Art Extravaganza 2017 Sponsored by Clackamas Art Alliance

Art Extravaganza 2017 Sponsored by Clackamas Art Alliance

If you’ve never experienced Art Extravaganza, you’re in for a treat! Sponsored by the Clackamas Art Alliance, this vendor trade show is an opportunity for artists, educators, students and all art enthusiasts to test, try and buy new and favorite art supplies and tools.

You’ll enjoy:

  • Product Demonstrations
  • Artist Demonstrations and Lectures
  • Panel Discussion by CERF+
  • Workshops
  • Door Prizes
  • Networking Opportunities
  • Pop-Up Art Materials Store by Merri Artist

Some of the many exhibitors:

  • Alvin
  • Arches
  • Faber Castell
  • Gamblin Artists Colors
  • Mel’s Frame Shop
  • ReClaim It!
  • Strathmore Artist Papers
  • Winsor & Newton
  • Yasutomo

It’s free to attend, and the mini-workshops are very reasonable. Also, I’ll be giving a lecture and demo of my process using Oil & Cold Wax Medium on Panel from 10:30 – 12:30. Tuition is $10 and space is limited.

If you’ve been thinking about taking my workshop in June at Oregon Society of Artists, this would be a great preview of the class.

You can get tickets and pre-register for the free trade show by clicking below. The first 50 people to pre-register will be entered in a drawing for a reproduction of Susan Kuznitsky’s pastel painting, beautifully framed by Mel’s Frame Shop. Register Here

Here are some of the other artists who will be sharing demonstrations:

  • Shelly Caldwell – Mixed Media Assemblage
  • Renè Eisenbart – Watermedia Painting
  • Sheila Ford Richmond – Block Prints, Fabric Paints
  • Karen Hadley – Mixed Media, Acrylic, Collage
  • Susan Kuznitsky – Pastels
  • Cindy Lommasson – Chinese Brush Painting
  • Sarah Sedwick – Artgraf
  • Amanda Sweet – Watercolor

Finally, check out the event page for a full list of vendor exhibitors, classes and demonstrations.  I hope to see you there! And just in case you think winter will never end here in Western Oregon, I’ll leave you with nature’s own Art Extravaganza, directly from my soggy garden – Happy Spring!

Creative Arts Community at Menucha

Creative Arts Community at Menucha

Creative Arts Community

Last week I taught a workshop for CAC (Creative Arts Community) at Menucha, a beautiful retreat center in the Columbia River Gorge. Each year this group brings together fantastic workshop instructors and interested adults for two weeks of creating together. This community is over 50 years strong because of these special ingredients:

  • A dedicated board and volunteers
  • Meals served family-style
  • An incredible setting
  • Dorm style and private rooms
  • Evening programs
  • Sharing of art
  • Walks in nature
  • Small classes for individual attention

My workshop focused on painting in Oil & Cold Wax. We talked about working in a series, content, design and techniques for working in Cold Wax. I was so pleased with how hard each student worked and the results were amazing. Here are a few paintings that resulted from my time at Menucha, and the demonstrations I gave:

Winter Pond

“Winter Pond” Oil & Wax on Panel, 12″x12″ ©Ruth Armitage


“Burning” Oil & Wax on Panel, 12″x12″ ©Ruth Armitage

Summer Breeze ©Ruth Armitage

“Summer Breeze” Oil & Wax on Panel, 12″x12″ ©Ruth Armitage SOLD








Student Reactions:

“It was a wonderful week. Ruth gave the perfect recipe for a successful teaching experience. Just the right number of demos, giving us lots of work time, wandering around the room for individual mini conferences and lots of encouragement along the way. Keeping the class joyous and not stressful were also great attributes for a super experience. I especially thought her use of the i-pad was very cool to take a picture of our painting and show us different design possibilities.” – Sharon Segal

“Ruth, thank you so much for the truly rich experience this past week. Your willingness to spend so much time with each of us working through our hundreds of issues, problems and questions was beyond anything I’ve experienced from an instructor. You are so very generous, kind, and wise. And your lightness of being allowed us to not take ourselves too seriously.” – Karen Story

Scenes from Menucha and the Columbia Gorge

I also wanted to share some of the beauty of this place and the students who shared it with me. Enjoy these photos from my art workshop at Menucha! If this looks like fun to you, check out my other upcoming classes on my art-workshops page. My Maui class is filling fast. It’s already 1/3 full – don’t miss out, register today!

Holiday – Oil and Wax Abstract

Holiday – Oil and Wax Abstract

“Holiday” Oil & Wax on panel 12″x12″ ©Ruth Armitage

Enter to win “Holiday” – a new Oil and Wax painting

I’m getting my paintings ready to deliver to the Street of Dreams, including the work above. I had been searching for a title, and finally settled on “Holiday.” The brilliant red seems so joyful to me, that it reminded me of the excitement of being on a trip.

“I like to have exciting evenings on holiday, because after you’ve spent 8 hours reading on the beach you don’t feel like turning in early with a good book.” -Arthur Smith, English Comedian

I’ve been planning a couple of trips, and the idea of a holiday is pretty appealing right now. It’s what keeps me going through the slog of weeding the garden, framing and shipping artwork, designing exhibit materials and all the daily chores.

I wanted a way for visitors to the Street of Dreams to sign up for my email list, and an incentive. So, I decided to run this giveaway on my website. And why limit the giveaway to attendees of the Street of Dreams? I say, anyone can enter! I hope you’ll share this opportunity with your friends… who wouldn’t want to win a painting that reminds them to cultivate a holiday frame of mind?

Wishing you the best of luck, and I hope you will enjoy receiving my free monthly newsletter. If you’d like a sneak peek – you can see a past issue here:

Stairway to Heaven Oil and Wax

Stairway to Heaven Oil and Wax

Another new abstract painting – “Stairway to Heaven” below.

Oil and Wax on Panel 36x36"

“Stairway to Heaven” ©Ruth Armitage, 2016 – Oil and Wax on Panel 36x36″

This piece will also be on view at the 2016 Street of Dreams, July 30 – August 28, 2016.

I had been thinking about a quote that my friend Margaret Godfrey found on our trip to Denver in June:

“You can’t look at the top of the staircase and want to be there. You have to look at the step directly ahead of you and ask yourself, “How do I climb that step?” – Patrick Wilson

I wanted to use an s shaped composition to portray a winding route, or stairway. I really love the warm and cool contrasts in this piece. Additionally, the painting came together relatively quickly – which probably makes me love it more!

I found some other fun quotes about stairs, and some ideas about hanging art on your stairway. Check them out on my Pinterest board!  My favorite quote is the one about Optimists. I try to see myself as an optimist, and this particular quote fits me to a ‘T’ – what about you? Are you an optimist or a pessimist?

Let me know what you think about my new painting. I’m always interested in your comments.

I’d also appreciate your feedback on what class I should offer next! Weigh in below:

A Quick Guide to Triptychs

A Quick Guide to Triptychs

“Undertow” is a new painting intended to form a triptych with two other oil & wax paintings: “Necessary Current” and “Crossover.”  After seeing house #4 at this year’s Street of Dreams, I realized that I would need a third piece to accompany the other two in order to maximize the wall space.

"Undertow" ©Ruth Armitage, 2016, Oil & Wax on Panel, 36x36"

“Undertow” ©Ruth Armitage, 2016, Oil & Wax on Panel, 36x36″

Here is what they will look like hung together – imagine this in your home or office!

What is a Triptych?

A triptych [pronounced trip-tik] is a set of three paintings designed to be displayed side by side. Triptychs are an especially good way to provide continuity in an interior design. Because they are made to hang together, triptychs automatically provide repetition. Most often the three panels are the same size, but artists sometimes highlight one panel by making it larger. Because they span a wider space, triptychs are a great way to make the most of a large wall space in a home or office. As a result, the series automatically becomes the feature in a room.

Hanging a triptych can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be! I’ve complied a few articles on how to effectively display and hang multi-panel artwork. First, the panels should be spaced between 2-3″ apart, depending on size, and should be hung at eye level. Next, it is important to measure carefully, to achieve a professional result. No eye-balling allowed! Read more about getting the spacing right and executing a perfect installation in these great articles from SFGate and Fotovia.

You’ll be able to see these and several other new works in House #4 – Quintessence – at the NW Natural Street of Dreams, July 30 – August 28, 2016. These works will also be on view in my own studio for Portland Open Studios, October 8 – 9 and 15 -16. Why not invite a friend to join you? Share this post with them via email, or on your favorite social network. I appreciate your referrals!

Have you ever purchased a triptych, or painted one? I’d be interested to hear your thoughts. Leave me a comment!

Portland 5 at Oregon State Memorial Union

Portland 5 at Oregon State Memorial Union

Portland 5 Art Exhibit opens at Oregon State University

"Necessary Current" Oil and Wax on Panel 36x36"

“Necessary Current” Oil and Wax on Panel 36×36














I’m honored to be included in this contemporary exhibit at the Memorial Union Concourse Gallery. I am an alumna of Oregon State, and I have fond memories of viewing interesting art exhibitions in the Memorial Union. It was one of my favorite places to study as an undergraduate. I love the huge palladian windows that look out over the street below. I have vivid memories of watching the elm leaves fall and litter the sidewalk. I sure miss those college days!

The building is open Monday – Thursday 7:00 am – 11:00 PM. Friday 7:00 am – 12:00 AM. Saturday 7:30 am – 12:00 AM. and Sunday 10:30 am – 11:00 PM.

During term breaks it is open Monday – Friday 7:30 am – 5:00 PM.

The show includes abstract work from five Portland artist, all of whom showed in Portland Open Studios:

The show runs through May 5th, 2016. Click above for more information!








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