Back to the Drawing Board




It’s summertime for many of us and busy, busy! It’s hard to be indoors when the weather is lovely.

But it’s also time in the Yellow class to buckle down and work on our second series. During this current session we are tasked with making a commitment to a certain set of parameters: media, subject matter, etc.

But this takes a bit of exploration first, of course, so I’ve been enjoying my table time!

I hope you are all having a wonderful month.


Moving & Childhood Artwork

I spent the last four days in California helping my mother go through things, pack, and get rid of stuff in anticipation of her move to a residential home this fall. She was a great sport about the whole thing and it was a bonding time for us!


I was secretly hoping to find some hidden box of art from my childhood (though I wasn’t very hopeful, as I had never seen any). Unfortunately there was no box, but we did unearth this little painting done at an art camp when I was 11 years old:


All of us in the class painted the same thing as I remember, so I’m afraid it doesn’t tell much about me as a child, except that I was pretty good at following directions!

In four days we filled 48 boxes and 20 trash bags, and there’s more to go!

This has inspired me, upon return, to try to clear out my own stash of stuff in anticipation of a forthcoming move (date TBD, but forthcoming nonetheless!).

In one day I’ve filled one bag.



Kids Art Week 2016 – FREE!

“Kids Art Week” FREE!
with Carla Sonheim
One-Week Class; 5 Video Lessons

Class Dates: July 25-29, 2016
Click HERE for more information and to sign up!

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Carla Sonheim, author of “Drawing Lab,” would like to invite you and your kids to join us for a week of creativity and fun. All you need are some basic art supplies and less than an hour a day!

… and, it’s FREE!


Class Itinerary

Lesson 1: Paul Klee Name Paintings (Crayon & Watercolor)
Lesson 2Dubuffet Figures (Crayon & Watercolor)
Lesson 3Motherwell Paper Bag Collages (Collage)
Lesson 4Hundertwasser Houses (Markers)
Lesson 5: Picasso Dogs (Collage & Crayon)

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Sample images:






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Supplies Needed:

Tempera or acrylic paint, markers, crayons, watercolors, pencils, brown paper bag, watercolor paper (or other stiff paper), imagination and sense of fun!

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It’s Free! Sign your kids up today!


Click HERE for more info and to sign up.

In-Person Workshop in Mexico Open for Registration

Screen Shot 2016-06-19 at 9.58.07 AM teacherad2


Lynn Whipple and I are teaching in San Miguel, Mexico in February 2017!

!Fiesta Flores! A Week in Flowers
February 17-25, 2017

The workshop is presented by Kathie Vezzani of Bellissima Art Escapes. Kathie creates well-rounded, pampered experiences, including finding the BEST restaurants and food, walking tours of the area, artist visits, and even cooking classes!

But the main event is five full painting days… and FLOWERS! I will be teaching many of my “Flower Crazy” techniques and Lynn will be teaching “Big Bold Bloom Wild Painting,” one of our most popular online classes to date. (I’m so looking forward to painting alongside Lynn too!)

If an event like this interests you, please click HERE for more information.

Thank you, Kathie, for having us again!


Fairy Tale Summer


Hi Everyone!

Fairy Tale Summer — our last class of the summer* — begins this coming Tuesday, June 21!

We are re-running an edited version of the year-long class from 2014, “Year of the Fairy Tale.” Assignments will be modified slightly for the summer session for a “doable” class, but you will have forever access so you can revisit the lessons anytime (and do the full assignments if desired). This is the last time this course will run live.

Class dates are June 21 – August 11, 2016; we will illustrate 8 fairy tales, one each week; each fairy tale includes both a drawing assignment (Tuesdays) and a mixed-media assignment (Thursdays).

Just $149. Click HERE for details and to sign up!

P.S. Previous “year of” participants can join again at no additional cost… email me to get on the list: carla [at] carlasonheim [dot] com.

* except Kids Art Week, July 2016 

Teacher Update: Stephanie Hargrave & Alison O’Donoghue

Hi everyone!

Every few months I ask our teachers what is new in their worlds… here are updates from Stephanie Hargrave and Alison O’Donoghue!




Stephanie writes:

I’ve been the artist in residence at Einstein Middle School since March working on a 40 foot collaborative encaustic piece that will be installed as a permanent piece in the school in July. The project is entitled Biology & Botany, and will have the work of over 50 middle school students embedded into the wax.  It was made possible by a grant from the Shoreline / Lake Forest Park Arts Council Artist in Schools Award, and an award from the Shoreline School District with materials purchased by the Einstein Middle School PTA.
Shows coming up:
Pratt Window in the TK Building, June, Seattle
Confluence Gallery, Group Show, Twisp
Shift Gallery, Group Show, August, Seattle

A photo from the school project:


And some recent encaustic paintings by Stephanie:

organella 8

rabbet 1

capra hircus 6

Stephanie’s Online Classes (available now as self-study classes):
Intro to Encaustic Painting – $125
Creating a Modular Encaustic Painting – $85



Alison writes:
News with me is that I am busy painting and drawing and will be showing in the following art Festivals this year.
Salem Art Fair July 15-17th Salem, Oregon
Bellevue Art Fair July 29-31 Bellevue, Washington
Art in the Pearl September 3-5 Portland, Oregon
Along with I have been painting in acrylic I have been exploring ink and watercolor drawings. I am attaching images of new paintings and drawings.
I look forward to teaching another online class as well!
jinx 1 ()
Alison’s class (available as a self-study):
Birds on Birds in Acrylic Painting – $85


Thank you, Stephanie and Alison!

Teacher Update: Diane Culhane & Karine Swenson

Hi everyone!

Every few months I ask our teachers what is new in their worlds… here are updates from Diane Culhane and Karine Swenson!




Diane writes: I’ve been working on 10 wood panels 38″x38″,  all going at the same time. Yes, all 10. With nothing else but focus on exploration work. I’ve always wanted to do this. I am spending time thinking backwards on my painting processes digging around and have found great good discoveries to share with you.  But first,  check out the wall –  can you see the addition ? I am very happy to have put in a ‘hard wall’  which has three 4’x8’x3/4″ birch wood panels and trim added at the bottom. This ‘hard wall’ can now hold up larger pieces of art work,  the studio dry wall wasn’t study strong enough. I feel so much like a real painter now- small changes are big in the way they influence the work.


Teaching Schedule:

*My Children’s Fine Art School “Go Go with Van Gogh”Art Camps are full for summer 2016 – Yeah! I love having the full week to do art projects and be outside. Bike riding of course to work every day makes the summer really fun for me as well. This is my 24th year of summers with kids, an honor to be with them and watch them create. 

* Workshop ‘Paint Your Story’ August 11-14, 2016  at Carlton College in Northfield Minnesota. It is presented by Midwest Art & Lettering Retreat. If you would like to join us there is more information on my website under the teaching tab.  

*Mentoring ‘One to One’ is one of my favorite ways of teaching if anyone is interested let me know- getting right into it and what you need for your creative vision.

Diane’s Online Classes (all available now as self-study classes):
Between Speech & Silence – $45
Table Top: Drawing & Painting – $85
Paint Your Garden – $85
Doings of a Do-o-dle – $85
For the Love of a Tree – $85



Karine writes:
I have recently been one of two artists written about in Palm Springs Life! Here is the article.
And I was the featured artist in February at JTE Gallery in Joshua Tree with the toy paintings, and this article was published about me in the local paper in February. I was also interviewed recently by a writer for the LA Times. He is writing an article about people who are inspired by Joshua Tree National Park. I have no idea when (if) that article will be printed.😀
“In the Shadows.” Oil on Canvas, 40 x 30 inches
“Some Ears are Bigger than Others.” Oil on Canvas, 36 x 36 inches.
Karine’s classes (all available as self-studies):
Intro to Abstract Painting – $85
Elements: Building Blocks of Painting – $165


Next: Updates from Stephanie Hargrave and Alison O’Donoghue!

Teacher News: Lynn Whipple, Cat Bennett & Krista Peel

Hi everyone!

Every few months I ask our teachers what is new in their worlds… here are updates from Lynn Whipple, Cat Bennett, and Krista Peel (all of whom have classes running or about to run right now!).





Lynn’s painting “Wild Fresh Flowers” was chosen as the 2016 Cherry Creek Arts Festival Poster! This is truly an honor, and well-deserved, too… her recent series of flower pot paintings are truly abundantly joyous!

If you are in Denver, Co July 2,3,4 please stop by booth 153 and say hello to Lynn!

Congratulations, Lynn!

Lynn’s classes:
Wordplay Painting – $85, two-week repeat class beginning next Tuesday (5/31/16)!
Big Bold Bloom Wild Paining! – $165, now available as a self-study class
The Joy of Collage – $85, now available as a self-study class
The Joy of Mixed-Media Assemblage – $85, now available as a self-study class
Scissors, Paper, Rock – $25, now available as a self-study class.



Cat writes:
“I’ll be working in the studio all summer! In September, I’m having a show at The Arsenal Center for the Arts here in Watertown, MA with my friend Maggie Stern. This is where I teach and have my studio so it will be a lot of fun. I’ll be showing a new series of 33rpm “vinyl” records (made of wood) from my “Sun Records” series in which I try to convey some positive messages in the song lyrics which I write on the black “vinyl.” I’m also doing a series of 45’s.
Chester Vance
“After that I’ll be having a show in my studio and showing some new small Tantra Homage
paintings. In Indian Tantra painting, the art is meant to bring us closer to the sublime.
Last summer I used the basic structure of the Indian abstract Tantra paintings and
made a small meditative painting each morning. They were entirely unplanned but
really nice to do. I will do the same again this summer and it will be interesting to
see how they change.”
Tantra Group
Yay, Cat!
Cat’s classes:
Sketchbooks: Making Art a Practice – $85, now available as a self-study class
Making Art a Practice: In and Out of the Sketchbook – $125 (just finishing its live session, but available as a self-study now, too!)




AmazingBookKP - Blue Purple page

Krista writes:
–My ombre necklaces currently featured in Jewelry Stringing Magazine – Summer 2016 edition, and also the cover of March 2015 Bead Style Magazine – YAY! Necklaces!
–I’m working on a new children’s book about amazing things on this planet, and this is an original watercolor spread from it. These are things that are Blue and Purple (see photo attached)

–And we’re gearing up to start building our own home from the ground beneath our feet. The technique is called Earth Bag Building and we’re excited to design, plan and conjure up a durable, beautiful, artfully organic home from earth.

Thanks, Krista!

Krista’s classes:

NEW! Art Heist – $85, two-week class begins June 7, 2016
Using Vibrant Color – $35, now available as a self-study class


Next: Updates from Diane Culhane, Karine Swenson, Stephanie Hargrave and Alison O’Donoghue!


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