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March 11 - Gordon Gandy - Water based paints on Tar Paper

Gordon Gandy is a native Wacoan and a life-long artist. he has a degree in commercial art and has been painting watercolors for 36 years. He has studied with many nationally prominent watercolorists such as Ed Whitney, Bud Biggs, Robert Landry, Doug Walton and Leo Smith. Gordon's paintings have won many awards, including eight Best of Show awards in Central Texas Watercolor Society exhibits. He is currently establishing a studio/gallery in downtown Waco at the Praetorian Lofts Building. In recent years, Gordon has experimented with unconventional materials, including painting on tar paper (roof felting) with acrylic house paint. It is this which Gordon will be demonstrating for us. The photo at the right shows Gordon with one of his Best of Show tar paper paintings. The photo at the left is another.


Come see Gordon in action on Sunday, March 11. We meet at the Waco Charter School, 615 N 25th Street, at 1:30 for refreshments and conversation. The meeting begins at 2, and the demo shortly thereafter. Bring your art for Show and Tell, and bring friends. First time visitors attend free.

March 11 - Gordon Gandy - Painting with Latex Paints on Roofing Felt

Gordon began by showing us several of his works done on roofing felt (tar paper), including an award-winning painting of a cross with a emotionally charged background (top right), as well as some done on paper. In either case, he combines one or more layers of background patterns with his subject. To develop the painting, he first makes a loose contour drawing of his subject on index paper with crayola, keeping his eyes on the subject, and allowing himself only 20 minutes to complete the drawing. He draws slowly to put more emotion in the work (top left). For background patterns, he may use a drawing of an pattern that interests him (for which he is always on the lookout) or even a random pattern, such as paint dribbled on a sheet of paper. If the shapes of the pattern are small, as they might be for paint dribbles, he may draw a grid on the back and cut the sheet into smaller pieces. Then he selects those pieces with shape(s) most pleasing to him and enlarges them on a copy machine to fit the size of his finished painting (middle left). He can then stack the subject and background layer(s) on a light table and trace them onto a sheet of 140 lb hot press watercolor paper, or onto a sheet of index paper, if the painting is to be done on roofing felt. In the latter case, the drawing is transferred to the roofing felt using a sheet of transfer paper from a fabric store (lower right). It may be necessary to tape several sheets of transfer paper together to make one large enough for the painting, as it was here. The photos at the lower right and left show some of his completed paintings with the subject and patterned background.

The painting which he demonstrated for us was painted with latex house paint on black roofing felt. The subject was a portrait of a Native American man with a background of shapes and designs that suggested Native American culture. Before he came he had already drawn the subject and traced the background designs on index paper, and transferred it all to the roofing felt using transfer paper. He had also painted a portion of both the subject and the background, exploring the colors to be used (upper right). His first decision was what to leave black. He decided on the hair. For his demonstration he applied more color, using Benjamin Moore latex house paint (stored in U-Line plastic pint jars) and Lowell Cornell brushes for acrylic paint. For the background, he used a light blue, blending it with gray (upper left). He did not have a preconceived idea of what colors to use, letting the painting and his emotions inform him. He added details to the face, hair, clothing, and accessories (lower right and left). He blended paint on the surface of the painting, achieving a smooth gradation of colors. He kept in mind a red, yellow, and blue triad, adding whichever one seemed to be missing as he worked. Gordon worked upside down throughout the session so that his work would be right side up for us. He said that this was the first time he had ever done that.

As Gordon worked on his painting, he shared the philosophy he had developed after many years of painting and attending workshops taught by master painters. His work illustrates “abandonment under control.” Abandonment allows the artist to let the painting and the medium inform the artist; control keeps the painting from chaos and randomness. He stressed the need to eliminate negativity, keeping the mind clear, and tapping into the right side of the brain. A common theme in his paintings is a recognizable subject matter, with a background of arbitrary designs and shapes which are inspired by his surroundings. He was always conscious of scale, incorporating small, medium, and large shapes in all his works. The photo at the left is the (unfinished) painting at the end of the demo.

We thank Gordon for a fascinating demo, and also Mary Behrens, Pat Blackwell, Nancy Cagle, Judy Franklin, Frank Gutierrez, and Kathee Tipton, who brought refreshments, and those who brought art for Show and Tell, some of which is shown below.


Mary Behrens      Nancy Cagle        Judy Franklin      Gloria Meadows

March 19 to May 14 - Art Guild Exhibit at MCC

We will mount an exhibit at the Ball Performing Arts Center at MCC on Monday March 19. Please bring up to three (3) hangable works at least 16" x 20", including the frame between 2:30 and 3:30. There is no theme, but nothing can be exhibited which has been show before at MCC. This will be Frank Gutierez's first time to hang a show. Please bring him lots of good things to work with. Participation was low at the last exhibit. If it doesn't pick up, we may not be able to continue exhibiting. The exhibit will end Monday, May 14.

March 19 to May 14 - Art Guild Exhibit at MCC

Be sure to see our exhibit at MCC, Frank Gutierrez's first as exhibit chair. There are 28 paintings by 11 artists. Many of the works are large, so they barely fit in the available space. It shows best in the evening when there is no glare on the frame glass or shiny glazes. You can take in a wonderful free concert or a modestly priced play as well as the exhibit, making the trip very worthwhile. It is in the foyer of the Ball Performing Arts Center. Coming from Lakeshore Drive, turn on College Drive, then take the 2nd left on Highlander Drive, then the 1st right into the Ball PAC parking lot. Photos of the art are below, but they are much better in person. The exhibit comes down Monday, May 14, 2:30-3:30.


Scheduled events follow. All are at 7:30 (except play matinees). Concerts are free. Plays are $12 adult, $10 seniors. & students

Mar 30 & 31 The Chicken Opera (a children's opera)

Apr 3 Jazz Ensemble Concert

Apr 10 Contemporary Christian Ensemble Concert

Apr 19 & 20 Hamlet, 2:30 matinees Apr 20 & 21

Apr 24 Rock Ensemble Concert

Apr 26 Wind Ensemble Concert

Apr 30 MCC Chorale: Carmina Burana

May 7 Waco Jazz Orchestra Concert

May 8 Waco Community Band Concert - All Gershwin


     Charleen Isbell

         Nancy Cagle

        Gloria Meadows (left 2)       Frank Gutierrez (right 2)

           Hilda Giles

     Jason Sorley

         Mary Behrens

        Christine Niekamp

         Bill Franklin (left 3)            Pat Blackwell (right 1)

         Judy Franklin



Other Exhibits:

= February 10 - deadline to enter the Tom Peyton Memorial Arts Festival in Alexandria, LA. A $30 entry fee covers up to 3 entries. Entries are submitted by digital photos, either on a mailed CD or on line at Exhibit is in April. Prizes are one of $1000 and ten of $300. Details on the website.


For information on competitions visit


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