Friday, November 15, 2013

Come see my show in Xenia, Ohio

The Xenia Area Community Theater (X*ACT) asked me to be their visiting artist for the holiday season. I just got home from hanging fifteen of my favorite paintings. It will be up until January 2. I was half-way home before I realized that I forgot to photograph the display. I'll head back this weekend and shoot some pictures to show you.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Prize Winning Iris

Iris #2 (c) Susan Bertke
My watercolor painting "Iris #2" won an Honorable Mention in the Fairborn Art Association's Members' Choice contest at the May meeting. Given the quality of the paintings that were submitted by the members, this was a real ego boost for me.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Exploring Acrylics, Class #3

Rose of Sharon #1 (c) Susan Bertke 2013
Tuesday was #3 in my Exploring Acrylics class at Fairborn Art Association. We explored the use of acrylics as transparent watercolor. Most of my students had only minimal previous exposure to watercolors. The idea of dropping color into a wet background and letting it flow was definitely a new technique for them. They also got a taste of negative painting in the leafy area. 

Thursday, May 16, 2013

The past couple of months have been really busy for me, art-wise!
One of the paintings I did in
Joe Fettingis' workshop
  • I joined the Fairborn Art Association last year, and the members have been very helpful and encouraging. Through the FAA I signed up to do an acrylic demo on April 10 in Xenia, Ohio, at the Greene County Council On Aging Senior Creativity Expo. It was a great experience, and I hope to support them in future expos.
  • Last week, I attended a 3-day workshop with Joe Fettingis, NWS, at the FAA gallery in Fairborn, Ohio. If you have an opportunity to go to one of his workshops, I heartily recommend it.
  • I submitted three paintings to the FAA's annual members show. (Sadly, I didn't win any awards.)
  • Starting next week I'll be teaching an 8-week class called "Exploring Acrylics" at the FAA gallery on Tuesday afternoons (May 21 thru July 9). So I've been preparing for that.
  • AND I've been working on a large commissioned painting for a friend.

So if I haven't been keeping up with my blog, I hope you'll understand!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Exploring Acrylics

Acrylics over watercolor
I will be teaching an 8-week acrylics class on Tuesday afternoons (1:00-4:00 p.m.) from May 21 to July 9, 2013, at the Fairborn Art Association gallery located at the rear of Fairborn Senior Apartment Building, 221 N. Central Ave, Fairborn, Ohio. The cost of the 8-week class is $85.

The class will focus on the sheer versatility of acrylics, with each week exploring a different subject, application technique, and/or support. Just a few of the possibilities:
SUPPORTS: canvas, paper, cardboard, illustration or mat board…
TECHNIQUES: glazing, impasto, scumbling, drybrush, wet-in-wet, collage, blending, painting with a knife…

SUBJECTS: portraiture, animals, landscape, floral, still life, abstracts…


  • Acrylic as an under-painting for oils, pastels, pencils…
  • Acrylic as an over-painting for watercolors or India Ink
  • Collage...
Actual projects may be tailored to the previous experience and interests of the students.

See more of my artwork at:  

To receive a registration form or for more information, comment on this blog and leave your e-mail address.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

A Face Only a Wife Could Love

"Horny B*stard" (c) Susan Bertke
graphite pencil on paper

   Shortly after we were married, I told my husband a joke. He returned from his next business trip with this little guy.

   The joke: There was an kindergarten teacher who was doing a lesson for her inner city kids about animals. She'd hold up a picture of an animal, and the kids would shout out the name of the animal. They identified cats, dogs, mice, pigeons, even horses. Then the teacher held up a picture of a white-tailed deer with a magnificent rack of antlers. That stumped them.
   "I'll give you a hint," she said. "Imagine your dad comes home from work, and he greets your mom with a big kiss. What does she call him?"
   Puzzled, one little boy looked at his friend and whispered, "Do you supposed that's a horny b*stard?"
   So now I have my very own blue-furred horny b*stard. Ugly or not, I love him.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Landscape Doodle

   This year I've spent a lot of time cooling my heels in doctors' waiting rooms, so I decided to make productive use of the time and took along a sketch book. Generally, I'm not confident drawing without a subject in front of me, so I started doodling landscape elements: rocks, grass, trees...and this is what I ended up with.
    This was done with a Pilot Precise V5 pen and a green Pilot Razor Point.