Annual Spring Luncheon

May 13, 2022

Citrus Watercolor Society Update
The Citrus Watercolor Society will not be hosting its regular monthly meeting in Inverness nor providing a workshop for its members and guests in May. It’s time for the membership to celebrate a new President and Board at the Annual Spring Luncheon held at the Citrus Springs Golf & Country Club. Included in the May festivities is a demonstration by CWS member, Polly Boston.

Demonstration:
“Troubles, Tips, and Technique for Painting Orchids”

Orchids are a lovely and popular subject for paintings. Polly guided us through the many decisions she makes in planning and painting her compositions.

Polly is a retired music teacher who always liked to draw and discovered watercolor when she moved to Florida. In Bradenton she studied with several excellent teachers (particularly Anne Abgott) and began entering various juried watercolor competitions. Polly won membership in the statewide Florida Watercolor Society for three straight years as well as awards in their yearly competitions. Her painting style is colorful and realistic and encompasses a variety of subjects. In 2016 Polly traveled to France for a watercolor class with Judy Morris. Since moving to Citrus County in 2017, she joined the Citrus Watercolor Society and recently won first place in the CWS competition at Homosassa Springs Wildlife Park. Polly now limits her media to her favorites, watercolor and scratchboard. Commissioned paintings also rank high on her list of favorites because this involves studying subjects that she would not ordinarily think of to paint, from grandbabies to grizzly bears! We are eagerly awaiting her
demonstration at our luncheon and expect to gain new insights to her artwork.


As promised last month, I want to share a little more about the CWS plein air artist, Joyce Cusick who has a passion for painting the great outdoors and its fascinating wildlife. Always inspired by color and
light Joyce has been a professional artist for more than 50 years. Joyce taught drawing and painting to children and adults in the City of Hollywood, Florida (1973—1977) and teens at Loch Haven Art Center, Orlando (1977—1978). Her resume includes President of Historic Preservation, Inc., (1986—2003), author, designer, and illustrator of Crafting with Lace published by Sterling Publishing Co., New York,1993 and contributing designer for many other books.

Joyce leads the Citrus Watercolor Society Plein Air group and belongs to Plein Air Florida and Ocala Plein Air Painters. She studied at Rhode Island School of Design and has a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from the University of Miami with a major in painting.
Last month she coordinated a trip for the CWS painters to explore the views of the Indian mounds at the Archeological State Park in Crystal River. Thank you, Joyce. You are such an important part of Citrus Watercolor Society and we appreciate all you do.

At the May Luncheon President Darla Goldberg presented Joyce Cusick with a Certificate of Life Membership in CWS for her dedication and invaluable contributions to Citrus Watercolor Society throughout her long time membership.


CWS’s monthly meetings will resume on June 10th at noon at the Family Center in the First Christian Church of Inverness, 2018 Colonade Street in Inverness. On the agenda is a “Paint Around” … details about this fun art experience in our next column. Guests are always welcome. For more information about CWS, check out our website at www.citruswatercolorsociety.org.

Until next time, stay well and enjoy all we have. Dori

Painting- A Matter of Necessity – March 11, 2022

March 2022 Press Release by Dori Sullivan


I’m so excited about the Citrus Watercolor Society’s guest artist in March! Lionel Sanchez is an award-winning Florida artist who paints en plein air (on location) using photography, sketches and of course, his imagination as his studio references. His choice of color, detail, perspectives and visions of “his world” are a delight to any viewer. His paintings are simply incredible and when he shares his visions with you, his art will become an essential part of your painting experience.

Lionel’s workshop will be held Saturday March 12 and Sunday March 13 in the Whispering Pines Recreation Building from 9 AM to 4 PM. The workshop fee is $110 for CWS Members and $140 for non-members. To register for the workshop or for more information email our Contact Person: Susan Strawbridge at susand319@aol.com.
You can also find more information regarding workshops and other opportunities on the CWS website https://citruswatercolorsociety.org/workshops

From his artist’s profile, we learned that Lionel’s older brother would draw for him when he was a child. He was fascinated with what his brother could do with a pencil and that fascination grew into a passion, and soon, a necessity for seeing his life in his art. You’ll find his experiences and challenges are brilliantly portrayed in his paintings. For over 30 years he was a draftsman and project manager, and since retiring from the business world, he’s now a full time artist and teaches watercolor workshops throughout Florida. Watercolor is his preferred medium, but he also has worked in graphite, acrylic, pen and ink.

Lionel strives for good composition and employs the principles of design in his stunning work. When you, the viewer is drawn to his paintings you may see sketches with the use of abstract shapes in the process he uses to develop what he deems a successful piece. He is both a teacher and artist who is always eager to talk about his art with others knowing that each painting will elicit an emotional
response and a desire to create a connection between the artist and you.

Personally, I’m really looking forward to the workshop and I hope you too will consider signing up for this motivating weekend. There’s a bonus that comes with the CWS Workshops … As participants, we
always enjoy the positive energies that come from a workshop filled with talented, like-minded people! In fact, on Lionel’s supply list, some of his important “materials needed” are “enthusiasm and humor”. I’m looking forward to a fun filled; inspiring weekend and I hope you will join me!

CWS will have its regular Business Meeting at noon on Friday March 11th and immediately following that, Lionel will give a short demonstration about his work as a preview of what’s to happen in his workshop the following two days. The demonstration will be held at the Family Center in the First Christian Church of Inverness, 2018 Colonade Street, Inverness FL at noon. Guests are always welcome.

Citrus Watercolor Society is a friendly collection of artists, both beginners and experienced watercolorists, who will enjoy meeting you and welcome you to our monthly meetings. Annual dues are only $35 – the benefits are many. We meet on the second Friday of every month, except July, at the Family Center in the First Christian Church of Inverness, 2018 Colonade St., in Inverness at noon. Come and see what we’re all about!

Until next time, stay well – keep your brushes wet and colors bright!

Enjoy all we have!

Dori Sullivan

Popular Artist Tom Jones Demonstrates at Citrus Watercolor Society Luncheon

DECEMBER 2021 Press Release by Norm Freyer

It is the Christmas holiday time again! What does that mean to members of the Citrus Watercolor Society (CWS)? For one thing it is time for the CWS holiday luncheon. And the other is to have a visit from artist Tom Jones.

Tom was scheduled to demonstrate at the 2020 affair, but that was cancelled due to COVID. But he is on the docket this year and we welcome him back. Tom Jones is one of the most popular watercolorists among CWS members. Tom has been a frequent visitor and demonstrator at numerous educational workshops to local artists. In the twenty years that I have known Tom, it seems as though he has made at least one stop in this area each year. Tom and his wife Bonnie reside in Edgewater, Florida. Bonnie is an accomplished artist in her own right. Both are members of the CWS.

On Friday, December 10, Tom makes a return stop to the area as the demonstrator for the Citrus Watercolor Society holiday luncheon to be held at the Citrus Hills Golf & Country Club in Hernando. Tom Jones impresses you with his ease of instruction, his interesting dialogue, where everyone gets the same individual instruction and encouragement, and everyone seems to gain something in their knowledge of watercolor art. His approach to watercolor painting just seems to make things so simple. Tom has traveled from coast to coast in the U.S. and to international sites with this type of workshop that is in constant demand. Always sporting a trademark straw hat with a colorful band, he has indeed become a very popular artist. Tom has been commissioned by government agencies, corporations, environmental groups, clubs, and private collectors have commissioned him to expand their art collections. In answer to popular demand, he typically produces his watercolor landscapes in a series of three or five paintings around a specific theme. His art can be found internationally in many private and corporate collections, including commissioned paintings displayed in the Florida State Capital Building, Walt Disney World Corporation, Marriott Corporation, and the Omni Corporation. Tom’s work has been featured in many books and on magazine covers as well as posters and brochures. Tom’s web site is http://www.tomjonesartist.com .

Tom Jones will be conducting a one-day workshop on Saturday, December 11, at the Whisperings Pines Recreation facility in Inverness, FL. For more information contact Dori Sullivan, email: billdori@embarqmail.com or see the CWS web site at https://citruswatercolorsociety.org/workshops.html

Oops! Class on Mistakes Now in Session

I hope that my headline doesn’t scare anyone away, because the demonstrator at the November 12 meeting of the Citrus Watercolor Society (CWS) is Inverness artist Barbara Kerr. Sometimes her demos replicate a secondary school classroom. And, if you find yourself talking to your neighbor during the demo, you may be whistled for a foul. In the end, Barbara’s demos are always high spirited and full of meaningful information.

Barbara is a native Californian who moved to Inverness in 1997. She taught Intermediate Watercolor at the Art Center of Citrus County for many years, and she was also Program Chairperson of the Art Center. She served as President of the Citrus Watercolor Society and the Ocala Art Group. She has conducted demonstrations in Ocala, in The Villages, in Boone, NC. and in Inverness at the Citrus Watercolor Society. She is a member of the Nature Coast Painters and the Citrus Watercolor Society. She says, “My lighthearted demonstration entitled Oops, will focus on common mistakes we make while painting, and how best to resolve them.”

Some of the favorite workshops she has attended were conducted by Jean Grastorf, Lynn Ferris, Alex Powers, Skip Lawrence, Miles Batt, Jean Dobie, and Judy Betts.

Never Attended an Art Workshop?

October 2021

Press Release by Norm Freyer

No time like the present to start.

It is not uncommon for a Citrus Watercolor Society (CWS) workshop to be sold out. And for good reason. These workshops are an opportunity to take advantage of new ideas and techniques, presented by leading watercolorists in a friendly, learning atmosphere. No need to be afraid – everyone attending is there to learn. And look at the visiting artists who have conducted workshops in the recent past – Janett Rogers, Tom Jones, Carol Frye, Lynn Ferris, Frank Zambardi and Terry Denson.

And now, there is another opportunity to learn from a leading visiting artist. At the October 8th monthly meeting, Marilyn Johansen will be on hand for a demonstration of her watercolor work. Based in South Florida, Marilyn is an imaginative award-winning artist who is driven by an incredible passion for self-expression through art, having lived in Belgium and Okinawa and places in between. She has signature status with the Florida Watercolor Society, the Miami Watercolor Society, the Palm Beach Watercolor Society, the Gold Coast Watercolor Society, and the Pennsylvania Watercolor Society. She has served as president of the Florida Watercolor Society and the Gold Coast Watercolor Society. She conducts demonstrations in watercolor, teaches watercolor and acrylic workshops, and judges art shows. Her fine art collections are featured in numerous Florida museums. To see her artwork, go to her web site at https://marilynjohansen.com/.

Marilyn Johansen will conduct a two-day workshop on October 9 and 10 at the Whispering Pines Park Recreation building in Inverness. Two days of learning to make new watercolor surfaces with gesso and matte medium. She will help you create art on the new surfaces. Composition will be stressed by taking photos with your camera or phone. Basic composition principles will be reviewed. Painting exercises to help you think in multiple dimensions.

For more information about registering for this workshop, see the CWS web site at https://citruswatercolorsociety.org/workshops/ or contact Susan Strawbridge at susand319@aol.com .

CWS Founders’ Award Awaits a Winner

September 2021

Press Release by Norm Freyer

The program for the Citrus Watercolor Society (CWS) meeting on September 10th is entitled, “Show and Tell”. The reason that the CWS continues this program in September of each year, is to allow members of the society, old and new alike, get a chance to present their creations to their fellow artists. The meeting format allows some outstanding watercolor paintings to make their appearance. The works of our member artists are impressive, and they get better each year. It is also an opportunity for members to praise and to provide helpful critique on how to improve the work that one creates. I think that you will find that there is an appreciation for the time and effort that each artist has put into the creative piece of artwork. You will feel good about presenting your work to the CWS members. After a review of all the artwork is presented, the Society will present the CWS Founders cash award of $50 to the winning artist exhibiting at this meeting. So – Bring your latest masterpiece and show it off!

Do you find yourself asking, “Where did all this time go?” The life journey to date has been interesting, not without hiccups and disappointments, but all in all, a good life. This brings me to the loss of a CWS artist who left us this summer. Lou Friedman was a long-term member of the Citrus Watercolor Society, Lou served as the CWS Treasurer for a number of years. He possessed a great sense of humor and was an all-around good guy. He strove to be a better artist and was recognized with his paintings in the CWS “Painting of the Month” competition. Lou was also a member of the Art Center of Citrus County. The second loss, and at an age too young, was Florida artist Kim Minichiello. Kim has demonstrated at the CWS monthly meetings and was an internationally recognized, award-winning artist, whose career in art and design has spanned more than 30 years. Kim was a signature member of American Women Artists and the Georgia, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, and Florida Watercolor Societies. She was also the 2019 President of the Florida Watercolor Society. Even though we as artists find that our place on earth is limited, art on the other hand is immortal. The art of Dali, Picasso, Minichiello, Witt, Jowers, Kansky, Friedman and Krall will live on, perhaps not to the extent of those famous masters, but still there to be enjoyed by others in the future.

Welcome Back! – August 2021

August 2021

Press Release by Norm Freyer

Finally, members of the Citrus Watercolor Society (CWS) are free to celebrate watercolor art and artists. Most of our members have been vaccinated against the Covid virus. Much of the general population on the Nature Coast have done the same. The CWS is now free to meet again, a meeting of celebration, free of the threat of the virus. CWS president Darla Goldberg asks that you mark you mark your calendars for the exciting return to monthly meetings. The party starts at 11:30 AM on Friday, August 13th, at the regular meeting place.

We are planning a fun meeting with door prizes, delicious snacks and treats, and a 50/50 drawing. Then add in a raffle to win one of two original paintings by noted Florida artist Tom Jones. How great is that? Excited yet? How about an artist’s sale!  It is exciting to give members a chance dispose of their extra, unused art supplies! What an opportunity! Bring in art supplies that you want to sell or just give away. Tables will be ready for your use; you are responsible for your own items. No paintings, prints (reproductions), cards, frames, furniture, oil paints and supplies, or clothing.  This is strictly for watercolor paint, painting medium, brushes, drawing supplies, paper, easels, pallets, etc. We are asking for a 20% donation to CWS from any profits you may make from sales. If you have not been vaccinated, please wear a mask to the meeting.

Why attend this meeting? We have to take a deep breath. This meeting will help stir the pot and help each of us get back on track. Forget about the trials of the last year and get back into the world of watercolor art. Let’s look ahead to some of the upcoming programs and what we can learn from them. In October Marilyn Johansen will be on hand for the CWS meeting for a demonstration followed by a two-day workshop. In December Tom Jones makes a return stop to the area as the demonstrator for the Citrus Watercolor Society holiday luncheon, followed by a one-day workshop. More great programs coming.


It’s Time to Take a Break

July 2021

Press Release by Norm Freyer

It’s July! And in July the Citrus Watercolor Society (CWS) takes the month off! At this time, I am writing this communication from a small cottage near the shores of Long Island Sound in Niantic, Connecticut; it is only a short distance to the centers of art in Old Lyme.

So, this week I attended the “88th Annual Juried Exhibition” at the Lyme Art Association in Old Lyme. Artists from The Hudson Valley Art Association had submitted 142 pieces of art in various mediums to be judged by the Jurors. These included Pastels, Sculptures, Watercolor, Graphics and Oils.

Of course, I was particularly interested in the watercolor submissions. My thoughts? Very impressive! I will probably go back again before this show closes.

Want to know about the Hudson Valley Art Association? Check out this website http://www.hudsonart.org. Next door is the Florence Griswold where the current art exhibit is “Social and Solitary” https://florencegriswoldmuseum.org/

And that is not all. Drive to the east a short distance and you reach the Mystic Art Gallery, with more outstanding artwork.

To top things off in Mystic, a visit to the studio of Russ Kramer to view his latest nautical artwork. Visit Kramer’s web site at http://www.russkramer.com

Back at home, plans are still being made for the upcoming Fall programs. But July does offer somewhat of a respite compared to the rest of the year. Our program chairperson, Susan Strawbridge, has been hard at work planning guest artist demonstrations and workshops.

In October, Marilyn Johansen will be on hand for the CWS meeting for a demonstration followed by a two-day workshop. Marilyn is an imaginative award-winning artist who is driven by an incredible passion for self-expression through art. She is based in South Florida and has signature status with numerous signature status.

In December, Tom Jones makes a return stop to the area as the demonstrator for the Citrus Watercolor Society holiday luncheon, followed by a one-day workshop. Tom impresses you with his ease of instruction, his interesting dialogue, where everyone gets the same individual instruction and encouragement, and everyone seems to gain something in their knowledge of watercolor art. His approach to watercolor painting just seems to make things so simple.

Tom has traveled from coast to coast in the U.S. and to international sites with this type of workshop that is in constant demand. Always sporting a trademark straw hat with a colorful band, he has indeed become an extremely popular artist.

Norm Freyer handles publicity for the Citrus Watercolor Society.

Judging Artwork- Criticism or Critique

June 2021

Press Release by Norm Freyer

When I was in high school, I would work sporadically at a filling station run by my uncle and my father. One of the regular customers was a local artist of some later fame. I’ll not disclose his name as I know if some supporters of his work should happen to read this column, they would certainly respond unfavorably! So, we will call him Mr. Artsy. When Mr. Artsy came to get gas at the filling station, he would stop short of the pumps and then his wife would get out of the car and direct him to the pumps. Once in place, he would always get 5 gallons. After filling the 5 gallons, I would have to wash the windshield, check the oil, and the water in the radiator and check the tires.

Upon reflection today, I chuckle on what was expected of you while working at a filling station in the 1950’s. Anyway, I was somewhat familiar with his artwork. I thought that it was primitive and showed a lack of talent. In short, I thought that it was rubbish! Now that is what I call criticism! But – wait a minute! I saw a review of Mr. Artsy’s work by a well-known art critic. He stated that Mr. Artsy’s work was primitive, possessing great charm, always colorful, decorative and festive in mood, a celebration of life. The difference in opinion regarding this artist’s work shows you that criticism differs from person to person. And it will be difficult to resolve the differences between the two. Some of the best artists have suffered from undue criticism, sometimes causing emotional distress, or worse, to the artist on the receiving end. 

Recently, I painted a watercolor of the coasting schooner Australia. The rotted hull of this vessel, which is all that is left of the schooner, resides at Mystic Seaport in Connecticut. The painting was being exhibited as part of a Citrus Watercolor Society (CWS) show and sale at the Homosassa Wildlife Park. The judge at this exhibit, who is a member of the Ocala Art Group, offered to critique any of the paintings on exhibit. I accepted to see how this painting would fair in a good critique. In summary, he advised me that basically this was a great painting. The ship was well painted, the sky was perfect, but – I had over worked the wave action in the painting. So – what to do? I had put too much emphasis on white caps on the waves. I had over worked this portion of the painting. Upon reflection I had to say, why did I do this? I had sailed my own boat for over 30 years. I should have known better. But the judge offered, “Listen, paint over most of the whitecaps and make it realistic.” He was right. I sat down and removed 75% of the whitecaps and ended up with a better painting. Thank you judge – not for criticism, but for giving this painting a good critique leading to a better painting. Fellow artists of the CWS, if your painting is giving you fits get another artist to give a critique on how to improve it.

Criticism, n.* – The act of making judgments; analysis of qualities and evaluation of comparative worth esp., the critical consideration and judgment of literary and artistic work.
Critique, n.* – 1 A critical analysis or evaluation of a subject, situation, literary work, etc. 2 The art of criticizing; criticism.
*Websters New World Dictionary

Looking Ahead – It Will Be Time to Celebrate!

May 2021

Press Release by Norm Freyer

Do you miss the monthly meetings of the Citrus Watercolor Society (CWS)?  Do you miss the CWS shows/sales held each year? Do you miss the demonstrations of noted visiting artists? Have you completed you COVID vaccinations? Have you had enough of social distancing? Well, there are plans underway to celebrate the return of our monthly sessions and other activities. Our president, Darla Goldberg, has plans for the coming Fall period which will help us return to some feeling of normalcy.

Do you miss the monthly meetings of the Citrus Watercolor Society (CWS)?  Do you miss the CWS shows/sales held each year? Do you miss the demonstrations of noted visiting artists? Have you completed you COVID vaccinations? Have you had enough of social distancing? Well, there are plans underway to celebrate the return of our monthly sessions and other activities. Our president, Darla Goldberg, has plans for the coming Fall period which will help us return to some feeling of normalcy.

The CWS is planning on restarting our monthly meetings in August!!  With the promise of the widespread availability of vaccinations for COVID, we feel comfortable beginning the meetings again. Members will be encouraged to wear masks during meetings. There are exciting plans for this meeting.  A real “Welcome Back” celebration!   Remember, my friends, we have a special spirit that lives within each of us. That spirit is that of a creator. I am excited about some of the creative ideas planned for the coming meetings in the Fall. Yes – as watercolorists we all have that special something which allows us to generate creative watercolor art as well as interesting meeting agendas. All that is planned cannot be disclosed at this time. Please mark your calendars and plan to join us on August 13th.  Keep checking our website for updates and activity!

I hope that you had the opportunity to view some of the artwork of Susan Strawbridge who was the featured artist during the month of March at the Lakes Region Library. She is a signature member of the Florida Watercolor Society, and also a member of the Citrus Watercolor Society, the Nature Coast Painters, and is a member artist at the Franklin Anderson Gallery. Susan says that she finds the inspiration for her watercolor paintings in nature, seeking subjects for their color and light. Some of her favorite subjects include Florida’s wildlife, landscapes and plants. She also travels to Maine annually and enjoys capturing its unique light in landscapes, seascapes and wildlife. You can view more of Susan’s artwork on the Member Gallery on the CWS web site.