Meet Artists New to RiverArts Studio Tour in Their Own Creative Spaces


David Gifford

So many new artists to visit! See them in their own studios by taking the free, self-guided RiverArts 19th Annual Studio Tour, October 20-21 and 27-28, 10:00-5:00, rain or shine. Chat with these artists as they talk about their inspirations and demonstrate their techniques.

Heron Point will have ten artists working in its newly built art studio. Four are returning artists, (Jack Fancher, Barbara Finneson, Olga Owens, Joanne Scott), and six are new to the tour (Gillean Ames, Linda Atcheson, Sandra Becker, Sandra Durfee, Charlotte Hawes, and H. Collette Moffatt). Their work will be on view at the studio and in Heron Point’s main gallery. Expect to see oils, acrylics, and watercolor as well as pastels, colored pencils, collages, monoprints and illustrations both drawn and from the computer. Subject matter will be varied:  landscapes, water views, and flowers, both realistic and impressionistic, portraits, African wildlife, decorative patterns, and the creation of zentangles incorporated into collages. Holiday cards will also be available.

A small art complex, Cannon Street Studios, houses four studios in the “barn,”  a building constructed to look like a barn that once existed on High Street. Lolly Braunschweiger has her studio there. Lolly creates collages using mixed media. Her work reflects her interest in color, pattern, and texture. Her pieces often incorporate multiple layers, some including such things as colored tissue paper, designs cut out from magazines, her own photographs, acrylic paints, and more. She especially likes to capture architectural imagery.

David Gifford enjoys the pure color of the pastel medium and the challenge of creating shapes and layers of colors that accurately reflect images as he sees them. It’s not unusual for David to stop at a Kent County roadside to photograph cloud patterns, a barn, a waterscape or fieldscape, which he then uses as the basis for his paintings. His works reflect the light and space he sees and the serene atmosphere he feels.

Louise “Lolly” Braunschweiger

Paul Santori’s drawings, illustrations and paintings in oils, acrylics and pastels range from realistic to abstract to surrealistic. His use of non-traditional applications of materials such as pouring, dripping and moving paint around with pencils and knives as well as the use of metallic paints helps his intuitive process. Paul’s studio is in his basement, with special fixtures that reproduce natural light conditions. He likes having his studio in his home because he can work when the mood strikes him.

Roberta Ingram works primarily in pastels. She looks for something she finds interesting from such subjects as landscapes to those of pets. Her landscapes are taken from her photographs though she sometimes works en plein air. When she and her late husband retired, they moved to Fairgale Farms. They found it to be the sweet life, thus the name La Dolce Vita Studio, which is  a corner of her home’s family room. She loves it because it keeps her connected to her art, her home, and her family.

Kate McGraw works in multiple media: oils, pastels, charcoal, graphite, colored pencils and photography. She is interested in capturing the emotion of a moment through light and color, choosing subject matter – landscapes, portraits and figures, that tugs at the heart or evokes a beckoning. Her recently completed studio is housed in half her garage. It has northern light exposure and is constructed of repurposed building materials from her 18th century home and farm.

Penny McCrea is primarily a plein air artist who uses pastels to capture the beauty of the countryside through nature’s changing patterns. She is particularly sensitive to the intrinsic beauty of farms, fields, woods, and streams. Her pastel paintings appear realistic, but on closer examination, they take on an impressionistic quality. Penny’s studio is in her home. She loves her scenic view of the Chester River and Baldwin Pond. See her studio as well as her “gallery” in her transformed entryway and dining room.

To see the works of all the artists on the tour, visit the Chestertown RiverArts Gallery, 315 High Street, in the breezeway. This month-long show will open First Friday, October 5th. Regular gallery hours are Tuesday-Friday, 11:00-5:30, Saturday, 10:00-5:30, Sunday 11-3, First Friday, 11:00-8:00. Phone is 410.778.6300.  During the tour Saturday and Sunday hours are 10:00-5:30.  Also, pick up a brochure at any number of area restaurants and businesses and visit the tour’s website, These will help you plan your tour.

Thanks go to the tour’s sponsors; Chesapeake Bank and Trust, Kent County Office of Tourism and Development and Baltimore radio station, WYPR.

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