Filed under: Exhibits and Events

The invitational one week plein air painting event, organized by B. Eric Rhoads, publisher of “Plein Air Magazine”, in and around Havana, Cuba was nothing short of fantastic.

There were over 70 artists plus 35 spouses, collectors and patrons on this historic trip to Cuba, February 6-13. We all stayed at one hotel and bussed into the old city of Havana to paint on – site. Also to small fishing villages, like Cojimar, immortalized first by Lord Albermarle, in 1678 when the huge British war fleet invaded Havana though the back door, then much later by Earnest Hemmingway (1898-1961) who’s house (and boat, “Pilar”) there has become a museum. We visited many of Hemmingway’s haunts on this trip and you can still feel his presence. “The Old Man and the Sea” was written with Cojimar as the setting.

But beyond all that is modern day Cuba, still struggling with economic realities that make it seemingly impossible to exist in this beautiful Caribbean paradise. The people were so friendly, helpful and always giving more than they had to all of us on this trip, as we painted their culture. Those famous 1940’s-50’s cars have been kept running by hook and crook – shear mechanical genius, in fact. Look at it this way – the warranty, on say a 1948 Chevy, was never intended to go over one million miles, but it does in Cuba! The cars have become part of the Cuban’s legacy and according to our guide, are forbidden to be sold outside of Cuba – they are icons of their modern history and must be preserved. We are talking tens-of-thousands of these colorful old cars, just in Havana.

Never in the history of Cuba have so many artists arrived at the country just to paint and record our impressions of a place that has been locked in time for over a half century. It was truly a “time warp” for all of us and we knew that history was being made through paint brushes, pastel sticks and drawings that have captured the look and feel of this incredible place – all before the inevitable changes that will be made as the country steps into the modern world economy. Music, colorful clothing, the old cars all add into their daily lives that are wrapped around family and a sense of sharing.

I am sharing six of the eleven plein air paintings I did there in this blog and hope you enjoy. Some are more finished than others (time was a limiting factor) but I have enough visual information to work on hundreds more, from reference photos and field studies (sketches) that I did in Cuba!

Malecon Afueres II
Malecon Afueres II
I have, in-fact, done a larger more finished version “Malecon Afueres II” from the smaller version you see in my grouping of paintings. The Malecon is a 4 ½ mile sea wall that protects Havana from the ocean to the north. My painting was done at daybreak, with soft warm light flooding over the wall at low tide, giving a rather pleasing contrast to the very active waves and water crashing on the beach. A Havana fisherman helped me with the title, when he saw my painting. “Afueres” means outskirts or along the edge in Spanish. At high tide, those same waves hit the wall full force and spew more than 40’ over the top. I’ll be working on some of those pieces next!
Note: one of our group, Turner Vinson, has made a short video during this trip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=617LgZdfzVk



Cuba!Saturday, February 06, 2016 by Steve Hill
Filed under: Exhibits and Events
Cuba Palette
Cuba Palette
Somewhere in this wild palette of colors are paintings I will be doing in Cuba!!
On February 6th, one hundred plein air painters, mostly from the U.S., will be arriving at Havana, Cuba for a week long special painting trip to the “forbidden island” . . . and I’m totally excited to be one of them.

“Paint Cuba” is an artists’ invitational and historic painting event, organized and led by B. Eric Rhoads, publisher of Plein Air Magazine. No group of painters this size has ever been allowed to visit Cuba, in the history of the island. We will all be focused on recording our impressions in a country that has been standing still in time, preserved as though forgotten for five decades. www.pleinairmagazine.com

I will be posting some images of my artwork done in Cuba, after Judy and I return (there’s no easy way to do that from Cuba). I look forward to having a special showing of the works, when we return. I know that every artist going over is already feeling an historic connection and will be producing some incredible work.



2016 Workshops have startedWednesday, January 27, 2016 by Steve Hill
Filed under: Exhibits and Events

2016 Workshops have started – the photos here are students from my Pastel Workshop taught at San Juan Islands Museum of Art in Friday Harbor, January 16-18

I had twelve very enthusiastic students who all produced some incredible landscape paintings, once we got through the “basic pastel stroke exercises” the first day. There are now some painters honing their new skills and headed for their studios in the San Juan Islands! This was the first full-capacity art instruction workshop at this beautiful new museum and I was very honored to have been selected to lead it!

Oyster Man
Oyster Man
The painting pictured here, is one of my live demos titled “Oyster Man” done from reference photos and sketches at the estuary between Shoal and Swifts Bay, near our home on Lopez Island. It is available at my gallery for $900 framed. Spencer’s Landing Marina and Shoal Bay form the background, at low tide.

My next local workshop will be at Dakota Art Center, Mt. Vernon, March 18/19 & 25/26. These are half-day sessions spread over 2 weeks to give extended learning time for everyone. We already have 5 sign-ups and it’s limited to 14 total. www.dakotaartcenter.com for details and to register for beginning/intermediate level pastel with Steve Hill.

A reminder for those who have indicated an interest in traveling to Europe with me in June/July, there is still space in my two workshops.

Korcula Island, Croatia June 5-14 www.slikamilina.ca for full info and to register

Bruges, Belgium June 30-July7 www.frenchescapade.com

Check-out both web sites and start planning your European painting adventure now. Both are limited to 14 total and are incredible deals with food, ground transportation, lodging and painting instruction from me.



 
© Steven Hill - Windswept Studios