Grandmother passes on painting skills to next generation at Fair Plein Air

By Roxie Murphy, Staff Writer
Posted 8/4/21

Art Works on Main Gallery had a new participant in their Gasconade County Fair Plein Air event last week when fifth-grader Maci Armstrong picked up some of her grandmother’s water colors and …

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Grandmother passes on painting skills to next generation at Fair Plein Air

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Art Works on Main Gallery had a new participant in their Gasconade County Fair Plein Air event last week when fifth-grader Maci Armstrong picked up some of her grandmother’s water colors and entered the contest.
Armstrong was hard at work inside the Exhibit Hall after she chose a flower submission — a rose from Ken Zimmeirer that won a red ribbon — to paint for her first watercolor experience. She is the third granddaughter of Becky Hesemann, who was there to guide her.
“I let her pick what she wanted to paint,” Hesemann said. “Water colors are new for her.”
As Armstrong observed the flower, a pink rose with a long green stem inside a tall, clear vase — Hesemann pointed out small things to look for. The width and fade of the stem and how it comes across in the painting. She also told her granddaughter to mind the water levels.
“They were down in participants this year and I asked her if she would like to try it,” said Hesemann, a third-year participant and former board member of the gallery. “We need younger artists.”
Armstrong, who is a fifth-grader in the Gasconade County R-2 School District, gave herself a little over an hour with the flower before submitting it. The picture placed second place in the contest.
Ginny Blankenship was also painting inside the Exhibit Hall on Friday afternoon.
Blankenship’s artwork is well-known in the area. A friend asked her to paint a picture of one of the blocks from Sue Nichols’ quilt that received a red ribbon.
“This should technically be a commissioned piece,” Blankenship jokes.
All marked paintings were set out for silent auction on Saturday afternoon.

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