The Grand Blanc Arts Council is featuring watercolor paintings by Ronald J. Schmitz at Genesys Health Park June 13 – August 8. The exhibit can be viewed on the second floor, between the elevators.
To purchase a piece of artwork, call the Hospice Division of Reverence at 810-695-9878 where 25% of proceeds will be donated.
Popular at Michigan Art Fairs, Ron’s artwork has also been seen in exhibits in Toledo and outside of Chicago. His pieces are in private collections nationally.
Ron loved to draw since childhood. His first paintings used old window shades as canvas with interior house paint tints for color. He would check out art books from the book mobile that stopped in rural areas. After retiring from the Flint Community Schools, where he was a teacher and then principal, Ron enrolled in watercolor classes and resumed painting.
Ron explains why he paints. “When I photograph something which moves me, the camera does not capture what I feel. When I try to describe my impressions of the image, I can not find the right words. It is paint flowing from my brush that floods the paper with emotion.”
Resume of Art Background and Training
Ever since my early childhood days I have drawn, and painted whenever I could find any materials with which to do it. Once when I was about nine or ten I got hold of some tubes of oil colors for tinting interior house paints. Since I knew artists used canvas, I found an old canvas window shade, cut it in to pieces, scrounged any old brushes I could find and my days in oil painting began.
Of course my drawing continued since it was easy to find paper and pencil. I didn't have any formal art instruction in school. I lived on a farm and in our area we didn't have a regular library. Periodically the bookmobile, a library on wheels, would visit. I would check out any books I could find on art. I asked the lady in charge to find as many art books for me as she could.
As I got older, I would save up my allowance and when I had enough money I would take a trip to Ferguson's Art Shop in downtown Flint to buy "real" artist's materials. Throughout my high school years and later I worked mainly in oils and tried my hand at pastels. After entering college there was little or no time to paint although I did continue to draw. Applied art courses were not a part of my curriculum so my advisor wouldn't approve them. When I graduated I immediately began my professional career in education. During that time I was a teacher, assistant principal and a principal in the Flint Community Schools. From time to time I did find opportunities to paint, draw and work with pastels. However, I voraciously continued to read books on painting and drawing, building what became a rather substantial library.
Finally, several 'years after retiring I really wanted to paint again. It was also time to get some actual formal art instruction. I enrolled in a watercolor class offered by the Flint Board of Education. I had never worked with watercolor and had trepidations about working in this media. This class was taught by Marge Stuvel. Since then I have taken many more classes taught by Mrs. Stuvel. I have also taken classes at the Flint Institute of Arts. One of these classes was taught by Allen Arnett and the other by Jim Ames. I have participated in numerous exhibits. I constantly strive to improve and expand my painting skills.
When I photograph something which moves me, the camera does not capture what I feel.
When I try to describe my impressions of the image caught by the camera, I can not seem to find the right words, but paint flowing from my brush floods the paper with the emotions the camera can not sense and the feelings of the unfound descriptive words.
This is why I paint.