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Highlights Newsletter April 2021

President's Palette

Photograph of BWS president Sherry Morell

Do You Zoom????

What a loaded question that is! For many of us it has been a life-line during the past year. Did you know that your BWS Board has been conducting business, as usual, continuously on Zoom since March 2020? The program has become such a vital part of our lives that we may continue to do the majority of our meetings utilizing it, even after the Covid-19 restrictions are lifted. Since many of our Board members are from far-flung areas, residing from Western MD to the Eastern Shore and from Southern PA to the DC area, it just makes good sense to eliminate a long and hazardous rush hour beltway commute.

All organizations and corporations now realize that the pandemic has changed how business is conducted and that digital/online programs and “tele-commuting” are here to stay, so we should make the most of them. Artists are no different and we believe that online workshops and programs will be permanent tools in the paintbox of many, allowing them to reach more students, not just by impersonal YouTube videos, but by online workshops and demos for small groups with personal interaction, and without the travel involved. We fully intend to take advantage of all these new possibilities.

In the Upcoming Events, Workshops and Exhibits listings you will note that there are many program choices but only one style of presentation noted – “online”:

  • The 4 new Art Critique Sessions, (dates TBD) via Zoom
  • Brienne Brown “Dynamic Watercolors,” April 12-16 via Zoom
  • April Rimpo, “Watercolor on Aquaboard,” May 3-7 via Zoom
  • Stacy Lund Levy, “Painting Animals” #2, May 12 via Zoom
  • Member Meeting with lecture and demo about Whistler, May 27 via Zoom
  • Mid-Atlantic Regional Exhibit, June 12 – Aug 31 online with submission of painting images via CAFE
  • Mid-Atlantic Workshop with Anne Abgott, “Daring Color,” June 21-24 via Zoom
  • BWS Fall 2021 Signature Jurying, October, with image submission online
  • Board Jurying meeting via Zoom

We are currently scheduling Fall workshops as “in person” but that may be TBD

So – Do You Zoom?

Actually – Do You Know How to Zoom?

I certainly hope so, as May 27th is our big Annual Members Meeting and this year it is by Zoom.  The 100 spots are filling in record time since it promises to be an amazing program. Art Historian and BWS artist Dr. Leigh Culver, who has worked and taught at the Smithsonian, Corcoran Gallery, the Art League School and University of Notre Dame, will be presenting an enlightening lecture on James McNeil Whistler. She is teamed up with artist Peter Ulrich (BWS, NWS, PVW) who will demonstrate and discuss painting watercolor in the technique of Whistler. What an exciting evening! This was to have been our 2020 BWS Dinner/Meeting, which was cancelled, but now we can share the adventure together on Zoom.

Recently we advertised for “Zoom Manager” volunteers, who would help our members attending programs to negotiate the technology needed for seamlessly linking their computers/tablets with our programs (phones are not sufficient). They would be our “problem fixers” who would work directly with the attendees while the instructors taught. We were overjoyed when 20 members responded to the ad. The Zoom Committee members are collecting a “skills list” and will be contacting the volunteers to ascertain their experience and skills, and to determine any needed training. We have such a wealth of talent here at BWS upon which to draw, and our members are always happy to pitch in when and where it’s needed.

One member who has been especially helpful is Nishita Jain, a BWS Signature Artist, who is also the Web- and Zoom-Master at Philadelphia Watercolor Society. She has shared her expertise and experience in organizing and leading their Zoom events, both large demos and smaller workshops, giving us tips, guidance and encouragement to make our upcoming events successful. Thank you, Nishita –We are so grateful for your generous spirit.

Up until now, much of the instruction for using Zoom has been included on the “Confirmation and Reminder” emails that April Rimpo, Membership Chair, sends out for each event.

Spoiler Alert: If you are an accomplished Zoom user –you can ignore the next three paragraphs. Otherwise, stick with me. 😊

Now our Webmaster, Bob Coe, has created a section with Zoom Instructions on the BWS Website. Look directly under our BWS Logo at the top left of this page and you will see a list of topics. Topic #5 is Zoom Instructions. Just a click on that link takes you to a set of instructions on how to download the Zoom Web Browser Client or obtain the Zoom App for Apple and Android devices, and how to use the described “app controls” like the “mute” and “chat” to participate in a program. There is also a Test Link so you can try your skills before a meeting and best of all, there is a link to an excellent video that walks you slowly through the installation of Zoom and all those controls you will be using.

Personal note from your non-techie President: I have gone through these instructions and found them to be very clear, plus the cited video on “Zoom Basics” is excellent and the most helpful one that many of us have seen. Remember to follow the instructions and download the Zoom Web Browser Client or the iPad/tablet App as they produce a very stable internet connection. I didn’t know about it at first and just used my regular browser – big difference in performance.

We are willing to run Test Sessions prior to events so that registrants are assured they are able to connect, chat, and have any digital issues resolved prior to logging into the real event, if we receive requests for those Test Sessions no less than 1 week prior to the event. We want you to be able to participate in the program and focus on your painting and listening – not on the technology.

Zoom has been amazing over the past year –it has been our lifesaver. Yes, we have had Zoom meetings and gatherings and done workshops but it’s still not the same as “in person.” On Thursday, March 11th, 2 weeks after our 2nd vaccination, my husband Tom and I got to hug our daughter for the first time in a year and then one of our grandsons, visiting from Florida (we had missed his college graduation, his wedding, his illness with Covid), and also a granddaughter whose graduation as a BS-RN for Hopkins we missed too– a whole year of shut down. The tears flowed.

We all need one another and that goes for needing our BWS Family, too. Eventually, with widespread immunization in place and regulations somewhat loosened, not only will our venues be opened up for indoor events, but the instructors and registrants will feel safe enough to attend them. Then most demos, workshops, and all the exhibits will be in “real life” once again. We might still have to take some masking precautions but we will be able to talk and laugh and meet together at HCCA and Hawthorne to share tips, tools and paint together, side by side. We can also give comforting hugs and cry at what has been lost – family and friends, and a whole year of our lives together.

We miss you all, and look forward to the time when we will see you again, face to face; so 'till then, stay safe and stay healthy.


    Upcoming Events

    Note: The above Upcoming Events summary only displays the start date for each event. For full details please click on the event, or visit the Events page.

    Welcome New Signature Artists

    Just a reminder that you can become a BWS Signature Artist after being selected three times in the BWS Mid-Atlantic Regional Exhibition. Just contact the membership chair ( with the years you had paintings in the Mid-Atlantic. Once validated you will receive an invoice for your Signature Artist dues. This month we have one new Signature Artist who has met this requirement. Welcome to our BWS family.

    Welcome New Associates

        Gina Busby of Norfolk, VA

        Janice Pini of Venetia, PA

        Sandra Rebert-Holbrook of Dillsburg, PA

        2021 Mid-Atlantic Exhibition

        The deadline for submitting entries for the 2021 Online Mid-Atlantic Regional Watercolor Exhibition is April 9. Go to (CAFE) to create your FREE artist login.

        The entries will be sent to Anne Abgott (AWS, NWS) for her review. Entering artists will be notified and the list of selections will be posted on the BWS website by May 10.

        Remember– all entries must be for sale, and the painting must be at least 10” on the smaller side.

        If you want help formatting your jpg file, help is available via for the promised donation of $5 for catalog support.

        The exhibit will be up for viewing June 12-August 31, and will be promoted both by BWS on Facebook, and by BlackRock Center for the Arts through their website.

        Virtual Workshops

        Upcoming workshops will be done virtually until further notice. All announcements will have information pertaining to the Zoom meetings. Please read any incoming e-mails thoroughly to stay informed. You will always find dates, times and instructions on where to register. I have been getting a lot of calls and emails asking questions that are listed in the announcements. 

        Zoom workshops: 

        The Zoom Session Link for your registered workshop will be provided a day before the workshop begins.

        Please do not share the Zoom link. It is only for you.

        If you don't already have Zoom, download it for free and familiarize yourself with it.

         For the best performance and to have the best experience with Zoom you should either use:

        • The Web Browser Client on your desktop computer, that you can retrieve from the Zoom website at:
        • Zoom app for iPad from the Apple Store
        • Zoom app for your Android tablet from the Google store

        If you are new to Zoom, read our Zoom Instructions web page to learn about it and get started. Be sure to get ready a week in advance so you have time to ask us questions if needed.

        Sabine Yeager, Workshops & Programs

        Online BWS Member Meeting

        With Lecture from Artist/Historian Leigh Culver and Demo by Artist Peter Ulrich

        Save the Date: May 27, 2021

        Zoom open for Member Social Time at 6:30 pm

        Presentation begins at 7:00 pm

        BWS has a treat in store for members. Everyone is invited to attend on Zoom—free of charge! Artist and art historian Leigh Culver (BWS), PhD, will present the lecture she would have given at our 2020 Annual Dinner (cancelled due to COVID-19).

        "An Evening with Whistler"

        Leigh will discuss Whistler’s art and the scandals surrounding his most well-known works. Explaining Whistler’s decision to turn to watercolor, Leigh will introduce us to what Whistler called his “lovely little games.”

        Artist Peter Ulrich (NWS, BWS, PVW) will then demo a painting in the style of Whistler, using the pigments and papers Whistler used.

        Leigh and Peter, together, will share insights about Whistler’s techniques and the history of the watercolor medium.

        Registration will be open to Members on Wild Apricot from Sunday, March 14th through May 20th or until we reach the maximum number of 100 attendees allowable in our Zoom account. Please plan to join us.

        Questions can be directed to:

        Strathmore Exhibit

        We are pleased to report that despite Covid restrictions on attendance, four paintings sold during the exhibit at Strathmore. Congratulations!

        Mak Dehejia, "Azure Glow"
        Rick Kowalewski,"Cape Cod Sunset"
        Annabelle Thurlow, “Still Waters"
        Alina Kurbiel, “Through the Mist”

        David Drown, Exhibits Chair

        Member Advertisement from Diana Marta:

        Diana Marta is teaching ongoing live Zoom classes from her studio at the Howard County Arts Center.

        These 30 minute weekly lessons use traditional watercolor approaches to build understanding of contemporary work.

        Each painter works in themes of their own interest. Some work purely in watercolor, some are mixing in rice paper and acrylic collage.

        “Fishbowl," watercolor collage pictured, was juried into the 2020 New Jersey Watercolor Regional Exhibit. The fish and the face were painted on rice paper and collaged into the watercolor.

        For information email

        Mixed media watermedia painting by Diana Marta, abstract patterns and shapes surrounding a goldfish in blue, yellow, and orange.

        Member News

        BWS members may submit a 60-word announcement gratis to be listed under the heading "Member News." Images will be included as space allows. Submissions are due by the 15th of the month preceding publication date, and may be edited for length or clarity. Please e-mail your submissions to the Newsletter Editor at

        Boxed off featured ads are available for $25 and may include up to 100 words and one image. Contact the Newsletter Editor at for details.

        Claudine Jones's piece “Brillig One” was selected for the juried exhibition “Ink It” at BlackRock Center for the Arts in Germantown, Maryland. The exhibition runs through April 10, 2021 online.

        J. M. Littleton's watercolor "See Us In Our Shadows" was accepted into the Rhode Island Watercolor Society Exhibition "Painting Through the Pandemic." The show is online until April 9. She is teaching a workshop online through the BlackRock Center for the Arts, "Skin Tones Developed in Watercolor," April 10, 11-2pm.

        Peg Sheridan will be Featured Artist at the Shenandoah Valley Art Center in Waynesboro, VA for the month of April with an opening tentatively planned for April 10. She will be teaching "Plein Air Painting in Watercolor" for Beverley Street Studio School June 7-July 12, 9am-12pm. Register at and see more

        Annie Strack’s painting “Toes in the Water” was juried into the Pikes Peak Watercolor Society International Biennial earning her Signature Membership in PPWS.

        Pam Wenger was featured in the current issues of both Watercolor Artist Magazine and Artists Magazine. Her painting “Disapproval” was one of the 10 winners of the Over 60 Competition in Artists Magazine and “Morning Routine” (below) won an honorable mention in Watercolor Artist Magazine’s Watermedia Showcase Competition.

        Watermedia painting by Pam Wenger, a white haired man sitting at a breakfast table, eating and reading the newspaper, framed by a decorative tile pattern on the wall behind him.

        "Morning Routine" by Pam Wenger


        West Virginia Watercolor Society
        Aqueous 2021
        Stifel Fine Arts Center, Wheeling, WV
        Entry Deadline: May 31, 2021

        International Society of Experimental Artists
        30th Annual Open Exhibition "Innovations"
        Mission Point Resort, Mackinac Island, MI
        Entry Deadline: March 31, 2021

        The Pittsburgh Watercolor Society's Member Show is online for viewing, and is inviting guests to vote for their favorite piece, through April 2.

        In Memoriam

        George Wills of Baltimore, MD

        George was a former Board Member of Baltimore Watercolor Society. The Baltimore Sun has published an obituary article about his life.

        Watermedia painting by George Wills, a beach scene with palm trees and colorful umbrellas

        Painting by George Wills from the collection of William And Susan (Wills) Hunter

        Member Discount Codes

        20% discount with code BWCS at checkout

        American Frame:
        5% discount with code Alliance2018 OR free shipping on orders over $99 with code Alliance99 (may not be combined)

        Board of Governors and Committee Chairs

        Baltimore Watercolor Society, a 501c3 Nonprofit Organization

        President: Sharon Morell,, 443-465-1863

        Vice President:

        Secretary: Deborah Cohan, 301-977-6212

        Treasurer: Gaye Holcomb, 410-442-1922

        Assistant Treasurer: Cheryl Himelright, 301-829-2331

        Mid-Atlantic Chair: Sharon Green,, 410-363-1922

        Workshops & Programs: Sabine Yeager,, 410-245-0366

        Webmaster: Bob Coe, 410-877-3730

        Newsletter Editor: Joanna Barnum,, 410-428-3432

        Newsletter Committee: Carolyn Murphy, 443-578-8343

        Archivist: Karen Norman, 301-318-2224

        Hospitality Chair: Karen Schuster, 410-531-5768

        Hospitality: Bonita Glaser, 301-498-3946

        Hospitality: Joan Orcutt, 240-381-9309

        Membership/Database: April Rimpo,, 443-766-0148

        Membership/Jurying: Stacy Levy,, 410-446-2714

        Mid-Atlantic Awards Chair: Dana Kleinsteuber, 410-917-7935

        Mid-Atlantic Awards: Janet Arsenault, 410-713-0248

        Exhibits Chair: David Drown, 410-971-9769

        Exhibits: Jeffery Turner, 410-964-8282

        Exhibits: Kathy Daywalt, 443-695-4008

        Publicity: Harold Walpert, 410-358-9543

        Social Media: Annie Strack, 610-925-2815

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