Sunday, June 26, 2016

Painting in Southern France

The Blue Door of Camon
watercolor by Jane McElvany Coonce
 I just got back from taking a group of artists to southern France.  There were 14 of us (3 were non painters.)  Our home base was in Limoux, a lovely little town on the Aude River.  Montfaucon, the place where we stayed, was similar to what we would call a bed and breakfast.  It was beautifully furnished, and I felt like I was living like the rich and famous.  Gourmet meals were provided with a chef that came in 4 times during our stay, and the other dinners were at Castles and 5 star restaurants.  We were treated royally.

Every day, we would journey to a nearby town to paint a variety of scenes:  vineyards, doorways and windows, gardens, canals with boats and barges, old medieval towns, cafes, and plazas.  I had to pinch myself every day to make sure it wasn't a dream.

We also lucked out on the weather.  The weather app showed that it was supposed to rain every day, but we really only had one day of rain. That was truly a blessing.

 Everyone really did nice paintings.  We will have a show of the France paintings in October at Cassatt's Kiwi Cafe in Arlington.  Put Sunday, October  30 on your calendar from
5-8 pm for the opening reception.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Trompe L'oeil "Trash Night" sold on Etsy

"Trash Night"
by Jane McElvany Coonce
I sold a painting that was near and dear to my heart.  Artists all have favorite paintings that are hard to part with, and "Trash night " is one of them for me.  But a woman on Etsy wrote me and told me she was really obsessed with it.  So I decided that if someone loved it that much, I would let it go.  

"Trash Night" is a painting done in the trompe l'oeil fashion.  Trompe L'oeil means "fool the eye."  Done in a realistic fashion, trompe l'oeil paintings are very labor intensive and take months to create.  That is why there are not many trompe l'oeil artists. 

This piece is painted to look like a bulletin board.  The wood frame is painted on the canvas.  The corkboard is painted to simulate a bulletin board.  Then various items were added: tickets to a Harry Potter movie (my family members are Harry Potter freaks), a photograph (of my 3 boys when they were younger), playing cards( Queen of diamonds is me- I was born in April my birthstone is the diamond and being the only female in the house, I am the Queen), matches and a firecracker (with 3 boys, there were plenty of firecrackers going off), and 2 notes.  One note is "Trash Night" which reminds the 3 boys to take out the trash. (This is my weekly "Nag" call that I make at the top of my lungs) , A key hangs from the wooden frame with the number 5 ( the number of people in my family)and a pencil dangles from a string held by a push pin.  All of these items are painted. The painting is a autobiographical painting of my family.

The painting is done in acrylics.  It is 11 inches by 14 inches and the sides of the canvas are painted to look like wood, so a frame is not necessary.  In fact, a frame would ruin the trompe l'oeil effect since the purpose of the genre is to fool the eye.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

June's Featured Artists for Potomac Valley Watercolorists

Patiently Waiting
By Jane McElvany Coonce

This month, I have been selected as the featured artist for the Potomac Valley Watercolorists.  This is an organization that comprised of the best watercolorists in the area.  I feel honored that I was juried into this organization.  It is a group that promotes the art of watercolor.  Nowadays, art can be so many different things- glueing trash to a canvas, running string and rope from wall to wall - so it's nice to see that good composition and technique is still in existence.

I hope you'll look at the PVW website:
You will see my work under featured artist, but you can also look at all the other wonderful artists that make up this organization.  PVW also has art shows throughout the year, and every show is as beautiful as the last one.  I'm always amazed!

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