Bucks County Illustrators Society exhibit “Fantasy Tales” at Cabrini University

piedpiperfinish96We are happy to announce that Cabrini University in Radnor, PA, has asked BCiS to mount our Fantasy Tales exhibit in their Gorevin Gallery. Our show will run through April 8. We invite the public to join us at the opening reception next Thursday, March 15 from 4:30 – 6:30 pm (it was originally scheduled for earlier in March but the large snowstorm and power failures forced us to change the date). Cabrini University is located at 610 King of Prussia Road, Radnor, PA, and the Gorevin Gallery is in their Holy Spirit Library building.  A campus map can be seen HERE,

For the Fantasy Tales theme, each illustrator chose a story or excerpt from a story that has elements of fairy tale, supernatural or fantastical events, and created an illustration to accompany the story. The artwork in Fantasy Tales encompasses a wide range of illustration styles among BCiS illustrators,  and varies from traditional media to digital to combinations of both.  The stories chosen span classic fairy tales like Little Red Riding Hood and Cinderella to a Native American Folk Tale to the epic King Kong saga. BCiS produced a book of the exhibit with the artwork and each illustrator’s biography, available for purchase by emailing BCiS at bcillustrators@gmail.com.

The show includes artwork by Joe DeVitoGlenn ZimmerJames BennettMonika HinterwaldnerGil Cohen, Katie Maxwell, Joe KulkaPiya WannachaiwongChristina Wannachaiwong, Rich Harrington, Becca Haushalter Klein, Rebecca Rhodin, Marie ThresherPam Convery- Hamilton , Dan Fione, Deb HoeffnerKim Kurki and Pat Achilles, and the exhibit was coordinated at Cabrini by Jeanne Komp and Nicholas Jacques.

Here are a few other events involving BCiS members coming up:

Etsy Round Table for Artists. Wednesday March 14 from 6:30 to 8 PM at Phoenix Art Supplies & Framing,  (1810 S. Easton Rd. Doylestown – they are on Rte 611, just a little north of Edison-Furlong Rd.). Pat Achilles will lead a free round table discussion on ‘Etsy for Artists’.  Pat has had an Etsy shop for her illustrated greeting cards for a while and finds Etsy a low-cost platform for selling art. She’ll begin the meeting explaining steps on starting an Etsy shop, so if you are considering creating one you’ll learn the basics.Then she’ll open it up to discussion & questions. The hope is that other artists who do Etsy will attend and share their experiences as well. Phoenix asks you to call to let them know you are coming, only so they can have enough chairs for everyone. So if you think you’ll come, just let them know at 215-345-0980 – the event is free. (And if you need any art supplies, Margaret told me the register will be open)
Bucks Fever Art Exhibit. This exhibit kicks off the Central Bucks Chamber of Commerce ‘Bucks Fever’ cultural season. Submission deadline is March 20. The theme for this year’s show is ‘Black & White’ in any medium, and the exhibit itself will run have an Opening Reception Thursday, April 26, 2018 from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. at The Bridges at Warwick, 1600 Almshouse Road, Jamison PA 18929.  The Exhibition continues through May 10, 2018, 11am – 5pm (daily), 10am – 3pm (weekends). Admission to the event: FREE. Information: 215-348-3913.  All info is at  http://centralbuckschamber.com/bucksfever/byersart.cfm 
Rich Harrington Exhibit in Lambertville.  Rich’s paintings are featured at The Final Four (4X4 Winter Group exhibit series) with work by Laura Rutherford RennerJane Adriance and Joseph DeFay. The show is March 8 to April 1, with an opening reception: Saturday, March 10, 2-6 pm .  Gallery Hours: Thurs, Fri, Sat & Sunday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm or by appointment.  At the Artists’ Gallery, 18 Bridge St., Lambertville, NJ. 609-397-4588contact@lambertvillearts.com  
Charles Santore Podcast and Exhibit. There is a great podcast interview of Charles Santore at https://soundcloud.com/woodmereart/santore-podcast . The Santore exhibit is at the Woodmere Art Museum, Chestnut Hill, now through May 13. To see the catalog of this exhibit go to https://woodmereartmuseum.org/explore-online/catalogues/ and click on ‘view catalog’ under the Santore heading.

Illustration Award from Phillustration


Art by James Bennett

I’m thrilled and honored to have received the First Place Award in Advertising art from the Phillustration 6 exhibit, hosted every year by the Philadelphia Sketch Club. The poster at left is the award certificate, with artwork by the inimitable James Bennett, whose painting of Roger Waters won Best of Show.

My husband and I attended a wonderful reception today at the Sketch Club, along with members of the PSC and the Bucks County Illustrators Society.  BCIS won other awards as well: besides his Best of Show prize, Jim Bennett also received an Honorable Mention in Self-Promotional, Cassandre Maxwell of West Chester received First Place in Editorial, Deb Hoeffner of Doylestown received Honorable Mention in Editorial, Ponder Goembel of Riegelsville received Honorable Mention in Book Illustration; and Dave Song of Doylestown received Honorable Mention in Self-Promotional.


My illustration for the play ‘The Secret Garden,’ which won First Place in Advertising Illustration

Also on display in the exhibit is artwork by BCIS members Glenn Zimmer of North Wales, Monika Hinterwaldner and Lee Harper of Doylestown, Pam Hamilton of New Britain, Rebecca Rhodin of Lansdale and Joe Kulka of Quakertown. It’s a terrific show, featuring art by many area illustrators including Charles Santore, Bob Byrd, John O’Brien and David Brinley (who juried the show) and it runs through November 8. The Chairman of the Phillustration show is illustrator Rich Harrington, and he’s done another fantastic job.

I recommend checking out this amazing show in person, but if you can’t get to Philadelphia there is also an online gallery of the works at the Philadelphia Sketch Club website.  You can find out more about our Bucks County Illustrators Society at the BCIS website as well.


An Evening with Renowned Children’s Book Illustrator Charles Santore

fwsantore3I was lucky to be among the people in the upstairs gallery of the Philadelphia Sketch Club who witnessed a magical evening Friday night, wading through lions, crows, mermaids, foxes, Red Coats, cyclones, herons and Patriots.  The Sketch Club graciously shared its venerable and historic Center City home with the Bucks County Illustrators Society, as members of both clubs spent the evening in delighted awe of the extraordinary work and charming commentary of Philadelphia illustrator Charles Santore.

Mr. Santore is certainly one of the most renowned illustrators of classic children’s books today, with titles including The Complete Tales of Peter Rabbit, The Little Mermaid, The Wizard of Oz, Paul Revere’s Ride and The Night Before Christmas, among many others.  His art is part of the permanent collections of the Brandywine River Museum and the Museum of Modern Art, as well as many private collections.  He is a winner of the prestigious Hamilton King Award from the New York Society of Illustrators, where his work was recently featured in a solo exhibition, “Exploring the Narrative Picture.”

santorephoto4He compares the creative process of illustrating a story to ‘staging a ballet or visualizing a musical composition,’ designing his pictures to build throughout the book to a grand finale.  The artists and fans who attended this talk, accompanied by a slideshow of his illustrations, saw these processes clearly unfold in the flow of the illustrations for The Wizard of Oz, where all movement in the first half of the book streams left to right, concurrent with the Yellow Brick Road; until the story encounters the Wicked Witch of the West, whose forces move relentlessly right to left.  Mr. Santore explained many instances of the ‘choreography’ of his illustrations, and delighted the audience as he pointed to example after example of his deliberate placement of shadows, gestures and framing of elements in his work for Aesop’s Fables and The Little Mermaid.santorephoto2

Amid the many charming and funny stories of his career, Mr. Santore also shared heartfelt moments that touched many in the audience.  He read aloud the Longfellow poem Paul Revere’s Ride while slides of his illustrations for the book were shown. Since the story takes place through a moonlit night, the images were powerfully composed between light and dark elements: a massive ship’s hulk, the spark from a horse’s hoof, a brilliant moon, a skyward view through the belfry of the Old North Church. Once during his reading he faltered briefly, murmuring, “I’m sorry, it still gets to me.”  His emotion over the bravery in that historic event and the beautiful language of the poem was evident in his voice; his admiration also echoed in the remarkable detail and vitality in his artwork.

santorephoto7Mr. Santore cheerfully stayed after his talk to answer questions, accept congratulations from students and fellow artists, and autograph books. I had bought his Wizard of Oz earlier in the day, and he chatted with me while he signed the title page (he’s left-handed, by the way) and made the book a complete treasure by drawing a little lion there too.  I asked him how he ever imagined and designed that stunning illustration from the perspective of looking up through the belltower of the Church.  “There’s a funny story to that,” he said.  “I called the Old North Church office and told them I was doing this book.  I asked if they had any photo references of inside the belfry.” He paused and made a wry face.  “They wanted ten percent.  Ten percent of the profits on the book, to give me the information. So, I called friends of mine who lived in Boston and asked if they could go to the church’s gift shop and find anything. They found a terrific book with plenty of photos, and they sent it to me.”

Afterwards the audience enjoyed a wonderful dinner together in the dining room of the Sketch Club – a building that since 1860 has served as a meeting place and forum for artists and supporters, counting among its illustrious past members Thomas Eakins, Henry Pitz, Edward Redfield, Daniel Garber, N.C. Wyeth and Thomas Anshutz.  The evening concluded with members of America’s oldest club for artists exchanging stories with Bucks County’s newest club for illustrators, where for this evening the topics of conversation revolved around art, books, and the magnificent illustrations of Charles Santore.

The Bucks County Illustrators Society

santorepostcardA wonderful evening with renowned children’s illustrator Charles Santore will be hosted by the Bucks County Illustrators Society & the Phila.  Sketch Club on Friday March 8 at the Sketch Club, 235 S. Camac St. in Center City. Doors open at 5 PM, Mr. Santore talks & shows his work starting at 6:30, dinner right after at 7:15 – all included for only $20 (for students, $15). Call by March 4 – 215-545-9298 to reserve your seat, payment at the door.  For more info see the BCiS or the Sketch Club website.