Simply the Best! Rhonda Nass Colored Pencil Presentation and Acrylic Workshop in March 2016

God's Will, colored pencil, copyright Rhonda Nass. Used with permission. Text not included in original image.

God’s Will, colored pencil, copyright Rhonda Nass. Used with permission. Text not part of original image.

Rhonda Nass is an internationally acclaimed, award-winning artist, who also teaches workshops in both colored pencil and acrylic techniques at The Morton Arboretum as part of the Visiting Artists Series.  The Nature Artists’ Guild of The Morton Arboretum is honored to sponsor a presentation on colored pencil and a book signing by Rhonda on Thursday, March 3, 2016,  and to co-sponsor a workshop with the Arboretum the following Friday, Saturday and Sunday, March 4th through 6th, 2016, in which Rhonda will share her techniques for painting in acrylic. 

At Thursday evening’s presentation between 7 and 9 pm at Thornhill, Rhonda will discuss some of her colored-pencil artwork, including God’s Will, shown above (yes that is colored pencil, and a recent winner in the Colored Pencil Society of America’s 23rd Annual International Exhibit!), and sign copies of her new book, Scratchings of a Madwoman.  This gorgeous book is filled with Rhonda’s colored pencil drawings, as well as her beautifully written inspirational stories, and an entire section is devoted to Rhonda’s techniques for working with colored pencils.  Rhonda’s kind and generous nature certainly comes through in this book as she shares her thoughts and artwork with her readers.  Nature Artists’ Guild members, visitors and guests are welcome to attend this program at the Thornhill Education Center of The Morton Arboretum.  There is no charge for admission or parking, either to the Arboretum or to this program.  Visitors should let the gate attendant at the Arboretum know they are there for the program and they will be directed to Thornhill.

Mimosa Fireworks, Acrylic, copyright Rhonda Nass. Used with permission. Text not part of original image.

Mimosa Fireworks, acrylic, copyright Rhonda Nass. Used with permission. Text not part of original image.

On the following Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, the Nature Artists’ Guild and The Morton Arboretum are excited to co-sponsor an acrylic workshop by RhondaTo enroll in this workshop, please visit the class listings at The Morton Arboretum’s website, or click on this direct link to the workshop.  This workshop is limited to 15 participants, and is expected to fill quickly!  Rhonda describes it as follows –

Acrylic Stroke-Free, A New Watercolor – If visions of harshly-colored gobs of paint come to mind when you hear the work acrylic, you are not alone.  This class will blow that perspective out the window.  Through a simple, step-by-step exercise, you’ll learn a unique acrylic technique that involves diluting paint from the tube and applying layers of translucent color with a feathering stroke that results in a stroke-free final appearance with unlimited potential for extremely tight detail and dramatic coloring and lighting.  We’ll take a fresh (and brief) look at composition and proceed with each artist beginning a simple painting of a tomato and leaf to learn the technique enough to move on to a painting using the subject of her/his choice.  There will be time to gain enough skills through demonstrations, one-on-one time, and practice in the workshop to leave the class confident to complete with with excellence the personalized acrylic artwork.

Please click on any of the highlighted links above to learn more.  For more about Rhonda and her artwork, please click on this link to her website,  

The images above are copyrighted by Rhonda Nass.  As always, the use of any image on this website is prohibited without the written consent of the artist.

Tonight and Tomorrow!

Don’t forget that the first Nature Artists’ Guild program of the year takes place this evening, Thursday, February 4, 2016.  JoAnne Laudolff’s upcoming class at The Morton Arboretum may already be sold out, but Guild members, guests, and visitors will still have a chance to see how she creates her oil and cold wax collages.

JoAnne Laudolff with one of her Oil and Cold Wax works

JoAnne Laudolff with one of her Oil and Cold Wax works

The presentation is from 7 until 9 pm at the Thornhill Education Center.  There is no charge for admission or parking for this event, and visitors can just let the gate attendant at The Morton Arboretum know they are there for the Nature Artists’ Guild program.

Tomorrow evening, Friday, February 5, 2016 is the opening reception for the Nature Artists’ Guild at Gallery 200 in West Chicago, IL from 6 until 9 pm.  It is a wonderful opportunity to view some beautiful nature art, enjoy a few refreshments, and support local artists.

Please scroll down to previous posts to read more about these upcoming events.

First Nature Artists’ Guild Exhibit of 2016 Opens February 5 at Gallery 200

Airborne, copyright Sharon Malec

Airborne, copyright Sharon Malec

Just a few weeks from now, the first exhibit of 2016 for members of the Nature Artists’ Guild of The Morton Arboretum will be opening at Gallery 200, 200 Main Street, West Chicago IL, with an artists’ reception on Friday, February 5, 2016 from 6 until 9 pm at the gallery. All members, friends, family, and art lovers are invited to attend! The exhibit will continue until March 3, 2016, and gallery hours are Thursdays and Fridays from noon until 8 pm, and Saturdays and Sundays from noon until 4 pm.

Sunset, copyright Patty Koenigsaecker

Sunset, copyright Patty Koenigsaecker

Gallery 200 is an artists’ collective, a division of People Made Visible, Inc., which features locally created artwork in numerous media.  The Nature Artists’ Guild is pleased to be invited to the gallery for this special exhibit of nature art.

For more information or to view works by Gallery 200 artists, please click on this link to the Gallery 200 website, or on this link to the Gallery 200 Facebook page.

February’s Best

There are so many reasons to celebrate in February!  Some of our greatest presidents had birthdays in February, and St. Valentines day is celebrated in February. Outdoors  in February, high up in the trees, cute little balls of feathers that will grow up to be Great Horned Owls are hatching, and down on the ground, the first flowers of spring, skunk cabbage, (whose flowers give off enough heat to be able to melt the snow immediately around themselves) will be blooming.

One more reason to celebrate February is that it is the month of the annual Nature Artists’ Guild paint-out at Orchids by Hausermann in Villa Park, IL.  This year, members of the Nature Artists’ Guild will meet from 8 am until 11 am on Tuesday, February 9, 2016 to sketch, draw, paint and photograph some of the thousands of orchids that will be blooming in February in the vast greenhouse of Orchids by Hausermann, the oldest and largest orchid grower in the Midwest.  Apart from booking a trip to some exotic location, it may be the best opportunity in the Chicagoland area this February to spend a relaxing morning in a warm, tropical environment, surrounded by gorgeous orchids.

Photo credit Orchids by Hausermann

Photo credit Orchids by Hausermann

Nature Artists’ Guild members should contact Jane Kellenberger (whose contact information can be found in their Yearbook) to reserve a spot at this popular event, since space is very limited.  Please click on this link to Orchids by Hausermann’s website for directions, and to view an online catalog of stunning orchids.

Who knew February had so much to offer?

JoAnne Laudolff Presents Oil and Cold Wax Techniques on Thursday, February 4, 2016

Oil and Cold Wax, copyright JoAnne Laudolff

Oil and Cold Wax work, copyright JoAnne Laudolff.   Used with permission.

JoAnne Laudolff has been creating artwork inspired by nature throughout her adult life, and after graduating from Columbia College in Chicago, IL, began to specialize in and teach Papermaking and Botanical Printing.  JoAnne’s most recent passion is for mixed media, specifically, the Oil and Cold Wax technique, and members of the Nature Artists’ Guild, as well as their guests and visitors, will have the chance to learn more about JoAnne’s work with this technique on Thursday, February 4, 2016 from 7 until 9 pm at the Thornhill Education Center of The Morton Arboretum.

” I like the peaceful landscape qualities that the medium conveys. I always incorporate nature into my art work. It is a way to take a little of that simplicity with me.”

Learn more about JoAnne Laudolff and her work at  While there, please be sure to click through all four of the galleries to view her beautiful work in various media!

As always, visitors and guests are welcome to attend this presentation sponsored by the Nature Artists’ Guild.  There is no charge for attendance or parking, and visitors can just let the gate attendant at The Morton Arboretum know they are there for the program.

JoAnne Laudloff with one of her Oil and Cold Wax works

JoAnne Laudolff with one of her Oil and Cold Wax works inspired by nature.

New Year, New Wonderful Experiences!

The Nature Artists’ Guild Executive Board members and Committee Chairs will be meeting this Thursday to discuss upcoming programs, paint-outs, presentations, exhibits, workshops, field trips and social gatherings, and we look forward to the schedule for 2016.  Nature Artists’ Guild members are always welcome to forward their ideas to any board or committee members, as events are added throughout the year.

Our busy new Program Coordinator (and Vice President), Sharon Malec, has already scheduled February and March, 2016 programs featuring artists JoAnne Laudolff and Rhonda Nass, and our new Outside Exhibits Chair, Gary Chipman,will be coordinating a Nature Artists’ Guild exhibit for February, 2016 at Gallery 200 in West Chicago, IL (members should have received a prospectus in December 2015).

Check back soon for more details!

Komechak Gallery Tour Next Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Many Nature Artists’ Guild members were able to catch a glimpse of some of the artwork at the Father Michael E. Komechak O.S.B. Art Gallery at Benedictine University in Lisle, IL while dropping off their own artwork for a group exhibit last year.  What many may not have known is the extent of the artwork collection housed at the university or the history behind it!

From the gallery’s website

Fr. Michael E. Komechak, O.S.B. Art Gallery

The late Fr. Michael Komechak, O.S.B. spent his life collecting and celebrating the works of others. Over time, he amassed one of the finest art and sculpture collections in the Midwest. The collection, approximately 4000 pieces, represents both fine and applied arts, and is engagingly diverse in its scope of subject and media. While a majority of the collection deals with religious themes, it also has a fair representation of contemporary art and work by well-known artists, but, consists mainly of works on paper and fine art prints.The gallery also boasts a collection of ceramics, drawings, paintings, photography, textile, sculpture, mixed media, folk art and kitsch.
Komechak Art Gallery, Benedictine University.

Komechak Art Gallery, Benedictine University.  Photo credit

Members of the Nature Artists’ Guild are invited to attend a behind-the-scenes gallery tour of the collections on the morning of Tuesday, December 8, 2015 from 10 am until noon. Participants should meet at the gallery located on the fifth floor of Kindlon Hall at Benedictine University, 5700 College Road, Lisle, IL promptly at 10 am.  The elevator to the fifth floor is located near the rear of Kindlon Hall in a short hallway to the right (the main elevator near the front entrance does not go past the second floor). Other buildings on the campus will be part of the tour, so comfortable walking shoes and warm outerwear would be advised.

There is no need to RSVP for this wonderful opportunity to attend the gallery tour. Please click on the highlighted links above to read more about the gallery, the collections, or for maps and directions.