President’s Message
January 2021


Year 2020 was a challenge for all of us.  Thanks to the efforts of so many members, we finished last year financially strong and looking forward to a much better 2021.  

Sometime mid-year we anticipate (make that ‘hope’) that many of us will have been vaccinated.  This will allow ramping up of in-person meetings, plein air outings, art-in-the-park (AIP), alternative art exhibitions and hosting community painting projects.  In the interim, the Guild is creating “studios” around members who share painting mediums: oil, acrylic, watercolor, pastel with others to follow as interest grows. Studios will connect like-minded members to share knowledge and resources.  This will start to rollout in January using Zoom to connect and share. Further information is found in this month’s newsletter. 

Upcoming Guild meetings (via Zoom unless otherwise noted) are listed below in the newsletter, and through June on our website calendar.  Instructions on how to easily join Guild meetings via Zoom (no registration required) will be sent via email one day prior to the meeting. If you would like to join the informal Thursday Open Painting Sessions (1-3:30 pm in the Harwich Community Center) just show up with your painting supplies. Capacity due to coronavirus is limited to ten people to allow safe distancing. For more information, Contact Chris Banks  Details regarding our March 20, Chatham Bars Inn ‘Winter Art Series’ will be forthcoming.  The effort is being coordinated by Sedona Summer and Karen Shortsleeve.

Karen Shortsleeve, Membership Chair, will be sending each of you a revised membership form and a reminder that 2021 dues ($35 Artists/$25 Associate) are now payable. The new form allows members to provide information regarding interests and skill sets that will be used to enhance member engagement. Mail completed forms, with checks if applicable, to Guild of Harwich Artists, P.O. Box 382, Harwich Port 02646. Amy Banford has volunteered to assist Erica Strzepek to maintain the Guild website. Together they will ensure that the website calendar and event postings are timely and informative. Maryrose Reynolds Schofield has volunteered to assist at the Welcome Desk at our monthly meetings and promoting Guild mugs and hats. If you would like to learn more about volunteering for the Guild contact me at

The Guild’s 41-year-old mission is to encourage artists and those interested in art through education, fellowship, and exhibition while engaging in charitable and educational works. As a member of the Guild, you have access to a variety of events, venues, and activities; and eligibility to apply to exhibit in the Gallery of the Guild of Harwich Artists located in Harwich Port.  If you have not already, please remit your 2021 dues ($35 Artists / $25 Assoc.) by end of the month. For membership new/renewal form go to 

Stay safe and positive…painting does help focus the mind. 

Michael Rudden, GHA President

Upcoming Guild Meetings (via Zoom). 

Note: Thursday’s Open Painting Sessions is taking place at the Harwich Community Center, Activity Room 4. Masks are required.

JAN 14 Thu: Open Painting 1:00 PM 3:30 PM

JAN 21 Thu: Open Painting 1:00 PM 3:30 PM 

JAN 23 Sat: Member Mtg 2:00 PM 4:30 PM / Demonstration Artist - Joan Carroll

JAN 28 Thu: Open Painting 1:00 PM 3:30 PM

FEB 4 Thu: Open Painting 1:00 PM 3:30 PM

FEB 8 Mon: Board Mtg. 9:00-11:00 AM

FEB 20 Sat: Member Mtg 2:00 PM 4:30 PM / Demonstration Artist- Chris Banks

Download a schedule from our website here.

Annual Charitable Giving

On December 21st, Katherine Vacca, representative of the Gallery of the Guild of Harwich Artists, presented Abby Newberry-West, director of The Children’s Center in Harwich Port a check for $1000. The funds were raised during the Guild’s annual member painted ornament sale. Thanks to many member volunteers we sold over 250 ornaments.

Introducing Guild Studios 

 The Guild of Harwich Artists (GHA) is forming “studios” around members who share a common painting medium: oil, acrylic, watercolor, pastel with others to follow as interest grows. This initiative is in response to last January’s ‘Listening Session’ where members expressed a collective desire for more art education and mentoring opportunities. The studios will connect members to share knowledge and resources, develop art education and exhibition opportunities for new and longtime Guild members.  This approach will continue when we can again meet around a table.  This new initiative will start to roll out in January using Zoom to connect and share. Fifteen members who have expressed interest will meet via Zoom this month to start getting organized. If you would like to join in the discussion, email Michael Rudden at

Art-in-the-Park Re-imagined 

 For forty years, Art-in-the-Park (AIP), located in Doane Park (across from the Harwich Port Post Office, has provided members an opportunity to sell their works during the summer months.  This is a tradition that we want to continue but changes are needed to expand membership and enhance sales.  In February, a Zoom meeting of current and interested A.I.P. members will be announced.  The purpose of the meeting is to solicit ideas on reinventing A.I.P.  Nothing is off the table.  Watch for the February Newsletter for more information about the meeting. 

j a Doodle?

You may have received an email from Doodle©, an application widely being used to schedule meetings with multiple participants. You can easily create a free Doodle poll in minutes and send it off to participants via email to let them choose the best days and times to meet.  Doodle allows you to determine the most convenient time that most of the participants are available to meet (via Zoom for now).  For more information visit the Doodle website at And if you receive an email from Doodle it likely contains a Guild-related poll. 

Interactive Art Demo: Gelatin Printing Tip Update with Joan Carroll

I will be presenting gel printing at the guild meeting on January 23, 2021. You can see that my kitchen counter functioned for days as the printing studio while I explored various inks and methods. The process is an easy nontoxic method of making images that resembles photographic negatives. Viewers may work along with me, but the gel block must be made at least 24 hours or more in advance. If the block cracks, you can place in the microwave for a minute or so until it melts. Block can be regelled over and over.- waiting 24 hours to use again. The blocks store for many months. They can also be purchased at arts and craft stores. The easiest recipe for creating the gelatin block is included below. (I found the alcohol recipes option in last month's newsletter has a strong alcohol smell.) Run a knife around the edge of the pan and gently pry away from sides before gently removing it. This form of mono-printing can be complex or extremely simple and can serve as a fantastic printmaking introduction for children.

The easiest recipe I found is: 
2 boxes =8 envelopes of plain Knox gelatin sprinkled gently and evenly onto 2 Cups of glycerin in mixing bowl. Stir gently and add 2 C boiling water stirring and attempting not to create any bubbles in gelatin. Pour into container. I used the above amount in two 5 by 7 pyrex baking pans. Let stand for 24 hours before running a knife around edges and gently prying away from the sides of the container. 
Inks: I found the best are the transparent and semi-transparent acrylic paint colors- cheap quality works fine. I also used acrylic clear medium to dilute the opaque colors. The most beautiful results occur from overprinting and seeing through the various layers of color. I used a plastic surface to roll out my ink, a styrofoam tray or tile or plastic cutting board can be used. Water-based Speedball block print inks work but are less transparent.

Materials needed to print will include:

  • gelatin block on which to roll out water base ink
  • inks, some related colors are good,  ie blue green violet and others if wanted. Acrylic paint, Speedball printing ink and others, I often mix acrylic clear medium to make some paint or ink more transparent. 
  • a clean cookie sheet or clean plastic surface (like cutting board on which to sit the gelatin block while printing. Afterward, I stored my block in the original Pyrex container, a 5 by 7 glass pan with lid. If the container has no lid, cover with plastic.  
  • opt. flat ink rolling surface such as a linoleum tile  or cleaned styrofoam meat tray 
  • ink roller
  • variety of found objects, feathers, hand-cut stencils, seaweed, small plants, seashells with texture, netting from produce bags., lace doilies, 
  • varieties of paper for printing - all kinds possible, white or colored office printer paper, any type of printmaking paper, watercolor paper,  white drawing paper or newsprint. Absorbent papers pick up more fine details. 

Glycerin is expensive, about $9 for 6 oz. bottle at CVS, but is much cheaper on-line. 
Mix ingredients in very clean glass Pyrex containers, flat bottom, no raised logo on inside or bevel,  Gelled plate will be transferred onto a very clean metal cookie sheet or a plastic hard surface... If during printing, the gelatin block surface develops dents, the block can be microwaved and re-gelled. 

Websites on Gelatin Printing
Tips on making the plate
Tips on making the plate    
Tips on ink selection, using transparent and opaque acrylic paint by Marsha Valk also demos great printing techniques   Printing techniques and inks

See you at the Demo!
Joan Carroll

Time to Update Your Artist Profile

Do you have an artist's profile on our website? Do you need to make updates? Well, nows the time! 

The Guild of Harwich Artists offers members an Artist Profile on our website as part of your paid annual membership dues. After initial publication, changes to your artist profile may be made once a year during the membership renewal period at no additional charge or during the year for a $25 fee made payable to the Guild of Harwich Artists. Use the guidelines below to submit/email your artist profile information to the website committee at 

  1. ARTIST NAME: Your name as you are known as an artist
  2. FEATURE IMAGE: One feature image (.jpg) that best reflects your style; include title information: ©Your Name, Title of Work. Medium, 0 x 0 inches size.
  3. HEADSHOT IMAGE: One headshot image (A picture of yourself) (.jpg)
  4. BIOGRAPHY / ARTIST STATEMENT: Tell us about yourself and your artwork in 200 words or fewer GUILD ACTIVITIES: What Guild activities do you participate in? Art in The Park, The Art Gallery, Plein Air Painting, Special Events, Board or Committee Memberships
  5. CONTACT INFORMATION: Contact information to be published online
  6. EXHIBITING LOCATIONS: Galleries or other locations where your art can be purchased and/or viewed
  7. LEARN MORE ABOUT: If you have a personal website, the Guild website will link your artist profile to your website; please include your web address
For assistance with your artist profile, please contact Erica Dale Strzepek at (508) 725-7472 or

Helpful and Inspiring Websites

Members have been asked to submit links to artists' demos in any medium along with a short description of why you found it useful. They are typically available via YouTube, Pinterest, and various social media outlets. Send to Joan Carroll, she can share these in our future newsletters as you send them.  If we get sufficient submissions we can start a list categorized by artist or medium and post on our website. 
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The Guild of Harwich Artists, Inc.
P.O. Box 382
Harwich Port, MA 02646

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