Exploring Abstract Realism

Don Longo

Saturdays 10:00AM - 12:30PM

Fall Session: 10/6, 10/13, 10/20, 10/27, 2018

$150 Per Session

Class Description

In this class we will change the real appearance of forms found in nature to simpler forms that are composed of SHAPES, LINES, COLORS and VALUES

You will use a combination of:

• FAUVIST Colors (wild unnatural colors)

• EXPRESSIONISTIC Designs (distortion and/or exaggeration)

• CUBISM Theories (showing different angles of one item in one composition)

Acrylic paint will be your medium.


About the Instructor

Don grew up in Lee, a small town in the beautiful Berkshire Mountains of Western Massachusetts. Living within five miles of the famous American painter, Norman Rockwell, he would occasionally ride his bike to his studio and watch him paint from a distance. Rockwell’s realistic paintings of everyday life inspired Don to do his own artwork of places and things that were important to him. At the age of ten, he helped design his grandmother's tombstone, and from then on he knew that art was going to be a major part of his life.

Don graduated from Westfield State College in Westfield, Massachusetts, where he majored in Physical Education with a minor in Art Education. After graduation he came to Texas, where he received his Master’s Degree in PE/Kinesiology at Stephen F. Austin State University. His first teaching position was at Sherman High School in Sherman, Texas, where he taught PE and Art. Five years later he moved to Irving, Texas, where he continued teaching art at Irving High School. During that time, he went back to school at the University of North Texas to complete his Texas Art Education Certification. A few years later, he transferred to J.J. Pearce High School in Richardson, Texas, where he taught a variety of art classes for the next 32 years, retiring in 2017 after 39 years in the profession.

He enjoys teaching introductory art classes in which students learn the basic skills of art and design. Seeing their talent and confidence grow is the most satisfying and rewarding part of his profession.

He now works in his backyard studio on a weekly basis, creating “intuitive” abstract paintings using a variety of techniques and applications of paint and three-dimensional materials. He loves experimenting with paint and textures to see where the process takes him. He believes there is never a mistake, only a learning experience.

He also continues teaching adult art classes at a local gallery – The Artists Showplace in Dallas, Texas. This allows him to continue educating new artists and seeing what great art comes out of them.


Supply List

Pencil and eraser

9" x 11" sketchbook


Paint Palette (a cheap cookie sheet works well. I will supply palette paper)

16" x 20" stretched canvas

Acrylic paint brushes, various sizes No. 2, 4, 8 and 12

(These brushes must be for acrylic paint, not watercolor paint) 

Tubes of BASICS Acrylic paint.  HEAVY BODY will also work but more expensive.


Beginners Paint Set

Burnt Sienna

Cadmium Orange Hue

Cadmium Red Medium Hue

Cadmium Yellow Medium Hue

Cobalt Blue Hue

Titanium White

Mars Black


Intermediate/Advanced Set

Burnt Umber

Napthol Crimson

Brilliant Purple

Pthalo Green (blue shade)

Pthalo Blue (green shade)

Yellow Light Hansa

Hooker’s Green Hue Permanent

Cerulean Blue Hue 

Ultramarine Blue

Alizarin Crimson Hue Permanent

Cadmium Orange Hue

Mars Black

Titanium White

Light & Value in Painting

Lou Ann Bower

Lou Ann bower

Light & Value in Painting

(Oil or Watercolor)


June 8 & 9



Class Description:

In this class, students may paint in oil or watercolor. Lou Ann works with students on all levels individually as well as collectively, teaching color, composition, perspective, value, and other very useful techniques and skills. She has been teaching for fifteen years and you can look at her work on her art website: louannbower.com. This workshop will emphasize the importance of light, values, and shadow for an effective and lovely painting. The instructor will lecture and demonstrate painting during the class. Classes are relaxed and fun.


Supply List:

For Watercolor Painters

Watercolor paper - 140 lb. wt. (Cold press)

Drawing board - foam board is acceptable (approx. 20” - 30”) or 1/4” sanded plywood board (Lowe’s can cut it for you)

Watercolor brushes:  No. 12 round, 1/2”wide, flat,  #3 round (1” long and very thin)

Wash brush:  at least 2” wide with soft hairs -  buy inexpensive brush

Watercolor palette - plastic pan with side compartments for paint with lid - 11 1/2” x 15”

Natural sponges - 1 small

Masking tape - 1” wide

Paper towels

Kneadable eraser or art gum eraser

Med. soft pencil

Roll of  paper toweling

Salt shaker with salt in it

Small notebook

Small apron or workshirt


TUBES OF WATERCOLOR:  Van Gogh, Cotman,  or Windsor Newton (most expensive):Cadmium Yellow, Cadmium Red Light, Yellow Ochre, Burnt Sienna, Alizarin Crimson,   Cerulean Blue,Cobalt Blue, Ultramarine Blue, Viridian Green, Sap Green, Burnt Umber


For Oil Painters

Brushes: Sizes #4, 6, 8, & 12 filbert  (soft and bristle); Sizes #3, 6 and 8 round  (soft); 1  1” filbert (soft and bristle); 1 fan brush


Canvas panels:   16” X 20” (2)

1 palette box with blue lid & separate pad of wax top liners that fit in box

or use wax top paper plates 

1 Painting knife, metal, 1 3/4” long, trowel blade

Quart paint thinner  

Container w/lid for thinner (coffee can or jar

Roll of paper toweling  




Lemon Yellow

Yellow Ochre

Cadmium Red Light

Ultramarine Blue

Cobalt Blue

Cerulean Blue

Viridian Green

Burnt Sienna

Burnt Umber

Titanium White - large


Portraiture in Oil

Lou Ann Bower




JULY 27 & 28

9:30 AM - 4:00 PM


Class Description:

In this class, students will learn the basics of drawing & painting a portrait. Lou Ann will talk about and demonstrate the steps in creating a good portrait. Questions are always encouraged and personal attention is always given. Sessions are informal.  Model photos will be given to each student but your personal photos are welcome. Do join us... you may surprise yourself of the outcome!



Supply List:

Brushes: Sizes #4, 6, 8, & 12 filbert  (soft and bristle); Sizes #3, 6 and 8 round  (soft); 1  1” filbert (soft and bristle); 1 fan brush


Canvas:   16” X 20” (2)

1 palette box with blue lid & separate pad of wax top liners that fit in box

or use wax top paper plates 

1 Painting knife, metal, 1 3/4” long, trowel blade

Quart paint thinner  

Container w/lid for thinner (coffee can or jar

Roll of paper toweling  




Lemon Yellow

Yellow Ochre

Cadmium Red Light

Ultramarine Blue

Cobalt Blue

Cerulean Blue

Viridian Green

Burnt Sienna

Burnt Umber

Titanium White - large

Pouring Acrylic Abstract Painting With Luminosity & High Contrast

Jo Moncrief

Jo Moncrief

Pouring Acrylic Abstract Painting With Luminosity & High Constrast


April 3 - 6

10:00 AM - 4:30 PM


Class Description:

The focus of this workshop is on ways to create abstract acrylic paintings that have visual interest, excitement and drama. Jo will be demonstrating (twice daily) on yupo or canvas. Each painting will begin as a wet into wet pouring of colors.  This method allows colors to explode, mingle and blend with each other - creating magical, unique and unpredictable effects.  

There will be daily exercises to help with the comprehension of the subject matter.  The emphasis will be for each student to understand the steps in creating abstract art & complete as many paintings as possible during the workshop.

Jo will explain how she uses composition, color, values, principles & elements of design, contrast and the rule of thirds while working through a painting to finality.  She will demonstrate the advantages of a limited palette (see supply list below), the Munsell Color Wheel vs. the traditional color wheel and how grays enhance any painting.  There will be strong emphasis on how to use color as a value and the surprising benefits of learning how to read paint labels.  Jo will also teach the importance of understanding the bias of colors and how they affect your palette and the importance of a focal point.  


Artist’s Statement:

I am a self-taught artist.  I have taken painting and ceramics courses in college, workshops and classes from artists whose artwork I admire.  I paint or draw every day.  I can do realistic artwork, impressionism, cubism, abstract and non-objective.  By far, the most mentally challenging artwork is abstracts and non-objective painting. 

I am not a gambler with money, but I like to treat my art like poker - a series of contemplated risks and a good chance for a jackpot now and then. It is impossible to not put a piece of yourself in your artwork.  Each contact with the surface of the painting is a decision on your part, a move, a color added, a tilt of the canvas.  Each of these can bring great success or near disaster.  

I begin each painting as a wet into wet pouring of colors.  This method allows colors to explode, mingle and blend with each other - creating magical, unique and unpredictable effects that simply cannot be painted by hand. Allowing the paint to flow, I use composition, hues, values, principles and elements of design, contrast and the rule of thirds while working through a painting to finality.  

Each painting sits in a dark area of my home for days, weeks or longer to study and look at it in different lighting.  This helps in determining any changes that need to be made.

Upon completion, my artwork is sealed in a UV polymer varnish that protects the surface from dust and dirt and helps to prevent fading due to ultraviolet radiation.

My paintings have received awards  in many juried exhibitions and juried art festivals.  In 2016, two of my paintings, Turbulence & Tranquility and Searching for What was,  were accepted into North Light Books’ fourth annual Best of Acrylic competition AcrylicWorks 4: Captivating Color!   The book was released in May, 2017.  The artwork accepted in the book (quote from Publisher) “shows excellence and originality in acrylic paint achieved via a variety of styles and subjects. “ 


Supply List:

Artist and/or Student grade paints/hues- tubes/jars/liquid paints all work equally well in this workshop.  Jo uses mainly student grade tube paints & hues and a few fluid acrylics.  Any major brand like Liquitex, Liquitex Basics, Golden, etc.    

Jo buys most of her supplies through www.jerrysartarama.com   - or www.cheapjoes.com – be sure  to allow 2 weeks or more for ordering.       -Alizarin Crimson (hue only) or Quin Magenta (or both) – Jo prefers both –


-Liquitex Brilliant Blue – best Cerulean blue color

-Cadmium Red Medium hue

-Cadmium Yellow Pale or Hansa Yellow Light – look for single pigment PY3

-Cad Yellow medium, Orange Yellow Azo, or Diarylide yellow  -look for single pigment PY83

-Dioxazine purple

-Mars black and titanium white  

-Metallic gold and silver  -  OR craft store metallics work well–  **

-Pthalo Green (blue)  

-Pthalo Blue (green)

-Ultramarine Blue    


Liquitex Pouring Medium – 1 quart or larger – do not buy Golden Pouring Medium – Liquitex only – essential for pouring paints – try to order from Jerry's or Cheap Joe's – best prices

Liquitex Gloss Medium & Varnish –  OPTIONAL  - one pint or more – Jo will show how to use this in thin, transparent glazes of color that can alter the value or tone.

** please note – it is not imperative that you buy the above paints but you will see the best results if you do so.        


-Bring any of your personal favorite paints also – Jo will demonstrate how to mix your favorite paints from the limited palette above

-Plastic bottles for pouring & storing paints – prefer bottles with spouts –  optional  - but srecommended  – 6-12 bottles - Sam's has good large plastic spout bottles -  Item  # 595530 – in restaurant supplies – can be found in Beauty Supply stores also.  These can be found online also at different restaurant and art suppliers.


Brushes - your preference but suggest watercolor style brushes or synthetic sable in 1/2” to 1-1/2” and then some finer brushes for detail. Don't bring bristle brushes,


-Watercolor Paper, Yupo, canvas –  your choice –

-Canvas - suggest 8” to 12”  canvas for daily exercises (Jo will demonstrate only on canvas or yupo) – up to 24” for personal paintings

-Yupo (preferred) or watercolor paper – minimum of 5 full sheets or more of lightweight yupo for daily exercises.  Your weight preference for watercolor paper.  Many exercises will be done on yupo.

   2 large spray bottles for:

-Distilled Water – OPTIONAL - for mixing large amounts of paint (5-8 oz) otherwise tap water is fine – your choice

-Alcohol 70% is my preference  - 90% can “burn” a hole in the paints at certain points of drying & should be used within limits

-1 pkg. plastic paint scrapers (found in tile department of Lowe’s & Home Depot) - 3 sizes in a pkg.

-Small plastic bowls– white only - bowls/plates or Styrofoam bowls/plates for mixing and pouring  paints.   There are great HDPE plastic bowls at some Dollar Trees – 3 cereal bowls for $1.00.  These are not always available but excellent when found.  Jo will provide one or more (depending on availability) for each student.  No colors other than white please.  

-Paper towels,  scissors



-Disposable gloves to work in – this is a request but not mandatory but is a good habit to form when painting

-Stencils, stamps, etc, – for making interesting marks    

-Bring old acrylic or watercolor paintings that are not working – you must be willing to paint over these paintings – these make a great base to create new artwork.

-Jo will demonstrate using the Pat Dews Atomizer – expensive but worth the price , rubber color shaper, watercolor crayons, etc. - if time permits


Stretch & Paint Your Own Canvas

Mark Whitmarsh

January 25 - 26, 2019

10:00 AM - 4:00 PM


Class Description

Have you ever wanted to create a painting with unusual dimensions and cannot find a ready-made canvas that will suit your design? Fear no more! In this brand-new 2-day workshop, master painter Mark Whitmarsh will show you how to construct your own stretcher bars and stretch your own canvas to meet your artistic needs.  Students will bring their own stretcher bars and canvas and all other tools will be provided. As a bonus, Mark will demonstrate techniques for approaching abstract art and students will complete the class by creating artwork on their own self made canvas- an original piece from A-Z!

Supply List

3 Yard Canvas

5 Claymark Select Pine Boards 1 1/2” x 6” (Home Depot). Check for straightness.

Paint, Brushes and Palette of your choice.

Gesso (Optional)

About the Instructor

Mark Whitmarsh has been painting professionally for over three decades. He was born and raised in Lakewood, Colorado, near the foothills of the beautiful Rocky Mountains, where backpacking and ski racing were his favorite outdoor activities during his early years. Art has always been very important to him from grade school through high school. He showed in galleries during his teenage years, winning an award in the national watercolor society exhibit at 18 years old. 

Mark studied at the University of Wyoming and the Rocky Mountain School of Art and Design. During this five-year period, he had the opportunity to study with Mark Dickson, the great abstract landscape painter from Denver.

This was a pivotal period for the artist, and during this time, he gravitated towards a more reductionist attitude toward painting landscapes. Strongly influenced by the Abstract Expressionism movement throughout the 1990s and into the turn of the century, Mark developed a freely expressive mode of creativity. 

Mark's work has been exhibited throughout the southwest, including New Mexico, Colorado, Texas and Oklahoma. He has had 22 solo shows at Southwest Gallery in Dallas, Texas. He has also participated in many group shows throughout the U.S., including, New York, San Francisco and Chicago. His paintings hang in many public and private collections, including Fountain Place in downtown Dallas, and Lincoln Plaza in North Dallas.

Selected Exhibitions:

2009-2018 exhibited at Southwest Gallery (group shows)

1994-2012 exhibited every year at Southwest Gallery (all one-man shows) 

2000-2010 included in select art gallery shows

1999 World Fine Art Gallery one man exhibit (New York City, NY)

1994-1996 included in the group shows listed below:

Contemporary Southwest Art Gallery (Santa Fe), Texas Figurative Show, Newman Gallery (Dallas), Jack Meier Gallery (Houston), Monte Wade Fine Art Gallery (San Antonio), Boyd Levinson Gallery (Dallas) and Circle Fine Art Gallery (Denver)

Selected Collections:

I.M Pei building at Fountain Place (Dallas)

Pacificare Corporation (Dallas, Houston and San Antonio)

Mary Kay Cosmetics private collection

Roger Staubach private collection

Brinker Corporation

Rocky Mountain Investors (Denver)

Hugh and Walters (Houston)

Justin Leonard (Professional Golfer)

Fujitsu Corporation private collection

Central Bank of Westminster (Colorado)


Cover Design Modern Poetry

Cover winner for Artist Encyclopedia of Living Artists

Artists' Community Partner Award (Colleyville, TX)

Greyhound Adoption League Award (Dallas)


Art in America

Dallas Observer

Southwest Art Magazine

Luxe Magazine

Patron Magazine

American Artists Series (45 images published)

Paula Pillow

In her studio in Grapevine, Texas, Paula Pillow explores images, shapes and patterns using water media. Her background in painting, quilting and fiber art is a natural connection to her ability to infuse a sense of color, pattern and movement into her work. Through her use of line and color, she captures an element of the unexpected and explores the visual textures.

She uses transparent layers and patterns to develop the negative space surrounding the focal point in her paintings. A new pattern or layer emerges and sets the stage for the focal point to stand relatively untouched. The process of creating a new way to view the image motivates her.  

“The freedom to start with abstract shapes that become the foundation for more realistic images is the beginning step in my creative process. The destination is not known, and it is the journey that is exciting.”

Paula studied art at Texas Christian University. She is a signature member of the Society of Watercolor Artists, the International Society of Experimental Artists, and the International Society of Acrylic Painters, and is a member of the Southwest Watercolor Society and the National Pen Women League of America. She has been in juried shows in Texas, Louisiana, California, Pennsylvania, and Florida, and has won multiple awards. Her work has been published in Mary Todd Beam’s book The Creative Edge: Exercises to Celebrate Your Creative Self.