Here’s Denise. She’s the winner of the spot in our Spain workshop next year. Congratulations, Denise! Get to know her…
The winner of our “Spain Giveaway” was announced last week, but Denise didn’t check her email until late in the day. She’d had a roller-coaster week and when she sat down to check her email, she had quite the surprise!
She responded to my email:
I’m soooo excited! I can’t believe it! I’m completely overwhelmed by your generosity– I can’t thank you enough! Yes, I will definitely be coming!
I’ve dreamed of taking part in one of your overseas painting adventures but didn’t think it would be possible until my kids are through school.
Here are some more facts about our Denise:
I was born and raised in Canada, in Saskatchewan. My husband accepted a job in the Twin Cities 16 1/2 years ago and we’ve been here ever since. We’re in one of the NW suburbs of Minneapolis.
I have two boys, ages 9 and 12. My husband is an engineer and I’m a stay-at-home Mom and artist.
I took my first decorative painting class in Canada about 20 years ago and was hooked! I started painting cut out wooden figures with acrylics. Shortly after that first class my husband and I moved to the Twin Cities. It took me awhile to find classes again, but I eventually found a Community Ed class. I kept taking it over and over again and the instructor, Cindy DeRuyter, became one of my best friends! With encouragement from her and from another Twin Cities teacher, Arlene Linton, I eventually joined the Twin Cities Decorative Artists Guild. There I found so many artists who were willing to share their knowledge and talent! I owe a huge debt of gratitude to so many who taught me painting techniques and made me believe that I could be an artist too! Carol Spohn got me started in transparent watercolor about 10 years ago. That quickly became my favorite medium! Shortly after I started in watercolor our group brought you, Kathie, to the Twin Cities for a weekend seminar. We did one watercolor batik, a watercolor collage project, and a piece with a lot of specialty Golden projects. I enjoyed them all, but the watercolor batik fascinated me! Last fall, I was fortunate enough to paint with you in your Batik Design class on Madeleine Island. That was a wonderful week and I learned so much from you Kathie! Today, I focus mostly on watercolor (including batiks!) and colored pencil, although I enjoy taking acrylic seminars now and again too.
And then, she also added this bit – and I have a bit to add after her comments…
I am ecstatic to be going to Spain to paint with you Kathie!!! I can’t thank you enough!!! It’s been a dream of mine to go to Europe to paint, since before I even started painting. I used to think that some people were born artists, but that I wasn’t one of them. Through decorative painting, I came to realize that much of painting and drawing is about technique and learned skills. Like anything else, art requires perseverance and practice, as well as passion! It took me a long time to feel confident enough to call myself an artist. Kathie, your classes and blog have really helped me with that. You’ve always been so encouraging and supportive. I confess, painting in Spain intimidates me a little–but I have almost a year to work on my drawing and composition skills. (I did most of your 30 day challenge and plan to work through your exercises again! They were very helpful!) I know, with you there to guide and encourage me, I’ll get over those fears and have a wonderful time! This is such an incredible opportunity and I thank you so much for providing it to me!!
DON’T WORRY, DENISE. You ARE an artist and will do very well with our group in Spain. You don’t need to work on your drawing and composition skills for the next year! RELAX and bask in the moment. If you can find time to draw between now and then, that would be fantastic. But you will be fine, whether you do or you don’t. Mr. EVIL BE GONE!
So, let’ officially welcome Denise to Spain 2015. CONGRATULATIONS!
BACK TO BUSINESS…ER, FUN.
I’ve been thinking about what I should talk about the next couple of weeks. I’m thinking ICE SKATING IN JULY? YES, Definitely!
Join us here next Tuesday for your first ice skating lesson.
See you then….and thank you so much for reading, and for your comments which keep me laughing, and loving you!
Congratulations Denise! Have fun painting!
What a “priceless” gift Kathie has given to Denise. The picture book on Smilebox
was so exciting to see. Kathie, thank you for all that you do to grow the artist in everyone. You’re the best!
How wonderful for Denise!! She will have an adventure of a lifetime I am sure! Mr. Evil be gone for all of us! Painting on!!
Congratulations Denise! You’ll have a wonderful time.
Congrats Denise. I’m so excited for you!
Few teachers have the gift of putting you at ease, especially the caliber of Kathie George. She’s so honest, carefree & genuine. The fact that she makes it personal, I have had the opportunity of one class. Never painted watercolor …..loved it. Denise I can’t wait to see your masterpiece , enjoy and share your journey
Congratulations! I’m sure you will have a wonderful adventure. 🙂
Can’t wait to meet and paint with you in Spain.
Congratulations, Denise!!! You are going to have a wonderful time in Spain with Kathie!!! She’ll take you under her wing and be very supportive. Have a fabulous time!!!
congrats Denise. I wish I could come, sounds like a great trip and to be able to paint as well how wonderful. I hope to get to meet Kathie next year in the villages or Ocala Florida. Have a great time. Nony Paquette
I am sure we met on Madelaeline. I look forward to seeing you again in Spain. Currently viditing family in the Maritimes and getting painting inspiration.
I know Denise and have painted with her. She will do a fine job and enjoy every minute of it. I’d love to join her!!!
Big congratulations to Denise. I am so excited for you. I look forward to living vicariously through you during the Spain trip. Kathie, you are so wonderful and generous and talented and sweet, but you hear that all the time so nothing new there.
We are all so lucky to have Kathie in our lives.
I’m happy for Denise! Karen Knutson told me about Kathie’s drawing challenge, which I did in March. It encouraged me to take on a commission, drawing the 5 houses for the Parade of Homes in November 2014, sponsored by the local symphony league as a fund raiser. They’ll use the drawings for publicity and as gifts to the homeowners who help in such a personal way. Without that 30 days of practice, I would not have considered taking on the job. I owe Karen and Kathie big kudos, and I so much appreciate their encouragement!
Denise, so happy for you. We have similar backgrounds and have been so lucky to meet Kathie, such an inspiration to go in new directions. Although I did not win, I am still going…so see you there!
Denise — woo hoo ! Congratulations!
What a fantastic gift from Kathie. You are going to live the Cinderella Trip — maybe you can keep a little travel blog for the rest of us wannabes. One of these days I will make a trip with Kathie and likeminded artists. Good for you … Enjoy it completely!
Congratulations Denise. Though I have cried uncontrollably since learning that you won instead of me, I will (sniff, sniff) get over this. My voodoo mentor says to buy more pins. Oops, that just slipped out. But I hope you and Kathie won’t worry too much about the curse. Don’t call the police, I am only kidding. Kathie, you take the best of care of Denise. But please Kathie, come back to east Tennessee soon for a class. Love to all the gals and you, who will be together in Spain and know that I am there with you in spirit. Have the best of times. Will pray for safe travel for you all. Blessings, Martha
Martha, I thought I was the only one crying……. 🙂
How exciting, Denise that you won this trip! It will be so much fun! I hope to get to go one of these years with Kathie! I love her art techniques and teaching methods and great personality!! I was lucky enough to win an original mixed media painting that she did on her Ireland trip and love love it! Have a great time!!
Oh, Denise, how wonderful! I am excited for you to get away from everything in your life and spend a little time immersed in art in a beautiful place on earth! Congratulations!
Thanks everyone! Elaine, yes we did meet on Madeleine Island–looking forward to seeing you again! Painters are such a great group of people–it’s going to be a fantastic adventure! Thank you again Kathie!
Congratulations Denise! I will be living vicariously through you as you let us know how your trip goes next year….
Again Denise, have a wonderful trip with Kathie and learn lots. Keep all of us wanna-be winners in the loop about the experience. You are one lucky and deserving person! Have fun. Pat
Congrats Denise, I know you will have a great time, are you going to Madeleine Island this year? My Girlfriend and I will be there sooo looking forward to a week with Kathie and other painters. Anyone else going? Thanks again Kathie for all the wonderful knowledge you share with us. Safe travels, Christie