February 2017 Judge: Carol Marine
BEST IN SHOW: Happy by Chris Krupinski. Judge's comment: As the title suggests, this painting makes me happy! The composition is well constructed, the values are spot on. The grapes are luminous and the stripes are so fun! I even love that the stickers were left on. As a still life painter, I guess I have a preference for this kind of thing, but I don't care, because I think this is a wonderful painting!
Sibling Bond by Shana Levenson. Judge's comment: I can feel the bond between this brother and sister. Not only is this very well painted, I love that they both have orange in their shirts, and they're looking right at us, defiant. Great composition. Well done.
Wild Iris and Buttercups by John J. Abisch. Judge's comment: What at first looks like a pretty ordinary subject, becomes luminous and captivating when painted by this artist. The composition is well chosen - each piece of light and shadow perfectly placed. Simply lovely.
At Dormancy Break by Laurie Barmore. Judge's comment: This painting has a solid base of interesting value and color. In addition, I can really feel the explosion that the artist suggests in the description, of a seed breaking open. I enjoy just wandering over the whole thing, savoring all the little moments.
Time is a River by Ruth Armitage. Judge's comment: I love a lot about this painting. Starting with value, there is such a big shift of value from the big dark areas to the light, but there are also quite subtle shifts to enjoy. The colors are harmonious, and the variety of line gives us a lot to wander through and appreciate.
Blowing Smoke (Portrait of Aaron Shikler) by Nicole Moné. Judge's comment: I can't help but be reminded of my late grandfather, who also smoked a pipe. This is so lovingly painted — clearly someone dear to the artist. The composition is deceptively simple and well done. I love the reflections of the flame. Wow.
Mud Man by Suzie Baker. Judge's comment: This one really jumped out at me! The skin tones are absolute perfection. The hair — so well painted. His eyes are just suggested, but he is so clearly present there. Suzie, my hat is off to you. Well done!
Food Coloring Memories by Kathie Odom. Judge's comment: I so enjoy the colors and composition of this one. When I first viewed it I had my own memories about trailers like this one, and then I read the description. What's wonderful is when you can create a painting for one reason and still have it resonate with others for their own reasons.
Koi Pondage, Let My Purple Go by Beth Forst. Judge's comment: At first I was looking at this from the perspective of realism, and I was confused by what I saw. But as soon as I tuned into it being (at least partly) abstract, I realized how absolutely wonderful the colors were! My eye has so much fun traveling around all the bits and pieces.
Greeny by Lon Brauer. Judge's comment: Ok, I admit, I have a weakness for green, and another for Beetles. But the way this is painted is just so fun! In addition to that, the values are just perfect. I love the looseness and all the drippies. Great!
Thermal Jellyfish by Julia Chai. Judge's comment: I kept coming back to this one. There is something positively luminous about this jellyfish! I am loving all the colors, and how the composition takes us right up to the edge on the top and bottom.
Light Dancing At the Clapp Barn by Patrick Saunders Judge's comment: This painting has one of my favorite things — dapples, and they are done exquisitely! The values are great, and the composition is lovely. That little spot of blue on the right side of the tree brings it all together.