March Workshop Registration Deadline extended-only a few spots left!

State of Grace, Watercolor by Barbara Benda

My Beginning Drawing and Watercolor 5 Day Workshop in Fargo will be held on March 14-18th,2022. The Level II workshop titled, Designing Your Watercolors for Success will be offered at another time when classrooms become available. The Beginning Drawing and Watercolor Workshop is a prerequisite to the Level II workshop.

In the Beginning Drawing and Watercolor workshop, you will learn: 

  • How to execute a variety of drawing and watercolor techniques 
  • How to make sense of the color wheel and use it to your advantage
  • How to use “value” (lights and darks) to make paintings dramatic
  • How to become more comfortable with the properties of watercolor
  • How to be more intentional with color scheme and composition

Time: 9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. daily (with lunch on your own from 11:30-12:30).

Location: NDSCS Fargo campus- 1305 19th Avenue North, Fargo, ND (across the street from the Fargo Dome). Parking available in front of building.

Participant profile: All levels of learners, ages 15 and up.

Class size: Limited to the first 12 paid registrants.

Masks are optional. All students will have their own tables placed several feet apart.

Registration:  Download a workshop flyer here:Beginning Drawing and Watercolor

The fee of $395 will cover instruction and handouts for 5 days.Supplies are extra.Click to download: Supply List  or you may order a Professional Supply Kit (includes everything on the required list) on your registration form (cost: $225.) Please contact me to order a supply kit as soon as possible to assure availability.

Check policy: Checks are not cashed until the workshop is filled. If the workshop is cancelled for any reason, your check will be returned to you, marked, “Void”. No credit cards ,please.

If you need special accommodations, please contact Beverly, Workshop Assistant, at 701-610-9529.

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Please mark your calendars! FMVA Studio Crawl October 2-3


Pretty Boy by Barbara Benda, Acrylic on canvas, 30″x30″, ©2021

You are invited to the 2021 Fargo Moorhead Visual Artists Studio Crawl event, a free event open to the public. This first weekend in October gives you an opportunity to visit almost 40 artist studios in our area in two days. Please download your Studio Crawl brochure here to choose your destinations.  I am #1 on the map, so that’s a great place to start!

 I will be doing demonstrations of my process both days at Mourning Dove Studio located at 809 20th Street North Moorhead, MN. Beverly, my twin sister, and I welcome you to our Double Trouble Art Gallery, which showcases hundreds of original artworks by both of us. We feature affordable art at all price points. We look forward to seeing you this coming Saturday and Sunday for our biggest art event of the year. 


Barbara tackling another Birches painting- this time in violet.


Beverly with gluey fingers, working on a mixed media poetry collage


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Berkey the Pig and Golf

Sketch of Berkey by Barbara Benda 2021

Watercolor Study of Berkey by Barbara Benda

Berkey the Pig by Barbara Benda








Summer Greetings! I am attending the Rural Art Exhibition reception tonight in Wahpeton this Thursday, August 12th. I have entered a pig and other paintings ( see below) to represent the rural theme. To prepare for this show, I visited the farm of my new friends Trish and Aaron and wandered around with my artist sister Beverly to explore subject matter. We brought our plein-air (open air) painting equipment to set up outdoors and paint studies of our ideas. There is always a process with art– if you want to do it the right way. Many artists splatter paint around and add a price tag, but that’s not my approach. If I am going to sell art, I like to put careful thought into what I do. I’m not against splashing paint around and, yes,  I do that for fun, but, often those pieces lack depth, composition, color scheme, and basic principles of art-the components that require advance thinking. It is much like strategizing how to score well on a hole in golf ( stay below the pin, take the wind into consideration, avoid bunkers and water, observe the slope of the green, etc.)  Golf and painting both require thoughtful attention, and results are important to me in both of these disciplines.

Above, you will see two studies and a final piece. I did the middle one first- my sweet pig was oinking and nodding his head at me asking for a treat and he would not keep his head still, so I walked around him and painted with my watercolor block in one hand and paintbrush and palette in the other. It took less than 5 minutes to capture his spirit. I came home, and did the value study in pencil to determine lights and darks, then I painted the final picture, accentuating the mud on his nose. These are good examples that demonstrate a peek into my process of creating a painting.

Below are my other paintings in the Rural Art Exhibit as well as Beverly Benda’s paintings that were  inspired by a chicken and a beautiful horse at Trish and Aaron’s farm. If you can join us at the reception from 5:00-7:00, I look forward to seeing you. If you cannot make it, please visit the exhibit as it will be open for viewing at the Red Door Art Gallery until October 1st, 2021. Go to for more information.


Promise of Rain by Barbara Benda ©2021

Montreal Farm 1882 by Barbara Benda ©2021

High-Heeled Lady by Beverly Benda ©2021


Archie by Beverly Benda ©2021


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