Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Making A Mark Nominations: Getting Out of the Studio

Today NOMINATIONS ARE INVITED for the Making A Mark Awards which are all about getting out of the studio!

You are invited to nominate artists and their art blogs for the awards summarised below. Instructions on how to nominate for these and other awards are set out at the end of this post.  Please note artists who do not have a blog will not be considered for these awards which are all about the art of art blogging.

The Painting Plein Air Plus Prize

The Painting Plein Air Plus Prize  This award is for excellence in plein air painting plus a strong commitment to sharing information
2006 Ed Terpening (Life Plein Air)
Ed has been blogging consistently since June 2005 and edged ahead due to his strong focus on sharing information on his blog as well as his commitment to plein air painting.
2007William Wray (Urban painter William Wray) Bill varies as to how much he talks about his subjects and his settings - but his comments, especially about the light he is painting in and its impact on the painting plus choices made in relation to composition are always worth reading
2008shared by:
  • Michael Chesley Johnson (A Plein Air Painter's Blog) Michael has published a new book in 2008 about Backpacker Painting. He specialises in painting in both oils and pastels and a lot of his painting is done plein air. He shares useful information in workshops and in his blog as well as in the book.
  • Linda Blondheim (Linda Blondheim Art Notes) who combines practical tips about marketing, painting and painting plein air with recipes.
2009shared by:
  • Loriann Signori, (Loriann Signori's painting-a-day) This year Loriann produced 342 blog posts - almost all about plein air paintings! She also knows how to paint in pastel on top of frozen watercolour! Loriann posts her thoughts about hiow she constructs her paintings, the materials she uses, how she addresses problems in the field - it's the nitty gritty behind the great colourist paintings she produces.
  • Marc R. Hanson, (Painting My Way Through Life )  In April 2009 Marc had a Painting Marathon and painted 4 plein air paintings a day. They are not three strokes, one for sky, one for tree and one for land. These are beautiful paintings with composition, theory and all included. He also wrote about the paintings each day.
Who do you think merits winning this award for plein air painting in 2010?

The Travels with a Sketchbook Trophy

The Travels with a Sketchbook Trophy combined with the 'Get Off Your Blogging Bottom and Sketch' Brass Plate from 2007.  This award goes to the most intrepid and/or industrious artist travelling with a sketchbook.
2006Laura Frankstone (Laurelines) primarily for blogging her sketches of Paris in October while she was still there but also for the way she planned a whole year of themes for her artistic endeavours – much of which involved getting out and about with her sketchbook - or rather sketchbooks!

Julie Oakley (One Mile from Home) This was for the artist or illustrator who has used their blog to make me feel most like I ought to do more exercise!  The Get Off Your Blogging Bottom and Sketch' Brass Plate is, of course, in recognition of all that brass monkey weather she has endured.
2007Martha (Trumpetvine Travels) of Berkeley California, for her well written, nicely linked and lavishly illustrated posts from all corners of the USA in 2007.
2008Cindy Woods. (Learning Daily) This was a posthumous award.  Cindy was always an intrepid traveller to all sorts of places with her friend Ronda and was still travelling with her sketchbook as she visited all the places and people she loved best in the months before she died in November 2008. Not everybody will be aware that Cindy did all her travelling in a wheelchair
2009Enrique Flores (Cuatro cosas) What I most like about Enrique's sketchbooks is the fluidity with which he extracts and simplifies the scenes in front of him - and the ease with which he draws with a brush in watercolour.  Enrique also goes to many interesting places and posts videos of his sketchbooks on YouTube

Who has impressed you the most with their travel sketchbooks - at home or abroad - in 2010?

The Going Greener Gong

The Going Greener Gong
This award is for the art blog which I've found most stimulating in relation to getting us in touch with nature and the environment. It encompasses those who blog about animals, birds, flowers and plants. Blogs are not required in any way to limit themselves to just those topics but they do need to have a feel for being green and sustainable about them. They also get extra points for getting out and about and drawing from life!
2007Richard Bell's nature diary Wild West YorkshireRichard started his nature diary in 1989 and continues to set a standard which is hard to beat.
2008Shared by:
  • Irene Brady (Nature Drawing and Journaling Workshops) Irene has a very strong emphasis on drawing natural history and shows the work done in workshops in both the USA and overseas -.  She provides lots of tops about how to draw nature up close and personal.
  • Debbie Kotter Caspari (Drawing the Motmot) whose blog is described as being about sketching adventures in the wide world of nature, with how-to sidebars and a bias for birds.
2009Sketching in Nature - a group blog started in April 2009 by Cathy Johnson.  It has revived an interest in and highlighting the joys of nature journaling

Who's been the greenest artist you know in 2010?  Who's got us back in touch with the environment - animals, birds, flowers and plants - through their artwork?

So you'd like to nominate...........

Although I already have some blogs in mind as contenders for these awards I'm really very interested to hear what you all think too.  Nominations made last year by readers of this blog resulted in awards being made to people YOU nominated!
What you need to do - it's very simple!
    • Identify the title of the Making A Mark Award that you want your nominee to be considered for
    • Leave a comment on the post on this blog inviting nominations for that award - BEFORE 24th December
  • WHICH BLOG:  Identify
    • the name of the blog, its URL (eg "The Art Blog" and
    • the name of the blogger
  • WHY:  Say WHY you think this blog should be considered for a Making A Mark Award.
That's it!  Simple!

I'll collate all your nominations and comments in relation to each award and consider alongside those blogs which I have in mind as being worthy of consideration. 

The Making A Mark Awards will be announced on the 29th and 30th December.

See my Making A Mark website for a list of previous award winners and an outline of the reasons why they wonAll nominees and nominators are linked to both from this blog and my main website page where all the past awards and nominees are listed
You can see all the previous winners of the Making A Mark Awards here.

Links: The Making A Mark Awards 2010 for blogging about art


  1. These awards are an excellent idea! We will tweet about it! All the best!

  2. These awards are an excellent idea! We will tweet about it! All the best!

  3. Thanks! :)

    Please make sure people are clear that they are for artists with active art blogs - not just for artists in general.

  4. Hello Catherine! I would like to recommend Adebanji Alade for the Painting plein Air Plus Size Award. ( His talent, enthusiasm and sustained sharing are brilliant. For these reasons, I really do believe he merits winning this award with flying colours.
    Festive cheers!

  5. I would like to nominate:
    The Artist's Road,
    a new website about painting the world's beautiful places.
    Thank you.

  6. Ann this is much more like a website than a blog. I know the word " blog" is used but I don't see quite how it's different to articles on any ordinary artist's website

    So far as I can see it's only got seven "articles/posts" none of which are dated - see

    I'm going to have to rule it's not eligible.

  7. Dear Catherine - thanks for creating such a brilliant site- serendipitously, I've just created my own blog which deals primarily with my humble efforts within the genre of still-life work. Why would I nominate myself? Ummm, well, I've a dedicated love for painting that I hope is evident. Anyway, the site address is

  8. The Make Me Think Gong
    I believe must go to Paul Foxton at:

    I don't think that I've ever come across a more helpful, educative and inspiringly well-written blog about learning how to paint.

  9. Hi Katherine - please excuse the spelling mistake and omission in my previously, posted self-nomination. I'd like to nominate, 'Is This England? (Wouldn't it be nice?)'
    110mm x 600mm
    Oil on commercially-prepared canvas.
    2010 for the previously mentioned reasons (if they're sufficient.

  10. The Travels with a Sketchbook Trophy

    I'd like to nominate Liz + Borromini
    which is the blog of Liz Steel

    I've had the privilege of following Liz's extraordinary travel sketchbooks since she began blogging but her achievement of sketching her way around the world for three months this year has been exceptional. It culminated in my getting to sketch with Liz here in Italy and that was inspiring.

  11. Katherine, I'd like to nominate someone for the Going Greener Gong

    I have been turned on to nature in all her wonderful and too often overlooked detail by
    Just Around the Corner
    by Debbie Drechsler

    Debbie's nature drawings are lively, beautiful and studious yet, at the same time, she is a great storyteller.

  12. I want to nominate Rene Plein Air
    for getting out of the studio and doing it, rain or shine, sleet of snow he is out there painting away.

  13. I would like to nominate Lin Frye, NC for her blog "View from the Oak" I believe she has posted a new watercolor everyday for this year with a variety of styles.

  14. I would like to nominate
    Just Around the Corner
    by Debbie Drechsler
    for the category "getting out of the studio".


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