Thursday, October 12, 2017

the best studio lighting!

I recently got this new task lighting from the Daylight Company for my workbench. The design is so thin and unintrusive that it's almost invisible in this photo. The lamp comes with another clamp as well, which allows it to be mounted on the mast of an easel. This lamp is compact enough to take it with me to classes and workshops, providing optimum lighting anywhere I go. It is goosenecked, dimmable, and the head swivels and turns to cast the light in any direction.
The light is truly colorless, and the lamp produces more light than all my other workbench lamps, combined.
The lamp is perfect for photographing artwork, too.
 When I mentioned to the daylight company how wonderful the lamp was for finishing plein air studies in my studio and providing the perfect lighting conditions for photographing my paintings, their response was something along the lines of "oh yeah? here hold my beer!" and they sent me MORE lamps! This Luminos lamp with the rolling floor stand is the absolute ultimate in studio lighting.

The Luminos lamp puts off a tremendous amount of light, and really creates daylight in the studio. 

The Wafer 2 lightbox is so thin it is really better described as a pad and not a box. That's my old lightbox on the bottom, with the Wafer 2 on top. The Wafer 2 weighs almost nothing, is less than a half inch thin, and is LED sandwiched between acrylic sheets which makes it almost indestructible. 
These products are all available at Daylight Company, and if you order and use coupon code AnnieStrack17 before the end of the year, you will get a 20% discount on your order!

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posted by Annie Strack @ 4:23 PM   0 Comments

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Demos and Plein Air next week!

Next weekend I'll be at Plaza Art in Towson , Maryland, to demo paints and mediums for Amsterdam Acrylics during the annual Hands on Creativity event.

 This popular art expo brings together representatives from all the popular brands. Artists can come and check out all the new products, and learn new techniques and skills from seasoned professionals. I hope you'll come out and see me at this event!

Right after I finish my demos in Towson next Sunday night, I will rush up to West Chester to start painting in the Brandywine Valley Plein Air festival. This is a week long event of intensive painting including a quick-draw and a nocturne, with a gala art opening and sale at Winterthur the following weekend. I'm on the planning committee of this event, and I'm thrilled to be part of the largest plein air festival in the region!

In other news, I'm over the moon to announce that I just received Signature Status in the International Plein Air Painters (IPAP)! This is a huge honor to receive such recognition from the most prestigious plein air society in the world. I've been painting en plein air since before it was even called that, and have taken my paints with me around the world several times. I'm thrilled to have been awarded this special and quite rare designation. It's my tenth Signature (my second one this year!) of my career and I'm proud of each of them, but I'm doubly proud of the international ones.

posted by Annie Strack @ 8:31 PM   0 Comments

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Plein Air Painting Workshop in Pennsylvania

 September proved to be the perfect time to teach a plein air workshop in Pennsylvania! The weather was mild with temps in the 70's and the sky was clear when my students and I gathered at the Community Arts Center in Wallingford, Pennsylvania. The location was perfect, as well. I chose a spot under the canopy of trees where my students could take advantage of the shade and the picnic tables, and had a wonderful view of several compositional subjects to from which to choose.

My students, working hard on their watercolor plein air paintings. 
My demo painting from my plein air workshop.

  The tower that I chose to use for the subject of my workshop is not "made up" -- it's an actual folly in the garden of the Art Center, as you can see in this photo!

 Al of my students use Value Finders. Here, Carol is looking at me to see if I have any values...

 More photos of my workshop students working on their paintings...

My next class at this location begins in January. Be sure to follow my updates to get the latest info.

All of my students worked on these 12x16 blocks of "Cezanne" watercolor paper provided by Hahnemuehle. I love when companies send products to me to try, and I love it even more when they send products to all of my students! I love the paper, and my students all got to try it out for themselves and experience the nice texture, outstanding brightness, and perfect sizing of this paper first-hand. Thank you, Hahnemuehle!

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posted by Annie Strack @ 8:39 AM   0 Comments

Monday, September 18, 2017

Recent Art Classes!

I held classes in my studio for the summer semester and called it Summer School. We explored still life painting, gestural figure painting, sketchbooking, landscapes, seascapes, and plein air painting. Here's a few photos of my happy studio students creating fabulous works of art! 

posted by Annie Strack @ 1:11 PM   0 Comments

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Watercolor Painting Workshop in NJ!

Last weekend I went to New Jersey to teach a watercolor painting workshop at the Rutgers University Ag Center, hosted by the Salem County Art League. This was my second workshop in southern New Jersey in the last few months, and I was thrilled to recognize most of the students from previous workshops and demos! 

I was also pleased that all of my students had brought good, artist grade materials and supplies. It made the lessons so much easier for them and for me, to not have to overcome the disappointments that result from trying to work with student grade materials. 

 We had time to finish two paintings in this workshop, which really helps to strengthen the lessons.
Stormy Beach, 12x16 WC $125.
 Here are my two demonstration paintings from the workshop. My students created paintings that were just as good as mine!
Two Skiffs, 14x20 WC $195.
I've got a ton of workshops and demos coming up in the next couple of months, and adding more constantly! Check out my calendar page on this website to keep up with the latest happenings.

posted by Annie Strack @ 2:11 PM   0 Comments

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

New Shows and Classes

I'm over the moon! I just found out that my painting "Destiny Awaits" was accepted into the Northstar Watercolor Society's annual international juried show! I'll be framing this one up and getting it ready to ship next week.
Destiny Awaits, 14x20 watercolor by Annie Strack

It's been an incredibly busy summer with classes, exhibits, workshops, and other events. This weekend, I'll be in New Jersey at the Salem County Art League teaching a watercolor workshop. The workshop has long since sold out, and I hope you signed up because I'm bringing some free samples of watercolor paper from Legion Paper to give away to my students in that workshop! 

Summer school classes in my studio are a blast this year, and the weather forecast is calling for cool weather this week so I think I might take my classes outside tomorrow for plein air painting in the garden. 

Students in Annie Strack's studio classes
This Fall is gearing up to be even more exciting, with more classes, workshops, plein air competitions, and demos. Be sure to check out the CALENDAR page of this website for the latest updates!

posted by Annie Strack @ 9:00 AM   0 Comments

Sunday, July 30, 2017

free watercolor paper for workshop attendees!

I'm super excited to announce that Hahnemuehle USA is sponsoring my next plein air workshop in Pennsylvania by providing each of my students with a 12x16 block of Hahnemuehle "Cezanne" watercolor paper! Whoo hoo!
This 1-day workshop will be held a the Community Arts Center in Wallingford, PA. The class size is limited and it will fill up fast, so be sure to sign up as soon as registration opens.

In other news, I'll be conducting a hands-on demo with Amsterdam Acrylics at Kennett Copy and More, in Kennett Square, PA! This is a new art supply store that just opened new my studio, and a great place for my students to run out to if they forget something when they come to class!
Come out to my demo, and try out the paints and mediums for yourself!

Also in the news, I reviewed several of the papers manufactured specifically for oil and acrylic painting by Hahnemuehle, and that review is posted on the National Oil and Acrylic Painters Society (NOAPS) blog. These unique papers all performed differently under various mediums -- check out my review to learn which papers are best for you!

Lastly, I just received notification that I was awarded Signature Membership status in the Central New York Watercolor Society! Whoo hoo! This marks my 9th Signature awarded from an Artist Society! Yay!

posted by Annie Strack @ 4:52 PM   0 Comments

Saturday, July 22, 2017

New Workshop just added! Plein Air painting in Watercolor!

New workshop just added! I'm teaching a 1-day plein air watercolor workshop at the Community Arts Center in Wallingford in September! This workshop is already starting to fill up, so sign up now if you want to get in before it's too late.

Students will learn how to break through the confusion of choosing a plein air painting subject, and learn how to plan a landscape composition by eliminating distractions and focusing on their subjects. They will learn how to capture light and shadow in their paintings, and how to see the landscape in simplified shapes of colors and values. They will learn how to mix colors with a limited palette, and depict a variety of perspective techniques to create depth and dimension in paintings. Students will learn how to sketch quick value studies, and add buildings, architectural elements, and gestural figures to the landscape to create drama and interest in their paintings. A variety of techniques will be demonstrated, and students will receive lots of hands on individual instruction and critique.
  • This workshop takes place outdoors, so please bring a folding chair.
  • Rain date will be September 19.
Instructor -- Annie Strack
Annie Strack has earned Signature Membership in 9 artist societies including the International Society of Marine Painters, and she is an Official Authorized Artist for the U.S. Coast Guard. Her paintings are exhibited in museums and galleries throughout the world and have been featured in over 20 solo shows. She is the author of the art instruction video Painting Seascapes in Watercolor which is broadcast on television stations worldwide and also available on DVD, and since 2005 she’s been a Contributing Editor for Professional Artist magazine. She teaches painting at Artists Network University, and she travels around the world to teach workshops, jury art exhibits, and paint en plein air. Her artwork has received hundreds of awards and hangs in over 1,000 collections worldwide including U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Navy, U.S. Pentagon, U.S. Senate, Veterans Administration, and many more.

Required supplies for this course:
  • Palette containing your favorite (or standard) watercolors
  • Assorted watercolor brushes (natural hair such as sable and squirrel preferred)
  • Sketchbook or journal for sketches
  • Several pieces of 140# CP or rough watercolor paper, small sizes, no larger than quarter sheet (Watercolor Blocks preferred)
  • Water container
  • Pencil
  • Value Finder (you may purchase one from instructor for $5 if you don't have one)
  • Optional: Watercolor easel, plein air umbrella, hat

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posted by Annie Strack @ 3:53 PM   0 Comments

Monday, July 3, 2017

Workshop and demo in New Jersey

Last week I judged an art exhibit and demonstrated watercolor painting for the Salem County Art League in New Jersey. It was a great show, and a great group of artists! Scroll through the photos to see my 1-hour demo.

I drove to Wisconsin to hang out with my sister for the summer, and when I get back home in August I'll be going back to New Jersey to teach a one-day workshop for the Salem County Art League. There's still a couple of spaces left in that workshop, but it will fill up fast so if you want to get in this class you need to sign up right away. I also have two 6 week classes for advanced watercolor painting starting in August in my studio in Kennett Square, and a one-day plein air painting workshop coming up in September at the Community Arts Center in Wallingford. Details for all of these are on my Calendar page. In the meantime, if you're in northern Wisconsin and want to get together for
some some plein air painting, let me know!

posted by Annie Strack @ 10:08 AM   0 Comments

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Summer is for Seagulls and Plein Air Painting

Whoo hoo! This painting "Jon L. Seagull" just won 1st Place in the Jerry's Artarama Watercolor Contest! I'm soooo excited! Yay! 

Jon L. Seagull, 7x10  watercolor $95. 

In other news, I've got a bunch of work to finish up in the studio this week and then I'm off to Wisconsin to spend the summer with my sister, Joni. I'll be back in time to start the next semester of art classes in my studio in August. 
Next week, I'll be judging the show and demonstrating watercolor painting for the Salem County Art League in New Jersey, but after that I'm taking some well earned va-cay time. Although, I'll probably bring some paints with me on vacation, so if any artists want to get together for some plein air painting with me in northern Wisconsin, let me know! 

posted by Annie Strack @ 6:58 PM   0 Comments

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