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to paint. 
I was i ngering some colorful scraps of collage pieces and 
thought, “I’ll do a collage. h at would be dif erent.”
As I began to place the pieces of collage onto a sheet 
of watercolor paper, however, my inner voice stopped 
me and told me to do a watercolor painting of the col-
orful pieces instead. I placed 
some of the pieces on the 
paper, traced their shapes, then 
took them of and painted 
those particular shapes. 
I cut up black paper into vari-
ous coni gurations to balance 
the color. h e result? I Go to 
Pieces was born. 
Sometimes, just starting one 
idea can lead you to another, 
even better one. he trick is to get started on some-
thing, but to be open to a change in direction.
Betsy Dillard Stroud’s painting, I Go to Pieces, 
(watercolor on paper) originated with the intention
to make a collage, but she painted her collage 
materials instead.
b tt h t i
ArtistsNetwork.com 21
Award-winning artist Kris Parins 
(krisparins.com) maintains studios 
in Wisconsin and Florida. Her work 
has been featured in Watercolor 
Artist and International Artist 
magazines, and in the Splash book 
series. Parins is a signature member 
of AWS, NWS and TWSA. Her work is 
included in many private and public 
collections, including the Woodson 
Art Museum.
Illinois artist Tom Lynch (tomlynch.
com) is an internationally known 
watercolorist with more than 35 
years of painting and teaching 
experience. His work has been 
exhibited widely, including a solo 
show in Paris. Lynch is the author of 
eight art instructional books and 
five PBS television series. Videos of 
his painting process can be viewed 
on artacademylive.com.
Chris Krupinski (chriskrupinski.
com), of Hurricane, W.V., is a 
Dolphin Fellow with the American 
Watercolor Society (AWS), and a 
signature member of the National 
Watercolor Society (NWS), the 
Rocky Mountain Watercolor Society, 
and the Transparent Watercolor 
Society of America (TSWA), among 
others. Her work has earned a 
number of awards in regional, 
national and international shows.
Award-winning artist Betsy Dillard 
Stroud (betsydillardstroud.com) is 
an AWS Dolphin Fellow, a signature 
member of the NWS and the 
Southwestern Watercolor Society, 
and a life member of the Arizona 
Watercolor Society. She’s the author 
of Painting From the Inside Out, The 
Artist’s Muse and Watercolor Masters 
and Legends, and has also created a 
series of DVDs on intuitive painting.
Artist and workshop instructor 
Laurie Goldstein-Warren 
(warrenwatercolors.com), who’s 
originally from New York, now lives 
in West Virginia. She has been 
painting in watermedia for nearly 
20 years. Goldstein’s award-
winning work has been exhibited in 
venues throughout the U.S., as well 
as in Japan, Turkey, Greece, 
Canada and China.
Sometimes, when I’m facing a blank sheet of watercolor paper, I’ll decide 
to revisit a subject I’ve painted before, but choose a completely dif erent 
method for painting it. If I originally worked with traditional tools, such 
as paintbrushes, for example, I might repaint the subject using only a 
mouth atomizer.
When I change the techniques, I’m not only changing my tools, but the 
method of transition through the painting. I’ve found that doing this 
revitalizes my passion for the subject, and makes me think and see it in 
a whole new light.
Laurie Goldstein-Warren’s painting, Chinatown Shadows (watercolor on 
paper, 30x22), is based on a photo she’d held onto for years. “I’d been 
unsure how to make it an interesting painting with no people in the 
scene,” she says. “Then, when I started using my mouth atomizer to 
create ‘brushless paintings,’ I saw how the blending of the multicolored 
dots made by the atomizer could make it beautiful and unique.” WA
22 Watercolor artist | OCTOBER 2018
ArtistsNetwork.com 23
Past Splendors
By John A. Parks
Calumet River Lift 
Bridge (watercolor 
on paper, 29x41) 
24 Watercolor artist | OCTOBER 2018
P eter Jablokow is drawn to the weathered, rusting relics of a bygone industrial age. A long-abandoned steam engine lan-guishes in a i eld, its cab a spectacular welter of peeling rust and l aking paint. A huge dredging vessel tilts into the mud of a lake, where it lies half sunk, its sagging cranes still sprout-ing wires and cables. h e shell of a stamp mill building stands 
with its sides open to the weather, icicles hanging from the beams, its l oor 
strewn with the detritus of an incomplete demolition.
All of these scenes are rendered with a kind of hyper-clarity that’s achieved 
with immaculate drawing, crisp edges and l awless perspective married with 
rich, varied color and a wealth of texture. Jablokow succeeds in creating a
sense of extreme precision while bathing his subject in a vibrant, warm light 
that suggests pleasure and attraction. We’re aware that he’s enamored with his
unexpected subject matter. 
Searching For Subjects
“When I started painting in 2010,
my family and I had just visited the 
Keweenaw Peninsula, within the 
Upper Peninsula of Michigan,” recalls 
the Illinois-based artist. Soon he 
began to paint things he encountered 
there. “h ere are great old mining 
structures, some of which are now 
gone. It’s a beautiful, remote place 
with historic old towns and mining 
relics—a combination I like. h e 
Quincy mine in Hancock has a steam 
engine in a i eld, so I started painting 
ArtistsNetwork.com 25
steam engines, too. After the
engines, I painted train bridges in the
Chicago area, because they were
closer to home. I love the complicated,
weathered structures, but they’re lacy-
looking, not heavy. hese days, I look
for bridges with massive counter-
weights or huge, solid pieces of steel.”
Whether it’s bridges or mine equip-
ment, Jablokow seems to relish the
heroic scale of these structures. “I like
the size of them, how they loom over
my head, with exciting textures and
chaotic shapes,” he says. “I love the
mess of shadows and shapes—and
the fact that there’s still an underly-
ing structure there.”
While Jablokow’s sense of structure
is strong, there’s also a romance in his
images. “here’s certainly a nostalgia
to them, of all the things people used
to do and how they did them. Now
only some of the skeletons remain.”
Jablokow’s search for subject mat-
ter involves more than a passing visit
with a sketchbook and camera. He’ll
often return to a location a number
of times to obtain better angles and
photos. “On the irst visit, I might
take a thousand photographs,” he
says. “hen I’ll go home and review
them and often determine that I
really should have taken this or that
Jablokow’s move to full-time painting in 2010 
was precipitated by the decline in demand for 
handcrafted architectural illustration that 
occurred with the advent of lower-cost 
computer rendering. He began taking classes 
with Peggy Macnamara at North Shore Art 
League, in Chicago, and continues to take 
classes with Alain Gavin, in Evanston, Ill. “I need 
outside critiques as I work,” he says, “but I don’t 
know many people to ask for that. Alain is a 
good source.”
As for inspiration, Jablokow names a 
variety of contemporary and historic artists. 
“Gottfried Saltzmann has done some 
impressive, simple compositions with really 
wet washes and some great aerial city shots 
with spattered cream or mask over the whole 
scene,” the artist says. “I turn to Jeanne 
Dobie’s Making Colors Sing for reference. I like 
her way of creating gray using cobalt blue, 
quinacridone rose and aureolin yellow. I use 
this gray as a base for muted colors. I also 
like the idea of surrounding a bright color 
with a muted opposite. 
 “Andrew Wyeth was incredibly loose
and incredibly tight at the same time, which 
I like and hope to be able to do someday,” 
Jablokow says. “I like