Jane Ramsey has been a favorite artist and customer of ours since the first day we met her. She graciously accepted our request to share some insight into what inspires her to pick up a paint brush. If you feel like us when you look at her amazing paintings, you may appreciate some of these tidbits!
See more at www.JaneRamsey.com
You are a prolific Bucks County painter with a professional discipline and effortless style. What things are important to you to be able to produce so much work?
I am so blessed to be warmly welcomed by the farming community in Bedminster Township. I have two farms in particular that I spend a lot of time at. Having these “go-to” places is wonderful because I don’t have to spend extra time looking for places to paint. Like old friends, there’s a comfort and familiarity in returning to these farms to paint — I know I can always find inspiration and set up to paint quickly. Often, while painting one scene, I discover another view or see the light from a different time of day and then I remember that for my next visit.
What motivates you to pick a subject?
I am inspired by light and color. Shadows and the play of light capture my attention and that is often what draws me to pick a subject.
Did you always work in watercolor as your primary medium?
Yes, watercolor is my true passion. I love the spontaneity of the medium – there is always an element of surprise in how the paint behaves. I love it! It’s so portable and easy to take anywhere.
Who are the artists that inspire you from the past? And present?
Past artists – Andrew Wyeth, Sargeant, Vuillard, Ranulph Bye.
Present artists – Aaron Cordell, Marc Hanson, Ian Ramsay, Dean Mitchell
If you weren’t an artist, what other work would you pursue?
Most likely early education – I love working with children and both my parents were teachers.
What do you dream of painting that you haven’t painted yet?
On my bucket list is a trip to paint on Monhegan Island – I have always been inspired by work I have seen from artists who paint there.
If you love color and texture in a painted landscape, you will certainly appreciate Mark McCoy’s plein air style. He is not afraid to manipulate paint on a canvas. His blending of color is dynamic, using a style that ranges from a square touch brush stroke (popular in the 1930’s with the New England Painters), to bordering the edge of impasto, to impressionistic strokes of undulating movement reminiscent of Van Gogh. Scratched and smeared, layers of paint are deliberately placed, but not overworked, with an instinctual reaction to the medium. Resembling glazed fragments in a mosaic, transformed into multifaceted depth once lit by the light of the gallery, he achieves the desired mood of the landscape.
Mark has shared some quotes from painters that articulate his sentiment in his approach to plein air painting. From John Folinsbee: “Art is something seen and felt…interpreted through the painter’s aesthetic sense, along with his technical knowledge to make this understandable…so that the observer’s reaction is what the painter intends.” From A.T. Hibbard: “Avoid using Nature photographically. Many adjustments are usually necessary. And they should make the painting more successful as a work of art.”
In his own words, it is the craft of painting that Mark would like the viewer to understand more and to know that painting is not a mystery but a calculated decision, each painter interpreting a scene of nature, poetically, sharing a mood using the paint. Certainly capturing moods of nature is Mark McCoy’s specialty.
We are excited to share the news that Mark McCoy has been 1 of 10 selected Bucks County artists to participate in the First Annual Bucks County Plein Air Art Festival. Congratulations Mark!
We make framing easy for you. We know many of you are overwhelmed by the prospect of getting your art framed because you don’t know where to start. But that is why we are here, to guide you step by step through the design process. All you have to do is say whether you like it, or not, to the choices we provide for you. On the other hand, if you know exactly what you want, we will help you reach that goal to the best of our ability. Bring all your ideas. We promise there will not be any hassles! Our goal is to create exactly what you want.
Here are a few observations we have distilled over our many years in business regarding what to expect:
We design to your tastes not ours, so we will ask you questions regarding your décor, ideas, etc. Feel free to bring in photos or samples to match color. If you want to borrow samples of mat colors and moulding samples, we can provide you with those. And if you want to place an order on hold, to think about it, please do.
If you would like an estimate, we will gladly do one at no charge. Keep in mind that the value of a piece of art has no relationship to the cost of framing. But we assure you that our prices are hard to beat. Additionally, please don’t feel embarrassed about a piece of art that you want to frame. Though we do frame expensive artwork to archival standards (Cezanne, Warhol, Picasso, Audubon…) we guarantee your special piece of art will be treated like and look like a masterpiece!
Frankly, our customer service is hard to beat. Give us a try! You will be glad you did!
One thing for certain is that painters Mark McCoy and Kay King are not afraid to use color. There is something very primal in our brains that is awakened by color as current research in neuroscience will explain to you (not me!) Perhaps it is simply the rods and cones in our eyeballs that are exercised but the effect on our brains is healthy and positive. It anchors us to the earth and expands our visual awareness of where we want to be in this world: surrounded by nature, even if its only in our imagination.
“Fields to Forest’ is will be on exhibit for a few more weeks at our gallery. Don’t miss it!
Five years ago, on a dark snowy afternoon, our furry friend showed up hungry and cold at our door. Needless to say, it was LOVE at first sight so we welcomed him into the gallery and he quickly became the ‘Cover Cat’ for Simons Fine Art Gallery. And folks travel from miles away just to visit him! And to commemorate that JOYFUL day, to inspire CREATIVITY and for the sheer FUN of it….we are holding a community art event in his honor! And we would like to invite you to participate in creating a piece of art to be exhibited at our gallery. Gift certificates will be given to the top three favorite pieces voted on by the community through the month of February.
The community is invited to vote for one piece they love the best! Judging event will start on Saturday, February 13, 2016 and end on Friday, February 26. Winners will be announced on Saturday, February 27.
See the design brief that follows if you would like to participate:
Design Brief for “Sketch George” Event
*A community art event for all ages!
*Gift certificate prizes awarded for 1st place $200, 2nd place $100 and 3rd place $50.
*We will accept one submission per person.
*All abilities, any medium and style accepted.
*You may use any photos of George from our Facebook page, or come by the Gallery and take your own photos or sketch from life. Subject matter is George, of course!
*Maximum image size 11 x 14 inches.
*Art needs to be matted or framed. All paint should be dry please!
*All art must be submitted with entry form attached to back upon delivery (available at gallery).
*Goal: to get CREATIVE and TO HAVE FUN!… No egos required.
Submission deadline is Tuesday, Feb 9, 2016, 5pm at
Please join us for a Meet the Artists Reception Saturday, November 7, 2015 from 1 to 4pm.
Here are some insights into the minds of our artists and what inspires them to create their beautiful art…
Interview with Kay
MY FIRST MEMORY OF MAKING ART: As a child I made cards and decorations and drew on the sidewalk and made things with clay. I always had an artistic bent. I thought everyone did!
WHAT INFLUENCED YOUR ORIGINAL INTEREST TO PAINT? I loved art class in school. In Jr. High school my teacher gave me a space in the classroom to paint a still life. I brought the painting home and my father framed it. I attained confidence I didn’t know I had.
WHAT DO YOU DO TO KEEP INSPIRED TO PAINT? Inspiration is the light of day, the everyday goodness of the beauty around us. I paint en plein air when the season is warm and in the studio when the cold sets in. I paint what I see. I work at making art every day.
MOST INFLUENCIAL TEACHER? During a sabbatical year from teaching I took a three month course of study at The Florence School of Art in Florence, Italy. It was practicing drawing in the classical tradition and became a life changing event. I came away with the confidence to believe in myself as an artist.
ADMIRE AS AN ARTIST? When I began painting seriously 35 years ago it was with watercolor. The artist at that time whose work was captivating was Charles Demuth. When I became an oil painter 20 plus years ago I was drawn to the work of Edward Hopper. Of course there are hundreds of painters whose work I love. It’s never ending.
FAVORITE COLOR:I love neutrals. There are so many and all so under stated, warm and cool tones. The day starts out with the neutral tones of mist rising over the water with the sun shining through. Neutrals make colors pop!
KAY KING Biography
Kay King from Wycombe is an award winning fine artist, and has been an active participant in the Bucks County art scene since 1985 with her first show at Phillips Mill.
Years of formal study, both in the states and abroad have provided a wellspring of knowledge that she draws upon to translate the world she sees into the world she creates on canvas. As a plein air painter, Kay’s images retain the freshness of energy and light present in the locations that inspire her.
Her style can best been categorized as “Modern Impressionism” with a feel for shape, color and form; all beautifully manipulated inviting you to share her vision of the world around her. Strong loose brushwork and large expanses of color allow for personal interpretation and exploration beyond the canvas edge, allowing the viewer to add their own story to the painting.
Her images successfully capture atmosphere and emotion, creating a quiet beauty that lingers in the mind’s eye.
…and some insight into the work of Mark McCoy…
Interview with Mark McCoy
FIRST MEMORY OF MAKING ART: Small pen and ink drawings I did of farm scenes at 12 or 14 yrs old.
WHAT INFLUENCED YOUR ORIGINAL INTEREST TO PAINT? Viewing of Andrew Wyeth paintings at Chadds Ford.
WHAT DO YOU DO TO KEEP INSPIRED TO PAINT? Keep observing all the beautiful effects of nature.
MOST INFLUENCIAL TEACHER? My 9th and 10th grade teachers
ADMIRE AS AN ARTIST? Winslow Homer and Edward Redfield.
FAVORITE COLOR: Orange
MARK McCOY Biography
Starting from a young age, Mark was always drawn to the arts and the natural world. Employment at the Boehm porcelain studio in Trenton, NJ brought hands on experience in painting, color and valuable exposure to other artists. Mark also worked as a free lance sculptor for Lennox in Langhorne, PA.
Inspired by a book on Pennsylvania Impressionism years ago, Mark’s “hobby” of painting grew into a passion. This prompted him to begin studying the New Hope School of Painting and to attend workshops on landscape and plein air painting. He has studied with local notable artists George Thompson, Peter Fiore and Robert Beck.
Today, Mark continues the tradition inspired by the beauty of Bucks County and the early painters like Redfield, Garber, Folinsbee, and many others. He paints landscapes primarily in oils. Along with his wife, Carol, they maintain a small hobby farm in Hilltown Township with their four dogs, two cats and assortment of barnyard animals.
Working in our custom framing gallery gives us an amazing opportunity to see art and objects of all kinds. It is like being in a museum where people bring their things and stories to us. We have framed everything from very expensive to reclaimed-abandoned art with lots of variety in between. The most common element of every single piece is the customer’s desire to capture the memory and passion of the piece to give it new life; to transform it into a mark on their own personal timelines that maintains the human connection to the story, to the history that inspires and propels us all forward. It can be a color, texture, design, a mood, a memory, a milestone that rouses one to get an art piece framed, but ultimately its value is connected to something they love and the roots of creativity. It is truly a gift to be witness to this process. Peg Lynch October 2015
Simons Fine Art Gallery and Boutique presents “Close to Home”, a collection of new works in oil by Jeffrey Charlesworth and Stafford Ordahl. Please join us for a Meet the Artists reception on Saturday September 19, 1-4 pm. The show will be on exhibit from September 19 through October 31, located at 122 N Main St, Dublin PA 18917. For more information please call 215-249-9155.
Artist Jeff Charlesworth brings his own impressions of local landscape colors and nature to the canvas. His plein air and studio oil paintings reflect his own view of light, color, and spaces. He finds inspiration in his own garden and in the landscapes of the Delaware Valley year round. His art work has been seen at the Phillips Mill Juried Show in New Hope, Pennsylvania; at the Simons Gallery, Dublin, PA: at the Stover Mill Gallery in Erwinna, Pennsylvania, New Hope Arts and at juried shows with Artsbridge and the Philadelphia Sketch Club. A landscape architect in his own practice, Charlesworth Fleischacker Landscape Architects, Jeff translates his eye for color and design into lush four-season gardens. Their practice specializes in sustainable and regenerative landscapes that integrate landscape, architecture and nature. His work in residential, school and commercial landscapes has received state and regional awards for landscape architecture, planting and environmental design. Jeff’s drawings, renderings and sketches illustrate their designs for clients, books and magazines.
Stafford Newell Ordahl was born in North Dakota and began his painting studies at the age of 14 with two Minnesota painters: Charles Running and C. N. Beck. After moving to New York City, Mr. Ordahl studied at the School for the Visual Arts, and privately with two New York painters: Eleanor Beckham and Ilonka Karascz. In addition, Mr. Ordahl studied anatomy for two years at the New Jersey School of Medicine in Jersey City. From 1965 to 1991 Mr. Ordahl worked in the advertising business as a copywriter and group creative director, winning a number of major awards for creativity. Since 1991, he has devoted himself exclusively to painting. Before settling in Bucks County PA in 2002, Mr. Ordahl painted the landscape of upstate New York- as well as interiors, portraits and still life. He now concentrates on the landscape of Bucks County and the surrounding area. Mr. Ordahl has been accepted twice by the juried Phillips Mill show and has won an Honorable Mention in a Lambertville Historical Society show. Ordahl captures the grandeur of the landscape, with majestic sunlit clouds and reflections of the ‘golden hour’.
A blend of color, pattern and texture is the theme of “Teacups and Flowers”, a collection of original works by artists Emily Steinberg and Corinne Lalin. This exhibit will run June through August 2015. Please join us on Saturday, July 11, 1-4pm for a demonstration by Corinne Lalin on the encaustic technique.
Philadelphia artist Emily Steinberg’s paintings of individual teacups are a bright and cheerful tribute to her mother’s extensive collection. Composed of sophisticated patterns in rich color, they are glazed with a whimsical element of balance in which the amplified angle invites the viewer to peer inside. Delicately poised on their saucers, you can practically pick them up and take a sip of tea. Having attained both her BFA and MFA at the University of Pennsylvania, Emily has been teaching and lecturing in the Philadelphia area for 20 years. For more on Emily and her art visit www.emilysteinberg.com.
The technique of encaustic painting integrates Corrine’s training as an a la prima landscape painter into the world of still-life, flowers, gardens and architectural spaces. Blending the essences of an inspiring subject matter with compelling arrangements of light and color, Corinne creates textured vignettes from the world around her. Acquiring an MFA in Painting from the University of Pennsylvania in 1989, she has been teaching college level art cirriculum for 15 years, and has exhibited in numerous shows sharing her amazing talent as both a teacher and an artist.
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