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Welcome to Reports of the Art Guild's Recent Events!

Check the Upcoming Events page for future events.

Earlier activities may be found on our Archives pages.

Links to other sites may be found on the Related Links page.


Clicking on any of the thumbnails on this site enlarges imaGge



May 16 - Art Guild Meeting

Starting off with visiting and lots of food, there were numerous discussions and decisions:
We voted to:
get a card reader and hook it to our bank account to receive charged purchases, including our Martha McKinney paintings, which we hope to put in the Art Fest Waco next fall, and Cancel the zoom account.
We also discussed:
The Art on Elm Street exhibit and sale May 28-29, which includes paintings by Chesley Smith, among others,
Several members who are also PACT members are entered in the Breckenridge Fine arts Center show.
The Uptown Art show and sale has been moved to May 29,
Jackie Holmes sold a painting at Sparrow Gallery downtown,
Rocky Kelley's new painting "If Only" is online as a video, and
A site explaining how to label your art.
There were also some paintings brought for Show and Tell by Chesley Smith and Sonny Rogers, shown below.
Thanks to all who attended, especially those who brought food or paintings for Show and Tell.
          Chesley Smith                             Sonny Rogers

April 11 - Linda Filgo -Portraiture

Linda Filgo demonstrated how she paints a portrait, and was able to nearly finish it during the meeting. That efficiency arose from natural talent and much practice, including 25 years as a commercial artist, followed by almost 20 years of creating oil paintings, many of which have won prizes. She credited the study of others' paintings, demos by Richard Schmid, and a recent “painting a day” challenge. The photo at the right shows Linda ready to start. Some of her sketches and paintings are shown below.


She uses walnut oil, rather than petroleum products, to thin paint, and also to clean brushes (followed by soap and water). She uses only a few basic colors and some gray to adjust value. She refers to a series of color patches to match colors. See photo at the left. Remember that all thumbnails can be enlarged by clicking on them. Sandy Scott searched for the sources of the materials Linda used. Links to those appear at the end of this report, all of which is based on her detailed notes. Sandy will post the video of the demo along with much of this report on our Facebook page.

The source photo, which Linda viewed on her laptop screen, is at the right. Stages in the painting are below. She began the demo by painting a dark background around the child with a mix of Alizarin Crimson, Ultramarine Blue, Terra Rosa and a tiny bit of Burnt Umber. Painting the background first helps her to loosen and warm up, and the darks later help her get the right flesh color. Then she began painting the hair using Yellow Ochre, Ultramarine Blue, and some of the dark background color. Next she painted the lightest part of the painting, the almost white bonnet, while she continued to work on the hair.


Then she added the face color using Yellow Ochre and a warm red, paying attention to the lighting to add shadows. She uses only bristle brushes, large ones to achieve a looser impressionistic style, but switching to smaller ones for details such as the eyes and lips, for which she used shades of Ultramarine Blue. She paints in layers, making final adjustments using glazes of a non-toxic gel mixed with transparent oils. The painting at the end of the demo is shown at the right.


Many thanks to Linda for an enjoyable and instructive demo. She sent a photo of the finished painting, which is shown at the right. We also thank Central Presbyterian Church for making space and equipment available, Jean Thomas, Nancy Cagle and Mark and Sandy Scott, for provided refreshments, and those who brought paintings for Show and Tell, some of which are shown below.

Links to sources:

Linda Filgo Fine Art: (

Richard Schmid (or Schmidt, either way, he just died) : &

Angled bristle brush:

Solvent free paints: (for paints, including Torrit Grey & tubed non-toxic gel)

Show & Tell:


  Jo Forbus          Bill Franklin          Tim Lowe       Gloria Meadows


  Sue Moore        Sonny Rogers    Chesley Smith       Jean Thomas


Online Exhibit-2021 April-May

The works below will be on exhibit until the next exhibit is mounted. If you want to buy any of the entries or other works by the artists, please contact them directly.


Cathy Niekamp (3)

Periwikles 8x10  prismcaolors SOLD                   Chrisi 9X12 prismacolors SOLD                         Mary 9x12 Prismacolors SOLD



Sue Moore (3)

            Old Fishing Hole 14x11 oil $50                                                My Front Yard in the Snow 14x11 oil $50



                                                                                                  Judi Simon (1)

Water Study16x20 oil $50                                                                                       Games We Used to Play 10x20 oil on board



Gloria Meadows (1)   Tim Lowe (2) 254-717-6068                                                                                                          

 Church and Flowers 16x20 acrylic                  Thee Guiding Light 14x11 oil $30                                              Kiki 14x11 Oil NFS     


Sonny Rogers (3) 254-717-9287

         Lonely Lighthouse 20x24 acrylic $250                              Lonely Landscape 10x16 acrylic $200                   Fancy Flowers 16x20 acrylic $200



Kay Reinke (3) 830-708-1436

                         Vortex                                                                    Odyssey                                                             Morning in the Clearing



Sandra Scott (2)                                                                                         Jo Forbus (3) 254-400-5839     

       Mark Jr. 18x24 oil NFS                    Hummingbird  8x10 oil $50                                 Sheeva Barn 8x10 oil



                                                                                                                               Jean Thomas (3) 254-709-4574

Daffodils 8x10 oil $75                     Elk' View 16x20 oil $200                                                            It's All in th Eye




                              Winter Peace 9x12 oil                                           Butterfly Resting 14x18 oil



Jackie Holmes (2) 214-766-9180

                  Cows Admiring Downey Paintbrush Along HWY 84 12x24 oil $300                             Red Poppies 8x8 pen & ink & watercolor &75



Bill Franklin (3)

Four Horsemen, one Driver, 17x23 watercolor $600            Banjo Ben 11x14 watercolor $400   Glad Girls 10x14 watercolor $400



Chesley Smith (3)

Zulu Warrior 16x20 acrylic $300  Poetic Beauty 8x10 print of pen & ink $45   Kmala 16x24 acrylic $300



Online Exhibit-2021 February-March

The works below will be on exhibit until the next exhibit is mounted in April. That will be an online exhibit as well.

The work receiving the most votes from our members has earned our People 's Choice Award. The critiquer, Kevin Malone, has picked his top five for Merit Awards. The winning paintings are labeled below. (Some of Kevin's works are on display at Cultivate 7twelve through February 12, if you would like to see them.)


Patrick Pollei  "Early Morning Walk"  30x20 oil NFS



Judi Simon "Saturday Evening Bath Time" 14x11 oil $550  People's Choice Award



Jean Thomas "All in a Day's Work"  8x10 oil SOLD

254 709 4574



Chesley Smith "Protector" 18x24 collage $400



Bill Franklin "Banjo Ben"  10x14 watercolor $500



Jackie Holmes "Storm Moving In"  20x20 oil  $250 214-766-9180

Merit Award



Kay Reinke "Poppies" 20x20 oil $800 830-708-1436



Jo Forbus "Nosey Bear" 8x10 oil NFS


Jean Thomas "Same But Different" 16x20 oil $100 254-709-4574



Judi Simon "Afternoon Tea with Earl Grey" 12x9 oil $975  Merit Award


Christine Niekamp "House and Carriage"

not  eligible for awards



Jackie Holmes "Water Lilies"  12x4 oil  $175 214-766-9180.


Sue Moore "Trees in the Swamp" 16x20 watercolor NFS


Kay Reinke "Sunflowers in Sunlight"  14x11 oil $500 830-708-1436 Merit Award



Chesley Smith "I Have a Dream"  acrylic  $950 Merit Award



Sandra Scott "Creeping Charlie" 16x20 oil $150


Bill Franklin "Glad Girls" 14x20 Watercolor $500



Tim Lowe "One Yellow Rose"


Cathy Niekamp "Doc" 9x12 pencil SOLD



Patrick Pollei "French Flower Market" 22x28 oil NFS Merit Award



Jo Forbus "Texas Deer" 8x10 oil NFS



Christine Niekamp "Cat and Vase"

not eligible for awards



Cathy Niekamp "Grandy" 9x12 pencil SOLD


Sue Moore "Homeward Bound" 24x38 oil NFS


Martin Museum - "Art of the Landscape" thru 3/7 & Rachel Meginnes" thru 4/1


March 27 - Uptown Art Walk on Washington Ave

The exhibit & sale will be at the Kieran-Sustruck Gallery, MC Art, and other spaces in the 2000 & 2100 blocks of Washington Ave. Some photos of the exhibits are shown below.


February & April - Exhibits at Cultivate 7twelve

There are a number of fine artists on exhibit through April at 712 Austin Ave. Many are PACT members, some are Greenhouse participants & some are regulars. Some of the variety is show below. Stop by to see them; there is much to admire. Among others are our members Chesley Smith, Judi Simon, Kevin Malone, and Kay Reinke,


                Chesley Smith                                                         Linda Filgo



                  Judi Simon                                                   Lujanna Westerfield




                       Kevin Malone                                                           Kay Reinke



                                                        Marsha Wilson                                                                     Joel Edwards



                       Brad Settles                                                 Karen Cruce                              Sean Oswald


January 24 - Art Guild - Tina Bohlman - Plein Air painting

Tina Bohlman, a native Texan, now living in Waxahachie, focuses on plein-air painting. Tina’s artwork is sold around the world to private individuals and to corporations. She has collected more than 60 awards and is the founder and chairperson of the plein-air event “Paint Historic Waxahachie.” You can see her work at A couple of examples of her watercolors are below.


Tina began by enthusiastically describing her beginnings in art, and her path in art to the present. Before beginning the demo painting, she showed us her two set-ups, one for watercolor, and one for oils. She carries both, because she never knows which medium might better translate the scene. Each has an easel, a palette, and is kept in a rolling sewing machine bag from Hobby Lobby, which holds all her materials, including a 12x16 paper pad ($65 with a 40% off coupon and tax). Her watercolor palette is “En Plein-Air Pro,” and her oil palette is “The Profilic Painter,” Both were designed by artists, and work very well. She also places a value scale at the bottom of her colors on the palette, and a Fish Eye mirror on the top of the tripod to see anyone coming up behind her. The photos below are her watercolor setup, WC palette, oil palette & rolling bag.


She strongly recommended Arches Oil Paper (12 sheet 12x16 pad, $27 at Cheap Joe's. Also available in 9x12, 22x30, and large rolls.). The top side is for oils, and the bottom side is for watercolors. The surface is treated so that the solvents soak into the paper, but the pigments stay on the surface. The fading that is usual for watercolor, is much reduced, oils dry more quickly, and the paper doesn't warp like regular WC paper. It also allows the painting of WC almost vertically. With either medium, you can cut a portion of the image out of the whole sheet. Something you certainly can't do with a canvas. The photo at the right is an example of an oil on paper. These are best attached to Gatorboard.

She uses Split primary colors on her palette, warm and cool versions of Red, Yellow and Blue. Mostly by Daniel Smith because they provide good dye colors. She gets Winsor Newton Burnt Sienna because the pigment doesn't granulate like most brands. She also uses Payne's gray to shift values, and gauche (opaque WC) at times. The photo t the right shows Tina painting our demo. She highly recommends Silver Black Velvet Watercolor Brushes. For the demo, she used size 16, 12, and a ½ inch flat, which is especially good at lifting excess paint, such as “run back,” which is where WC tends to move from wet areas to dry ones. She says these brushes perform very well at a reasonable price. She has brush holding cylinder that is no longer available, but could probably be made from thin wall PVC or acrylic pipe.

Her demo painting was of a shed in Cedar Hill SP near Dallas. It was fascinating to watch her skillfully paint from her reference, deviating from the photo to improve the composition. She pointed out that cast shadows are darker than shaded ones. For shadows, she made a warm gray by mixing Cobalt blue and Sienna. She enhanced depth by letting foreground objects hide background ones. She also warned against letting background lines meet those in the foreground. In just an hour or so, she was able to produce a beautiful painting. We put our names in a can, and Tina drew Tim Lowe's as the lucky recipient of the demo painting! The photos at below show her sketch, and several stages of the painting.


We want to sincerely thank Tina for traveling in the heavy fog and sharing her skills and ideas. What a great demo; and such an engaging artist!!! We also thank Central Pres Assistant Pastor David Rodgers for helping us use the room, and for using his phone to capture the demo for the Zoom attendees (shown at the right). Although a number of members brought their art, we didn't have time for Show and Tell, due to a late start caused by zoom setup. We hope we have that figured out now, and can avoid such delays in the future.

December 5-16 - "Making History": The Art of Historic Waco

The exhibit will continue at East Terrace House (shown at the right), 100 Mill Street, 10-4 Wednesdays through Saturdays, and 1-4 pm Sundays. Although the address is on Mill Street, the access is from Martin Luther King jr. The house is impressive, the decorations are beautiful, and the art is worth seeing. Admission is free on Saturdays. Other days you pay the usual $5 admission price. A number of Art Guild Members and demo presenters have art in the exhibit, including Chesley Smith, Judi Simon, Marsha Wilson, and Susan Sistruck. Photos of those and others are shown below. As always, they can be enlarged by clicking on them.



Chesley Smith       Judi Simon         Marsha Wilson     Susan Sistruck


Pricilla Henry       Joel Edwards      Melanie Stokes    Roy de Romera


November 27-February 12 - PACT "Studio Magic" at Cultivate 7twelve

The exhibit will last more than two months. As a result, there will be three First Friday receptions: 5-9 on December 4, January 8, and February 5. The exhibit will also be available 10-6 Thursdays through Saturdays, except holidays. There will also be a Christmas Market December 12, noon-7 pm. Some of the art is shown below.





November 8 - Greg Lewallen - Ink & Pastel Pencil Wildlife Drawings

The November Art Guild meeting was held outdoors at Jo Forbus' house. The weather was nice, and the demo was very interesting and instructive. Greg grew up in Waco, volunteered at the Baylor Strecker Museum (which has become the Mayborn), went on field trips with graduate students, and learned how to collect and preserve specimens. He told us a little about how he travels all over in search of exotic specimens, many of which are insects, which he collects and uses as the subjects of his paintings. A life-long passion for drawing, led to making detailed ink drawings of the specimens. Greg speaking to us and one of his drawings are shown at the right.


For us, he used a small, about 5x7, drawing of a bald eagle, based on a photo he took at the Waco zoo, in order to show us how he uses pastel pencils to color his finely detailed ink drawings. The drawing and Greg coloring it are show on the right. First, he draws over the ink drawings, largely obscuring the ink lines. Next, he uses a hard paper stylus to work the color deeply into the hot press watercolor paper. Then he uses an art gum eraser to lift the surface color, leaving the embedded color, and exposing the ink lines again. If the pencil lines stray out of the intended area, it won't be embedded, and can be erased. To get into tight corners, he uses a Mono Zero, basically a mechanical pencil with an skinny eraser "lead." The photos below show Greg applying color, scrubbing it in, erasing the surface color, and the instrument he uses to erase in small spots.




In addition to Greg's demo, we also had some Show and Tell. Cathy Niekamp brought three drawings, Chesley Smith brought one of the paintings in his African mask series, and Nancy Cagle showed us a couple of Don Magid drawing using zoom from her home. These are show below, along with a photo of many of those who attended in person. Remember that any of the thumbnails can be enlarged by clicking on them. Our thanks to Greg for a great demo. We learned a lot about how he accomplishes his amazing art. To better appreciate his work, visit his permanent exhibit at Cultivate 7twelve at 712 Austin Ave. Prints of many of his works are on sale there.


November 6-21 - Greenhouse Exhibit at Cultivate 7twelve

The exhibit displayed the works of a number of Waco artists who had participated in a Creative Waco project to help artists get their careers going. It included sessions on marketing and critiquing, and $3000 per artist in seed money. Some of these artists may be familiar to you. After the poster, the first image is a work of Quilter Judy Steward, who did a demo for us recently. The next painting, by Brad Settles, is 6 ft high and 9 feet wide, and is really stunning. Many of the others have appeared at Cultivate 7twelve previously. All can be enlarged by clicking on them. Drop by to see the exhibit if you get a chance. Open Thur-Sat 10-6.





October 29-November 2 - Ofrenda (Day f the Dead) Celebration

The Ofrenda was held outdoors this year, and was expanded in size accordingly. It was at the intersection of Dallas and Tyler streets, behind Lula Jane's. The displays were spectacular. I hope you didn't miss it, but if so, the photos below give some idea of what was there. The first two show workers constructing it. The next two are nighttime views of the altar from the front and from one end (which also gives a glimpse of the back). The next two show an altr layout with Pre-Coloumbian artifacts, and behind it, a Mayan calendar (and a row of dried flowers). The next three are skeletal figures of a cow, a couple, and a cyclist. The last is the cemetery gate decorated with paper flowers. The cemetery crosses can be seen in the background. At night there was  candle in front of each of the thirty or so crosses. If you missed it this year, look for it next year. Remember that you can enlarge any of these thumbnail photos by clicking on them.





October 24 -Sidewalk Sale at Kieran-Sistruck, MC Art & Other Sites

There were some 20 artists exhibiting their works at four locations in the 2000-2100 blocks of Washington Ave: MC Art, Kieran-Sistrunk, and two parking lots to the left and right of K-S, as well as guitarist Fred Exum. It was quite a feast of art. Some photos are shown below.






October 11 - The Art Guild met in person for Show & Tell

We had a great meeting under the portico of the Central Presbyterian Church.  It was hot outside, but the breeze accommodated us quite well, and the shade was shared by all, even with social distancing. Some of us ate our bag lunches on TV trays.  Jackie Holmes set up a table with an ice chest with cold bottles of water, very much appreciated. Several people brought artwork, some of which is shown below. Some was finished and some brought to solicit advice. Several members paid their 2021 dues. We also talked about an online art exhibit, in lieu of MCC.



    Jo Forbus                    Bill Franklin               Jackie Holmes                 Tim Lowe                   Tim sketching

Several members paid their 2021 dues.

October 10 - Jesus Rivera "mural" at Dichotomy, 508 Austin Ave.

The mural was really a rather large painting (about 5' x 7') that was not even attached to the wall, much less painted on it. I suspect that this was a way to get some city funding for murals, while allowing Rivera to work in his studio. The announcement said that posters and cards would be signed by the artist 1-4 on Saturday, October 10, but the art is available anytme the shop is open. Cards are $5, posters are $40 for a 18x24, and $65 for a 24x30.The photos show the painting, and the easel with cards and posters.



October 2 - Brad Settles & Wendy Davis opening at Cultivate 7twelve

Although the exhibit was billed as Brad Settles, and he was in the main gallery, the next gallery had the paintings of Wendy Davis. Shown below are Settles' works. The first is a small group of his landscape paintings just around the corner from the main gallery, which are quite nice. The next two are the left and right walls of the main gallery.


The left wall has some interesting ideas, but no great artistic skill. The left hand painting seems to suggest that whites buy, but blacks rent. The right hand one suggests that gentrification supplies houses for the buyers, but loss of housing for the renters.


The right wall is two huge works which are bird's eye cityscapes with large colored patches on them. The were a few smaller versions of essentially the same thing on the wall facing the street.





Continuing into the next gallery, you find Wendy Davis' mostly floral paintings, are shown below.






September 26 - Open Fence at Windstar Farm, Lorena

Susan Sistrunk orchestrated quite a show at Windstar Farm. There were quite a few artists represented, including Art Guild members Chesley Smith, Judi Simon and Kay Rienke. Susan and her partner, Mark Kieran, had paintings, jewelry, poured acrylic pieces, and leatherwork. A major attraction was an amazing playhouse that Susan had decorated with murals on every wall. Other notable features were Guitarist Frank Exum (shown with the playhouse in the background) and all the animals wandering about, including  dogs, horses, donkeys, geese, and chickens. I didn't photograph the tamelife, but some of the art is shown below.









September 13- Susan Sistruck - acrylic resin pouring

Waco artist, Susan Sistrunk, is co-owner with Mark Kieran of the the Kieran-Sistrunk Fine Art Gallery at 2120 Washington. She and Mark produce many handmade items, including leather and jewelry items, and sell them at their gallery and elsewhere. Susan has been practicing different forms of art since childhood. After her family moved from California to Texas, she attended Belton HS and studied Studio Art at University of Mary Hardin Baylor. Teaching is her great love. She has long taught at the Methodist Children's Home, and she gives classes in various forms of art at her gallery.

She told us about her failures and successes with Art Resin. What follows is her method to ensure success. She carefully measures equal amounts of resin and hardener in separate measuring cups, and pours them together into a third container. She then uses a popsicle stick to mix them thoroughly (for at least 2 minutes), getting rid of large bubbles. (at right)

She arranges small objects, such as shells, on the bottom of a silicone mold which has been sprayed with a mold release. When the small bubbles rise to the surface of the mix, she pours some of it into the mold, but not so much as to make the objects float (at left). Any remaining bubbles can be brought to the surface and popped by blowing on the surface with a heat gun, which is similar to a hair drier, but much hotter. (They are inexpensive at Harbor Freight.) After the resin stiffens enough to hold the objects in place, she can make and heat additional pours.


Using a large cubic mold, she can trap objects on the five surfaces, one at a time, then fill the central hollow. She makes night lights by putting a small LED light in the center of a wooden disk (at right), and placing a finished cube over the LED. Some LED lights will continuously change color, which adds interest (at left). Our thanks to Susan for showing how to successfully use art resin. You may want to visit her gallery (after calling ahead to get access), or the Windstar Cottage, 115 Brandy Hill, Lorena, where Susan has painted murals, and painted designs on furniture. There is an outdoor open house 10-6 Saturday, September 26.

August 29, 9am-1pm - Uptown Art Walk

This was the second Uptown Art Walk. and it had even more artists. The first two photos below are our members Sue Moore and Chesley Smith. The next four are some of the other artists, and the last shows Frank Exum providing live music among yet other art.













August 7-September 26 - Cade Kegerreis Exhibit at Cultivate 7twelve

The exhibit it titled "Devolved - Unity Through Evolution, Diversity and Connection." The soft opening was August 7. There will be a First Friday reception 5-10, September 4, coffee and closing thoughts reception 12-3 September 26, and a closing reception 5-7 the same day. A booklet of his painting with artist comments is available. More information about the artist and his work is in an article by Carl Hoover on page 1C of the August 6 Trib. The gallery is at 712 Austin Ave, and it will be open noon-7pm Thursdays-Saturdays.  Some examples of Cade's are shown below, along with some the other work on display. There's lots else on display as well. It's worth a visit.


CK Depth, print on silk                                   CK Human Spectrum, oil




                      CK Amagamation Triptych, oil                                     CK Does Art Evolve? oil


                                 A wall of Charles Wallis paintings


                                     A wall of Greg Lewallen paintings


                                        Marsha Wilson's latest woodburning

July 25 - Outdoor Exhibit & Sale at Kieran-Sistrunk & M C Art, 10-2

The exhibit included about 10 artists, some of which are shown below. They included our Chesley Smith.




June 18-July - 31 Katie Ward: "Structure" Exhibit at Cultivate 7twelve

Katie Ward's works combine gold leaf with charcoal and paint, protraying human figures with abstract backgrounds. It will be on display noon to 7 pm, Thursday-Saturday until the end of July at 712 Austin Ave. Katie and some of her works are shown below.



June 18-July 31 - Works by Jay McMillen, Julie Pitman, Mark Kieran, Susan Sistrunk & George Giddens

at Kieran-Sistrunk Gallery

To view the art, text or call 254-733-9478. The gallery is at 2120 Washington Ave. Some works are shown below.



May 17 - AGCT Meeting - Cancelled, but some created art that afternoon

Sandra Scott,

Creeping Charlie (wildflower), May 2020, oils

This is what Sandra was finishing Sunday, 5/17. Comments and suggestions are welcome.


Myrl Luper,

Wildflower, May 2020, watercolor pencil, 5"X7"

Color was added Sunday. Comments are welcome


Bill Franklin,

Glad Girls 1 with background, watercolor, 10.5"X10.5"

The background was originally left white. I filled in the greenery before Sunday, then added the critters Sunday. Comments welcome.

March 8 - Marsha Wilson - Pyrography ("painting" with a hot iron)

Marsha Wilson, a master at pyrography, has always loved working with wood, which began with cutting and creating objects including crosses. Then, because she thought the wood objects looked a bit bland, she began to burn designs into the wood, which is called pyrography. She decorated those crosses and created solid silhouettes and typography. She then began to construct plaques with unique sayings.  In the beginning, she did not have a temperature gauge on her burning tools, which made it harder to control the burns.  She now has temperature control, shown at right, and some new tools.

Marsha’s present pieces of art are highly shaded on wood, leather and paper. She creates many depictions of animals, people, buildings, and other intricate and unique designs from around the world and sites she sees around Waco. She transfers her design onto the medium of her choice and burns with a Walnut Hollow Versatool (at top right). This tool has different levels of heat, which along with the use of several brass tips (one shown at left,) enable her to shade more effectively. To avoid uncomfortable heat, she recommends holding the tool further back on the handle.  Most of her supplies can be purchased at local craft and lumber stores, but she orders some specialized brass tips online (shown at bottom right).

She starts the burning with the darkest tone and showed how she stroked the wood more quickly for the lighter tones.  She showed us her shading technique to avoid blobs of burns, which was a swooping airplane landing-like motion on the object. One example, a commission, is at the left. She also enjoys designing on leather, which is very responsive to her touch with the burning tool.  But she mentioned that temperature control is very important because it is easy to melt, instead of just burning the leather. An example of that is at the right.

When burning paper, she uses Strathmore Bristol paper, on which she can get better tones than on wood. Plus, the tool does not burn holes into that kind of paper as she details and shades her pictures.  Marsha remarked that it takes a long time to complete some pieces but that it was very relaxing for her to do so in her meticulous manner. After her presentation, she invited the attendees to try their hands at it. Some of those are shown below.


She has been mentioned as a master pyrographer in Woodcarvers Illustrated and Pyrography Magazine, Baylor Lariat plus numerous internet blogs.  She also had an interview with Ann Harder before Ann retired. Marsha has been contacted from many places throughout the world because of these publications.  And she is now in negotiations for bigger projects in Waco and elsewhere.

And here is a great video presented on KXXV, channel 25. Marsha is being interviewed by Lindsay Liepman: Many of her pieces are shown on her website at: Another site with numerous designs is Her Facebook site is She also has studio space at Cultivate 7twelve Gallery in Waco, 712 Austin Avenue, where she has many of her items located. See

We are so thankful that Marsha was able to take the time for bringing some sample work for us to view and for explaining the details of the process. She has a great talent for knowing which designs to use in her creations. Her demonstration was mesmerizing in its entirety! Thanks also to those who brought refreshments and art for Show & Tell, some of which is shown below.

Show & Tell:


 Nancy Cagle       Jackie Holmes         Bill Franklin           Sue Moore     


   Tim Lowe           Cathy Niekamp

March Gallery Exhibits, All Had First Friday Openings and Receptions

Cultivate 7twelve, 712 Austin Ave, "Landscapes of the Soul"

The exhibit by Charles Wallis and Lauren Dickinson will be on view Thursday-Saturday, 10:30-7:30. Some photos appear below. The first two are works  by Dickinson, the third is Wallis, and the rest are his works. Remember that thumbnail photos can be enlarged by clicking on them.



Kieren-Sistruck, 2120 Washington Ave, "Euphoria"

The exhibit by Kavitha Samminathan will be on view Monday-Friday 10-6 and Saturday 10-4. Some photos appear below. The first is of Kavitha holding a painting she gave away as a door prize; the next three are some of her works; and the last shows the live entertainment. Remember that thumbnail photos can be enlarged by clicking on them.



White Elephant, 1025 Austin Ave, Various Artists

White Elephant displays the works of many artists, including our members Lee James and Kay Reinke. Some photos appear below. Remember that thumbnail photos can be enlarged by clicking on them.


February 23 - Arboretum Reception, Critique, and Merit Awards

We were proud to have a great exhibit for David Smith to critique. He commented on every piece (running overtime to do so). He gave Merit Awards to (in alphabetical order):

Faces of Jesus: Jesus and the Children by Gena Deeds-Page,

Sunset Blossoms by Larry Garza,

Brame Park, Bellmead, TX by Frank Gutierrez,

Spanish Lady by Sue Moore,

Dust Storm by Christine Niekamp, and

The Eyes Have It – 1930's Hollywood Starlets by Judi Simon.

Below there are photos of some of the guests , the refreshments table, and David Smith critiquing the art. You can enlarge them by clicking on them.



February 13-March 15 - Arboretum Exhibit Reception & Critique

We have another excellent exhibit with 28 works by 15 artists. The reception and critique by David Smith will be February 23, 1:30-3. David will begin about 2:15, so try to get there at the start to have time to view the art and enjoy the refreshments before he begins. He will give five merit awards to his favorites. Photos of the art are below, beginning at the door and continuing around to the right. Because the photos are low resolution, you will need to see them up close to appreciate them. You can also see the exhibit 8-5 most weekdays and more limited hours on the weekend. It's best to call before coming to be sure it is available.

                  Bill Franklin                              Tim Lowe

               Gena Deeds-Page                                               William Rogers

                                   Christine Niekamp                                                     Jo Forbus

             Marion Jean Thomas                                  Tim Lowe                                     Christine Niekamp

                       Kay Lamb Shannon                            Sandra Scott                                        Sandra Scott

      Frank Gutierrez & Gena Deeds-Page      Larry Garza

                       Sue Moore                                Kay Reinke

           (chosen for the postcard)

                                         Bill Franklin                                                        Kay Reinke                                     Jo Forbus

               Frank Gutierrez                         Kay Lamb Shannon                 Sue Moore

       Cathy Niekamp                                                 Chesley Smith


          Cathy Niekamp                                      Judi Simon                                                     Judi Simon


January - B&W photos at Kieran-Sistruck Gallery & Other Events

The January exhibit is "The Wandering Artisans Excursions in Monochrome." Also offered at the gallery at 2120 Austin Ave, will be "Open Paint Night" on Jan 8 & 15 at 6:30 pm, and "Wake Up to Art" on Jan 9 and 16 at 10 am. A few photos are shown below. The images can be enlarged by clicking on them. This will only give you an idea of the range of the subjects. The quality of these images is far worse than the originals. You'll have to go look to see that.

January 29 - March 1 Artist Talk & Reception at Baylor's Martin Museum

John Hartley's "Played in America" exhibit has been sharing Martin Museum space with the "Faculty Biennial" since January 16. There was a reception and gallery talks for the latter on the opening date. Now there is an artist talk and reception for John Hartley on February 29 at 5:30. If you can't make that, at least come by March 1, Tue-Fri 10-6, Sat 10-4 or Sun 1-4. Both exhibits are well worth seeing. The art is an amazing variety of genres and styles. A few of the offerings are shown below. The thumbnails are impossibly small, but can be enlarged by clicking on them. The first is one of John Hartley's works. The others have names in the photos, except he last, which is 3D art by Robbie Barber The red numbers refer to pages in the 80 page booklet that provides more information about the exhibitors.

January 16-March 1 - Two Exhibits at Baylor's Martin Museum

Sharing gallery space at the Martin Museum are two exhibits: "John Hartley: Played in America" and "Baylor Art and Art History Faculty Biennial." The opening began with three 30 minute lectures by faculty members, 4-5:30, followed by the reception and gallery viewing 5:30-7. The exhibit remains on view Tuesday-Friday 10-6, Saturday 10-4, and Sunday 1-4 through March 1. This is an event that you don't want to miss. The art is an amazing variety of genres and styles. A few of the offerings are shown below. The thumbnails are impossibly small, but can be enlarged by clicking on them. The first is a slide from one of the lectures, the second is one of John Hartley's works. The others have names in the photos, except he last which is art by Robbie Barber. The red numbers refer to pages in the 80 page booklet that provides more information about the exhibitors.

January 12 - Bill Franklin - Perspective Reality

Member Bill Franklin reminded everyone that realistic art is an exercise in illusion. We look at or imagine a 3D scene, and put marks on a 2D surface, which we hope a viewer will perceive as the 3D scene we envisioned. Our brains do all of that remarkably well. Understanding how it works can help artists to do a better job. Bill began by showing photographs of a square grid viewed from an angle. The grid tapers in the direction we are looking, and, if extended, the tapering lines intersect at a point called the vanishing point. An example of this is below at the left. He showed this operating in both photographs and imagined scenes. Examples of these follow the first image below.


Next, he asked us to suggest clues other than lines converging toward a vanishing point to suggest depth in a painting. These included the overlapping of distant objects by closer ones, and the diminishing with distance of size, sharpness of detail, contrast and color saturation, as well as an often bluish haze in the distance. Then he showed the progression of Picasso's art from realistic portrayal to abstractions that used the principles of perspective and the distortion of familiar shapes to deliberately throw the viewer off balance. Examples follow.


He finished by showing a number of examples of works in which perspective had been used well or badly, asking us to identify specific clues that worked to make us view them as a 3D scene, or where they failed to do so. Examples are below. Make your own judgments.



After the demo, we voted on the paintings that members brought to be used as the art on the postcard invitations to the reception for our upcoming exhibit at the Arboretum. They are shown below. The winner was Sue Moore's Iris. Our thanks to Bill, and to those who brought refreshments and/or art.


Gena Deeds-Page                Jo Forbus                         Bill Franklin               Larry Garza               Sue Moore


                Tim Lowe                                     Sandra Scott                  Chesley Smith           Judy Steward

January 3 - Opening at Cultivate 7tweve, Joel Edwards & Brad Settles,

       and in the Upstairs Gallery, Mick Burson

Joel Edwards presented a number of pencil drawings, mostly of trees and some oil landscapes. Brad Settles presented some oil landscapes and some large paintings that appeared to be photos overlaid with transparent color stripes. Mick Burson has abstract works of many sizes, from a few inches to about six feet. Some examples are shown below. The first two are Edwards', the next is Settles', and the last two are Burson's. These exhibits are available Thursday-Saturday 10:30-7:30 at the gallery at 712 Austin Ave. The images can be enlarged by clicking on them.


December 31 - Deadline for early dues discounts

Dues paid before Jan 1 will be discounted as shown below.

Category                          annual calendar year dues       dues for the remainder of the current year

Students (21 or younger)                 $12                                 $1/month for the rest of the year

Regular members                             $24                                $2/month for the rest of the year

Web Gallery Members                     $36                                 $3/month for the rest of the year

Patron members                              $100                                $100

Timely payment discount: If paid before January 1, dues are $5 for student, $15 for regular, and $25 for Web Gallery. Patron membership is $100, regardless of when it is paid.


December 31 - Closing of Lee James Gallery at Vibe in McGregor

In the meantime, everything is on sale. For Bargains, see Contact info at Lee James FB profile: Some of his paintings can be seen at


December 27 - Marsha Wilson Closing at Kieran-Sistruck Gallery

Recent Art Guild presenter Marsha Wilson was the December featured artist at the Kieran-Sistruck gallery at 2120 Washington Ave. There was an closing reception Friday, Dec 27. Some of her art is shown below. The first photo is of Marsha with an astounding image on paper of Notre Dame under construction. The next one is on wood. The next two are on leather. The last is Mark Kieran with one of his paintings, which also sold. Marsha sold seven of her works during the show. An interview of Marsha is at It is also on our Facebook page:


December 7 - Art Guild Annual Luncheon at Olive Garden

We had a good turnout for our annual luncheon. The photos below are taken from the two ends of a very long table. It may be difficult to see those near the center of the table.


December 6-27 - Marsha Wilson Opening at Kieran-Sistruck Gallery

Recent Art Guild presenter Marsha Wilson is the December featured artist at the Kieran-Sistruck gallery at 2120 Washington Ave. There was an opening reception Friday, Dec 6, 4-9 pm, shown below. The first photo is of Marsha with an astounding image on paper of Notre Dame under construction. The next one is on wood. The next two are on leather. The last is Mark Kieran with one of his paintings. The exhibit is available Tue-Fri 1-6 pm & Sat 11-4. An interview of Marsha is at It is also on our Facebook page:


December 6-20 - Jesus Rivera exhibit at Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

The venue is located at 915 La Salle. Some photos of the exhibit are shown below.


November 15-Jan 6 - Art Guild Exhibit at MCC

Another impressive exhibit, with 24 paintings by 13 artists. The painting are shown below as they appear on the wall, from left to right. Of course you can appreciate them better with your own eyes, rather than just seeing photographs of them. The exhibit is in the foyer of the Performing Arts Center, which is within the loop formed by Highlands Drive. The exhibit will be taken down on Monday, January 6.


The best time to come is in the evening when there is no glare from the opposite windows. You can take in a performance as well by attending one of the following events. All are at 7:30, and all are FREE, except as noted.

Nov 19 - Rock Band Concert

Nov 21 - Wind Ensemble Concert

Nov 24 - Concert Band Concert, 3 pm

Dec 5 - Guitar Ensemble & Vocal Tech Ensemble Concert

Dec 9 - Waco Jazz Orchestra Concert

Dec 12 - Waco Community Band Concert

Dec 19 - "The Sound of Music" by the Christian Youth Theater, 9:30 am, $10 early, $12 at door

Dec 20 - Same as above, 7 pm

Dec 21 - Same as above, 2:30 pm & 7 pm

Dec 22 - Same as above, 2:30 pm & 6:30 pm

Even if you don't go to the "Sound of Music" performance, the exhibit will be on view in the foyer.


Gena Deeds-Page


Sandra Scott and Jackie Holmes


Sue Moore


Chesley Smith


Tim Lowe


Bill Franklin


Sonny Rogers


Jean Thomas


Cathy Niekamp


Christine Niekamp



Jo Forbus


Frank Gutierez

November 10 - Art Guild meeting - Gena Deeds-Page - Portraiture

Gena possessed an interest in art from a young age, drew sketches of classmates in high school, and graduated with a BFA from Hardin-Simmons University in 1982. She has since had solo exhibitions in Waco and Dallas and participated in national juried shows in other cities.  You can see her art on her webpage, including a series of faith-based paintings depicting scenes from the Old and New Testament. Her portraits range from a traditional old Masters style to a more loose/painterly approach.  She also creates more modern mixed-media portraits and designs using acrylic paint, fabric, beads, and embroidery. A few examples she brought are shown below. The first 2 are whole groups, the 3rd is a self portrait in which the right side of her face is done with embroidery, and the last is done with gel pen. Remember that any thumbprint on our site can be enlarged by clicking on it.


For her demonstration, she used a 16x20 Senso clear-primed linen natural colored canvas. She squeezed tubes of acrylic paint onto a Stay-Wet Palette (which contains a damp sponge to keep her paint from drying too quickly.) She used brushes purchased from local arts and craft stores.  She mentioned that she tries to draw or paint every day.

Our lighting at the Meeting room was fluorescent, but for lighting at home, she uses an Ottlite Truecolor lamp to the left of her canvas. She prefers to paint from life, and pointed out the drawbacks of using photo references, because cameras create distortions compared to using a live subject.

Shirley, the wife of Chesley Smith, volunteered to be Gena's model for the 2-hour portrait session (photo at thr right). For Shirley's skin color, Gena began with a mixture of dark umber an ultramarine blue for the shadow areas, then added white where she wanted highlights, brushing it in and/or adding skin color to tone the highlights down. She blended in midtones containing umber, midtones containing umber, burnt sienna and yellow ochre. When it got too dark, she added white; when too light, she added the darker skin color. This went back and forth, looking more like Shirley at each step. A few stages of this are shown below. About halfway through the painting process, she stopped to assess her work and then made more changes and added details. The lips were painted with red, purple and brown. They started out looking pretty good, but were eventually shaped into a smile. Then it really looked like Shirley. After 2 hours, she signed her painting, and presented it to Shirley and Chesley (shown at right).

We enjoyed watching Gena paint every stroke, listening to her explanations of technique, and answering our myriad of questions in her soft and patient voice. One could easily see why her paintings look so meaningful as she has injected feeling, warmth and personality into her canvas. Gena has joined our Guild and will be participating in our upcoming MCC show. She is a talented and delightful individual, and we are happy to have her as a member.

Our thanks to Gena, Shirley, those who brought refreshments, and those who brought art for show and Tell, some of which are shown below.


 Mary Behrens        Bill Franklin           Tim Lowe           Cathy Niekamp     Chesley Smith

November 7 - Talk by Gary Goldberg at Martin Museum, Baylor

Gary Goldberg is a photographer and artist. This exhibit, "Finding the Universe in Oaxaca," is a series of photos and fabric art. Goldberg took photos of small sections of walls in Oaxaca. The shapes and textures suggested landscapes, and he painted then as abstracts that can easily be read as landscapes. While he made some large prints, he wanted to make them much bigger. He managed that by having local women duplicate them as large felt tapestries. Most are six to eight feet wide or tall. He explained his thinking and the process of making the felt enlargements during his talk. The exhibit will continue until December 22. A few are shown below.



November 7 - Opening of Charles Wallis exhibit at Keiren-Sistruck Gallery

Charles Wallis does expressionistic paintings, mostly landscapes. He is shown below, along with a few of his paintings. The last two photos are works of other artists. Wallis's are worth a trip. The others are a bonus. The gallery is at 2120 Washington Ave. Call or text 254-733-9478 to make sure it's open The exhibit will end December 29.



November 3 & on - McGregor open house including Lee James' studio

Lee James has a gallery and studio in the Vibe building, 216 S Main Street, McGregor. He has about 40 feet of wall space, and it's full of his painting and prints. There are tables with even more. A few photos are below. There was an open house Sunday, November 3. It is not usually open on Sundays, but will be during December.


November 1-22 - "Ekphrasis: Veracity" Exhibit at Cultivate 7twelve

The opening Ekphrasis is a Greek word for poems that describe or interpret visual art. The exhibit comprises 16 artist-writer pairs. There was an opening reception from 6 to 10 on November 1 at Cultivate 7twelve, 712 Austin Ave, that included readings and songs as well as a display of the art. Two of the pairs are shown below. Clicking on a thumbnail enlarges it. You will have to do that to read the poems. The exhibit is by the Central Texas Artist Collective and the Waco Poetry Society, and it will continue at Cultivate 7twelve through November 22.


DeShauna Hollie & Julie Milstead         Angie Veracruz & Aaron Rollins             attendees

October 31-November 11 - 9th annual Waco Ofrenda, Dia de la Muerta

Ofrenda is translated into English as offering, gift or sacrifice. It is a Mexican celebration of the Day of the Dead. This is not a spooky Halloween thing. It is a celebration of the lives of the departed, with Aztec and Catholic roots, whose purpose is similar to All Saints' Day celebrated in many churches. Skeletons and skulls are prominent, along with candles, food and photographs of departed relatives. The public were encouraged to bring photos of departed family members. I brought one of Judy, and was honored to see that it was placed on the main altar. The art and decoration was fantastic. A few examples are shown below. The 1st is a cow decorated by Deborah Reed; the 2nd, manikins in one one the many rooms decorated; the 3rd, the main alter; the 4th, Judy's photo; the 5th. some of the attendees; and the last, Sandi Horton, who contributed a prayer and music. You can still see the exhibit 10-6 Monday-Saturday through November 11 at 402 Tyler (behind Lula Jane's). There will be a closing reception on November 11.


October 13 - Chesley Smith - Murals

Before our Demo, guest Susan Crowley put out a call call for artists to volunteer to work on a mural they are planning for the side of their Talitha Koum Nurture Center building on 1311 Clay Avenue. You can reach Susan at 254-498-9577 Their website is The Talitha Koum's Nurture Center opened in 2003, and has continuously structured it's program around the latest data on both brain development, and how it is affected by early trauma, to give traumatized children a strong foundation on which to self-regulate and learn.

A few local exhibits were mentioned, including Climate Change exhibit at The Winery, 708 Austin through November 2, The Brazos Fine Art Show and Sale, November 8-10 at the Hilton Waco, and the rarely open Helen Marie Taylor Museum, 701 Webster (

Then we were treated to a presentation by our Art Guild member, Waco native, Chesley Smith. He has bachelor’s and master’s degree in art Education and has exhibited across Texas and the U.S, 13 of which were solo exhibits. He produces many commissioned works . He has 5 individually painted murals, such as the one on the wall of Marilyn's Gift Shop (top left) and 4 collaborative ones, including the the one at the East Waco Library (bottom left), and the one recently painted on the side of the Diversified Products at 1001 Webster Drive in Waco (shown below). At 156 feet wide, it is the biggest mural in Waco. The mural depicts some highlights of Waco history, from about 1845 to 2019 including the Cotton palace, the major tornado of 1953, the Alico Building, the Suspension bridge, Katy Park baseball, racetrack, servicemen from Connally Air Force Base, Greyhound Bus Station, and more.

The project began in the heat of May when they worked for 4 hours in the morning and then later in the evening for a total of 8 hours per day. Diversified Products provided the paint and supplies, served them Lunches and snacks and rented the lift for painting the upper portions of the mural. For this project, the design was planned, approved and sketched on 16 different panels that were then projected onto the wall at night. The outlines were then sketched from the projected images. and later blended, because sometimes the lines didn’t match up and the artists had to fix proportions, etc. Chesley said that many painters subsequently came to help, so there was no unified style of painting, which is indicative of a collaborative effort. They used very expensive but long-lasting, colors called Nova Acrylic Paint. Chesley said the paint will be there long after he is gone. The Trib did a nice write up of Chesley and the mural, which they framed and gave him (at the right)

Thanks, Chesley! Thanks too, to those who brought refreshments, and those who brought art for Show and Tell, some of which is shown below. After the demo, we had our second Auction featuring more of the books donated by Sandra Vasek.

Show and Tell:


Mary Behrens              Bill Franklin               Susie Moore         Christine Niekamp         Sandra Scott

October 4-6 Waco Arts Fest

There were many arts on display at the Arts Fest. Music and Dance most of the time at the main stage, poetry & prose in the convention center and at Baylor, Science and Film in the convention center (Check out The Boy who Harnessed the Wind on Netflix.), and art of all sorts scattered around Indian Park. A very few of the latter are shown below. If you missed going this year, don't make the same mistake next year!



                our Chesley Smith                                        Gena Deeds-Page                   Gretchen Weisgram



       an entry in the Art Center trailer                a suit of armor          Baylor's Paul McCoy     sculpture from scraps

September 8 - Show and Get Help

There was a large turn-out and we had a lot of fun. We had such a diverse and extra amount of member-provided foods, that we set up an extra table for all the good food. We had a relaxed but very productive gathering. The meeting was as brief as we could manage, minutes were read from last May’s meeting.

We discussed upcoming art exhibits, including “The 3rd Annual Climate Change Exhibit,” Aug. 28 until Nov. 2; Sonny Rogers has artwork in this show and so does Caitlyn Veazey, granddaughter of Myrl Luper. Also, there is “The Bosque Art Classic,” September 15-28, in which Judi Simon has a painting. We also talked about places available in Waco to show art, besides our own yearly shows.

A Slate of nominations will be presented at the October 13th meeting and our members were reminded to think about possible nominations for 2020. We have a yearly luncheon in December and members were asked to come up with suggestions, also by the October meeting.

Many Artists participated in Show & Get Help and brought art just to show to us. Jackie Holmes showed several paintings and asked for help before finishing; some were oil, and some were acrylic. She was advised to put more light into the background of her pink cornflower painting, also to add more bluebonnets to the right side of another painting and general highlights into some forest paintings. These are shown below.


Jo Forbus asked for advice on a lovely painting of Bluebonnets in a basket  which she painted on the fibrous side of a Masonite board. Nobody had any suggestions for improvement, because it already looked great!

Tim Lowe showed an outdoor scene he painted from his recent trip to Alaska and asked for advice on how to proceed with the bears and background.

Sandy Scott wanted to know what kind of background to use on her oil painting of her backyard chicken, the consensus was to leave the background dark and put more emphasis on the chicken and Spider Lilies.

Susie Etheredge showed us some of her pretty Tole paintings for the 1st time. She brought 2 angels and a scarecrow; we hope she brings more of these to show us at meetings.

Others just brought work just to show us, including Sonny Rogers, Jean Thomas, Christine & Cathy Niekamp, Mary Behrens, Susie Moore, Chesley Smith. And to top it off, Judy Steward wowed us with several beautiful Quilt Art Pieces. Some of those are shown below.


Sonny Rogers       Jean Thomas          Susie Moore          Chesley Smith


Christine Niekamp  Cathy Niekamp      Mary Behrens        Judy Steward

After Show and Get Help, we had an art book Auction of some of the almost-new books donated to our Guild by Saundra Vasek. We wish to thank those who purchased many of the books, we greatly appreciate it! Many more books will be available at our next few meetings.

Our Fall Board meeting was held at the end of Show and Get Help. We discussed payment levels for non-member artists and our Guild who present demonstrations to our group.


May 19 - Joe Taylor - Archeology and Art

Joe Taylor is a Paleontologist and the director and curator of the Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum. He is one of the most skilled in his field of fossil restoration, and is called in by many museums in the U.S. and abroad for his help.  In fact, he was called in by the team working on the Waco Mammoth Site, and made the mold and exact reproduction of the bull and juvenile on display at the Mayborn Museum.

He was born and grew up near the town of Crosbyton in Mount Blanco Community. He started collecting dinosaur bones many years ago when, as a 12-year-old boy, he found a fossilized shark's tooth His fossil achievement stems from his artistic ability which brought him to the art success back in his early days in California. 

Trained as an artist and sculptor, Joe headed to California during the Sixties to work as a sign painter for major record companies. He painted large billboard copies in artists oils of hundreds of album covers, including, Olivia Newton John, Waylon Jennings, 3 Dog Night, Beatles, and many other artists. He showed us slides of himself standing next to the larger paintings on boards he did for advertisement. These are now showing at his Museum in Crosbyton. A couple are shown below.

            (Photos copyright Joe Taylor and Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum)

During his time in California, Joe volunteered at the La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles. In Texas, a few years later he molded one of the saber tooth tiger skulls. For our Waco tornado-damaged Dr. Pepper Museum. Joe Taylor, in the 90’s, molded the big sculpted sign on the front of the building. He restored a cast of the sign and re-molded it so they could cast a new one in hadrocal and stainless steel. Looks great now!

Joe led and took part in many archaeological excavations. One of them being the Waco Sudden Death Mammoth Site. He made the largest mold ever made of Fossils which were still in dirt, such as the large mammoths trapped by the Brazos limestone split.He began working on this Mammoth site with Dr. Calvin Smith and Ralph Vinson in 1988. Dr. Smith and Joe discussed the possibility of molding the large mammoth herd bull with a juvenile on his tusks. In 1993 Joe molded the complete skeletons of the bull and juvenile. Molding even one of the mammoths while still in the ground (in-situ) was considered virtually impossible, but Taylor went even further, molding the juvenile in two layers, making it the largest mold ever made of animals still in the ground as well as the most complex. As of May, 2019 , no similar project has been attempted by major universities or museums.

“The importance of molding a fossil skeleton still in the ground is that it allows us to make an exact reproduction of the fossils that can be studied under controlled conditions or displayed in a museum setting." In fact, Taylor made a reproduction, colored exactly like the original, which is now part of the new Mayborn Museum complex at Baylor University in Waco, Texas.

Joe also showed us many slides of some fossils he restored. He also had a picture of a skull with an elongated head, nicknamed “Cinnamon.” It was sent to him asking for analysis, molding and reproduction. He told the caretaker that it looked like some skulls that he molded from the area of Peru, The DNA of these 300 fossils found in Peru by Julio Tello, have been found to originate from Europe and Mid-East. While it is possible that the heads found had been bound in order to elongate, he mentioned that this particular one had several Inca bones but no Sagittal suture. (the sagittal suture is a connective tissue joint between the two parietal bones of the skull.)

Joe has also hunted fossils in the North Dakota Badlands and many other places in this as well as other countries. He has found and restored many dinosaurs including a Hadrosaur skull. He has excavated Triceratops bones with the skin still on the bones and so much more.

Needless to say, you could easily hear a pin drop during his presentation, because we were all so enthralled with Joe his slides, and his story, what a rich life he has led!

Joe Taylor, thanks so much! Thanks also to those who brought refreshments and those who brought art for Show and Tell, some of which are shown below.

You can visit Joe's site in Mt. Blanco, near Crosbyton, TX. 124 W. Main Street. 1-806-675-7777

Hours & Info

124 W. Main Street
P.O. Box 550
Crosbyton, Texas 79322


Monday-Friday 9:00am-5:00pm
Or by Appointment

Show and Tell


Gloria Meadows     her rocks & a fossil         Susie Moore             Sonny Rogers           Chesley Smith

April 7 - Lee James - Acrylic Painting Using Palette Knives

Lee James presented an instructive, enjoyable and interesting demonstration of painting acrylics with palette knives. We had a good turnout despite the rain. Jean Thomas and others brought refreshments and drinks. Guests included BG Coulter and Judy Steward, both of whom decided to join, and Shannon Birchum.

Lee did engineering work for 50 years, moving more than a dozen times. He also played guitar, saxophone and keyboard in his twenties, but his real entry into fine art happened years later, when his five year old son asked him to draw a Superhero . When Lee said that he couldn’t do that, his son said "Dad, you always told ME not to say I can't! So he drew a passable cartoon for him. A year later, his wife bought him a set of oil paints and it progressed from there.

He switched to watercolor because they were easier to move about. Then he started using acrylics in his watercolor paintings to add more vibrancy. Initially, he painted in a more detailed, exacting style, a carryover from his engineering background, but he studied with some nationally known artists in Bar Harbor, Maine, because he felt the need to loosen his painting style. He also took a plein-air workshop with Carlton Plummer, who was noted for his loose style.

Lee takes many photographs, and uses the computer to arrange parts of them to produce an artistically arranged reference. He puts this reference on a large computer screen next to his canvas. For the demo, he brought a small tablet, shown at the right. He doesn't copy the reference, rather, he tries to achieve the impression he had at that scene. He focuses on the effect of light on objects not on the objects themselves. An example is at the right. He finds a 360 degree spinal ruler (shown at the left) helpful in checking perspective lines and proportions.

The demo painting he brought already had the major shapes blocked in, with the parts placed with proper perspective, shown at the right. He had started with an orangish wash, such as that shown at the left, and a 2” penciled grid to help him with perspective and proportion. The wash was a mixture of artist grade transparent colors, favorites being Quinacridone Nickel Azo Gold and transparent Raw Sienna, brushing vertically then horizontally with a Japanese Haik brush.

He places relatively small dabs of paint (shown at right) on parchment paper laid on top of a damp paper towel in a shallow box with a lid that can be tightly closed to keep the paint from drying out. Some of the colors used were Titan Buff, Milky White, Unbleached Titanium White, Quinacridone Burnt Orange, Turquoise Deep, Paynes Grey, Indanthrone Blue, and Van Dyke Red. He is careful not to mix colors on his palette as he picks up small slices of several compatible colors on his palette knife, shown at left.

He began to place colors, starting from the top of the canvas, using different sizes of short-sided, long-sided and round blade palette knives, shown at the upper right. He used different hand scraping and tensions to apply the paint in different directions to bring forth an impressionistic view “evoking an illusion of realism.” The scene was a Italian street with a cafe's canopies along it, shown at the left. He painted parts of the canopies and also a window and a table to illustrate how he worked. In places he left ridges, giving a texture to the work, shown at the lower right. Before going back over an area, he lets the first coat dry to keep the texture and avoid mixing the new paint with the old.

At the right is the canvas at the end of the demo. You can compare the canopies, window and table, with the reference photo above. Lee has a gallery in McGregor, where he gives group and private lessons, sharing his techniques, but also helping students improve their own approaches. BG Coulter has taken several lessons from him there, and she brought a beautiful painting that she produced under his tutelage. Lee is shown holding it at the left.

Lee was also asked to comment on an unfinished painting by Jackie Holmes. He is shown doing that at the right. We thank Lee for giving us such an interesting demonstration, chock full of instructions and hints, we learned a lot! To see more of his work, check out his his website, or his Facebook page,  You can also visit his gallery in McGregor. We also thank those who brought refreshments and their art for our Show and Tell, some of which is shown below.

Show and Tell:


 Nancy Cagle         BG Coulter         Bill Franklin       Jackie Holmes   Cathy Niekamp    Chesley Smith

March 10 - Judy Steward - Art Quilting

We want to thank Judy Steward, Master Quilt Designer/Instructor, who gave us a spectacular demonstration at our meeting on 03-10-19. Quilting is a form of art, in fact Judy fashions what are called “Art Quilts” which are usually smaller than regular quilts and displayed like tapestry on walls. A few examples of these are shown here. She had many more. She started quilting at a young age, using the old fashioned methods such as making her own cardboard templates and tracing onto fabric to make the pieces to quilt. She began design quilting in 1981 in order to make a treasured quilt for her first baby which she brought with her for the presentation. Since that time, she has learned and advanced herself to her present expert level of design.

She takes many photos with her camera, and when making designs, she uses one of her photos and traces it onto clear vinyl. Next she enlarges it to the size she wants the final quilt to be. Now she can trace the design onto freezer paper for her pattern, cut out each piece and iron onto the fabric and then cut out the fabric pieces. She then irons “Misty Fuse” (which is a heat sensitive web of glue) onto the back of the pieces, using parchment paper to keep the glue off of the iron. These pieces would then be ironed onto her background fabric. Afterwards, she stitches around the design. She brought one example. She is holding an enlarged photo of a yellow door in a blue wall in her left hand, and the quilt in her left hand. Another example is the whimsical Lily Tomlin quilt at the right.

Another method she uses is to paint watercolor designs free hand onto the fabric with either Dye-na-Flow Fabric Paint or Textile Paint II by Jacquard. Then she free-form machine stitches around the designs and all sorts of new little designs are born onto the background. Sometimes she draws stencils onto the freezer paper and then stencils the designs onto the background. One example is shown at the left  She often stitches down her pieces as she is quilting it. That means that she has 3 layers she is stitching through. The top layer with the design, the middle layer is batting (which is a thick layer to give the quilt dimension), and the final layer of fabric called the backing. By doing this she can make the design visible on the back in a subtle way. This can be seen in the photo at the right.

Judy set up her regular, multi-stitch sewing machine. In the photo at the right, she is showing us how she can stitch even in the center of a large quilt with it. She changed the pressure foot to a darning foot, dropped the feed dogs, and threaded the machine bobbin and the top as usual before sewing a garment. She then showed us how she does her free form designs. A close-up is shown at the left.

Some of her artwork was presented at the meeting in small squares onto a large Felt Background Display, shown at the right. She showed us an array of beautiful quilts. One was a whimsically designed quilt with a bicycle in which she also utilized organza to make the see-through portions between the stitches of the spokes. Her favorite art quilt, shown at the left, is the gorgeous one she fashioned called “America’s Soul Flag” which she did in honor of the military. The quilt depicts the lyrics from the song, “America the Beautiful,”. This quilt encompasses 2004 fabric squares and took her over 20 hours to Quilt.

Judy regularly holds Quilting Workshops and Retreats which you can see, along with some of her work on her website, and also a Facebook page She has her studio in Hewitt, TX and can be contacted by email: or by phone at: 254.495.0905. Thanks again, Judy!!! Thanks also to those who brought refreshments, and to those who brought art for Show and Tell, some of which are shown below. Remember that clicking on any thumbnail enlarges it.

Show and Tell:


  Nancy Cagle               Jo Forbus                 Bill Franklin                 Tim Lowe


    Myrl Luper          Christine Niekamp      Chesley Smith

March 7 - ReStART Opening/gala/awards/auction

The opening at 712 Austin Ave was well attended, and the art was quite inventive. However, buyers were few. Among the entries were some by Art Guild members Chesley Smith and Bill Franklin. Theirs are first three shown below, followed by the winners of the first and second prize winners. The second row begins with the popular choice prize, followed by some of the other entries. There were 41 entries, and some of them were multiple works. The exhibit can be viewed until March 30 at the Restore, 1224 Franklin Ave, Wednesday - Friday, 9-4, and Saturday, 9-2. Click on thumbnails to enlarge them.








March 7-May 14 - Art Guild Exhibit at MCC

We have a bumper crop of works in this exhibit: 32  entries from 15 artists! There was barely room to hang them all. Photos of the entries are shown below, but they can be appreciated better up close. Plan to drop by the foyer of the Performing Arts Center (PAC) to see them. The best time to come is in the evening, when there is less glare from the opposite windows. There are only a few evening events scheduled so far. If you can make it to one, you will get both a fine performance and a look at our exhibit. All begin at 7:30, and all are free. They are:

March 19 - Faculty Recital

April 7 - Student Exit Recitals

May 6 - Waco Jazz Orchestra Concert

May 7 - Waco Community Band Concert


From Left to right:

Tim Lowe


Mary Behrens


Kay Lamb Shannon


Myrl Luper


Christine Niekamp


Cathy Niekamp


Sandra Scott


Sue Moore


Jean Thomas


Jackie Holmes


Chesley Smith


Frank Gutierrez


Santos Maldonado


Sonny Rogers


Jo Forbus

March 1 - Opening of Kieran-Sistrunk Gallery at 2120 Washington Ave

Mark Kieran and Susan Sistrunk have made a duplex at 2120 Washington Ave into their home, studio and gallery. It's a lovely, high-ceilinged home, filled with their art. There was a good crowd for the opening. If you want to visit, call or text to 254-733-9478. A few photos from the opening follow. The first is Susan and Mark with some of Susan's art. The second is Art Guild member Myrl Luper with more of Susan's art. The next two are some of Mark's art, and the last shows the crowd and Bill Franklin taking photos. As usual, you can click on a thumbnail to enlarge it.



February 5 - March 2 Art Guild Exhibit & Reception at the Arboretum

The reception was well attended, even though the Trib failed to print our announcement. We had many members and a number of guests who got postcards or were invited by members. David Smith critiqued the art, finding things to appreciate in every one, often things that most of us may have missed. It really enhanced our experience of the art of others and even our own art. It made us all feel honored.


He also picked five works for merit awards. Those were (in alphabetical order)

Bill Franklin - Bellingham Bay, Gray Day.

Sue Moore - Peaudouce Rose.

Kay Lamb Shannon - Aspen Trees.

Sandra Scott - His Bold Side.

Chesley Smith - Portrait in Relief II.


Here are some photos of David Smith discussing the art with the artists:






Below are photos of the art, starting at the door and moving around to the right. If you didn't come to the reception, visit the exhibit 8-5 Monday-Friday or 10-2 Saturday to see the art properly. These small photos don't do it justice.

Sandra Scott, Christine Niekamp, Jo Forbus, Bill Franklin




Gloria Meadows, Mary Behrens,

Kay Lamb Shannon, Jacqueline Holmes, Sue Moore, Linda Green, Bill Franklin



Gloria Meadows, Larry Garza, Frank Gutierez




Mary Behrens, Tim Lowes, Kay lamb Shannon, Jo Forbus, Chesley Smith






Jacqueline Holmes, Sandra Scott,

Cathy Niekamp, Judi Simon, Cathy Niekamp, Tim Lowe




Sonny Rogers, Jean Thomas, Chesley Smith



Linda Green, Sonny Rogers, Jean Thomas


February 5-28 - Chesley Smith exhibit in Dawson

There was a opening reception on February 5. Some photos from it are shown below. The first shows Chesley with his wife and the pastor, who hung the show. The exhibit will continue through February 28. It is at the Methodist church in Dawson, which is a few miles beyond Hubbard.



February 2 - Opening of Art Forum's Mi Corizon/My Heart exhibit

The opening was well attended, and the variety of the artworks was amazing. Some examples are shown below. The first row shows a talk by two of the curators, Sandi Horton performing a poem, some Art Guild members in attendance, and Bill Franklin with his entry. Some of these thumbnails are too small to appreciate, but you can enlarge them by clicking on them. The exhibit will continue through March 2, Tuesday-Saturday, 10-6. The Art Forum is at 1826 Morrow.





January 8-31 - Susie Moore Exhibit in Dawson 

Our member Susie Moore has an exhibit at the First Methodist Church of Dawson, TX. They have a well lit exhibit space, and Sue's paintings show up nicely. Three sold at the January 8 opening. There were also refreshments and tables for sitting down to enjoy them. A few of her paintings are shown below.



February 5-28 - Chesley Smith exhibit in Dawson

There was a opening reception on February 5. Some photos from it are shown below. The first shows Chesley with his wife and the pastor, who hung the show. The exhibit will continue through February 28. It is at the Methodist church in Dawson, which is a few miles beyond Hubbard.



January 6 - Pat Blackwell - Stained glass

Thanks to all of you who attended our meeting on Sunday, January 6, 2019. Many members and visitors came to enjoy refreshments, a short but information packed meeting and a wonderful demonstration by Pat Blackwell.

We had 2 new members at the meeting, Jean Thomas and Sonny (William Rogers) who are brothers and sisters, both artists who will also be showing art at our Arboretum Show starting February 5th.

Pat Blackwell is a well-known local artist especially for her stained glass. She showed us several of the techniques she uses to create commissioned pieces for windows in homes, businesses, and churches, as well as articles for sale. She also brought some examples in the form of hangings that she also sells. She answered many questions while keeping her hands swiftly working!

Pat explained that she uses a variety of glass. She shops at local home improvement stores for clear glass and usually purchases the specialty glass such as opaque, colored, textured and beveled from Hollander Glass Co. in Houston. The piece at the far right uses cobalt glass and beveled pieces for the star.

For the demonstration, she marked her design on paper, put it underneath the glass and then traced it onto the glass with a Black marker (silver marker if on a darker piece of glass.) She cut out the design pieces with a glass cutting tool coated with a special oil. She then used running pliers to break off the larger pieces, and Grozing pliers to nip off small pieces that remain outside the markings. Afterwards, if there is any necessary smoothing to do, she paints the glass with a special oil and while keeping it wet, she grinds the piece smooth, as shown at the left.

She used copper foiling strips, she peeled the backing off the copper and wrapped, then pressed it snugly around the front and back of the piece, as shown on the right. To tack the pieces together she applied dots of flux to desired areas and then melted small blobs of 60/40 solder on top of them. Then she again applies flux to all the copper seams on the front of the piece and tins them with melting solder , as shown at the left. For the hangers, she wraps copper pre-tinned wire around a pencil, removes the coil and snips with a special tool to make a partial circle and solders that onto the finished piece of art.

Thanks for being with us Pat, your demonstrations are always so welcome and we learn so much from you! Thanks also to those who brought refreshments, and to those who brought art for Show and Tell, many of which are shown below. After the demo, we voted for which painting we wanted for the postcard announcing the Arboretum exhibit in February. Sue Moore's painting of a yellow rose was chosen, with Larry Garza's painting of a Colorado stream finishing a close second.


Show and Tell:


 Pat Blackwell          Bill Franklin          Larry Garza           Linda Green       Jackie Holmes


   Sue Moore     Christine Niekamp    Sandra Scott       Chesley Smith

January 4-February 14 - PACT Exhibit at Cultivate 7 Twelve gallery

The Professional Artists of Central Texas mall Works Exhibit (A Bit of Red) at Cultivate 7 twelve gallery, 712 Austin Ave, began with an opening reception 6-10 pm on Friday, January 5. Eleven artists will be represented, some of whom have done demos for the Art Guild. Others are good possibilities for the future. Drop by the gallery, look them over and let our program chairs, Jo Forbus and Mylr Luper, know which ones you would like to see at our meetings. There are also many larger works by PACT members and others. Some photos taken at the opening are below. Clicking on a thumbnail photo will enlarge it.







December 22 - Art Forum Closing Reception for Judy Steward's Quilts

The reception was very much worthwhile. Bright sun streaming in through large windows really made the bright colors of the quilts pop. There was also music by the Horton Duo, and some very tasty refreshments. A few photos are below. The middle one shows Judy discussing her art with Rick Allen, a former Waco Councilman. Click on a photo to enlarge it.



December 8 - Luncheon at George's

We had a good turnout for the luncheon, upwards of twenty, including many guests. There were lots of good conversations in small groups, although the long table and background noise precluded large group discussions. The food was good, and everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves. A couple of photos are shown below. Unfortunately not everyone present is in them.

November 20 - January 8 Art Guild Exhibit at MCC

We have another fine exhibit at MCC in the foyer of the Performing Arts Center (PAC). There are 26 works by 12 artists. Photos of the art are below, but it's much better to see them in person. Since some behind glass and are rendered hard to see in the daytime because of reflections of the opposite windows, it's best to see them at night. Fortunately, there are many evening events in the PAC, so you can see both the art and an excellent performance in one trip. All of the events listed below are at 7:30, and are FREE!


Nov 26 Guitar Ensemble Concert

Nov 27 Vocal Tech and Guitar Ensemble Concert

Nov 28 Student Chamber Ensemble Concert

Nov 29 Rock Band Concert

Dec 3   Waco Jazz Orchestra Holiday Concert

Dec 6   Highlander Holiday Concert

Dec 11 Waco Community Band Concert


Jacqueline Holmes


Santos Maldonado


Sandra Scott and 2 by Susie Moore


Bill Franklin


Tim Lowe


Larry Garza, below a sign by Jennifer Scott


Christine Niekamp


Cathy Niekamp


Jo Forbus


Chesley Smith


Judi Simon

November 16-17 Apple Tree Bazaar

We had a booth at Apple Tree Bazaar again this year, with things for sale by Jo Forbus, Charleen Isbell, Susie Moore, Myrl Luper, Nancy Cagle, Bill Franklin, Sandra Scott, Karen Gorman and Tim Lowe. Many of them, Linda Green, Mark Smart Jennifer Scott and Mark Scott also helped set up and/or stayed with the booth to make sales and encourage membership. A sampler of their paintings is at the right. There were also some handcrafts, and Susie Moore  and Jennifer Scott brought food to sell. An overview of the booth and some of those who manned it is at the left. We didn't sell much art, but we did pick up two new members, which was our principal reason for displaying there.


Pat Blackwell has for years had the booth just in front of us, but lost it this year due to not receiving the sign-up info. However, they gave her an area along the front wall, which really gave her more display space than before. Her booth is shown at the right. The images are too small to see, but you can enlarge them by clicking on them.

November 11 - Jo Forbus - painting sandblasted glass with oils

During the business meeting, we elected officers, and discussed webpage decisions, the Appletree Bazaar and the MCC exhibit. We got volunteers for the Bazaar, and decided to have the annual luncheon at George's in Hewitt on December 8, if it is available.


The demonstration was presented by Jo Forbus. She began painting in her early 30’s in Corpus Christi, TX, after a tragic accident that killed both of her parents. She continued to paint when possible while working as the Nueces County Medical Examiner’s Office Administrator and director of the Sparkling City Chorus of Sweet Adeline’s International.


In 2005, Jo suffered a debilitating stroke, which forced her to relearn walking, reading, and writing. Music and art were instrumental in her recovery. After moving to Lubbock in 2007, she joined the Art League of West Texas and arranged to bring artist Jerry Yarnell there for a 2-day workshop. She was active in the Lubbock art group until her move to Waco in 2017.



Jo brought several examples of her paintings (see above) on sandblasted (not etched) glass, and showed us how it was done. This involves several steps, not all of which could be done during our demonstration time. She had already made a pencil sketch on paper, and traced the pattern with a sharpie to make it visible through the translucent sandblasted glass. Then she taped her 8X10 glass over the design, and taped that sandwich to a wooden frame. Next, she painted the design, using oil paints, and allowed it to dry. An important point was that this procedure made it easy to get the design the right size and properly centered.


For us, she removed the paper and taped the glass on the frame so that the back side was up (top left).  Then she used her finger to smear the background (top right), checking the effect by flipping the frame over to see it from the front side. A view from the back side is shown at the bottom left. When satisfied, she can set it aside to dry, and frame it. The final result is shown at the bottom right. This was new to everyone, and we enjoyed learning about it. Our thanks to Jo for the presentation, to all who brought refreshments, and to those who brought art for show and tell, some of which is shown below. The painting by Jackie Holmes isn't finished. She brought it to ask for suggestions for the river. Remember that all of the images can be enlarged by clicking on them.


Show and Tell:




 Pat Blackwell               Bill Franklin                Larry Garza            Jackie Holmes



Gloria Meadows       Christine Niekamp        Chesley Smith

November 9-11- Professional Artists of Central Texas Exhibit at the Hilton

This was a great show! Keep it on your radar for next year. There were more than twenty artists with booths, with a wide range of media from jewelry to painting and drawing to wood and bronze sculpture. A few images are below. You can enlarge them by clicking on them. The first one is a piece by our member Judi Simon. It is painted porcelain with an attached porcelain flower.




October 14 - Show and Get Help

Due to a church program, our meeting was delayed, however the Board met at 1:30. The Board decided to increase the presenter honorarium to $100 for non-members, $150 if they lived more than 50 miles away. Members will not receive an honorarium. Dues were discussed, but not changed.

The business meeting began about 3:00, followed by a “Show and Get Help” session.  Several of our members brought paintings and asked for suggestions before finishing.  Jo Forbus asked for suggestions to de-emphasize the flowers above the guitar in her painting, and the group offered several ideas.  Jackie Holmes had a painting of her grandson dressed as a chef in the kitchen, she needed help on the little guy’s hand shape.  Sandy Scott brought her Church in Hawaii painting and needed help transitioning the ocean into the sky and also in arranging the placement of palm trees into a more pleasing arrangement.

Several other members brought paintings to show, and Karen Groman brought a lovely yellow shawl that she crocheted just in time for the cooling weather. Some of these things are shown below. Bear in mind that many are not finished, since the artists brought them for suggestions for improvements. We hope to see the finished works at a future meeting.

Many thanks to all who brought drinks and baked goods to the meeting.


 Pat Blackwell               Jo Forbus                  Bill Franklin              Karen Groman


Jackie Holmes         Gloria Meadows       Christine Neikamp

September 9 - Becky Wilkes - Photography

Becky Wilkes is the daughter of our member Mary Behrens. Educated as a chemical engineer at Texas A&M, she has “spent much of her life as a stay-at-home mother of four children who have now blessed her with a multitude of perfectly fantastical grandchildren.” She credits her parents with instilling the virtues of picking up litter, particularly things that might pose a hazard to children.

Her current vocation is a blend of urban archaeologist, anthropologist, sociologist, trash collector, and photographer. These areas are reflected in her body of artwork centered around lakeshore debris collected near her home in Eagle Mountain Lake,TX. She currently has several works on display at 500X Gallery in Dallas and will open a second solo show October 5 at the Fort Worth Community Arts Center.

She presented a great demo a couple of years ago, so our expectations were high. We weren't disappointed by her slide show about her unusual process for blending her photography of lakeshore debris. She had photographed each item separately in a creative way, and used Adobe software to build digital collages. She separated her photos into Categories such as, Fishing Gear, Tin Cans, Rusty Metal, Broken Glass, Plastic Bottles, etc. With the items jumbled together in these categories, she began to see totally different shapes and new pieces of artwork were born.

In Fall 2014, Texas was in the midst of a multi-year drought. Receding water levels in area lakes unveiled hidden shorelines and abundant debris. her walks on the beach became a treasure hunt, albeit of contemporary archeology. She documented each piece of debris as it lay, often not knowing what I was photographing until it was unearthed. Then she removed them.

Initially, I set aside my biases about trash and focused on my “treasures”. But, with the abundant runoff of the May 2015 flood, and subsequent barrage of debris filling the lake, I began to understand the migratory nature of trash in our waterways flowing from our drainage ditches and roadways ... the countryside is being inundated on a massive scale by the individual fingerprints of personal irresponsibility – as indicted by the 5,585 pieces of trash collected.” During the presentation, Becky passed out copies of some of her found items and gave us time to draw and create something totally different around those objects. One by Mary Behrens is shown at the right.

Becky is an inspiring steward of the land. If more of us followed her example, we could truly have America the Beautiful! You can see some of her work pictured here. But to truly appreciate her work, visit her website: After Becky’s demonstration we enjoyed seeing the many paintings and drawings brought by members. Some of us also brought artwork to ask for advice, some of which is shown below. The critiques were appreciated by everyone.

Show and Tell:


 Dianne Harris           Charleen Isbell              Tim Lowe                Gloria Meadows


Cathy Niekamp       Christine Niekamp       Chesley Smith

May 6 - Marsha Wilson - Pyrography (wood-burning art)

Marsha Wilson, a master at pyrography, has always loved working with wood, which began with cutting and creating objects including crosses. Seven years ago she began to burn designs into the wood, which is called pyrography. She decorated those crosses and created solid silhouettes and typography. Her journey led into her present pieces of art, which are highly shaded on wood, leather and paper. She creates many depictions of animals, people, buildings, and other intricate and unique designs from around the world and sites she sees around Waco.

She transfers her design onto the medium of her choice and burns with a Walnut Hollow Versatool (at right). This tool has different levels of heat, which along with the use of several brass tips (one shown at left), enable her to shade more effectively. To avoid uncomfortable heat, she recommends holding the tool further back on the handle. Most of her supplies can be purchased at local craft stores, but she orders some specialized brass tips online.

When burning paper, she uses Strathmore Bristol paper, on which she can get better tones than on wood. Plus, the tool does not burn holes into that kind of paper as she details and shades her pictures.  The work began at the right is based on the photo at the left.She also enjoys designing on leather, which is very responsive to her touch with the burning tool.

The art group gathered around Marsha to watch her shading a drawing of a Longhorn cow on a piece of wood. The photo at the lower right shows how far she got during the demo. As she worked, she remarked that it takes a long time to complete some pieces but that it was very relaxing for her to do so. She started burning with the darkest tone and also showed how she stroked the wood more quickly for the lighter tones.

Many of her pieces are shown on her website at: Another site with numerous designs is She also has studio space at Cultivate 7twelve Gallery in Waco, 712 Austin Avenue, where she has many of her items located. See

We are so thankful that Marsha was able to take the time for bringing some sample work for us to view and for explaining the details of the process. She has a great talent for knowing which designs to use in her creations. Her demonstration was mesmerizing in its entirety! Thanks also to those who brought refreshments and art for Show & Tell, some of which are shown below.

Show and Tell:


  Pat Blackwell              Nancy Cagle            Cathy Niekamp         Christine Niekamp



 Sandra Scott             Chesley Smith (Please excuse the relections)


April 8 - Judith Baker - Watercolor Pencils

During our April 8, 2018 meeting, we were fortunate to have Judith Baker.

Judith has worked with colored pencils (CPs) for over a decade, and the foundation of her CP training was provided by Bet Borgeson – “…an awesome mentor”. (Judith explained that Bet, the “Godmother of Colored Pencil”, authored the groundbreaking first book about the CP medium in 1983 --followed by five more books in later years – holds many awards, and “…knows everything there is to know about colored pencils”.)

Judith’s particular interest is in botanical art, and she holds a diploma from the Society of Botanical Artists (UK) botanical illustration course. Both of her pieces appearing here have botanical subjects. The bromeliad above is entirely watercolor CPs. The ornamental corn at the left uses watercolor pencils for underpainting, with both wax- and oil-based “dry” CPs layered on top. The ornamental corn piece is currently appearing in the Conroe Art League’s 3rd Annual National Invitational exhibit that runs through March 31st. You can view all 101 pieces in the show, including Judith’s, by clicking on the following link:

Judith uses artist-grade water-soluble pencils. She explained the different characteristics of the sets and brands that are available in the USA. She demonstrated techniques in their use, including dry on dry (then wet), dry on wet, wet on wet and blending. She uses sets of 8 different brands of watercolor pencils

She added that water-soluble pencils blend well, are cost effective, and are convenient for use in the home and for travel. She also discussed water-soluble blocks, bars, crayons and sticks, along with three- value wash pencils.

Judith said that watercolor pencil brands vary in price based on characteristics such as type of wood and lacquer coatings of the pencils, and other differences, including high pigmentation and dissolvability. She suggested staying with the same brand for consistent shades and recommended avoiding student-grade (scholastic) pencil brands due to less pigment and thus lesser quality.

She told us that water-soluble bars are good for making backgrounds in a quick and efficient manner. She then made a temporary palette by rubbing a swath of color onto dry scrap paper and dabbing it with a wet brush. A more permanent palette is made by using a 3x5 piece of Aquabord. When the puddle of pigment dries on that, it can be saved and simply re-wetted to use again.

As Judith showed a variety of techniques, she handed around examples as further illustrations. She demonstrated vignette and soft focus methods, starting with dark line or ring and spreading and teasing the color out with a wet brush (Make a thicker ring to spread more color.) She also showed artistic tricks such as stroking a pencil against a kitchen sieve or an art shop grater for differing sizes of spots to be then blown, sprinkled, or spattered onto wet paper. Baker also demonstrated small misting vials, available in art shops, to pour or squirt color.

An additional helpful tip that Judith gave to the Guild members was to create a personal color wheel for the pencil sets you use. Another tip was to make color reference samples: prepare a grid of strips and paint a color in five values, dark to light, on each strip. After they dry, cut the strips apart and attach to a ring to provide a handy color reference of your pencil set.

Thank-you Judith for a well-organized and interesting demo.

And thanks to all Art Guild members that brought such wonderful works of art to show at our meeting. Some of those are shown below.


Show and Tell:


Mary Behrens             Pat Blackwell              Nancy Cagle               Jo Forbus                  Linda Green


Gloria Meadows       Cathy Niekamp       Christine Niekamp        John Perdichi           Chesley Smith

March 12 - May 9 Art Guild Exhibit at MCC

We have another excellent exhibit in the foyer of the Ball Performing Arts Center at MCC. The images below are photos of the entries from left to right, but you really need to see them in person to appreciate them. It's best to come in the evening when there is no glare from the windows on the opposite wall. Besides, there are many good evening programs, and most are FREE. A list of scheduled programs follows. All begin at 7:30 and are free, unless noted otherwise. Enjoy a performance and see the exhibit, a two-fer that makes the trip worthwhile.


April 6 & 7: La Fille du Regiment (musical performance)

April 10: Student Jazz Band Concert

April 12: Chorale Concert

April 16: Country Ensemble and Cotemporary Christian Music Concert

April 17: Rock Ensemble Concert

April 23: Vocal Tech and Guitar Ensemble Concerts

April 26: Wind Ensemble Concert

April 27: Wind Band Concert

April 29 (3 pm): Concert Band Concert

April 30: Waco Jazz Orchestra Concert

May 8: Waco Community Band Concert



 Pat Blackwell                      Frank Gutierez                                 Cathy Niekamp



                            Christine Niekamp                                                  Mary Brehens



                  Sue Moore                                  Kay Lamb Shannon



                Nancy Cagle                                    Jackie Holmes



                               Chesley Smith                                                      Tim Lowe



                           Santos Maldonado

March 11 - Pat Blackwell - Acrylic Landscape Painting

Our Art Guild of Central Texas meeting was highlighted by a demonstration of landscape painting in acrylic by Art Guild member Pat Blackwell.

Pat started painting in 1979, and opened an arts and crafts store in 1990, Pat’s Art at Brazos Craft Mall, with a large area for paintings. She also displayed and sold many other people’s work. She closed the store in about 2006 or 2007 and now operates out of her backyard workshop, with the main product being stained glass windows. Pat gives lessons in stained glass and painting. If you are interested, you can reach her at, or call her at (254) 756-3854

She emphasized how one should always have fun while painting and it was fun for us also, watching her have fun creating the painting!

Pat used a Styrofoam paper plate palette loaded with 5 simple acrylic colors. She used several different bristle brushes and applied colors of black, white, blue, yellow, red and yellow ochre. From time to time she used plain water to spray the palette and canvas lightly to keep the acrylic paints from drying too quickly. This helped to facilitate blending until she was ready for it to dry. The photos below are just thumbprints. Click on any of them to enlarge them.

She suggested beginning a painting with the farthest background area--in most cases, the sky. Pat used blue and white for sky and adding more white for clouds (at left), and adding some black to gray down some areas to create the look of distance (at right). She advised that mixing additional black into the lower clouds will help highlight the upper clouds.

Using a stippling technique, Pat used her green and yellow and red to create greens and browns for trees and bushes below the horizon (at left). She also had bushes at the bottom of canvas but then decided to have water in the painting. Quickly she overpainted those bushes to create a pond (at right).

Pat then double-loaded blue on one side and white on the other side of a small flat edged brush and dabbed with each color to create some Texas bluebonnet wildflowers. She then dabbed on additional spots of red and yellow, saying that where there are bluebonnets you usually will also see Indian paintbrush wildflowers (at left). Blackwell finished off her creation by painting a few high-flying birds over the then-dry canvas and highlighting the water with white palette knife strokes to reflect the brightness of the sky (at right).

We asked Pat many questions during the presentation and learned a lot from her. Of special interest, she used a Reducing Glass. She explained how she liked to sit while painting and demonstrated how the Glass made the painting look further away, so a person, while still sitting, could judge how it would look from a distance.

Thanks, Pat Blackwell, for such and interesting and fun demonstration! Thanks also to those who brought refreshments and art for Show and Tell, some of which are shown below.

Show and Tell:


 Pat Blackwell           Gloria Meadows     Christine Niekamp       Chesley Smith

February 11 - Exhibit, Meeting and Reception at the Arboretum

Our exhibit at the Carleen Bright Arboretum will run from February 7 to March 11. Many of our members saw it at the reception on February 11. If you weren't able to attend, be sure to see it. There are many wonderful works on display. The first three photos below show some of those in attendance. The rest show the exhibit starting at the right of the front door and continuing around to the right. While they provide a hint of the excellence of the art, the resolution is too low for a close examination. Besides, a close up look at the actual art is far better than any photo.



Santos Maldonado, Cathy Niekamp, Christine Niekamp


Nancy Cagle, Christine Niekamp, Kay Lamb Shannon


Mary Behrens, Cathy Niekamp, Gloria Meadows


Nancy Cagle, Pat Blackwell, Mary Behrens


Jackie Holmes, Tim Lowe


Sue Moore


Chesley Smith, Larry Garza


Larry Garza, Tim Lowe


Sue Moore, Frank Gutierrez


Frank Gutierrez


Kay Lamb Shannon, Jackie Holmes,


Janet Martinez, Santos Maldonado, Pat Blackwell


Chesley Smith, Janet Martinez


Judi Simon



January 14 - Nancy Cagle - Drawing Workshop

Most attendees showed up with drawing tools and material to work on. Sandra provided materials for those who didn't. Nancy arranged some objects as possible subjects, but those who brought reference materials were encouraged to use them. We had a good time drawing and sharing what we produced.


Those who wanted to have their art used for the Arboretum exhibit postcard brought their entries. There were many excellent choices, but we voted to use Larry Garza's Peacock. Some of the art brought is below as Show and Tell. Our thanks to Nancy, those who brought art, and those who brought refreshments.


Show and Tell:


 Mary Behrens       Pat Blackwell       Suzi Etheredge    Karen Groman         Larry Garza



Jackie Holmes        Sue Moore         Cathy Niekamp     Chesley Smith



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