At the Howard Rees Art Students Show, 2007 I won a blue ribbon (and $40!) for best oil in the show. My entry was the Bodega Bay "Schoolhouse Beach" painting already shown in another post. My friend Bob Engle from Thousand Oaks, CA won the best in show with his oil sketch of "Flakey the Clown" (Bob, himself, in clown makeup and garb.) Here's the schoolhouse beach painting once again. It's 10" x 20" oil on canvas panel, plein air.
Early this year (2009) I joined the Northern California Arts group and entered their all member show. I won a merit award for "After the Show" a 16" x 20" Acrylic on canvas. By coincidence, the painting was of my friend Bob Engle, mentioned above, as he posed at Howard Ree's studio in Amador City as Flakey the Clown. Here's Bob as Flakey, with a little dramatic lighting of my own invention thrown in.
I've decided enter more shows over the next year, particularly juried shows. I think it's valuable to 'test' yourself, not so much as in testing against competition, but more to stretching to produce works that are the best you can produce at a given time. Sort of competition against your previous successes and personal bests. After I have more experience with it, perhaps I'll write more on the experience and whether it did in fact encourage progress in my work.
January 9, 2010: Sacramento Fine Arts Center Members Show, Award of Merit for "Evening Walk", oil, 18" x 24".