Looking Back, Looking Ahead

Looking back, looking ahead….there is a sweet balance of good memories and the excitement of new adventures.

Highlights of 2023:

  • Jurying a Student Art Exhibit at the Red Door Art Gallery in  my hometown of Wahpeton, ND
  • Plein-air painting grant through the Lake Region Arts Council and McKnight Foundation
  • Teaching drawing and watercolor workshops, classes, and private lessons
  • Artist in Residency with twin sister Beverly for the students of Hankinson Elementary School- introducing my new curriculum called Birds in Art with a focus on sketching and watercolor and highlighting the works of artist and conservationist John James Audubon
  • Spring Art Sale and Studio Crawl events at my home-based Double Trouble Art Gallery/ Mourning Dove Studio in Moorhead
  • Plein-air painting in northern Idaho
  • Participating in several art exhibits, including the RRWS National Watermedia Exhibit held in Fargo, ND
  • Creating 8 large watercolor paintings of different rodeo events as commissioned by a rodeo family in western ND
  • Staff reunion at the first school where I taught: the Circle of Nations (formerly the Wahpeton Indian School).
  • Having my Black Hills Bison image selected for use by With the Wind Winery to introduce a new dry red wine called Sacred Solitude.

Looking ahead 2024:

  • Preparing for my upcoming March 4-8th 5-day Beginning Drawing and Watercolor (click for more information)
  • Planning for more Artist in Residencies in schools without art programs; continue teaching at various venues
  • Preparing new works of art for the Spring Art Sale, May 10-11 from 10am to 6pm.                                                                                                                                                                         Location: Double Trouble Art Gallery/ Mourning Dove Studio                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   809 20th Street North in Moorhead,MN
  • Return to northern Idaho for time with nephew Alex-play golf and paint the beauty there

The rest is in the hands of my CEO, Lord God Almighty, who directs my paths and connects me to amazing people along the way! All glory goes to Him, for all I do!

“I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me”. – Phillippians  4:13.



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Art for the Holidays Sale coming up!

Chief by Beverly Benda, Acrylic Mixed Media Collage on canvas

Saturday, December 9th,2023 is the  Art for the Holidays Sales event which will be held at the Fargo Civic Center, 207 4th Street North, Fargo, ND from 10 am -5pm. Beverly and I will be there to sell our original watercolors, acrylics, and mixed media collages and Christmas cards. We will also have flyers available for the March Beginning Drawing and Watercolor workshop held this coming March 4th-8th at the NDSCS campus in north Fargo. If you ever had the desire to start watercolor, this is the workshop to take. Download a flyer here Beginning Drawing and Watercolor.

At the Arts for the Holidays event, I will be sharing my plein-air watercolors that were created this past summer and fall, thanks to the Lake Region Arts Council and McKnight Foundation.

This winter Double Trouble Gallery and Mourning Dove Studio in Moorhead, MN will be open by appointment only if you are interested in purchasing larger works of original art for your home or business. Please call Barbara at 218-443-1126 to set up an appointment.

Beverly and I look forward to seeing you on December 9th!

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LRAC grant for plein air watercolors completed

In June, I received a Lake Region Arts Council grant for the purpose of bettering my skills as a plein-air artist with watercolor as my medium. Thanks to LRAC and the McKnight Foundation, I was able to travel around Minnesota and paint water reflections on ponds and lakes. I appreciate receiving this opportunity as I’ve been desiring more time to paint outdoors for several years. The grant lit a match under me to continue to do this often in all seasons. Here is a sampling of some of my works from Lake Sissebakwet in Cohasset, MN and Lake Victoria in Alexandria, MN. Thank you, Lake Region Arts Council and McKnight Foundation!

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