Tuesday, January 31, 2012

What is the city but the people?

Interview with City Painter Gwen Meyerson
by Miriam Schulman, @schulmanArt
New York Art for sale www.gwenmeyerson.com
SchulmanArt: How long have you been an artist?
I’ve been an artist for as long as I remember. I actually can’t think of a starting point. I majored in art in college but way back in grade school I loved dressing up all my social studies reports with my craypas illustrations.

Where did you study art?
I studied art at Queens College. I spent part of my senior year in London where I painted at a school in the East End. My postgraduate studies included a year at the New York Studio School after which I earned an MFA in painting at Florida State University.

How does your New York roots influence you as an artist?
When I attended FSU my professors were mainly abstract painters and I felt compelled to go large and abstract. I yearned for my roots and created some massive “graffiti wall” canvases that incorporated city imagery. In the years since I have returned to my perceptual roots. Out of necessity I work smaller now and base my work from what inspires me in my little universe. That would include lots of city images with a focus on everyday people in the street. My daughter lived in Fort Greene whiling attending Pratt. I have enjoyed returning to Brooklyn where I was born and painting the neighborhoods of that borough. A week ago a California woman bought one of my Park Slope prints and asked me if it was 4th Street I painted. I knew it was because my brother lives on that street and it turned out I had painted the front of this lady's brownstone! The next week I got an order for the same print from her old neighbor!

In addition to painting scenes of New York, I enjoy café scenes, both interiors and outdoors. Next to New York, my favorite city to paint is San Francisco.

Visit Gwen Meyerson's Etsy Shop
What has been your most exciting moment as an artist?
I remember when I attended the Studio School that I saw an ad in the NY Post for an art competition held by the Queens Museum. I was about age 21, mailed my slides and was soon alerted that I was a finalist. The curator and museum director came together to visit my “studio” which was my parents’ basement! They clearly expected a more seasoned artist and looked rather surprised when they came down the stairs. But they interviewed me and were most encouraging as they talked to me about my work. I was not in the final cut but it was the first time I felt elated at being recognized for my talent. I actually have those paintings on my walls today.

Artist Gwen Meyerson
SchulmanArt: What is your studio space like?
I have a very small apartment. My studio is a tiny room –in fact it's my daughter’s bedroom who is in college! Therefore a very important ritual for me is making the commitment to paint and covering the walls, floor and bed with drop cloths. The easel comes in from the terrace and the paints, cans and palette emerge from the closet. When I am set up I have no excuses not to paint. I either turn on daytime tv or listen to radio (WFUV which turned me on to some of my favorite artists like Ray LaMontagne.) This room has one big window facing the north. To my left I see the Throg’s Neck Bridge which is kind of nice.

What are you working on now?
I actually do not have any shows coming up. I have been concentrating on building my etsy business. I recently started offering prints which has had a good reception. Until my daughter goes back to school in a week I am using a small tabletop easel in the kitchen working on some quick studies. But I have some great city shots that I intend to start working on very shortly.
mentioned in this article  @GwenMeyerson
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Monday, January 30, 2012

Facebook Fans Give Creative Titles to new Sheep Art Series!

Wooly Booly!
By Miriam Schulman, @schulmanArt
Wooly Booly, 8x10" Farm Animal Art
Completed a new series of watercolor on canvas. This series depicts all sheep art and lamb paintings Paintings of farm animals add a delightful touch to your child's room, or a country kitchen. For this series I asked my fans on my facebook fan page to help me out with titles, so I owe the creative titles to my fans!

Shorn This Way!, 8x10" Lamb Art
Ewe and Me Against the World, 8x10" Sheep Painting
Peaceful Fleecy Feeling, 8x10" Lamb Painting
Peaceful Pasture, 8x10" Sheep Art
Sheep Arts & Crafts by lots of talented etsy artisans!
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Thursday, January 26, 2012

Happy Chinese New Year!

Creative Inspirations
by Miriam Schulman, @schulmanArt

Stationary from BBDesigns
Chinese New Year started officially on January 23, 2012. One of the most important traditional Chinese holidays,  it is also known as "Spring Festival." The festival begins on the first day of the first month  in the traditional Chinese calendar and ends with Lantern Festival on the 15th day.  Chinese New Year is the longest and most important festivity in the Chinese calendar. The origin of Chinese New Year is itself centuries old and gains significance because of several myths and traditions.
 I don't paint dragons, but I have plenty of dragonflies!
Dragonfly Painting
Dragon fly Wall art
Dragonfly Art
Dragonfly Decor


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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Decorating with Cockatoo

Make Your Spirits Soar
by Miriam Schulman, @schulmanArt

Butterfly Art hangs over a white sofa, room with Cockatoo accents
If you're like me, spring can never start soon enough and I start fantasizing about spring along with the colors I plan to wear. One of my favorite colors to come out of the Pantone 2012 Spring color report is "cockatoo." Cockatoo, a tactile blue-green, is sure to make your spirits soar. This unusual hue adds a whimsical touch to the palette and will surely make a statement this spring. You can have spring come early into your home by using this vibrant pastel in your decorating schemes. 

Butterfly Painting for sale online
In the paintings over the couch, the butterflies flit across a light turquoise (cockatoo) summer sky and land on bamboo yellow and emberglow coral flowers. These pieces are done with archival watercolors on specially prepared canvas which gives gorgeous affects as the transparent watercolor has texture and luminosity. It would be at home in modern or traditional decors. Gold crackle frame is INCLUDED with this offer. ___________________________________________

Summer Butterfly Swirls by Miriam Schulman for sale on etsy
Title: Summer Butterfly Swirls
Size: 8x8in gallery wrapped Canvas
FRAME INCLUDED, 10x10" gold crackle frame as shown, wired and ready to hang
Media: Watercolor on Canvas with acrylic varnish
Pantone Cockatoo Color swatch

Are you looking for a new paint color?
Colony Green by Benjamin Moore

I had my entire living room painted in this color and every person who came in would comment how soothing the room felt. Colony green is truly color therapy for your home. This color is a bit softer than the Pantone swatch making it easier to live with and work with other furnishings in your home. Think of it as an almost gray that has been tinted with a hint of blue and green. As David Kleinberg says in House Beautiful, "I grew up in a house that was all turquoise, and for years I couldn't look at blue. But this color is so terrifically pretty and filled with joy — sort of like as if you were inside a robin's egg looking out into the light. I'd use it in a bedroom with white lacquered trim, a four-poster bed lacquered white, and crisp white bed linens."

Do you love art and decorating? Get art you love and decorating inspiration delivered straight to your inbox! Click HERE.


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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Using Artwork to Inspire a new Decorating Scheme

Beguiling Begonias
post by Miriam Schulman, @schulmanArt
Get inspired to Decorate with Original Orange Flower art
If the new year got you in the mood to finally decorate, here is an easy way to get a designer look. Start with a Moroccan quality area rug by Stark Carpet. The one shown in the room view, Moroccan Relief, will look chic modern and hide the sins of minor wear and tear. 

($37.88 per gallon; myperfectcolor.com)
Next, add instant sophistication with Benjamin Moore's Amherst Gray.  As interior designer Lytel Young says in House Beautiful magazine, "Gray is the new neutral...use it in a living room , where it would make the most uptight guest feel at ease, as if he'd loosened his tie."

Instead of adding the art last, find a piece of art that really speaks to you and use the colors of the artwork to add decorative pillows.
Enjoy the energy and beauty of Orange Begonias all year round
This impressionist floral watercolor painting depicts orange potted begonias. The background is the bright solar power yellow sunshine with splatters of tangerine tango, cerulean blue and warm green. you can use this floral painting to brighten your home decor or as a gift for your sweetheart for a special birthday or Valentines Day. Floral wall art is a wonderful way to enjoy flowers in your room decor all year round. The feisty persimmon orange is right on trend this spring
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Detail of Floral Watercolor with vibrant yellow and tangerine
Title: Beguiling Begonias
Size: 14x20" before framing (18x24" with optional matting available thru the artist)
Media: Original Watercolor on Arches Watercolor Paper- signed in black ink by the artist
Purchase info: Click HERE

Whimsy and Fun in detail of Flower Watercolor
Copyright words do not appear on actual artwork but are there to deter image theft on the internet. 


Steal this look using handcrafted pillows found on etsy:
Lime Green Satin Pillows
Custom Mid-Century Mod Pillows
Designer Leopard Print Pillow

Do you love art and decorating? Get art you love and decorating inspiration delivered straight to your inbox! Click HERE.

mentioned in this article @schulmanArt, @benjamin_moore, @housebeautiful, @starkcarpet
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Sunday, January 22, 2012

Artist who Depicts Cats like Us

Interview with Whimsical Cat Artist Heidi Shaulis
More great cat art for sale on www.heidishaulis.com
by Miriam Schulman, @schulmanArt


SchulmanArt: What has been your most exciting moment as an artist?
Heidi Shaulis: When I realized I could make a living as a painter! I've been painting for over twenty-six years now! Until 1999, it was a hobby; then when my younger son Rowan was a baby, while off for the winter at the archaeology company where I was working... I decided to try to sell my paintings on the internet. Much to my surprise, once I discovered selling on eBay, my paintings sold and I was ecstatic! It was wonderful to be able to do something I loved for a living, and be able to be at home for my two sons at the same time.


Cat Art by Heidi Shaulis
SchulmanArt: What are your inspirations?
Animals, particularly cats. Also I'm inspired by the long history of cat art; including Henriette Ronner and Louis Wain who concentrated on cats as their subject matter. There are also lots of artists from the past whose work I love and inspire me; Franz Marc, Marc Chagall, Henri Matisse and Alice Neel among many others. Seeing the high quality of new work on the internet by other artists working today also continuously surprises me and inspires me to work hard to get better and better.
Indoor Cats plan their escape!

SchulmanArt: How do you stay disciplined?
I've been doing it long enough now that I don't really need to be in a certain mood; I have a number of projects that I'm working on continuously, and simply work on them daily as part of my routine. For music, I have Sirius radio and usually just set it on the Spectrum and leave it there.
Become Heidi's fan on Facebook!
SchulmanArt: What is your studio space like? 
I have a beautiful studio in VT that is a separate building with a cozy wood stove and a view of my garden and a 5 acre hayfield that is teeming with wildlife. However, in November I moved to North Jersey to be with my boyfriend (reunited after 23 years), and so that my son can have more freedom by being in a town where he can walk to school, etc...instead of 14 miles out of town like our place in VT. Currently I'm working in the living room, though I have an opportunity to participate in a studio share at the Monroe Center for the Arts in Hoboken, NJ and might do it if I can afford it, as Hoboken has a vibrant arts community, and I'd love to have a studio where clients can come see me.

Charlie and Willy, Heidi Shaulis original oil painting

SchulmanArt: I love your tuxedo cat and tabby cat themes since we just adopted a tuxedo cat and we are also in love with my sister in law's orange tabby. Who are the cats in your life and do they keep you comany while you create?
Heidi Shaulis: Charlie is my main muse; he is a very chubby tuxedo cat with the sweetest, most gentle temperment of any cat I've ever known. My orange/buff tabby is Willy and he loves Charlie and follows him everywhere. Harry is my other tuxedo; he is more playful than the others and the best hunter. Thistle is my 4th; she's a longhair gray tabby and avoids the boys as much as possible. Since I'm working at home, they are ever-present in that subtle way that cats have of taking over their environment. Charlie and Thistle were from the Providence Animal Rescue League, Willy was a barn kitten and Harry was a free kitten. So many animals need homes that I always adopt...though a couple of times they have chosen me by just showing up at the door.
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Thursday, January 19, 2012

Gifts for the MAN in your life this Valentine's Day

A few creative touches that won't scare him away.
by Miriam Schulman, @schulmanArt


Lots of flirty pillows available from SewEnglish
Why be coy?! Even if you didn't see the season finale of Grey's Anatomy TV show to hear Dr Alex Karev's words of wisdom ... "Eat more bacon. Have more sex" ... I suspect there are people who agree with him!! Each pillow is individually handcut and appliqued in England, so order now to get in time for that special day.


Funky Geek T-shirt
If you want to be affectionate and avoid anything either too suggestive or lovey dovey- this t-shirt by signaturetshirts is perfect!


Rooster Art by Miriam Schulman
Is he too chicken to commit? You can poke fun at him in a playful yet non-pushy way with this rooster artwork. Cocks are always suggestive, flirty and fun.








What do you think makes a great valentines gift for a lover?
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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Chicken Philosophy

I dream of a better tomorrow, where chickens can cross the road and not be questioned about their motives.
by Miriam Schulman, @schulmanArt
Newborn Chick, Original Chicken Art
My latest series of original artworks features chicken paintings. Chickens and eggs are full of mystical and religious symbolism. I also enjoyed working with the aesthetic qualities of all the features both brown and white as well as the baby fuzzy yellow down.

Although all the art is done in watercolor, you do not need to frame this impressionist farm art under glass. I prepare and finish all my watercolors on canvas using archival techniques allowing you to enjoy the transparency of watercolor without the expense of custom framing. If an 8x10" frame is desired to finish the work, these are easy to find. Animals make wonderful nursery room decor. Chicken decor also enhances the country kitchen or any modern home.

In Newborn Chick, (above) a mother hen nestles near a newly hatched egg. The mother hen nesting is depicted in earth tones on a light blue background. A sweet yellow baby chick peers up at her mama. The brown earth tones contrast beautifully with the turquoise blue sky.

Chickens Come Home to Roost, Original Farm Art
In Chickens Come Home to Roost, white and red roosters pop against the brown earth tones and the turquoise blue sky. All the paintings in this series are 8x10" on gallery wrapped canvas. The sides are painted black so you may display them without a frame.
Rooster Art, Chicken-Hearted


Chicken-Hearted depicts white hens and roosters in a dense flock. The chickens are depicted in white and reddish pink on a turquoise background. This lovely work would be excellent for Valentines Day. (especially good for that lover who is afraid to commit)

Which reminds me of an excellent quote: The difference between involvement and commitment is like ham and eggs. The chicken is involved; the pig is committed.~Martina Navratilova

Hen Art
Hen-Pecked is an original watercolor on canvas depicting  two hens pecking in the grass. The chickens are depicted in earth tones on a turquoise background. The composition has strong diagonals and contrasts. This artwork and all the others have been given a light coat of acrylic varnish.

  • SOLD
I listed all these artworks over the past weekend and a hungry collector already bought one so if you are thinking of adding one to your collection, don't hesitate. The same paintings are offered both in my etsy shop (search for all chicken art ) and on my website ( in animal art)  but there is only one painting of each. my website is set up to take your secure credit card payments. You will get the same personal service wherever you choose to shop.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Art Inspired by Night Visions

Interview with Fantasy Artist Shawna Erback
by Miriam Schulman, @schulmanArt

You can find art for sale by Erback on her website
SchulmanArt: How long have you been an artist?
Shawna Erback: The first painting I remember creating was of a beautiful black horse when I was only 12 years old that I gave to my father on his birthday. I can still see that painting in my mind as if I painted it yesterday. I would give almost anything to see and hold that painting again, but it’s gone.


Where did you study art?
I don’t have any professional training.  Creating art is in my family.  I grew up painting and drawing with my Nona.  Bob Ross, who I love,  was always on TV in the background.

Become her fan on Facebook
What are your inspirations?
I keep my eyes and ears open all the time.  My next creation could be inspired by a word I hear, a leaf I saw or a neat rock that I find in my son’s pocket when I’m doing the laundry.

What has been your most exciting moment as an artist?
I’ve been blessed with many exciting moments but the one that I’ll never forget is the day one of my dreams came true.  DreamWorks emailed me to send in a concept sketch after I sent them my website.  I heard of a new fine art program they were launching thanks to my Google Alert and I applied right away and heard back the same night! Now I get to create beautiful paintings for their fine art program based on their animated films like How To Train Your Dragon.  When they added me to their website as one of their international artists, that was a great day for me and my family.

What is your studio space like?
Last summer I had an idea to move my studio out of my house.  We renovated a space downtown and spent tons of money and time.  After the second week of my doors being opened, I realized I made a mistake.  I felt trapped like I was in a 9-5 job and couldn’t believe what a dumb idea that was!  I didn’t want to tell my husband, after the months of work he just did for me! When I finally did he just rolled his eyes and said I guess you want me to move everything back this weekend? lI learned an expensive lesson about how to appreciate what I already had in the room just off of my kitchen.  Being at home with my kids and family is where I need to be!
 
That's a great story! What is the view out your studio window now?
I live on a mountain and have a wonderful view of the whole valley and town below, we live in bear country and it’s not uncommon for us to see a bear or two right outside my studio window.  This fall there was even a cougar spotted in my yard by one of my neighbors.  I’m still wondering where my head was at to want to give my natural space up for a 400 square foot box downtown.
 
You can follow Shawna's blog
You have recurring "characters" in your paintings. How do they come to you?
I have these visions.  I usually get them at night. My sad moon character is my one of my favourite characters that I dreamed up one night.  I love him, he is always protecting and worrying about the little girl in my paintings.  Lots of my paintings are in memory of my dad and you can see the darker side in them.  Over the last couple years I’ve noticed that my paintings are brighter with a lighter feel and my collectors have noticed that too because they tell me.  I guess it’s a direct link to how I’ve been changing. I still do the odd darker side painting though.  It’s such a part of me, but I can see things have changed as I go through my images from time to time.

What's on the easel now? I’ve been invited to the Wow Creations, Oscars gift lounge in Beverly Hills next month as their feature artist during Oscar week, so right now I have a set of four paintings on the go that I’ll presenting to the Oscar nominees, stars and guests (they will each have a print to take home as a gift). I’m creating a Celebration Of Film Collection and my first painting has been revealed which is Little Red Riding Hood. I’m posting all of the updates on my blog and facebook page. The next three will be revealed soon.


Mentioned in this blog port: @shawnaerback, @dreamworksstudio
etsy name - http://www.etsy.com/shop/shawnaerback
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Friday, January 13, 2012

Creative Valentines Gifts for Anyone

Have you been bitten by the Love bug?
by Miriam Schulman, @schulmanArt

click here for all Insect Art
click here for all Love Bug Art
Looking for a great gift idea for Valentines' Day? This can be a tricky holiday for some people who are in a new relationship and don't want to send the wrong message. A creative gift lets them know that you are thinking of them without  making anything complicated. Creative presents are also great ideas for women to give to important men in their lives! People of all ages love art, and why not give them a piece of art that they can have forever?

What do you think makes a great Valentines gift?
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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Artist who Celebrates the Strength and Confidence of the Female Form

Interview with Figurative Painter Julia Trops
by Miriam Schulman, @schulmanArt

Nude Figurative Art by Julia Trops
SchulmanArt: What gave you the courage to pursue a career as an artist full time?
Julia Trops:  I didn't see that there was any other choice. When I left the military, to join my family where my husband had been newly posted, I made the decision that if I was leaving a very well paying job then I was going to be doing something I loved and wanted. It was a force I felt within me and it was almost like I had a steel chain in the centre of my chest pulling me in that direction. My husband was supportive - though I am not sure he had much choice.

SchulmanArt: What motivates you to return to the female figure again and again?
Julia Trops: I've always drawn people and the feminine form even when I was young - elves, mermaids, fairies, which then, in puberty, progressed to drawings of ancient Greek statues and renaissance paintings. Currently I draw from life, and have for the past ten years after leaving university - mostly female nudes. The female figure has much to do with my own femininity, that I recognize now - acceptance and celebration of the same. A criticism of the feminists and a few self proclaimed contemporary artists say that I am victimizing the female by drawing her nude, but I disagree. For me, I am reveling in the strength and confidence of the female form, and have a recognition of her power in the human experience. I would suggest that it is only those who have bought into and are held by the patriarchal mores and values who see a nude female as a victim. My current work is borderline abstracted female form, and I am exploring the female as child, virgin, mother and crone.

Become Julia's Fan on Facebook
SchulmanArt: What has been your most exciting moment as an artist?
Julia Trops: Three times so far have been the most impactful. The first was being accepted in to the Rotary Centre for the Arts in 2002 (I left just at the end of 2011), the acceptance into the residency in Italy, and when I sold my first work. All three of those have a common theme, that of acceptance and belief in my abilities, and my future. It is something I am still learning to internalize and believe in myself. It's been a long road, but I'm getting stronger with each achievement.

SchulmanArt: How do you maintain a work discipline?
Julia Trops: When I was at the Rotary Centre for the Arts, I went each day to the studio, just like a regular job. A typical day would include internet time was at home from about 630 to 830, studio 9-2 or 3, home for supper and then a bit more internet time til around 8 or so. Now I am getting adjusted to having the studio in the home, and working on a specific project. I recognize that the internet needs to be really structured because it is easy to get sucked in to a vortex where it is concerned. I have it in a separate room now, not in the main family area. I have to physically walk there to go online.

Julia Trops at work in her studio
I try to go to my studio each day, or I do my reading, some kind, writing in the blog, or journal. It is still structured, but less formally. I am enjoying the freedom. Rituals in the studio include "nesting" before a big project starts - often I won't know a project is coming until this happens, and when I realize it, it is quite exciting! Before beginning to paint or draw, I line up my colours and my brushes, (or drawing tools) inspect them all, make sure the bristols are soft and pliable. Much time, I do not listen to any music. I enjoy the silence.


SchulmanArt:  How do you stay creative?
JT: I refuel the creative well by taking a break. That's hard to do, and it's been hard to allow myself to do it sometimes. I'll read. I'll meditate. Take a complete mental break. I'll not go in the studio for a month to a few months. I've learned not to force the flow of creativity and to honour these breaks. During those times, I'll focus on online work. Or other projects that I have on the go.

Female Nude by Julia Trops
SchulmanArt: What are some of projects do you have going on now? 
JT: I manage my website, along with Livessence, a life drawing group, and the Okanagan Erotic Art Show as well as the facebook pages. I'm getting ready to go through portfolios for the Ex Nihilo Vineyards new art gallery called Creatio - I am their art gallery director. (More information on the Erotic Art Show Call to Artists is online and on facebook. I'm learning Italian to be able to function in Italy for June, as I am doing a month long residency there. I'm reading and learning about the female in society, matriarch vs patriarch, myths and stories, archetypes, super-consciousness.

Julia Trops work can also be seen at  Gallery Odin.
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Check out all the art by Miriam Schulman in shades of teal and orange or look at these beautiful etsy creations and vintage finds

mentioned in this article @juliatrops
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Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Renaissance Portrait

Boticelli's Dream Girl

Botticelli, Ideal Portrait of a Lady
The latest exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art focuses on Renaissance portraiture. This is a must see for portrait artists, or anyone who loves romantic Italian art. The exhibition is broken down by geographical location as there is a Venice room, a Florence room etc and includes not just paintings but sculptural portrait busts as well.

Detail from Birth of Venus
A highlight of the exhibition is a breathtaking portrait by Botticelli. Immediately as you walk into the Florence room you are drawn to the idealized painting of Simonetta Vespucci. She was a bit of a cult figure and died at a tragically young age. Her legendary beauty was described as flowing curly tendrils and pearly white skin. Simonetta became known as the most beautiful woman in Florence, and later the most beautiful woman of the Renaissance. She looks like the Venus figure in Botticelli's Birth of Venus and in fact many art historian have debated whether she served as a model or muse. Certainly, the painter would have had the most beautiful woman of his time in mind when painting the Goddess of Beauty.

Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Renaissance Portrait from Donatello to Bellini
through March 18, 2012

This exhibition has ended... but you can continue your journey with portraits... have you ever wanted to master portraits in watercolor? Take this survey and learn more!

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