Friday, November 18, 2011


"Each painting is an experiment in which to investigate how pigments can be used to induce a sense of rhythm and energy." 
Princess Simpson Rashid

 Have you ever been invited to an artist reception at the Museum of Science and History? 
How about a painting demo in the museum Science Lab?
Last night at MOSH, art and science merged in an exciting and interactive presentation by scientist, artist and Renaissance woman, Princess Rashid.

The audience was happy to help plan the painting
Princess, an artist with roots in Jacksonville, now living in Tampa, gave an engaging presentation, starting with the premise that art = science. Her vibrant work often incorporates math formulas and the periodic table of elements presented in a way that will lure even math and science haters. 
Many of these works grace the lobby of the museum.
Princess explained her process
Let the painting begin!

Fueled by artistic energy and loud music, Princess invited us to "make some marks" on her large canvas to start the process of her painting.
Then, with water, liquid acrylic paints and dynamic brushwork, she transformed our marks into the basis of a large and beautiful abstract design. 

"Finished for now"

Clear tar gel combined with pthalo blue liquid acrylic and dripped from the brush added the "punctuation" near the end of the piece.
Princess' love of paint and process was directly conveyed to the canvas. Her mission to meld art and science
made the presentation educational and fun!
Thanks, Princess, for an evening we won't soon forget.
Princess Rashid's website 
Princess Rashid's Blog

Monday, November 7, 2011

Go See the Jacksonville Watercolor Society Show!

The JWS annual juried members' show opened yesterday at the 
St. Augustine Art Association and a beautiful show it is! Over sixty works grace the walls of the Art Association. Quite a large crowd attended, despite the rainy and windy weather.
It was most exciting to be there to support three of my students who are members of the JWS, along with their watercolor instructor, my friend, Ruth Bamberg. 
Laurie, Cheryl and Marti

Cheryl, Ruth, Marti
Back row:
Laurie and Hercel (Grand Prize winner!)

It was wonderful to reconnect with Hercel Stallard, of Hercel Stallard Studios, who was the big winner of the day with his lovely painting, Fly Fisherman. Hercel has been teaching watercolor students in the north Florida area for many years, conducting regular classes, workshops and painting trips. Watching Hercel and painting with him inspired a love of watercolor in me as it has many other students over the years. 

 Cheryl with her entry - Manatees

 After a lovely afternoon at the show, we discovered I had locked the keys in the car! Yes, it was my fault!
Here is Jeff, posing as the disgusted husband, waiting for AAA Road Service
to come and unlock the car for us.
Really, he was only posing.

In between pacing around, peering down the road for the AAA truck and shivering (did I mention it was a windy, rainy day), I took advantage of our great parking spot right on the waterfront to take a photo of a pirate ship! 
If you have the chance, go see the JWS Show - it's amazing how beautiful
and varied watercolor can be.

Sunday, October 30, 2011


Determined to keep up the momentum from the Painting the Region plein air 
event, I've been out painting several times in the last few weeks.

This past week, Bruce Ann Ferguson and I met at Mayport Little Jetties. When I arrived, she was well into a large sky painting and since the sky was truly lovely that morning, I jumped into one as well.

Here's a reference photo I took to show the drama of the values.
Morning at Mayport, oil on panel, 8x10"©2011 Jaime Howard

Here's the painting done on sight that
day (not from the photo). 
Now that they're side by side, I can see that though the values may be similar, which after all is what makes the image so dramatic, I could use some "sky time" in the practice of painting those subtle variations in the sky that seem to turn into
not-so-subtle color changes in my
Sky Study, Jax Beach, oil on panel, 6x8" ©2011 Jaime Howard

  This morning, in search of subtleties,
I parked at the beach and painted the sky over Jacksonville Beach. I hoped to convey the feeling of distance.

The blue of the sky itself becomes more intense as it gets farther "up" or 
farther away from the horizon.  The clouds that are farthest away are those nearest to the horizon. They are smaller and closer together than the ones painted higher up, which are closer to the viewer and are painted larger and with more intense values. This is what gives the impression of distance in the painting.

The feeling that a two-dimensional surface (the painting) is three-dimensional
(the sky!) is just a trick of the artist. Sleight of hand, I tell my drawing students.
Learn a few of these kinds of tricks and you are a magician! 

I'll let you be the judge good a magician I am. Can you see into the distance?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Painting at Little Jetties

First Coast Plein Air Painters (FCPAP)
met to paint today at Little Jetties in Mayport, Florida. I've been to Mayport many times, to eat at Singleton's, to board the ferry, and last week, to paint during the Painting the Region event. 
I had never been out to the end of the jetty until this morning and I didn't know what I was missing!

I dragged my rolling bag past a dozen or so FCPAP members, all in enviable  locations with views of the Intracoastal Waterway, the purple flowering grasses, the fishermen and the aquatic birds. When I got to the end, I found a shady bush and plopped down into the sand. As the dolphins frolicked just offshore, I painted.

 I almost don't care if I like it or not - I just enjoyed sitting on the beach,
watching the fishermen,women and boys, and the swimming dog. 

Driving back to the road, I stopped to watch a little church hold a baptism in the ICW. This was the best part of the afternoon - singing Shall We Gather at the River on a beautiful Sunday afternoon.
The girl in the bikini didn't even bother to move.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Painting the Region - Coloring the Coast

This past week has been one of the most fun of my life! Participating in Painting the Region, a plein air painting event was so great. Over 40 artists painted all week from Mayport to Vilano Beach.
My two most favorite artists stayed with me - Kelly Medford and Elisabeth Ferber. We started the week by getting up at 6 am and driving out to the beach to paint from the Hionides front porch on Atlantic Beach. After a couple of days of this, I asked if we could just stay there each night and we were welcomed to the house. From then on, I painted in my nightgown - ready on the porch before the sun came up - brush at the ready for the first light. It was great.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Everyone had to be able to draw - Rijksmuseum Amsterdam - National Museum for Art and History

The foundational skill of drawing is so important to any artistic endeavor!
I have (and I'm sure you have) met students eager to learn to paint, but loathe
to practice the discipline of learning to draw. Those without some drawing skills
run up against their limitations quickly when attempting to paint.
Drawing skills - don't leave home without them!

Click on the link below for some historical reference for this position:

Everyone had to be able to draw - Rijksmuseum Amsterdam - National Museum for Art and History

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Artsy-fartsy trip to Savannah for St. Pat's weekend!

Last weekend, I was able to return to my home away from home, Savannah.

St. Patrick's (Savannah's claim to fame) was Thursday, and when I arrived Friday evening and even up until I left on Sunday afternoon, there were people on the streets who were still celebrating! Drinking as they walked arm-in-arm with their fellow celebratees (is that a word?), dressed all in green from head to foot, adorned with green beads, and topped with a leprechaun chapeau. Only in Savannah.

I was there to deliver a painting (see above) commissioned by my friend, Bonnie, the hostess with the mostest, and to deliver 5 prints and a large painting for the Form and Context Gallery in High Point, NC.

It was wonderful to be back in Savannah, where the leprechauns wander the streets for days after St. Paddy's day and the weather is fine.