Monday, May 9, 2016

Spring Art Down ...

Ironstone's 19th Annual Spring Art Show ended this past weekend. Always sad to see the work come down. It was such an outstanding exhibit with works hailing from throughout California. 

Many new names graced the walls this year along side so many of our local favorites.  We have completed the posting, here on this blog, of all the artists biographies for you to enjoy along with an image of the pieces that were accepted into the show.  If you would like information on any one of the represented paintings, please do not hesitate to contact Chris at with the Artists name and title of the piece you are interested in and she will forward you the artist's contact information.

We are glad to announce that a great number of paintings found new homes this year.  One collector announced she was planning on donating her purchased painting to her favorite Charity for an upcoming auction.  A very generous gesture to be sure.

A special thank you goes out to both our wonderful judges this year, Kathleen Dunphy and Charles Pyle.  Both exceptional educators as well as keen observers, Kathleen and Charles are skilled  at evaluating all aspects of a piece of art and presenting their observations in a clear and concise manner. As nationally recognized artists in their own right, both are able to create an excitement towards a painting, opening eyes of non artists to all subtleties of a work of art.  Thank you Kathleen and Charles.

Next year, 2017, marks the 20th Anniversary of this exciting exhibit.  What would you like to see at next year's show?

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Meet Artist Barb Young, Ironstone Spring Obsession accepted artist

O-023  Souza Cow Camp  watercolor  12x24  $500

Since coming to Sonora in 1990, Barb's ART has expanded to include many sales and now, participation in local galleries. In 1996 she took a watercolor class from Dianne Starnes, while recovering from heart by-pass surgery. Since that time Barbs choice of medium has been WATERCOLOR.
O-025  Fall in Reds  watercolor  11x14  $200

She has a prolific way of depicting old and historical building and capturing life like realism in her paintings of landscapes. And as well as doing watercolors, she has special touch with her Sharpie Pen Sketches of rocks and trees, and pinecones, and other things that depict the Sierras.

Now retired, Barb can spend more time on the things she loves: painting and drawing, and Therapy Dog WORK with her doggies Happy BURITTO, & Kristy both Chihuahuas.

Barb has done some commissioned paintings, with unique challenges, She also has sold a lot of her paintings and sketches, as well as cards made from her paintings and sketches. You can find Barb around the Sonora and outlying areas sketching and taking pictures, and observing the many views and buildings. She also spends a lot of time in the Sierras.

Barb has come a long way from her beginnings in ART as a teenager, copying comic book characters and doing paint by number Paintings. her early works were sad and gloomy (which expressed her early life); and now, her work has taken on a "lightness, and colorfull expression." Barb credits her abilities as a God given talent.

Barb has won many awards at the MLAA shows in Oct. Her work can be seen at the ALOFT Gallery, Sonora. At Twain Heart's All That Matters; Pinecrest Gallery in Pinecrest and Sonora Blue Print. Barb has entered the Ironstone show many times.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Meet Artist Elizabeth Willmon, Ironstone Spring Obsession accepted artist

Elizabeth Willmon

O-055  Wine and Orchids  watercolor  20x30  $1200

Artist Statement

I love to paint the designs and patterns created by light and shadow in everyday objects all around me. While I paint in a realistic style, I add my own interpretation by laying down many layers of transparent watercolor. These layers create glowing color, emphasizing the design that first caught my eye.

I paint because I never grow tired of watching the vibrant colors I put on the paper mingle and transform something ordinary into something that commands attention from the viewer.


Originally from Clovis, I have been surrounded by creativity for as long as I can remember. My mother was a fiber artist and my father was a jeweler and furniture designer. In the evenings as they were sketching ideas for their designs, I would draw portraits.

I fell in love with watercolor when I took Dan Petersen's classes at Modesto Junior College. After raising a family and then finishing my Bachelor's degree I have come back to watercolor because it feeds my soul.

I currently live in Modesto with my husband and our little Tibetan spaniel, Cookie. I paint every day in my studio which overlooks a beautiful courtyard filled with the scent of orange blossoms. 

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Meet Artist Paula Tooman, Ironstone Spring Obsession accepted artist

O-133  Spring Delight watercolor  27x33  $580
My name is Paula Tooman. I really love doing watercolor painting. The colors intrigue me and the techniques always presenting interesting challenges. In my thirties I started painting – but was busy raising two children so could not paint as often as I desired. In my forties my husband and I adopted fourteen children – thirteen Ethiopians and one handicapped girl from the United States. The children were and are a joy – and sometimes a sorrow. We certainly felt emotions parallel to those experienced by parents all over the world – multiplied by fourteen! As was expected they did keep me very busy and I found time to paint only sporadically. Now I’m in my sixties and we only have four children at home. My husband prepared a home studio for me and I am enjoying the freedom to regularly paint again with my beloved water colors. It is such a luxury to have time to paint again and I’m having great fun doing it!
O-134  Rain forest Jewel  watercolor  29x25  $950

I enjoy most of all painting flowers, people, and landscapes. They lend themselves to the use of a great variety of painting materials, many color variants, and a host of presentation and brushing techniques. I am always reading books and watching DVDs by other artists to encourage myself to try new ideas and to look at each new blank paper as a new and interesting challenge.