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Hello all! Hope you are enjoying the group so far. I know that certain people are not. This seems like as good a time as any to mention some things I do not appreciate. If you feel that you are being treated unfairly in this community I would love to hear from you to try to be helpful or supportive. I have the best of intentions, take it or leave it. So that being said, please direct these notes to the group, and do not send me private notes containing content such as this:

"I can't believe you declined my [descirption here] piece, a favorite watercolor among [insert subgroup of] DA fans. If you're really that stuck up, then pardon me for leaving your group."

"Nice bragging that you have a degree in watercolor. Really - get over yourself - you may be good, but you're not that good."

Please don't imply that I am trying to lord anything over your head, or imply that me not liking your work as much as some of your other "artist" friends means that I am not an artist. Any reasonable person knows that makes little sense.

Please don't tell me you think I'm a bad painter. Maybe I am, but I don't think that technically has anything to do with my moderation of the group. If I pick paintings to put in the gallery that the community seems to enjoy, and I offer help to those who request it, then I believe I am serving my purpose.

Please don't call me a "loser".

Please don't use the phrase: "pull that stick out of your huge, pretentious ass." My ass might be a bit larger than average (how did you know that?) but it's very shapely, and I don't like people speaking to it that way.

And after all of that is said, please try not to write me an extremely inflamed note and then cover up with "like I give a shit at what some stuck up bitch like you thinks." Now you're contradicting yourself.

The point is that I have experience with watercolor, much less than many people, but also much more than others. The reason I mention it is not to make anybody feel bad but honestly because a formal education is expensive, and it disappoints me that so many truly creative people haven't been able to find an artistic community conducive to personal growth because they haven't bought into the ridiculously overpriced university system. I think that knowledge should be accessible to everyone who desires it, and my main goal here is to be helpful.

I also desire for this group to serve as a more sophisticated and serious venue for watercolor painters on DA. You might have noticed that other media have groups which are just as (if not more) exclusive as this one.  

So if anybody feels confused about policy or generally unappreciated here, please do ask questions, but please do not use inflammatory language or insult me personally. If our problems cannot be resolved please feel free to leave the group without making a scene.

If you send me a note resembling the content above you WILL be permanently banned.

Thanks to all who took the time to read. And keep those submissions coming! :)
Today I submitted an art feature of choice works which illustrate a contemporary perspective on traditional subject matter: figure, still life, and landscape painting. Some amazing artwork is features, for more information and the featured paintings --
View the feature here:  news.deviantart.com/article/13…

Remember to click on the images to see the member responsible for the beautiful art. :)
Open for entries October 1 - November 30.  
Contest judging will take place through mid December.
Incentive: WINNER gets a one month feature here of the winning entry and select works from their gallery! 5 finalists will also receive a mention!

If I receive less than 15 entries there will be NO finalists, only a winner. So join in!

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Using "borrowed colors" is a standard exercise used in an academic setting to help artists boost their creativity, and when needed spice up a body of work which seems to be stuck in a rut. So here's the idea:

Goal: Spice up your typical color palette with 3 NEW colors.
Ideas: 1)Look at your latest color combinations and pick 3 colors you haven't used recently.
2) Or pick a piece of art you love, on DA or elsewhere. And use the 3 prominent colors in that work to create your painting (must be colors you haven't used lately).

Subject matter is completely open: paint what you love!

This is VERY important
Remember to list on your artist comments:
MEDIA used (watercolor, gouache, ink, etc.)
OLD colors not used
LINK to inspiration (if applicable)

The reason you must do this is because in order for me to decide who has best completed the challenge I have to be able to figure out if you fulfilled the main requirement, USING NEW COLORS.  Now you don't have to run out and buy new colors (although I do suggest purchasing new colors from time to time) but you DO have to use colors that have NOT been used in your recent work.  

I WILL look at the newest paintings in your gallery to decide if you were successful!

If you are using 3 colors you found in another piece I would appreciate a link, but this is not mandatory, because the above requirement still applies.

Lastly, please list your media. Contestants who are not deemed the winner will have their work sorted into the main gallery folders.

I hope to see many entries in the coming months! I encourage you to participate even if you think you may not win. This challenge will be fun and helpful to everyone! I will post another blog soon with links and tips to help you with the challenge.

Good luck to you all!
There will be a challenge coming the first week of October which will run until December 1st. I'm still open to votes on the content of this challenge, but if I don't get enough responses, I will decide myself.

Winner of the challenge will get a group feature for a month! And anything else I can come up with. Also, personal growth. Now you can't put a price on that, can you? :)
With my second blog entry I'd like to welcome all of our new members. I feel like this group is growing very quickly -- and I'm very pleased! :) So now that we have almost 100 members, I'd like to adress some matters of business.

First: to everyone who has had one or more submissions declined by me, please try not to be discouraged. The last thing I want anyone to do is feel that they are not wanted in the group, because that is very far from the truth! If you want to include your deviation in the group (because you think I'm an asshole for rejecting it) OR if you would like to get some feedback from me about the strenghts and weaknesses of your paintings + some technical tips for future reference, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE, submit to the "Feedback Wanted" folder. Submissions are automatically accepted! I included that folder so that you could bypass my rather strict personal filter, AND get those valuable crits! Also, when watchers get that deviant watch message, your deviation will appear along with all the others. (That's a personal victory if you ask me!)

Second: Like I mentioned, we have almost 100 members now, and I would like to get some contests underway soon. You can read this blog :     
inspired-watercolors.deviantar…;
to see some ideas I had in mind for our first competition. Feedback is appreciated on the issue. So if you would be interested in pariticpating in a competition, please reply to either blog.

And Lastly: If you're confused by what I'm letting into the group, OR you want to look through some awesome paintings, check out the FEATURED folder. I have personally selected all of the works within, so not only are there some amazing paintings, but also insight into what I'm looking for in the group. Most of the works selected have been chosen for technical skill, although others were chosen because of their slightly non-traditional (at least when you think of watercolor) subject matter.

Thanks again, hope to see more responses and deviations soon!

-- Anne