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February 5 - Deborah Bell - Oil Landscape

On February 5, Lewisville artist Deborah Bell will demonstrate how she paints landscapes in oil. Debbi began her art education with a home study course at age 16. At 20 she was a full time professional artist with a degree in commercial art. She kept busy painting portraits, and for many years she and her sculptor husband Randy Cox ran a gallery in Carrollton. In the mid-eighties, they closed the gallery to have more time for traveling and painting.


Debbi has receive many awards, and her work has appeared in shows across the country. One became a Christmas card for the National Wildlife Federation. "I still paint portraits," Deborah says, "...portraits of the Earth. I like to explore the relationship of man, animals, and the environment in which they exist."


Don't miss seeing this master painter in action or hearing her discuss her art. We will meet at the Waco Charter School, 615 N. 25th Street. Refreshments and conversation at 1:30 p.m.; program at 2.



February 5- Debbi Bell - Landscapes in Oils

Debbi Bell, a Lewisville artist, demonstrated her approach to painting landscapes in oil. She used a fairly small canvas in hopes of completing the painting for us, which she came close to doing. Debbi uses a glass plate for a palette because paint can be scraped off easily. She stores it under water between painting sessions to keep the paint from forming a skin.

Debbi likes to produce smooth-surfaced paintings on canvas. This requires some six coats of modeling paste, followed by sanding and light coat of paste to provide a little "tooth." She prefers the give of canvas to a hard surface like masonite, and expects canvas to last longer. Color is added as fairly thin oil, brushed out smoothly.

Most of her paintings have subdued colors. For us, she chose to paint an early dawn scene with mountains in the background and a teepee beside a river in the foreground. She mixed a near black from umber and ultramarine blue, then lightened it with white and some cadmium yellow as needed. To warm the sky near the sunrise point and things lit by it she added flesh color.

She didn't use a sketch, although she usually does, since she practiced Saturday and knew what she wanted. She worked from back to front, beginning with the sky and moving to the mountains, trees, river and shore. Finally she added the teepee and a foreground tree. She used Payne's gray along the river and for shadow around the teepee to tie them into place. For greens, she used viridian in this night scene, but she uses sap green for daytime scenes.

Debbi prefers relatively small brushes, even when covering large areas, using a bristle brush to apply paint and a sable brush to smooth it. Throughout, she dabbed paint in an approximation of what she wanted, then smoothed and softened it by brushing over it with a fan brush. She often glazes the final painting with a little alizarin crimson and black mixed into the glaze to tone down and unify the painting. Sometimes she uses ocher instead to give an old appearance.

We thank Debbi for a very interesting demo, which included several ideas and techniques that were new to almost everyone. Thanks also to Saundra Vasek, Christine Niekamp, and Linda and Gil Morales for the refreshments. Finally, we thank those members who brought their work to share with us. An example from each of them appears below.


Show & Tell


  Nancy Cagle       Judy Franklin       Linda Morales  Christine Niekamp   Violet Piper



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