Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Updated Website

Today I published a new version of my website at www.jimoberst.com.  My goals were to simplify it, focusing on news and other timely information, and to highlight my medium and large-size paintings that are still available, and to make it easy to purchase them with some PayPal Buy Now buttons.  I'll be adding more paintings from time to time, as well as changing the painting image that's on the Home page.  My small paintings are still displayed and sold on my other website, www.weeklywatercolor.com.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Brush Strokes Painting of the Month

My painting Big Ol' Barn won Painting of the Month honors at the December 10 Brush Strokes meeting.  This painting is based on a large barn I came upon in Ohio.  The painting is for sale for $325 framed, and is hanging in the Coronado Center in Hot Springs Village, Arkansas until January 14.

Painting Commission: Honfleur

I just completed a commission painting of Honfleur Harbor.  I visited Honfleur, in Normandy, France, earlier this year, and found it very scenic and a perfect painting subject.  I've since painted a number of watercolor paintings of various views of the harbor and posted them on my weekly watercolor site - www.weeklywatercolor.com.  Several have sold; it seems that everyone who visits Honfleur looks for some way to remind themselves of the quaint town and harbor.  This painting was done for a client in Massachusetts from one of the photos I took in Honfleur.  It turned out to be much more detailed than my original intention (as many of my paintings do), but I do like the final painting, and so did my client.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Workshop with Alvaro Castagnet

During October I attended a 5-day watercolor workshop with Alvaro Castagnet in Sedona, Arizona, sponsored by the Sedona Arts Center.  There were 14 students, and we painted outdoors most of the time.  Most of the students were not from Arizona.  Alvaro did many of very good demos, and spent time describing what he thinks about when he paints.  He also provided very useful critiques of the students' paintings.  I was challenged during the workshop, and now after it, to put a lot of Alvaro's tips into action... which hasn't been easy!  But I intend to keep at it.  I would like to be able to capture in my paintings some of the mystery and looseness that Alvaro injects into all of his paintings.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Demo Painting at Gallery 726

On Thursday evening, September 23, most galleries in Hot Springs participated in a program designed to educate people about art and introduce them to the galleries.  This program was by invitation, and included talks, demos, food, and drink.

I did a watercolor demo at Gallery 726, which took about an hour and a half.  I've posted the result here... perhaps a bit over the top, but perfect for lovers of strong color, high impact paintings.  It's titled Early Snowfall.

If you'd like to see more of my paintings,  visit either Gallery 726 or Artists Workshop Gallery in Hot Springs, or take a look at my two websites:

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Workshop with Tony Van Hasselt

During the last week of August I attended a plein air workshop given by Tony Van Hasselt.  It was held on the Maine coast, in Rockland.  I signed up for this because I had heard that Tony is an excellent teacher, and because I wanted to learn how to successfully approach plein air painting - my previous attempts yielded lackluster results.  It also dovetailed into a longer New England vacation that we had planned.

The workshop was great.  Tony is a plein air expert, has great advice about how to paint realistic landscapes, and has a wonderful approach to critiques.  I did several plein air paintings; the best of the lot is posted here, along with my painting setup.  I also took hundreds of photos of the Maine coast, so my cup runneth over with references for future paintings.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Juried into 2010 Diamond Exhibit

Today I learned that two of my paintings, Mickey's Bar-B-Que (yes, the place on Park Avenue just north of town) and Taking a Break, were juried into the 2010 Diamond National Exhibit. This exhibit is sponsored by the Fine Arts Center of Hot Springs, and draws art in all mediums from around the region. Drop by the Fine Arts Center during August to enjoy the exhibit.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

3-Day Watercolor Workshop

I taught a 3-day Watercolor Workshop on July 12 - 14 in Hot Springs Village, AR, under the auspices of Brush Strokes Art Club. Twelve students were subjected to my approach to watercolor painting, including talks on design, perspective, symbols, landscape guidelines, what makes a good shape, color, etc. Somehow they all seemed to not only survive, but to prosper. Intrinsic to the workshop was a half-sheet, 2-hour demo each morning. I've posted here photos of the class and of the three demo paintings I completed. For more information on my watercolor workshops, including how to schedule one for your group, please visit my website workshops page.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Best of Show in Brush Strokes Exhibit

I'm pleased to report that my painting Gallery Walk won Best of Show at the Brush Strokes Garland County Library exhibit. Selma Blackburn was judge. The show is very nice and worth a look; stop by to see it during July and August.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Best of Show in Brush Strokes Exhibit

The Brush Strokes art club holds its major exhibit each year at the Woodlands Auditorium in Hot Springs Village. This year I was awarded Best of Show for my half-sheet watercolor painting Arlington Hotel, depicting the famous Hot Springs icon. The judge was artist, instructor, and author Bob Rohm. The exhibit continues through the end of June.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Juried into 2010 MSW Annual Exhibit

Last week I found out that I've had one painting juried into the Mid-Southern Watercolorists Annual Exhibit this year. It is Sound of Silence (shown here), and is based on some views of Lake Ouachita in Arkansas. In this painting I tried to capture the size and grandeur of the lake, in comparison to the tiny fisherman in a rowboat.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Timothy J. Clark Watercolor Workshop

I'm just back from a 3-day watercolor workshop taught by Timothy J. Clark in Van Buren, Arkansas. It was somewhat unusual compared to most watercolor workshops, which often concentrate on technique and simplified color and design theory. Tim teaches at the Art Student League in New York, and his class was more aimed at developing artists than "making paintings". He focused more on drawing, creating themes and rhythm, and lessons from "classical" artists. His demos were very interesting. His last-day critique focused more on where each student most needed to develop his talent, than on the particular paintings he completed in class, though these of course provided some input.

In all, a valuable and very useful workshop. All of the folks at the Center for Art and Education in Van Buren, where the workshop was held, were great. It was a talented class, with many experienced oil painters trying their hand at watercolor quite successfully. The attached image is of a painting I did on the first day, a basket of lemons that Tim set up.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Watercolor Workshop Scheduled

I'm scheduled to teach a 3-day watercolor workshop under the auspices of Brush Strokes in Hot Springs Village on July 14th to 16th. The signup sheet filled (12 people) the day we announced it. That is both encouraging and intimidating. I'm really looking forward to doing this - I've enjoyed the days I've taught previously, but never did an entire workshop myself. To learn more about the workshop, click here. We do have a waiting list, and if the demand "holds up", I'll probably teach a second session.

The image is of a quarter-sheet painting of the fountain in front of the Ponce deLeon center in hot springs village. This painting is hanging in the Woodlands lobby as part of Brush Strokes' HSV 40th Anniversary exhibit. There is a "Meet the Artists" reception there at 2 pm on August 24th.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Featured Artist at Gallery 726

I will be featured at Gallery 726, located at 726 Central Avenue in Hot Springs, during the month of April. In this show, titled Town and Country, I'll be exhibiting a variety of watercolor paintings - rural landscapes, seascapes, and urban landscapes of Little Rock and downtown Hot Springs. The attached image is of one of my new paintings - Lazy River - that will be on display.

Please join me at my reception on Friday, April 2, from 5 to 9 pm during Gallery Walk, to enjoy my art and say "Hello". If you can't make it this coming Friday, stop by Gallery 726 anytime during April to see my exhibit. Gallery 726 is open from 10 am to 5 pm Tuesday through Saturday. I hope to see you this coming Friday.

I'll also have several more paintings on display just down the street at Artists Workshop Gallery, 810 Central Avenue.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Some new paintings

I framed a few new paintings to display at Gallery 726 in April and May... I'll be featured there in April. Both of these are half-sheet paintings, and were developed after painting a similar weekly watercolor painting (these are eighth sheets). I've done it both ways... painting a large painting based on a weekly watercolor painting, and painting a weekly watercolor based on a large painting. Of course, given the vagaries of watercolor, none of these pairs of paintings are "identical". The boat scene is titled Taking a Break, and the river scene is Lazy River.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Weekly Watercolor Update

It's been about two and a half months since I began my weekly watercolor project - adding an additional small watercolor painting to my weekly painting activities - and so far, I've been faithful. In fact, I'm a few paintings ahead, having just posted #13, Backyard Barn.

As you may know, I am offering these paintings on my Weekly Watercolor website for only $100 each, including shipping within the United States, so art lovers will have access to a large selection of my original art at a very affordable price. Most of these paintings will be 7-1/2" x 11", suitable for a 12" x 16" or 14" x 18" frame. These gems are large enough to enjoy, and small enough to be hung almost anywhere. If you haven't visited the site lately, please do so - there will always be new paintings to see. You can also sign up for automatic updates on the website About page, or on my supporting Weekly Watercolor Blog.

I'm excited about this project, and I hope you enjoy watching as a
new painting is added each week. If you would like to follow my art
activities on Facebook, you can do so by clicking on this link and
becoming a fan of my art page.

Thursday, February 11, 2010


Jeanette and I just returned from a two-week vacation in Kauai. I think we came home too soon, with all this snow! In any case, I took a lot of photos, and hope to paint some Hawaiian scenes soon. But before we left, I had Hawaii on my mind, so I did a half-sheet painting based on a photo I took a few years ago on Maui. Here it is, titled Kihei Beach, Maui. That's the western Maui mountains in the background. I'll probably be displaying this painting at one of the galleries downtown in the next few months.