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    BEST IN SHOW: A Cappella

    Above: BEST IN SHOW, A cappella by Valeriya Lakrisenko. Read more...

    February 2018 Judge: Mary Pettis

    “A cappella is masterfully executed on every level. The striking composition invites us from afar; great flat shapes remind us that this is paint, and that we as viewers are willing participants in this communication. We are eagerly led by the shape’s gradation to the marvelous payoff: the exquisite and delicate beauty of the model! The accompanying text is not necessary, but is equally sympathetic to the manner in which this is painted, lending context and metaphor. A triumph. Congratulations, Valeria!"
    — Mary Pettis

    Read more about professional artist Mary Pettis.

    See judge's comments on all 12 finalist paintings below (shown in random order).

    Name of Artist: Kathleen Carr
    Judge's Comment: The surreal linear quality of this painting feels fitting and is a sympathetic handling of the artist’s narrative. The clean and simple perfection of tones and detail floating within the shapes seem to reflect an innocence and purity.
    Name of Artist: Jaq Grantford
    Judge's Comment: This tribute painting is a unique translation of the depth and soul of her subject. Beautifully painted in relative monochrome, the drawing and artistic concept carry the picture. Well done.
    Name of Artist: Bruce Bingham
    Judge's Comment: This charming work leaves little question about what the story is that the artist wants to tell. The play of colors between the tops and the undersides of the two umbrellas alone are enough to carry the painting. The manner in which the darks are connected is sophisticated and beautiful.
    Name of Artist: Valeriya Lakrisenko
    Judge's Comment: BEST IN SHOW - A cappella is masterfully executed on every level. The striking composition invites us from afar; great flat shapes remind us that this is paint, and that we as viewers are willing participants in this communication. We are eagerly led by the shape’s gradation to the marvelous payoff: the exquisite and delicate beauty of the model! The accompanying text is not necessary, but is equally sympathetic to the manner in which this is painted, lending context and metaphor. A triumph. Congratulations, Valeria!
    Name of Artist: Patrick Saunders
    Judge's Comment: In this little picture we feel the artist’s reverence for the compelling beauty of a white rose in light. I’m not certain how anyone could see this painting and ever look at a rose in the same way again. I believe that this is our job as artists: to reflect back to all the inherent beauty in the abundance of life around us!
    Name of Artist: John Buxton
    Judge's Comment: This classic motif is well handled in this original. The double light source lends both an intimacy of the moment and a sense of space beyond the picture plane. Well done!
    Name of Artist: Nicole Moné
    Judge's Comment: This ‘Chat Noir’ story is refreshing and delightful, both in the painting and its narrative. The relationship of shapes within a pyramidal composition plays well with the yellow background and the red and blue hints throughout. I love the circular focal path!
    Name of Artist: George F. Bodine
    Judge's Comment: This painting is a fine example of the beauty of the human figure in a languid setting.
    Name of Artist: John McCartin
    Judge's Comment: I, too, have been serenaded by scenes such as this. To paint a beautiful pastoral without making it redundant or trite or overtly picturesque is no small feat! The artist’s mastery in handling the bounced reflected light on the cattle and in the air is the quality that moves this piece into a class of its own.
    Name of Artist: Jason Sacran
    Judge's Comment: This is a gorgeous seascape in the hands of a master. The forms selected from the myriad of information, in both land and sea, hold our interest and move us effortlessly about the scene. The shapes of foam and froth kissing the rocks, the color transitions of the wet sand as its shape moves towards the light (and the climax of the painting), and of course, the color of the moist morning air are each truly stellar. Wow.
    Name of Artist: Shana Levenson
    Judge's Comment: Colors, tone, edges and modeling are perfectly suited to support the artist’s visual idea.
    Name of Artist: Alex Fong
    Judge's Comment: This ‘at-first-glance’ playful narrative morphed slowly into a complex interpretation full of meaning and nuance. I suspect this is exactly what this artist intended for his viewer to experience. Is this not one of the great things about art being a vehicle for thought?

     

     

    February 2018 Artists Choice

    Cash award to monthly Best in Show winner. All monthly finalists win a free promoted painting entry, are chosen and critiqued by a different professional artist judge each month, and compete for Grand Prizes awarded in August. Artists may offer to sell their paintings or print reproductions and keep 100% if sold.
    >> Click here to learn how your entry fee supports artists without access to art supplies or art instruction.
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    Fine Artist Studio Online (FASO) provides professional websites and marketing expertise for artists. Many top member artists participating in this competition have their primary website hosted with FASO.

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