Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Easel Envy

I’ve broken several portable easels during plein air painting the last few years.  I’m searching for the perfect set up for watercolor painting outdoors.  I have “Soltek” envy right now…..this easel looks perfect to me, except for the $500.00 price tag, especially after reading about the problems painters are having with the telescoping legs of this expensive piece of equipment.  But the sleekness of body, the resilience against wind and the lightweight quality of this easel is more than attractive to me.

Easels are personal and I’ve yet to find a favorite. I start out sane and organized but by the end of a day, I have paper towel rolls blowing away and paint brushes lost on the ground and my kneaded erasers are gone with the wind.   I lose equipment and drop pieces wherever I go.  I’d like to find an answer to the easel conundrum and find something that helps me stay organized. I'd like an easel with a shelf for my supplies that's portable.

Here’s a thought.  I read this interesting article about making a watercolor plein air easel to match my style:

I also like the en plein air pro at
 It looks easy to set up and lightweight and I especially like the shelf for supplies and  the way the palette has an opening for the water.  That just looks practical to me. Price is under $300.00.

So, “Easel Envy:”  I’m searching and would love to have input on the perfect watercolor plein air easel.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Catherine Hillis: My Name Belongs To Me

"My Perspective" Watercolor by Catherine Hillis

I've been teaching quite a while now and I've never felt the need to create boundaries for students until now.  Recently, I've had a student begin teaching classes in my neighborhood, using my name as one of her credentials.  And, I've had a former student (who is now teaching art to adults) post one of her recent paintings on Facebook, using my name (I guess they call that tagging) and crediting me for teaching her the "technique."  This painting is not one that I want to be associated with, my friends.

Oy vey.

What to do.

There's not much in life that really belongs to me.  My name, however, is mine and after these many decades of working so hard to become a relatively proficient painter, and building a good business in art ( try building an art business, my friends:  it's hard) , I want my name used to advertise....ME.

My kids don't belong to me; my body doesn't do what I want it to - so I guess it doesn't  belong to me; most people's houses belong to a mortgage company; but, my name is far!

So, please don't use my name without my permission:  I don't want it used as one of your credentials AND  I don't want it used for something I may not want to be associated with.

Artists, your credentials are those things that YOU have accomplished and not those things someone else has accomplished.