Central Virginia Watercolor Guild

Combining Camaraderie with Creativity


Challenge! committee: Juliette Swenson, and  Laura Brennan Pooler

The intention of these painting challenges is to encourage you to explore new subjects and techniques. Share your creations at the monthly meeting.

January 2019 “Selfie”

Have you ever included your own image in a painting? Show us the results!

January challenge

Harold Hallock, Linda Abbey, Anne Hopper, Juliette Swenson, and Karen Schwenzer

February 2019 “Abstract” 

Show us a painting that breaks away from traditional representations of physical objects.  Show us your form, line, color, tone, and texture!

Abstract Challenge

Thirteen members responded to this challenge!

March 2019 “Metal or Rust”

Rust can be beautiful.  What can you paint with metal objects?

April 2019 “Wind and Weather”

April showers bring May flowers, so show us a painting related to wind and weather.

May 2019 “In Flight”

Whether it’s a plane, a kite, or a bird, let’s see what you can create that flies.

June 2019 “Out in the Garden”

How do things look in your garden?  Or maybe it’s how you wish they looked.  Show us!

July 2019 “Life’s a Beach”

Summer means sand and sun.  Show us a painting related to something you might find at the beach.

August 2019 “Dogs Days of August”

Share a painting of a dog or other pet with us on this steamy dog day in August.

September 2019 “Local Views”

Our beautiful state of Virginia provides ample choices for a beautiful painting. Paint items or scenes from where you live!

October 2019 “Autumn Bounty”

Autumn provides such a bounty!  Show us a painting that includes some of the best of Autumn.


October 2018:

“The Open Window”

Try a view using a window, looking out or looking in. It will give you an interesting painting challenge. Enjoy!

September 2018:

“Country Roads”

Scenic nostalgic country roads provide ample choices for a beautiful painting. Paint your memories or scenes from where you live!

August 2018:

“What’s in Your Attic?”

Quilts, old photos, a chair…..the possibilities are endless for a painting subject from the attic or in your attic. Lots of opportunities for a creative painting result.

Attic challenge

From l. to r., Nancy Ford, Rosemary Connelly, Patricia Travers, Patty Richmond, Harriet Groeschel, and Marcy Springett

July 2018 :

“Summer Contrast: Light and Shade”

Morning, noon and evening, the summer sun can create many dramatic painting opportunities. Show us your results concentrating on LIGHT and SHADE.

June 2018: “A Close Up”

Screen Shot 2018-06-12 at 3.58.33 PMHow do things look through a magnifying glass? It’s time for your close up…….…close up painting that is!



May 2018: “Things with Wings”

ButterflyWhether from your imagination or nature, let’s see what you can create with a winged subject.

Bring your work to the May 21 meeting.


April 2018: What IS in your Kitchen?


Shapes, colors and values?

Create a painting using anything you see in your kitchen and bring it to the April 23 meeting.

We look forward to the results!

For more information, contact the Challenge! committee: Juliet Swenson, Laura Brennan Pooler, Harriet Groeschel.

Thank you to Adella Langham for photographing these five paintings…



March 2018: Floral Value Study

Brenda Hounshell suggests: “Spring is coming and we will start to see color everywhere. Use this image as a value study to create your version of this floral subject. Bring your paintings to the March 26th meeting and share your interpretation with everyone.”



February 2018: Rain

Watercolor is the perfect medium to express “Rain”. Linda Bethke suggested you could paint just one drop of rain on a leaf, or a downpour in the Scottish highlands. I’m thinking of a soggy street scene with colorful umbrellas. Give it a try, and bring your work to the February 26 meeting.

Click HERE to see the results!

January 2018: Yellow and Orange

Brenda Hounshell issued a terrific challenge to start off the New Year! 17 artists brought paintings to the January 22 meeting. Click HERE to see their work.

Screen Shot 2017-11-27 at 10.41.40 AMLet’s Move Yellow and Orange Outside the Box!

  • Paint primarily with the colors Yellow and Orange
  • Use your choice of water media
  • Make good use of complimentary colors and shadows
  • Paintings should include both Yellow and Orange

Try to choose non-traditional subjects and be creative with the use of these two colors…..  Let’s not see just fall trees or a lemon and orange still life, unless you think reversing the colors in the landscape or still life might make a dynamic painting!  Think about it………………………….

November 2017: Local History

Click HERE to see the 21 artists who brought pictures to the November luncheon.

The challenge is “Local History”, and the paintings are due in time for our November 20 annual luncheon. (We thought there’s too much going on in October).

If you can’t decide which historic site or monument to paint, here’s a suggestion…Monroe’s Highland. Don’t feel you have to copy the picture exactly. Let part of it be a ‘jumping off’ point towards something that inspires you.

Monroe's Highland

Photo by Linda Bethke

August 2017: Summer

Click HERE to see the 11 pictures that were entered into the “Summer” Challenge!

At the CVWG July 2017 meeting, we issued a Challenge to our members! We invited everyone to paint something in accordance with a given theme or photographic reference. Then, at next month’s social hour, we shall share the results. This is a purely voluntary activity, but it might motivate those who have a hard time choosing a subject. And it might prove a fun learning opportunity.

The chosen theme is “Summer”. How does summer make you feel? What memories does it evoke? What color palette? You can interpret the theme however you like–landscape, still life, even portrait. If you need a prompt we are attaching a photograph of a beach scene that has plenty of color and action figures.

Linda Bethke will set up a table during the August 28 social hour (12:30-1:00 pm) to showcase the paintings and photograph them for a website gallery. They do not need to be framed. You will be able to ask questions, learn new techniques, and meet fellow artists. If you cannot come to the August meeting, you can send Rosemary Connelly a photo of your “Summer” painting and she’ll include it on the website.

Why not give this a try? Perhaps we can make the Challenge a regular monthly event?  If you have suggestions for a future theme, just let Linda or Rosemary know.

Linda Bethke, LSB525@aol.com
Rosemary Connelly, RDConnelly@embarqmail.com
Beach photo

Photo by Judy Fish at Lake Monticello

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