I have been blessed to be painting with a wonderful group of artist for the past 14 years. We meet every Wednesday in Galesville, Md. a sleepy community on the West River, in a historic schoolhouse. We call ourselves the West River Artists Association, and come from all parts of Md, DC and Virginia. We paint in the mornings and then over lunch critique each others works over lunch. It has been an absolutely invaluable growing and enriching experience for me, for which I will always be grateful.
But some of our familiar faces do leave us for one reason or another and it leaves a hole. Then someone else gets invited to join our group and brings their own mark, and helps fill the void left by the departed artist/friend.
A few years back we welcomed Claudia Rutherford. She is a fabulous watercolorist, specializing in animals – cats in particular. She has won many awards, even named for one of the top 10 women artists in America, and most recently published in”art journey ANIMALS A Collection of Inspiring Contemporary Masterworks”, edited by Jamie Markle, published by North Light Books. Here is on one of her master pieces, although the title should have been “Furball” because it looks exactly like my childhood cat that had at least nine lives.
Claudia shared with us last week that she and her husband would be moving to Virginia in a month – a job change for him, and a 3 hour drive from us. Yikes will we miss her and her assistant dog Libby, a labro doodle, that when you take the red vest off becomes an energized bundle of love!
Claudia’s quiet and friendly demeanor, keen eye, and incredible skill with watercolors will be sorely missed on a weekly basis. We will be hard pressed to fill her void. And, I give Claudia thanks for giving me the courage to try watercolors again.