By Pat Grabill

I call this blog “In My Opinion” because that’s what it is–just my opinion.  Those of you who know me, and especially those of you who know me well, are aware that I have an opinion about many things–not everything (sometimes I just don’t care), but many things.  What my friends know–and acquaintances don’t’ realize–is that I really don’t care whether anyone agrees with me or not or likes my opinions.  Really, I don’t.  If I like you, I’ll like you even if you have differing opinions.  It’s OK.  We can still be friends. 

Which leads me to the Juried Show for this year, which will be judged this week and which opens in early August.  If you entered the show and didn’t get in, then, in the opinion of this year’s judge, Don Andrews, your painting did not meet his criteria.  It doesn’t mean that you painted a bad painting because that’s simply not true.  Our show is a small show in a small space, and competition is fierce.  Our membership is loaded with wonderful artists, and each judge brings his or her own opinions to the judging process.  So…in the show or not, keep painting!

Which leads me to one more thing.  WSI Board Member Linda Halcomb, who is a docent at Newfields, where our exhibit hangs, each year provides great publicity for WSI by taking other docents through the exhibit and sharing information about the art work and the artists who painted it.  Linda doesn’t just share about the prize winners–she shares about everyone’s beautiful work. 

One thing Linda also does is choose one of the paintings in the show for a program called “Closer Look,” where she and no more than 20 other people spend an hour discussing, looking at, and sharing ideas about one painting in our exhibit.  To that end, Linda asks me to collect information about the paintings from the artists themselves–information which she can include in her presentation.  I ask for info–you send it to me–and I put together a document for Linda.  It’s time consuming on my part, but I enjoy it.

In reading your responses to my questions, I have learned so much about those of you who have paintings in this year’s Juried Show.  I love reading about where your ideas come from, what you love to paint, whether you sketch or not, what your color palette is, what design techniques you use–all those things that make your work TRULY yours.  Truly original. Congratulations.

I think all of you are wonderfully talented.

But that’s just my opinion. 

Keep painting beautiful things.