2019 SMALL PAINTING Exhibition: A Weekend of Art

NOAPS Snowy Afternoon Walk 16x20Galbraith_Katherine_597618-1

“Snowy Afternoon Walk”, 16×20, Oil, by Katherine Galbraith, Winner of ‘Best of Show’ at the 2019 NOAPS SMALL PAINTING National Juried Exhibition at the RS Hanna Gallery, Fredericksburg, Texas.

The results are in, the winners chosen!  The 2019 NOAPS SMALL PAINTING National Juried exhibition was a stunning success, with paintings from 35 states, Canada and Selangor.  The quality of the work was outstanding, as our Judge of Awards, William J. Kalwick, Jr. will attest.

The weekend events began with a 2 day plein air workshop headed by William Kalwick, painting on the grounds of the Pioneer Museum in Fredericksburg.  Though the weather only cooperated for one day, Bill quickly changed genres and gave participants a day of portrait instruction, indoors and out of the inclement conditions outside.  All the participants appreciated Bill’s flexibility and expansive knowledge.

NOAPS KALWICK WORKSHOP  William J. Kalwick, Jr. during the Plein Air Workshop

The rest of the weekend included a demonstration by Ann Hardy, NOAPS Master Artist, where she shared her insights in floral painting.  Bob Rohm, well-known artist and author, followed in the afternoon with a demonstration of his landscape painting technique.

NOAPS ANN HARDY DEMO  Ann Hardy, NOAPS Master Artist

NOAPSBobRohm3small[19468]  Bob Rohm, Artist and Author

Bill Kalwick returned on Saturday with a portrait demonstration, where he completed a full portrait ‘alla prima’, while keeping us engaged with lively discussion.


William J. Kalwick, Jr. demonstrating with model Edyth O’Neill

The best part of all, of course, is seeing the paintings in person.  There is simply no comparison to the images over the internet.  For example, the painting that won ‘Best of Show’, above, is an exquisite example of “composition, values, temperature and light” as per our Judge of Awards.  The brushwork flows with grace through the painting, sweeping from one area to the next, guiding the viewer with soft edges and surprises of color.

Be sure to check www.noaps.org for upcoming exhibits, and plan to attend the 2019 ‘Best of America’ National Juried Exhibition at the Montgomery Lee Fine Art Gallery in beautiful Park City, Utah!

To see the entire NOAPS SMALL PAINTING Exhibition, visit www.noaps.org.

Written by Patricia Tribastone, NOAPS Blog Director.  Photo Credits: Cheng Lian, Ober-Rae Livingstone and Patricia Tribastone.




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Jian Wu: Master Artist

NOAPS Wu Times Square Traffic 14x18

“Times Square Traffic” 14×18, Oil on Board.  Winner of the Third Place Award at the 2018 NOAPS Best of America SMALL PAINTING Exhibition in Nashville, Tennessee.  Collection of the Artist.

The first thing that the viewer notices in “Times Square Traffic” by Jian Wu is the sense of movement in the painting.  The waving flags, the active brush strokes and the light that streaks from the cars and across the canvas tell us this is not a static scene.  To add to the feeling the colors are bright and seemingly chaotic; but the linear elements of the painting hold the composition together.  A difficult feat indeed.

NOAPS Wu The Color of the Fall 16x20  “Color of the Fall”, 16×20, Oil on Canvas.  Collection of the artist.

The artist began his artistic career in China, where in middle school his first exploration began on a blackboard with a version of a class newsletter.  Later, his art career began to take form after meeting Mr. Wang Naizhuang, a well know artist in China.  Mr. Naizhuang became Jian’s mentor, teaching him drawing and painting.  Jian went on to attend the prestigious Central Art And Crafts College of China (now known as Art College of Qing Hua University) where he graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Art.

NOAPS Wu The Dream 24x32  “The Dream”, 24×32, Oil on Board, Winner of an Award of Exceptional Merit from the Portrait Society of America’s 2015 International Portrait Competition.  Collection of the artist.

Today, Jian’s work may be considered impressionistic realism.  He paints in oil, but also works in pastel, acrylic, watercolor and marker pens.  In his development as an artist, masters such as Sargent and Picasso (particularly the cubism) and contemporary artist Richard Schmid have been influences.  But he has developed his own style over the years, and his ability to capture light, and his loose brush work are hallmarks of his paintings.

NOAPS Wu San Francisco Bay View 48x24  “San Francisco Bay View”, 48×24, Oil on Canvas.  Collection of the Artist.

Inspiration, as we artists know, can come from many sources.  For Jian, it is everyday life: people, landscapes, cityscapes, or “just a shadow on the floor”.  His inspiration for “Days of Her Life” (juried into the 2018 NOAPS Best of America Exhibition) was the old woman, her living conditions, and the “heart aching but honest” story of her life.

NOAPS Wu Days of Her Life 30x24  “Days of Her Life”, 30×24, Oil.  Collection of the Artist.

In the studio, Jian works with both live models and from photo reference.  He begins with a burnt umber underdrawing, sketching out the basic value patterns.  He then begins to apply color, first the shadow areas, then the middle tones, the lighter areas, and finally the highlights.  He assesses for final adjustments at the last.  For his landscapes, he goes directly to color, but makes sure the value contrasts are established.  His brushes consist of bristle brushes, both brights and filberts, along with the occasional large house brush and palette knife.  His colors include: titanium white, lemon yellow, cadmium yellow, yellow ochre, burnt sienna, burnt umber, permanent rose, magenta, ultramarine blue, cerulean blue, phthalo green (yellow shade), phthalo green (blue shade), and ivory black.

NOAPS Wu Still 20x16  “Still”, 20×16, Oil on Canvas, Private Collection

Jian Wu has had many accomplishments in his career: he is a Master Artist with NOAPS, has won two Exceptional Merit Awards from the International Portrait Competition; NOAPS awards including a Best of Show, Third Place, Best Use of Light and Color (twice) and Best Portrait Award.  He has also won accolades for his pastel work, winning First, Second, and Third place awards in the Pastel Journal ‘Pastel 100 Competition’.  But for Jian, his most prized accomplishment has been the development of his own personal style of painting.

Jian leaves us with a quote from Winston Churchill: “If you’re going through hell, keep going.”  To relate to painting, Jian says: “I believe that those of us who play with colors can paint our way out of any ‘hell’ if we persist”.

Jian Wu is the Judge of Awards for the 2019 Best of America National Juried Exhibition, to be held at the Montgomery Lee Fine Art Gallery in Park City, Utah.  Jian will also be teaching an exciting 3 day workshop prior to the opening weekend.  Please check www.noaps.org for information.  To view more of Jian’s work, visit his website at: www.jwstudio.net.

Written by Patricia Tribastone, NOAPS Blog Director


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William J. Kalwick, Jr.

noaps kalwick 24x30 stoney mountain[18409]

“Stoney Mountain”, 24×30, Oil, by William J. Kalwick, Jr.

NOAPS is proud to announce the Judge of Awards and Workshop Instructor for the 2019 Best of America SMALL PAINTING National Juried Exhibition at the RS Hanna Gallery in Fredericksburg, Texas.  The exhibit will run from March 1 to April 6, 2019, and will feature 125 carefully chosen paintings by NOAPS members.  Mr. Kalwick will also teach a two-day plein air workshop prior to the opening of the exhibit, located at the historic Pioneer Museum just minutes from the Gallery.

From William Kalwick, in his own words:

Drawing and painting have always been a part of my life.  I studied with my father, who was an artist, until I finished high school and then went to New York City to study at the Art Students League of New York under John Howard Sanden.

Following my time in New York, I was invited to study with Lajos Markos, a prominent portrait painter and western artist.  Markos was the most influential teacher for me, and I spent six years as his student and apprentice.

noaps kalwick imogene creek 11x14   “Imogene Creek”, 11×14, Oil

During my early career, many of my paintings represented my time spent in Europe studying and painting.  Two artists that I admired the most were John Singer Sargent and Joaquin Sorolla.  After studying with Markos, my interests moved south to Mexico and Guatemala where I did many paintings over the years.  In Guatemala, I wanted to capture the local dress and culture before it disappeared.  During this time, I was also taking many portrait commissions.  Harold Hook of American General and Rees Jones, golf course designer, are just two of the many portraits.

I always look in many directions for inspiration.  From Plein Air painting in Colorado to painting retiring CEO’s, Western Art, to Mexican market scenes, there is an endless inspiration for my artwork.

Although I have worked in other mediums, my preferred medium is oil painting.  I like the many ways it can be used and manipulated for different effects and the immediacy it offers for my work.  I find painting in oils the perfect medium when painting outdoors.  Having the plein air study and a photo for some details helps me to complete a large studio landscape or any other subject.  I paint from life as often as I can and encourage my students to paint from life as well.

noaps kalwick beaver pond 12x12   “Beaver Pond”, 12×12, Oil

William J. Kalwick, Jr. is represented by the RS Hanna Gallery, Fredericksburg, Texas; the Wilcox Gallery, Jackson, Wyoming; La Antigua Galeria de Arte, Antigua, Guatemala; Pitzer Fine Art Wimberley, Texas; Concetta D Gallery, Albuquerque, New Mexico; Jack Meier Gallery, Houston, Texas; and Marta Stafford Fine Art, Marble Falls, Texas.

To view more artwork by William Kalwick, visit his website at http://www.kalwick.com.

To sign up for the workshop on February 27th and 28th, 2019, and view all the opening week events, go to www.noaps.org

Edited by Patricia Tribastone, NOAPS Blog Director



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2018 Fall On-Line: Judge’s Comments

NOAPS Them winter Blues 24x48 HANSON_MARC_595694-1

“Them Winter Blues”, 24×48, Oil, by Marc Hanson.  Winner of ‘Best of Show’ in the NOAPS 2018 Fall On-line International Exhibition.

The job of a Judge of Awards is never an easy task, and the approach that one must take is to forego all personal preferences and look at the artwork with an exceptionally critical eye.  The level of art presented in the 2018 NOAPS Fall On-line Exhibition was outstanding, and the discernment between choices became minute.  In order to win an award, the painting must hit all the marks, with no exceptions; those marks being drawing, values, composition, color, edges, narrative, technique and overall mastery of both the subject and the medium.

In Marc Hanson’s painting, shown above, every aspect of technical skill was addressed with both eloquence and proficiency.  The drawing and values create a composition that invites us in to search for the hidden places amidst the cold glittery morning air.  The colors of blues, blue violets, oranges and golds are subtly combined to pleasingly shift from warm to cool.  The edges dance from soft to hard, informing us of foreground and distance.  The total effect is remarkable.

NOAPS Children Face 30x40 cm Cai_Jie_595668-1

“Children Face”, 30x40cm, Oil, by Jie Cai, winner of Second Place Award in the 2018 NOAPS Fall On-line International.

The superbly painted portrait of children, shown above, is an outstanding painting on many levels.  The drawing is flawless, the construction of the composition provides a solid framework for the soft bodies, and the colors are subdued yet full of life.  The artist has provided a variety of textures; the cold metal, the rough brick contrasting with the downy soft hair and clothing.  The narrative is casual, yet draws our attention and curiosity.  The mastery of portraiture by this artist is extraordinary.

NOAPS Calm Morning in Chioggia 20x16 Whytock_John_595811-1

“Calm Morning in Chioggia”, 20×16, Oil, by John Whytock, winner of Third Place Award in the 2018 NOAPS Fall On-line International Exhibition.

Mood was the spell-binder in John Whytock’s painting, above.  The artist skillfully rendered the perspective on the building and boat believably, with impeccable drawing.  The light and shadow coupled with the atmosphere inform us of the time of day.  The artist has used his complementary colors convincingly; dulling down the red-orange has let the blue become the star color.  He has used linear elements, broken up by shapes, to lead us down to his focal area, where he has quietly placed his most intense color.  The texture on the building contrasts with the mirror-like water, with the darkest area of the painting at the bottom, giving the viewer the feeling that they, too, are sitting at water level.

My congratulations to all the artists admitted into the 2018 NOAPS Fall On-line International Exhibition.  It has been a privilege and an honor to view all of the outstanding paintings created by artists from all over the world, and I thank you for sharing with us your amazing work.

Written by Patricia Tribastone, Judge of Awards for the 2018 NOAPS Fall On-line International Exhibition.

To view all of the paintings in the exhibit visit www.noaps.org/2018-fall-online


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Tom Altenburg: Nature Artist

NOAPS Altenburg Savana Shade  “Savanna Shade”, 23.5×16, Acrylic, Collection of the Artist.  Winner of ‘Best Realism’ at the NOAPS 2018 Best of America National Juried Exhibition at the Eisele Gallery, Cincinnati, Ohio.

The most memorable realistic paintings are more than technically well painted; they are paintings, such as Tom Altenburg’s painting pictured above, that are well composed, and give us a sense of emotion that transcends the obviously skilled hand.  Here the artist created a circular composition that leads us directly to the eye; that eye translates intelligence, and leads us directly to the birds above.  We get the sense of size of the elephant in contrast to the birds above.  The elephant is grounded, solid, and the birds, as light as air, fly away.

NOAPS Altenburg Warm Sunlight  “Timber Wolf”, 17×24, Acrylic, Collection of the Artist.

Artist Tom Altenburg is a life-long artist.  Starting in high school, he realized his talent and passion, and took classes at the Kansas City Art Institute in drawing and painting.  He continued his art education earning a B.A. in Studio Art from the University of Missouri, Kansas City.  Tom received additional experience taking classes and workshops; particularly from Hallmark Cards Master Artist Ron Raymer while in high school, and later at the Beartooth School of Art in Bozeman, MT.  He has studied with artists such as Robert Bateman, Terri Isaac, and John Banovich.

NOAPS Altenburg Blue Cascades  “Blue Cascades”, 28×16, Acrylic, Private Collection.

Altenburg would classify himself mainly as an animal and nature artist.  He finds his inspiration and subject matter through his love of nature; parks, nature refuges, animal rehab centers and zoos.  His compositions are a result of sketches, combinations of his photos, and his own fluid ideas.

NOAPS Altenburg King of Coop Paint         NOAPS Altenburg King of the Coop

“King of the Coop”, Left, in progress, Right, finished painting.  28×14, Acrylic, Collection of the Leigh Y. Woodson Museum.

A session in his home studio, which sits across from a fishing lake and nature trails, begins perhaps after his morning walk, a little time on his guitar, and then assessment of his digital photos.  Beginning with an underpainting in acrylic red oxide, he is able to establish his composition.  This color choice also helps him achieve the vibrant colors so characteristic of his work.

Working on a composite hard board coated with gesso, he uses Liquitex acrylics in combination with gesso and mediums.  His palette consists of Titanium white, burnt umber, raw sienna, light blue violet, ultramarine blue, chromium oxide green, cadmium yellow, orange, an red, yellow ochre and yellow green.  Paintings can take a week or up to a month for completion, depending on the size.

Tom Altenburg is also a full-time artist for Hallmark Cards.  He is an American Western equine artist; has created artwork for Star Wars Publications for George Lucas; and created the 2017 Birds in Art Exhibition show poster for the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum, with the original piece as part of the museum’s permanent collection.

Altenburg’s work has also received accolades from the National Oil & Acrylic Painters’ Society, where he has won numerous awards, and has been granted the status of Master Artist.

To see more of Tom Altenburg’s artwork, visit www.natureartists.com

To see the NOAPS 2018 Best of America visit www.noaps.org

Written by Patricia Tribastone, NOAPS Blog Director

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Jeff Morrow: Realism Today with a Look at the Past.

NOAPS Morrow The Young Pianist 30x24  “The Young Pianist”, Oil, 30×24, Winner of the ‘Best Figurative’ Award at the 2018 NOAPS Best of America Exhibit at the Eisele Gallery, Cincinnati, Ohio.

Capturing emotion and movement in a portrait or figure painting creates a lasting impression on the viewer.  In Jeff Morrow’s painting “The Young Pianist” the artist has conveyed a sense of peaceful concentration, using the piano structure to enclose the figure in the world of his music.  The soft edges and warm color scheme give help to impart the feeling of pleasant calm.

NOAPS Morrow The Designer 24x30 2016  “The Designer”, 24×30, Oil on Canvas, Collection of the Artist.

Jeff Morrow has achieved great success since turning his full-time attention to his art.  Although he painted as a hobby for many years, his hobby became a serious vocation after a corporate downsizing.  He had been painting in oil for many years, but when his time was fully devoted to art, he began taking lessons on the basics as well as more “sophisticated techniques” with David Mueller, a Cincinnati artist.  He continues to paint and learn from a core group of Cincinnati artists, drawing inspiration from “their passion and dedication to excellence”.

NOAPS Morrow The Painter 18x14  “The Painter”, 18×14, Oil on Canvas, Private Collection

Jeff is primarily a portrait and figure painter, though he also finds inspiration in sporting animals, urban and outdoor scenes as well as still life.  When working, he only occasionally does preliminary sketches, but starts the painting with an idea and the toned canvas.  He first lays in the values, considers his composition, and once these are established he begins in color.  His brushes range from hog bristle flats to synthetic flats and the softer sables for edge control.  His palette consists of Flake White replacement, Winsor Yellow, Winsor Yellow Deep, Yellow Ochre pale, Raw Sienna, Burnt Sienna, Light Red, Cadmium Scarlet, Alizarin Crimson, French Ultramarine, Cerulean Blue, Viridian,  Sap Green, and occasionally black.  His choice of supports is usually one with little tooth, or panels.

NOAPS Morrow Mint Julep Cup with Roses in progress   NOAPS Morrow Mint Julep Cup with Roses 14x11 2018   Left:  “Mint Julep Cup with Roses” in progress: Right: “Mint Julep Cup with Roses”, Completed, 14×11, Oil on Panel, Collection of the Artist. 

As plainly seen in his work, Jeff is a realist painter.  The resurgence in the popularity of realism, which is evident in the revival of atelier schools of art, relies in large part on the practices of the old masters.  These masters, including Edmund Tarbell, Joseph DeCamp, and John Singer Sargent, have impacted Jeff’s work with their “disciplined yet painterly manner.”

NOAPS Morrow Middleburg Hounds 18x24 2016  “Middleburg Hounds”, 18×24, Oil on Canvas, Private Collection.

NOAPS Morrow Winter Shadows 18x14 2014  “Winter Shadows”, 18×14, Oil on Canvas, Collection of the Artist.

And although Jeff finds the masters to influence his work, he feels that authenticity is most important. In finding one’s own voice, he advises “take all your lessons learned and all your good influences and apply them to your own natural style.  You have to find your own voice and use it towards what you wish to create.”

Jeff Morrow maintains a studio in Cincinnati, and is represented by Eisele Gallery of Fine Art, Cincinnati.

To view more of Jeff’s work, visit his website at www.jeffmorrowart.com

To view more of the 2018 NOAPS Best of America Exhibition visit www.noaps.org.

Written by Patricia Tribastone, NOAPS Blog Director

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Adam Clague Teaches How to Get Loose at NOAPS Workshop, by Dale Wolf

NOAPS Adam Clague

Artist Adam Clague

To those of us of wizened age, Adam may look young (actually at 34 he is young to have hit stride at such a high level of excellence because he paints crazy-good).  His brush just rolls across the canvas, with solid, confident strokes. You won’t find him dapping or fussing as he interprets the figure in front of him. He will tell you that at one point in his early art classes he was driven by perfection. He could do realism. It’s just that realism wasn’t what he wanted. Breaking the realism habit was hard, but now he teaches others how to do loose paintings that still impart what the figure looks like—only with a style that makes him happy and his clients even happier.

It happened here in Cincinnati when he led a class of about 11 portrait painters from the National Oil & Acrylic Painters’ Society.  NOAPS held their  annual meeting in the Mariemont suburb of Cincinnati and their national juried Best of America show was held at Eisele Fine Art Gallery to conclude their five-day meeting.

Adam was a major part of this show. He was the judge who had to evaluate over a hundred stunning paintings hanging at Eisele to determine the award winners.

Adam also ran NOAPS’ two and one-half day portrait workshop held at the Women’s Art Club. He opened with a prayer circle seeking wisdom and guidance for each attendee to achieve the improvement they sought, followed by a talk about his approach to painting the human figure and then a demo that illustrated his technique and talents.

NOAPS Adam & Nancy Haley

Adam with workshop participant Nancy Haley.

After Adam’s demo, the class went to work for three consecutive half-day sessions, working with live models.

Adam taught along his own “five fundamentals” of drawing:  value, color, edges, temperature, plus the big bonus—composition. With 2 model set-ups and 11 students, Adam worked to take each student to the next level, pushing for improvement over the three sessions. He studied each painting and then pointed out a few areas where the student could achieve a better capture of the model. He stressed that the drawing had to be as good as possible and sat down on each student’s chair to measure off the key distances, such as distance from tear duct to chin compared to tear duct to top of skull. These careful measurements assure that all facial elements will be in proportion to one another before color is added to the drawing.

NOAPS Adam with Michelle's Portrait   NOAPS Catherine Marchand

Pictured left to right: Adam helps with student work; Catherine Marchand working on her portrait.

Adam cautions, “Don’t get caught up in the details. Keep it more of an impression of what you see. Leave the viewer with some things to figure out on their own and they will become more involved in your painting.”

As he crossed the room, his individual tutorials encompassed a breadth of painterly issues:

“Use broad brush strokes and get this edge along the cheekbone established.”

“You could use more chroma where the blood is closer to the cheeks”

“Use a bigger brush. Here, this one is just about right. Get the right value of paint on it and touch it on the face just where it is needed and pull the brush away. Don’t fuss it.”

“Roll the color along this edge. Edges are where the excitement happens”

“Establish your darkest and lightest spots and then work toward them.”

“Don’t lose those key values as you move along. They add life to the figure.”

“With a white beard, it is generally darker than you realize and it is in these areas that you establish the darker values. We need to find these darker areas to create the dimensional shapes within the beard.”

“Just a few things to consider here because your drawing is good but look at that shadow under the chin … if you get that established more strongly you will know where the bottom of the face is and that will begin to hold all the other shapes in relation to one another.”

All of Adam’s students emerged from the workshop with fresh enthusiasm and some real nuggets of wisdom.  Adam Clague is definitely an artist to watch.


Adam Clague will have an on-line course in painting available in 2019 for all levels of artists.  This on-line course can be taken at several different levels with individualized instruction, and can be done from the convenience of home.  To see more of Adam’s work, visit www.adamclague.com.

Thank you to Dale Wolf, artist, author, and NOAPS member.  Dale is also a member of the Cincinnati Art Club.

Edited by Patricia Tribastone, NOAPS Blog Director

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