Monthly Archives: January 2010

CVG Show: Barbara Wilson

Barbara Wilson in her Bainbridge Island home studio.

Barbara Wilson

Next time you’re in Poulsbo’s That’s a Some Italian Restaurant, check out the mural of the two monks with wine barrels in the dining room. Barbara Wilson painted that. The Bainbridge Island artist has painted a few murals in the area.

When Wilson speaks, her accent gives testimony to the fact that she lived 39 years in Great Britain before moving to the states in 1997. In England she attended the Norwich University College of the Arts, then transferred to Goldsmiths University in London.

Although she studied art she says she worked in accounting for 20 years after college. In 1997 her computer programmer husband took a job in the states and the family packed everything they had into a few suitcases and moved to Southern California.

After a very short stint in the south, Wilson moved up to the picturesque, mural-thirsty wine country of Sonoma County. The wine country must have put her back in touch with her desire to paint, because in Sonoma she began painting murals. She said business was booming there, and she often had a three-month waiting list for her work. Wilson spent six years in Northern California before settling in Bainbridge after the bank her husband worked for in California was taken over by WaMu.

She’s found the mural business slower here, perhaps because of the slow economy, but her work is still visible on walls throughout the peninsula. She has one in Moses Lake and a couple up in Canada, as well.

Besides murals, she’s been inspired to paint Seattle cityscapes on canvases in her garage studio. “I’m attracted to the lights and reflections,” she says. “I like the movement and the feeling of the rain.”

Her cityscapes really capture the filtered light of a rainy day in the city. And recently one of her paintings also captured the grand prize at a national contest sponsored by the Daniel Smith art supply company. Wilson says her art won the grand prize out of 3,000 artists’ submissions.

Winning the Smith prize and getting into the CVG Show was a big boost for Wilson. “Every year I feel I’ll get a little bit farther ahead. It’s tough because there’s a lot of really good artists out there,” she says.

In March 2009, Wilson also had art hanging at the Bainbridge Arts and Crafts Group Show; the same month, she had a one-woman show at the  Adobe Gallery in Fremont.

You can view some of her work at

During February, The Artful Blogger will talk with some of the artists whose work is showing in the Collective Visions Gallery’s annual show. The show runs from Feb. 2 to Feb. 27. That doesn’t give enough time to highlight all the artists involved, but I will do my best to reach as many as possible. If you have any suggestions for The Artful Blogger, you can reach me at

This and That

THE BIG SHOW: The 2010 Annual Washington State Juried Art competition at Collective Visions Gallery begins next month. There are a number of Kitsap artists participating this year. I’m sure I’ll be posting more about it before the exhibit opens on Feb. 2, then throughout the month. There’s a schedule of events on their Web site:

I just received some information from Loretta Anderson, who is the vice president of the South Kitsap Art Association, which has been in existence darned near as long as I have. The SKAA meets at Cedar Heights Junior High School, 2220 Pottery Ave., in Port Orchard at 7 p.m. on the fourth Monday of each month. They meet in the art room. If my calendar is correct, that means that they will be meeting on Monday, Jan. 25. Artist Jo Ann Sullivan will demonstrate pastels at the meeting. Perhaps someone can take a picture of Jo Ann’s demo so I can post it on the Artful Blogger. The only time the group doesn’t meet is when there are school vacations.

FREE CLASSES: Al Mulkey is offering some interesting free classes at both Artists’ Edge locations in Silverdale and Poulsbo. Classes will be held in Poulsbo from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Wednesdays, and in Silverdale, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays. Mulkey will teach some india ink techniques, as well as a class in caricature. You can get the schedule of classes here:

From the Studio




As promised here are some of the images from Dianne Gardner’s monthly gathering at her south Kitsap studio. Artists who attended this month were, Donna Trent, Terry Sceli, Karen Wisley, Sheila Anderson, Sid Cloud and Loretta Anderson. The models were Tina Hagedorn and Diane Asplund. Gardner says painting from life is the best way to learn, but during the summer her group gets out of the studio for some plein air painting as well. Learning is good, but getting outside sounds so wonderful right now. The spirit of turpentine has permeated the walls of my studio/guestroom. I could really use some plein air.

South Kitsap Gathering

Oil painter Dianne Gardner has a monthly gathering at her studio for several South Kitsap and Gig Harbor artists. The next gathering will be Thursday, January 14, which is tomorrow (sorry about the short notice). It’s from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. There will be two models available to paint, draw or sculpt. The models will hold one pose for 20-minute intervals with time-out for lunch, which Dianne says is potluck. The cost is $15. Her studio is located at 9385 Olalla Valley Road, Port Orchard. You can reach Dianne at, or check out her Web site here: I’m particularly fond of her piece “The Poultry Keeper,” not just because it’s a stunning piece of art, but the Artful Blogger has just finished painting a chicken — they’re not easy subjects.

Dianne's studio map

Dianne says she will send me some of the results of January’s gathering. I can’t wait.

Look: Up in the Sky!

Oil & Water Has been Elevated

Richard Nelson, owner of Oil and Water Arts, and Arty ready to "elevate art" to the top floor of Winslow Mall.
Richard Nelson, owner of Oil and Water Arts, and Arty ready to "elevate art" to the top floor of Winslow Mall.

Artists on Bainbridge Island wondering what happened to Oil & Water art supplies just need to go to the old location and look up. They’ve moved on to the next story.
I talked with Pam Christiansen, who is the head of the Creativity Center there associated with Oil & Water. She tells me that they made the move upstairs not because it’s a bigger space but because it’s a more focused space. Now it’s located right next to the Creativity Center classrooms. Christiansen started the Creativity Center three years ago; in June the center merged with Oil & Water. “We had the same vision and ideas,” she said. Moving downtown to the Winslow Mall was “great because people can come over from Seattle. It’s centrally located,” she said.

The Creativity Center now has 16 faculty members who teach classes in most mediums, including oil, watercolors, acrylics, pastels, multimedia and drawing for both adults and children. They run labs with nude models every Thursday night, and even have an off-site sculpture class.

New sessions begin this month. You can get information here:

Where to Find Me

I work on the Kitsap Sun’s design desk, which means I normally work very strange hours. If you send me a message during the day, and I don’t get back to you right away, it’s because I normally don’t fire up my computer until after 4 p.m. Reader Dianne Gardner points out that there is no way for people to get in touch with me other an by posting a reply to my blog entries. That is a problem.

Although I would encourage people to post replies to the blog entries, you can also send me information and images at, or They both work. I switched my byline to J.D. because there was another Jon Williams in the company. I kept getting his e-mail. For some reason the problem cleared up and I don’t get his mail anymore, so you’re welcome to use either address.

Former Kitsap Sun artist Jessie Randklev did this pen and ink drawing of Pearl Django a few years ago. She did it on a piece of illustration board and it's been hanging somewhere near the wall next to Arts & Entertainment writer Michael Moore's desk. The band has since added an accordion player.
Former Kitsap Sun artist Jessie Randklev did this pen and ink drawing of Pearl Django a few years ago. She did it on a piece of illustration board and it's been hanging somewhere near the wall next to Arts & Entertainment writer Michael Moore's desk. The band has since added an accordion player.

GYPSY SWING: If you want to get in touch with me this Friday night I will be at the Collective Visions Art Gallery, along with a lot of other art lovers, and lovers of Gypsy swing. The great Seattle Gypsy jazz band Pearl Django will be playing at the gallery located at 331 Pacific Ave. Bremerton. What a show that’s going to be! And what a great place to see them play!  I’m thrilled, and so is my 9-year-old daughter. I took her to a Django Reinhardt festival in San Francisco a few years ago, where we saw a guitarist named Durado Schmitt. She was about 5-years-old and had the attention span of a five-year-old, so I was expecting her to lose interest real fast. To my surprise, Schmitt’s Gypsy swing performance captured her attention through out the whole show. Now we’re looking forward to Friday’s show. You can see Pearl Django too by calling Collective Visions at (360) 377-8327. I just called over there, and they still have tickets available at $20 each. However, I’m told they’re going real fast. The show starts at 7 p.m. See you there…

Off We Go

The Artful Blogger: Just replace the the first “g” with a “d”  and turn me into The Artful Blodger.
That’s right, it’s a horrible pun… a real groaner. So right off the get-go I can tell you’re not impressed with my ideas. And that’s OK, because I’m not going to use this space to promote my ideas.
What I would like to do with The Artful Blodger is pick your brain, not your pockets. I mean that figuratively, of course, although I may use that image sometime in the future. I want to use this space to showcase KItsap’s visual artists, and I need your help.

With your help, we can turn this into a place in cyberspace where people in the visual arts can gather to see what others are up to, or to find out what’s coming up in the community. I’ll try to stay on top of who’s offering classes, presentations and gallery openings. That kind of stuff I can handle,  but I’m going to need some help with suggestions about who to highlight here. So If you know someone who is doing interesting things with paint, clay, pixels or even potato prints, and you think others would enjoy seeing their work, please send them to the attention of The Artful Blogger.

This is a composite photo of local artist Derek Gundy surrounded by some of his work at Artists' Edge in Poulsbo.
This is a composite photo of local artist Derek Gundy surrounded by some of his work at Artists' Edge in Poulsbo.

Anglers and artists have a lot in common when it comes to drawing inspiration from the nearby streams, rivers and the Puget Sound. Watching the huge salmon wiggle up tiny streams is like watching a very tall man stuff himself into a Yugo and drive off. It takes a lot of determination to get those big bodies where they need to go in those small spaces. Artist Derek Gundy might agree. Gundy became inspired by the salmon after he moved to Washington from Rockland, Maine six years ago. He started reading about them, then he began to paint them.  “It’s really a supernatural thing. That’s why I started painting them flying.” It’s even a spiritual thing, says Gundy. Spiritual, yes, but his work is also very whimsical. His latest piece, Holy Mackerel, seems to capture both of those themes.  In some of Gundy’s paintings, the salmon are flying through the air, relieved of their watery confines. Almost all of Gundy’s work contains fish, or water. Sometimes the fish are in the air, and sometimes the water isn’t water: it’s wine, or flowers. His work illustrates just how much fun it is being an artist. On canvas anything can happen.

Perhaps it is because he’s  been around the water his entire life that he makes it such a theme in his work. Gundy grew up in coastal Maine, where his parents ran an art supply and framing store. Their shop did the framing for many local artists, including Andrew Wyeth, who had a summer home near Rockland. He attended the Portland School of Art, now called The Maine College of Art, then made his way to Washington after his wife grew tired of the Maine winters. She grew up in the Northwest, and wanted to move back.

The apple apparently didn’t fall too far from the tree, because, when he’s not working in his studio, he manages The Artists’ Edge art and framing shop in Poulsbo. Like many art stores, The Artists’ Edge offers classes taught by qualified local artists. Gundy says he’s going to return to teaching some of those classes this month after a long hiatus. In the past, he’s taught watercolor and drawing classes, at the shop. Later this month, he’s going to be teaching acrylics. He says says he enjoys helping people develop their skills, and he’s had some requests to begin the classes again.

If you’re interested in picking Derek Gundy’s brain, you can reach him at The Artists’ Edge, or you can see his blog at