Mid-December 2023 Announcements

SRAL Presidents' Message

Happy Holidays to all of our art loving friends! As the year end approaches, we tend to think back over the year and reminisce about how it went. At our Santa Rita Art League, we have much to think back on. This is a very active league!

We are very proud to be a part of SRAL and to have been entrusted with its leadership. But most of all, we are so very grateful for all the friends we have made.

Arlene Szypulski


Jeani Gustafson


Seriously folks, co-leadership is where it's at!

We have had a lot of laughs, a few hurdles to jump over and happy to have each other as co-presidents to lean on when we needed.

Looking forward to next year. We are very excited to have much of the planning underway. We have our exhibits scheduled for 2024. We plan to continue with the Art 101 classes and of course, the Demonstrations, Mixer, SIG’s, and studio availability. All this will continue.

We are grateful to everyone who volunteers to keep all of these activities and events moving on. We are also grateful to everyone who participates. What is it they say, you will always benefit from participation but the first step is just “showing up.” A BIG "Thank You" to those who “Show Up.”

Wishing all of you a creative 2024 with lots of painting, learning, teaching, helping, and participating.

Enjoy the Holidays!

Arlene and Jeani

Quotes for you to enjoy:

"I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn't say any other way." -- Georgia O'Keeffe

"Everything has its beauty, but not everyone sees it." -- Andy Warhol

Current Art Shows

"The Color of Energy"

LtoR: Maureen Detberner, Darilyn Ronn, Tracy Sear, Debra Nealy, Shelby Jagla,

Joan Cawthorn, George Shively, Karen Workman, & Nan Lux.

In the auditorium of the GVR Las Campanas Rec. Center, the winners of

"The Color of Energy" fine art show were announced during the reception to honor all who entered the show.

Ribbons were awarded to:

"Energia de la Danza" by Tracy Sear

"Golden Hour" by Darilyn Ronn

"Friesian Fantasy" by Maureen Detberner

"Kaleidescope Gold" by George Shively

"Golden Energy" by Joan Cawthorn

"Butterfly" by Shelby Jagla

Honorable Mention was awarded to:

"Timeless View" by Nan Lux

"Chromatophilla" by Debra Nealy

"Twilight Blooms from a Bug's View" by Karen Workman

This show ends on December 29th at the Las Campanas Center.

"The Collage/Mixed Media Show"

This show is at GVR's West Center and ends on December 31, 2023. You only have a few more days to get over to the Center to enjoy the paintings.

"Printmakers Guild Show"

There is an excellent display of art prints by Karen Keim and John McGraw in the lobby at the Desert Hills GVR Center and it will continue until December 31st.


by Karen Keim


by John McGraw

We have added only a few of their pieces. The show actually occupies three walls. Karen & John are displaying some of their very best work. Their art is so outstanding that you will not only be amazed, you will be captivated by the complexity of each piece.

This show is not to be missed, their professionalism is masterful.

"Boundary Rim"

by John McGraw


by Karen Keim


by Karen Keim

"Three Sisters"

by John McGraw

Highlighting our

Special Interest Groups (SIGs)

Periodically, we plan to visit each Interest Group to see what's happening and learn more about them. Each Interest Group has its devoted volunteers who vigorously work to provide meaningful sessions for its members.

Knowing more about each group may be right up your alley. Who knows, you may find another interest to pursue and that may be a good thing.

Figure Drawing Group

This fun group meets once a month on the first Saturday from 9am to noon in the Main Studio. Each time they get together, they invite a professional model who will pose for maybe 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 10 minutes, and sometimes longer.

The coordinator is Lisa Schmidt, who has been a professional artist for most of her life, and she arranges hiring a model for each session. Normally the members know who the model will be. But sometimes, especially if one cancels and another steps in, you could have a cowboy, a dancehall dancer, an old man with a beard, possibly a Native American wearing a ceremonial headdress, or even a professional ballerina.

For the session we visited, they were sketching a very beautiful ballerina, who was also a professional model.

All Art League members are invited to attend the sessions. Just bring your pencils, charcoal or graphite sticks, maybe a drawing board, some paper towels, and all your enthusiasm. Oh, let's not forget that there is a $5 fee that goes toward paying the model.

ART 101 Workshops (Two Workshops held in December)

"Beginner Intro to Acrylic Painting"

December 9, 2023

Art Instructor, Nan Lux, planned a very exciting workshop that included the participants creating all sorts of abstract pieces utilizing different approaches. Nan demonstrated a pouring technique using acrylic paint to create unique images. She had everyone fill a paper cup with various colors and then pour the paint onto the canvas. Then each member tipped their canvas in different directions, which caused the paint to flow to all corners. Everyone was astonished with the beautiful paintings that resulted.

Nan continued by showing our members how to create hard and soft lines as well as a few tips about composition placement. One technique required the members to use a straw to blow the paint around on the canvas. This editor had never seen anything like it before, but it produced outstanding patterns.

"Creative Design"

December 16, 2023

Art Professor, Angelique Gillespie began this session with a quick trip to the SRAL Library where she had selected several books that would help each member acquire a better understanding of graphic design. Everyone appeared to be amazed that our little library was so well stocked with materials not only about design but on many subjects within the realm of art.

Once everyone returned to their art stations, Angelique systematically reviewed the basic principles and elements of design.

It was a lively discussion as she explained every facet, answered all questions, and provided examples for the members to visually absorb the complexities and differences that broadened their comprehension.

To further their understanding of a demanding subject, Angelique asked them to create their own designs based on the discussions they had. Using hand-torn black paper, all completed designs that were simply beautiful.

This was an outstanding art class presented by an obviously excellent professor. "You are never too old to learn new things or to revisit subjects that may have slipped between the fissures in your mind." Everyone was delighted to have participated in such a marvelous class.

Art 101: New Workshops in January 2024

Are you a beginning artist and want to learn the basics about different mediums, design, and color? Are you an artist that has wanted to learn a different medium? Then Art 101 is perfect for you. The Art 101 classes offered this fall and winter will be presented by SRAL members volunteering to share their time and expertise. 

  • Each class will be held in the SRAL studio, from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM. A few may have a different time slot. 
  • Materials for classes will be provided by SRAL and include paints, paper or canvas, and an appropriate paint brush. 
  • Participants will need to bring a water container, paper towels, an apron, or any appropriate working clothes.
  • The class size is determined by the instructor; generally, 12 - 18 people. We encourage members to sign up for only one media class per month to enable everyone to participate. This will ensure participants a fuller mastery of the new medium and allow us to accommodate more members.
  • Registration for each class will be on Art 101 webpage. A small material fee of $10.00 is required to complete and validate your registration. Each class list is compiled on a first come first serve basis. You will receive notification after you have registered. You will then be notified about how and when the material fee is to be paid.

More Free Art 101 Classes in January

"Art Basics for Success"

Instructor: Rich Metcalf

Date: Sundays, January 7, 14, 21, 28, 2024

(A series that builds on each other.)

Time: 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM

Maximum Number of Participants: 18

For More Information Click Here


"Images in Mist"

in Watercolor

Instructor: Darilyn Ronn

Date: Saturday, January 13th

Time: 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM

Maximum Number of Participants: 15

For More Information Click Here

Angelique Gillespie Will Be Our January

Demo Artist

January 11th From 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Originally from Sydney Australia, Angelique Gillespie studied Engineering Drafting.  She worked in the oil industry in Australia, as well as in England and Canada.  Angelique settled in Canada after meeting her husband and  raised two children there.   During this time, she took a basic watercolor class to see if she had any  artistic talent. While studying at the Alberta College of Art and the University of Calgary, Angelique received a Visual Arts Diploma (updated to a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree).

Join Angelique as she shares her Creative Journey process. She will show how she moves intuitively beyond the white paper angst, creating a variety of abstract backgrounds before adding her images onto either canvas or wood. Starting with a sense of skillful mark making, she will show the ways she uses unexpected creations sensibly. Angelique’s unique style is supported by knowledge of past Masters’ techniques applied to her own innate reaction to what results from her unique starts.

More information about Angelique can be found on the SRAL web site at:


View works by Angelique at: https://federationgallery.com/artist/2708/angeliquegillespie


Please Bring a Treat to Share with Members!


for 2024, began on October 1st  

Still only $35 for the 2024 year


  • Monthly live artist demonstrations
  • Free learning workshops
  • Over 10 different Special Interest Groups to work with
  • Participation in membership exhibits throughout GVR Centers
  • Participation in juried and judged shows
  • Use of our art studio and wonderful library
  • Camaraderie and developing great friendships.


  • You can now go onto the SRAL website to:
  • Fill out an application and pay online.
  • Print out an application and pay by cash or check.  
  • Pick up an application in the studio from the file folder located by the entrance.
  • Pick up an application at the General Meeting and pay there.


NOTE: PLEASE read the renewal form carefully as it gives you information you need to renew and make your dues payment.  

For a Membership Application Click Here


Locker and slot renewals for 2024 are now due, and must be paid by the 

January 11, 2024 general meeting. Fees can be paid by filling out a rental application (available in the studio) to include with your cash or check payment; both should be left with the studio monitor. Or fees can be paid at the January 11 meeting. Fees are still $20 for lockers, and $15 for slots.

If you no longer want your locker or slot for 2024, PLEASE contact Valerie at 

ValerieSM@SantaRitaArt.org. There is currently only 1 locker available, and no slots.

If you would like a locker and/or slot and none are available, your name will be put on a waiting list for the next available. 

For more information, or if you no longer want your locker or slot this year, PLEASE contact Valerie St.Marie by clicking here.

SRAL Art Shows to Prepare For

"Desert Hills Permanent Show"

The winter show at Desert Hills will be on display from January 9 to April 9, in the large auditorium. Please email your entry information to Jan Harnish, no later than January 5.

Send the following information: title of artwork, media, price, artist name, phone number, and your email address (Please indicate if you do not want your contact information on the ID card).

We have room for 24 paintings, two entries max. per artist. Because of difficulty handling and arranging larger pieces, limit framed painting dimensions to LESS than 36", either direction. If more than 12 artists enter, we will hang the first painting listed on the entry forms.

Please check that matting, framing, and hanging hardware are in good shape.

We are looking forward to another great SRAL show.


It is almost time for the

"2024 Masters Show!"

Edgar Degas

Vincent Van gogh

Vincent Van Gogh

Wassily Kandinsky

Wassily Kandinsky

Recreating a Master painting is a time-honored tradition for developing artistic skills. It is a good way to try out a new technique, improve on your own style, and have some fun!  


For 2024 there will be a special section featuring Women Artists. We have posted a list of names on the bulletin board as a suggestion, or you can choose another woman artist. Of course, this is not a requirement, and you may choose any artist that you consider to be a Master, male or female. We have a good library for ideas.


     ++++Now for the Rules!!!++++


Due to United States copyright law, the artist must be deceased for AT LEAST 70 YEARS. So any artist who died in 1954 or before is allowed. ANY ARTIST DECEASED FROM 1955 AND ON WILL BE DISQUALIFIED FROM THE SHOW. Please check your artist info.


Two entries are allowed and there is no entry fee. Five ribbons will be awarded, judged by the artists who are entered into the show. Judging should be based on how close to the original artwork you have come. No size limit. You do not have to paint in the original medium, as most were oil. Watercolor, pastel, acrylic, etc, is fine. 


The 2024 show will be held at the East Center for the months of March and April. Delivery date is Friday March 1, 10a-11a. Pickup is Tuesday April 30, 10a-11a. Email for more info: CherylS@SantaRitaArt.org 

Entry forms are available online at our website or in the studio on the wall next to the key pad. Entries must be postmarked before Feb 15th, 2024. 

Learning Opportunities at

Tubac School of Fine Art

The Tubac School of Fine Art is offering workshops from a variety of artists. Please click below for information.

Phone: 520-398-2589

Email: workshops@tubacschooloffineart.org

"Realism Within the Abstract"

Instructor: Lisa Larrabee

January 5 - 7, 2024

Intuitive Painting with Watercolor and Gouache

Instructor: Stan Kurth

January 12 - 14, 2024

Additional Workshops at Tubac School of Fine Arts

Lisa Lesch Morrow: Oil Rub-Out, January 15-16, 2024

Dianna Fritzler: Paint Bodacious Blooms, January 19-21, 2024

Keiko Tanabe: Capturing the Essence in Watercolor, January 26-28, 2024

For More information Click Here

Upcoming Art Competition


The Community Performance & Art Center

"Icons of the West"

Featuring Works by Arizona Artists

Location: Harry & Ann Paxton Gallery and Theater Lobby

January 2 - February 1, 2024

Reception: Wednesday, January 10, 5:30 - 7:00pm

Click Here for More Information About This Exhibit

Learning Opportunities at CPAC


"Plein Air Watercolor to Studio Creations"

Instructor: Roberta Rogers

January 4-5, 2024

This workshop will give students of all levels the opportunity to work “en plein air” with outstanding views of the Arizona Desert. Learning to see and choose landscape elements will lead artists to express an authentic view via the extra exposure to nature.  Click here for more information.


Studio Sessions at CPAC

Instructor: Fran Sutherland

"Developing individual objectives and participants sharing experiences. Format will be Discuss. Identify. Critique."

Every Wednesday, February 7 - April 24, 2024

9:00 AM - 12:00 PM 

As a lifelong teacher who has worked in all media, Fran enjoys facilitating people's artistic journey, whether they are a relatively new painter or one who wishes to evolve. In this series of sessions, participants work on their specific objectives while sharing the creative process with others. Emphasizing how different substrates respond to media and contribute to the message of the artwork will also be explored as each student works.

Flyers are available in SRAL's studio or Click Here For More Information.


"The Art of Awakening"

Solo Art Exhibit by

Rev. Paula Richards

East Center

7 S Abrego Dr, Green Valley

November 1 – December 31, 2023

Contact Paula, Click here.

Solo Art Exhibition by

John D. Vandebrooke

West Center Lobby

January 3rd -- 31st.

New Novel by Hugh Beykirch

One of our most experienced Artists who has been a member of SRAL for more than 20 years is also a great author of several books. Hugh Beykirch writing under the pen name of Harald Lutz Bruckner has just released his latest novel.

Resurrection is a mystery at several levels. A set of twins abducted in Santiago, Chile, shortly before the Pinochet coup d'état on September 11, 1973, appear to be recognized by one of their uncles at a pub in Düsseldorf, Germany, in February 2022.

It is the uncanny resemblance to the almost ninety-year old twin uncles living in Düsseldorf that starts the hunt to solve a fifty-year unsolved crime. 

The reader is taken once again on a rollercoaster ride that follows the highs and lows of the protagonists.

The novel is available in paperback and "E" versions at Amazon. 


There are 10 Special Interest Groups and all of them are open to the members of the Art League.


On the SRAL website there is a complete description for each SIG.

If you wish to learn more about any of the SIGs, Click Here

Below is additional INFO not on the SRAL webpage.


There are no special skills required to join in with this friendly group. Meeting attendees always find artist support, often with live demos, workshops, and critiques. Come and see what it’s all about.


Next meeting Monday January 8, 2024 in the studio at 10:00. The Monthy Challenge is to paint with 3 colors plus black and white and use a brush that is 1 1/2” or larger. You can use other tools, the idea is to loosen up and use your whole body to paint. 


The Assemblage Group’s next challenge is the 5 Object Challenge. The purpose of this challenge is to provide an opportunity for the artist to reflect on the personal meaning of each object as it relates to the intention or concept of their piece. We are challenged to limit ourselves by using a maximum of five objects to convey the concept of the piece. By doing this, each object becomes a unique statement…or a description for the work of art.


The next Figure Drawing session will be held on Saturday, January 6th, 9am to noon. The model fee is $5.00 per participant. 


Special Announcement from Deb Nealy

Greetings to Oil Painting & Pastel Artists.

In January 2024, the walls of the SRAL Studio will be adorned with Oil Paintings & Pastels -- but we need your work! We prefer to have it either framed or matted (take a look at the current display by the Plein Air Group for reference). Let me know if you have any work you would like to be included in this month-long exhibit. Also, I will be away the beginning of January and would appreciate it if someone could organize this in my absence. Email, text, or phone me if you're interested.


Resuming In January!

We will meet on Thursday mornings and try to form carpools. Our destinations are special places around Southern Arizona. Meet times will vary depending on the weather. If you are interested, contact Nanci at NanciS@SantaRitaArt.org.

Plein Air Schedule for December

  • Dec 21. The Lost Barrio in Tucson. Although I've never been there, I saw a story about it on Arizona Illustrated. Meet at East Center we will leave at 12:30 to arrive at the Lost Barrio, located at 208 S Park off of Broadway. We should arrive at 1:00 and have plenty of time to paint in warmer conditions.
  • Dec 28. San Augustin Plaza in Tucson. Urban painting. A lovely site off Congress at Convento. A favorite for locals and visitors alike. Your chance to paint people or ?. Meet at East Center south lot, we will leave at 12:30 pm to arrive about 1:00 pm. It is located on the corner of Congress and Covento. Get off on Congress and turn Left under the Fwy. Proceed to Convento and turn left. There is parking across the street in a dirt parking lot. The Plaza will have a Mexican Bakery, shops, a coffee bar and restaurants. Urban painting inside or outside one can paint the building itself.
  • Jan 4. De Grazia Compound in Tucson 6300 N Swan. Meet at East Center, South lot at 11:45 am . We will leave at noon because it is quite a drive and on the 11th no paint out because of the SRAL meeting in the afternoon. 

Dress accordingly.

Hope to see you for our beginning Plein Air Year. 


All are welcome to try some Gelli-printmaking on Wednesday, Dec. 20 at 9:30am in Room A of the SRAL Studio. Bring acrylics or thin water-soluble inks and a Gelli plate if you have one.

In January, we will meet on Wednesday, the 24th. Activity TBA.

Print Show: The Printmakers Guild art show in the Dessert Hills Lobby continues until December 31.

Click here for the list of SIG chairpersons and their e-mail addresses.