I’d like to thank Marge Park for having me serve as the judge for the 2019 Online Exhibition. It has been an honor and privilege to view the excellent work submitted and to select the show. All the artists represented in the exhibition should feel proud of the work I accepted. This exhibit reflects a variety of subject matter and painting styles. While we would always prefer to see both a well executed and evocative piece of art, in exhibitions at the local and state level, a simple, honest painting that speaks to and evokes emotion in the viewer may have been included over more technically accomplished work. There are always images which jump out in the initial viewing and you know as a juror that there is no doubt that they will be included in the show and win one of the top awards. This was certainly the case with the award winners in this exhibition and three or four other paintings which did not make the cut for merit awards.

I judge paintings with my heart and gut as much as with my head. This is true in the case of both abstract and representational work and it really involves a lot of subjective feeling on the part of the juror in addition to how well the painting is composed and executed.  The nice thing about most watercolor competitions is that I, like most judges, will have to put on my other hat as a submitting painter, go to the mailbox and feel my “self-addressed stamped envelope” to see if my slides were returned or whether I made the next show to which I apply or more recently check online for a rejection or acceptance.

Congratulations to all the exhibitors and all the award winners!

Steve Rogers AWS, NWS, TWSA

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