Archive for September, 2022

Offering some watercolor window tips.

September 30, 2022

I have a watercolor commission in progress, and while I’m waiting for my window to dry, I thought I’d share something I’m often asked. When it comes to rendering windows, I’m happy to share what I’m doing. If I find a better way in the future, I’ll share that as well.

First, I draw out the window with mechanical pencil and ruler. Then I take a 005 Micron Black pen and use a ruler to trace over my pencil lines. I never use Black in watercolor; rather I mix varying amounts of Winsor Green and Alizarin Crimson until I get a rich black. The amount I mix for each window pane will vary, as more crimson will give a warm black, and more green will give a cold black. I place a blob of watercolor in the center of the window pane, then use a 4H pencil with a good sharp point to draw the water to the edges and corners of the pane. I let that dry. Then I move to the next, mix a new color, which will not be the same black as the other, but I think that is good. When finished, I can see a variety of dark, light, cool, warm across the spread of window panes.

Thanks for reading.


Friday Morning Stirrings in The Gallery at Redlands

September 30, 2022
Seated behind the desk at The Gallery at Redlands

Thought is only a flash between two long nights, but this flash is everything.

Henri Poincaré

There is little time to write, but I wanted to post the remarkable line from Poincaré I just read early this morning (why do I awaken at 4:30 a.m. after my first night spent in Palestine? This occurred last week as well).

I believe most creative minds dwell in that rhythm between ebb and flow, darkness and light, depression and inspiration–long nights of darkness interrupted by a visitation from the muse that spurs us to pick up the brush, pen, musical instrument, and begin a new cycle. But it takes a mathematical genius such as Poincaré to encapsulate that experience beautifully in a short line such as that posted above. I am thrilled every time I read a line of words that pour out of a writer that way.

Thank you, Henri. Now I am back to work . . .

Gearing up for a Big Art Weekend

September 29, 2022

Jason Jones photograph of me in today’s edition of The Palestine Herald

We hit the ground running upon arrival in Palestine today. Our monthly Art Walk is Saturday, 10-3:00, and I’ll be teaching a watercolor class 12-2:00, and offer an additional one if needed, 5-7:00 for the same price. We’ll paint a colorful bison in our two-hour exercise. All materials are provided. Cost is $35. Students and seniors over age 55 will pay $30. I’m posting the bison below, followed by the article appearing in today’s Palestine Herald. My genuine thanks goes out to editor Penny Lynn Webb, always a supportive friend of the arts, and reporter Jason Jones who interviewed me a few days ago.

Our subject for the watercolor class

The Downtown Art Walk will once again feature painting classes during its monthly event this weekend. Classes were added to the event in August and the Dogwood Art Council is excited to continue the instructional series.

The featured instructor for October is renowned watercolor artist David Tripp of Recollections 54. He will instruct classes starting at noon on Saturday, Oct. 1 in the Redlands Hotel conference room.

Tripp, a native Missourian, grew up in St. Louis and studied art in rural northeast Missouri while earning his bachelor’s degree from Truman State University.

“I’ve been drawing since I could hold a pencil,” Tripp said. “I was a terrible student and had zero interest in school, but my art earned me a full ride at Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri. Somehow during that time, I woke up intellectually.”

Tripp went on to earn his Masters and Doctorate before spending the next three decades teaching high school and college. Since retiring he has focused full time on art.

Tripp’s watercolors feature small-town American sights fading from our landscape, but not our memories.

“I like to focus my art on American nostalgia,” Tripp said. “I find inspiration in relics from the past that are still standing. Old architecture especially seems to invoke an emotional response.”

Tripp has been the owner of The Gallery at Redlands since 2021 and splits his time between Palestine and his home in Arlington every week.

The Art Walk takes place from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m., but the class will be from noon until 2 p.m. Cost is $35 per person or $30 for students and seniors age 55 and above.

“We’ll be watercoloring an 8 x10 bison in bright colors, ‘Southwest Art’ style,” Tripp said. “All materials will be provided.”

Seats must be reserved in advance by calling David Tripp at 817-821-8702 or emailing Seats are still available and all major credit cards are accepted.

The Redlands Hotel is located at 400 N. Queen St. in Palestine. For more information call 903-922-5794 or visit

To learn more about David Tripp visit or follow his blog at


Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Morning Sketches & Musings

September 28, 2022
Attempted sketches of what stands outside my bedroom window

The vision of the artist or the poet is the intermediate determinant between the subject (the person) and the objective pole (the world-waiting-to-be).

Rollo May, The Courage to Create

The tactile sensation of dragging graphite over a paper surface, to me, is intoxicating. I seem to fall into a trance when I attempt to render crowns of tree leaves with the scribbling of a pencil. The change in breathing I sense when I suddenly shift to the mode of scratching out the irregular surface of tree bark also sends me into ecstasy. I am alive with feeling when I engage in these tasks.

Positioning myself upright in bed, opening my sketchbook, selecting the right pencil and sharpener, and then fixing my eye on the tree, luminous and resplendent in the morning sunlight just outside my window–what a way to live! The invitation to sketch is irresistible. The image on my page never approaches the splendor of what I’m seeing and feeling, but that doesn’t matter. What matters is what happens to me while I sketch. My world suddenly improves; my life senses new hope.

Knocking Upon Silence

September 27, 2022

This morning’s view from my bedroom window

We knock upon silence for an answering music.

Archibald MacLeish quoting a Chinese poet

The wondrous light that greeted me this morning through my open window made me think of Annie Dillard’s reference to “the tree of lights” in her book Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. I never forgot that quote, and now that I am re-reading Rollo May’s The Courage to Create, I’m gleaning gold just as lustrous as that in the leaves above as I read his account of Cezanne’s revelatory experience gazing upon the colors of trees. I also hear reverberations of my friend Clarry Hubbard as he writes poetically about the trees he visits on his morning hikes.

I have started a commission for one of my dearest friends, and would love to post a picture of how it is coming along, but alas, the part I am working on is now covered in masquing fluid and flooded with yet another tree color. I have this feeling that once I remove the “bandages” I’m going to see something sublime, but that is not going to happen till it’s 100% dry. The problem of working on 300 lb. watercolor paper is the long drying process that comes with it.

More later. Thanks for reading.

Preparing for Saturday’s Watercolor Class

September 26, 2022
The Lone Bison

The fall art season continues to heat up. Saturday will feature Palestine’s monthly Art Walk from 10-3:00, and I will be offering a watercolor class 12-2:00 in The Redlands Hotel conference room in the lobby area down the hall from our Gallery at Redlands. We’ll be watercoloring an 8 x 10″ bison in bright colors, “Southwest Art” style. All materials will be provided. Cost is $35 ($30 for students and seniors age 55 and above). I always look forward to these experiences, and would love to see any of you in the area who would like to participate. Seats must be reserved in advance by calling me at (817) 821-8702 or emailing me at I take all major credit cards. We still have seats available.

Thanks for reading.

Eudaimonia in the Studio

September 25, 2022
Tedious work on details at the moment, but I’m loving it

Beneath our loquacious chatter, there is a silent language of our whole being which yearns for art and the beauty from which art comes.

Rollo May, My Quest for Beauty

The quiet Sunday offers a respite from the sustained pace we have had to keep up the last few days. Yesterday we had to leave Palestine by 2:00 in order to make the reception for the Fall Show sponsored by the Lake Granbury Art Association.


I was thrilled to receive an Award of Excellence and a handsome check for my Palimpsest entry. I don’t compete nearly as often as I used to, and frankly, seldom win when I do compete. In fact, I have not even been juried into competitions recently when I have entered. So, last night was sweet and I’m very thankful for all the good will poured out by the crowd in attendance.

When the reception ended, I walked to the town square and entered the Baron’s Creek Wine Room to see the new show that has been installed, sponsored by The Eyes of Texas Fine Art Gallery.

He is No Longer Here

I was pleased with the overall quality of the show, and appreciate where my full-sized watercolor is hanging. I’m looking forward to the opening of this show as well.

Today is it is back to work in the studio. The large panoramic watercolor I’m working on with the view of Spring Street in downtown Palestine is proving to be long hours of work, but I’m enjoying every brushstroke, and glad to have the time to pursue it.

Thanks for reading.

Saturday Morning Bliss in The Gallery at Redlands

September 24, 2022

There is only time to voice text a quick blog. There are many events going on in Palestine this morning, including a major bicycle race. People are running around in all directions, and I am grateful for this quiet bubble in the gallery where I can resume work on this painting that is soothing my soul. I am still working hard on my new details, But ultimately want to get back to the big issue of juxtaposing cold dark shadows against bright sunlit leaves.

Thanks for reading.

3:30 a.m. Visitation (it’s never my plan to rise this early)

September 23, 2022

Dawn view outside Suite 207, Redlands Hotel. Carnegie Library undergoing extensive renovation.

When the muse stirs and awakens me, I find it necessary to rise, no matter the hour, open my journal, and listen.

David Tripp

With the arrival of fall, I am sensing more than ever something fragrant in the air. Artistic souls in East Texas are stirred with new activity as the art season begins to revive. The Eyes of Texas Fine Art Gallery magazine is approaching deadline for the holiday season issue expected the first week in November. There has been a flurry of activity as this goes to press.

Next weekend, October 1, I will teach a watercolor class in the Redlands Hotel conference room from 12-2:00. The seats are already filling with a limit of sixteen participants. All materials are provided. Cost is $35, with students and seniors over the age of 55 discounted at $30. Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult. If you are interested, you must register through me and pay in advance. Credit cards are accepted. My phone is (817) 821-8702, or email We will paint an 8 x 10″ bison in bright Southwest Art colors.

The Edom Art Festival is fast approaching, October 8-9 from 10-5:00. This is one of my biggest festivals of the year, and they are marking their 50th anniversary with this one. If you have not yet attended one of these, you’re in for a real treat. The festival nestles in rolling pasture land with rustic outbuildings serving as a headquarters. The town of Edom is little more than a crossroads, but people pour in from the Dallas/Fort Worth area, McKinney, Plano, Tyler, Palestine, Austin, Waxahachie–thousands of people flood the festival grounds to enjoy the art, food booths, and live music from two stages. My excitement grows as festival time nears.

And finally, I’m hoping this fall for the chance to visit art galleries scattered all over East Texas that I didn’t know existed. Some of them are new, yet some have been in business for years. I’m also grateful to join recently the art family in neighboring Tyler, Texas. As I’ve said before, I’m eyeing this region as a “New Byzantium” much as the poet William Butler Yeats spoke of 6th century Constantinople under Justinian. Yeats wrote: ”in early Byzantium, maybe never before or since in recorded history, religious, aesthetic, and practical life were one.” At this moment in our history, I’m enriched by the flurry of visual arts, live concerts and performance art that East Texas is experiencing.

Saturday evening, I’ll attend the artists’ reception for The Fall Art Exhibition at Lake Granbury Art Association. One of our gallery artists, Cecilia Bramhall, has had a painting accepted in the show, and I have as well. We’re proud to represent the Palestine art circle as we participate in this event.

Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Painting Thursday Night in The Gallery at Redlands

September 22, 2022
Continue to work on the Blues theme in Palestine

It has been a busy day today in The Gallery at Redlands. We have a new magazine issue approaching deadline. Preparations for the next art walk a week from Saturday or underway, and I will be teaching a watercolor class from noon to 2:00 October 1st. I have posted that event on facebook, and you can look it up and see if you’re interested in painting with us on that day.

After finishing all the gallery business, it is nice to be able to sit down to the drafting table this evening and push this Palestine painting a little bit further toward completion.

Thanks for reading.