Virginia, United States
I guess you could say I was born an artist! My intrinsic artistic abilities appeared around the age of 1½ years old when I began scribbling colorful imagery on my bedroom walls, later carving designs and cryptic messages on my parent’s fine furniture. Over the years, I have continued my artistic endeavors working as a monotype printmaker, painter, mixed media artist, and jewelry maker.

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Thursday, February 27, 2020

New Classes update! Cold Wax, Mixed Media and More! 2020

These are the classes I have scheduled for now. I plan on adding more soon. If there is something you would like to take and you do not see it here, let me know!


Adult Classes at The Studio School, Roanoke, VA
Upper Level Towers Mall

Spring 2020
  • Printmaking - Geli-Print 
2 classes, Mondays, March 9, 16, 2019 • 5:30–7:30 p.m. • Geli plates, brayers, card stock, and deli paper provided for use). 

Come learn the basics of Printmaking! Enjoy demos, use the Elements and Principals of Art to create prints, and explore making your own colorful designed monoprints, papers, and more using various provided papers and tools. Gina will show you a variety of ways, and discuss how to display them. Bring your stamps, stencils, etc, for texturing, acrylic paints, and imagination! ALL levels welcome! Contact Gina at Lougael@cox.net if you have questions. 


  • Open Studio Class in Mixed Media and Collage 
4 classes: Mondays, March 23 and 30, April 6 and 13• 5:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m. •(includes some materials)

This Open Studio Class in Mixed Media and Collage is ideal for cultivation your creative side! We will experiment with mixed media collage and a variety of ways and with a variety of materials (Gina will have some to share). Using the subject matter of your choice we will discuss processes, materials, and mediums. We will also look at composition and the Principals and Elements of Art.  The focus is to begin each class with a few demos or exercises to stimulate the creative process, then to continue working to develop your own visual language. Gina is available to give individual input as needed.  ALL levels are welcome! Contact Gina for a short materials list. lougael@cox.net
Summer 2020
  • Cold Wax Alchemy and Open Studio Workshop                                                                                                                           2 Days, Saturday August 8 and Sunday August 9, 2020                                                                                                                                         10:00 a.m. to 4:00 P.M.  Explore the endless possibilities of painting with cold wax and oil! Take an intuitive approach into the many uses of luminous cold wax with oil paint, pastel, mark-making tools, brushes, scrapers and more. Composition, color and contrast will be addressed, along with an exploration of visual elements such as line, shape, pattern, texture, form and depth. We will create original pieces and explore effects possible  with the oil and cold wax medium by using it as a surface treatment to create completed paintings, collages (including copied photos), and incorporate mixed media by adding oil and cold wax with various 'found' tools. All skill levels would benefit from this class, especially beginners. For previous cold wax participants, Gina will offer critiques, and be there to assist in developing your visual journey. *Bring your oil paints,  Arches oil paper, Multimedia board, or recommended 8” x 8”  birch board, gesso board, or clayboard  panels, an old used gift card,  palette paper, wax paper, Wet Ones, and a 12” palette knife or icing spreader. Gina will bring tools to share and several materials for you to try, plus furnish one jar of cold wax. Lunch breaks included. (Needs 4 to make) Email Gina with questions, lougael@gmail.com
Workshops At 310 Art Gallery, Asheville, N.C.
Coming in 2020: Registration open at 
  • CONTEMPORARY SHRINES, IMAGE TRANSFERS AND MIXED MEDIA 
June 6 and June 7, 2020
10 am -4pm
No experience necessary. 

Most people immediately connect the word “shrine’ with something either religious or contemplative. For this class, a shrine is a self-contained expression of a single thought or theme. (Family, pet, or even a thought or idea {nature}.)
That’s a pretty broad definition that leaves the door open for a variety of interpretations.
Choose an image of a favorite family member, pet or animal, theme or object and lift them to a place of honor using mixed media and collage. Participants will create a ‘Personal or Contemporary Shrine’ by the end of class. We will first create a textured base using a Wabi-Sabi technique with natural fibered papers and ephemera, adding inks and mediums, and then focus on three types of image transfers of your chosen subject/theme and you will learn methods of placing the image-transferred subject on the panel(s) in a place of honor. Once transferred, you can create an interesting surface and visual frame. Bring your own good contrast laser (toner, not inkjet) copies of your choice of images no larger than 4” x 6’ for the project and some that are no more than 2” wide for practice. You may want to bring two copies of the same image.
Gina will provide the wooden base (6” x 6”), a house and arch shape, some natural fiber papers, acrylic paints, Walnut ink, brushes, Pan Pastels, texturing materials, glue, transfer materials, assorted stencils and stamps and more. 
Optional, but highly recommended: Personalize your work using your own stencils, stamps, milagros, small beads, mosaic pieces, small nails or brads, and collage materials, or small personal objects you may choose to bring. Also bring scissors, paper towels and Wet Ones. 

  • Encaustic Pendants                                                                                                                                                                                            June 9, 2020                                                                                                                                                                                                              10-4 pm
No experience needed.
Fee includes all wax, solder, soldering irons and soldering setups, one chain included, and other items needed!
Participants will create up to four soldered pendants, with the largest being 1” wide and up to 3” long. We will use wax, metal and small inclusions. For a more personal pendant, you may wish to bring such items as dried flowers, small inspirational words, bits of collage/decorative papers, lace, beads, or small flat charms. If you would like, you can enhance small 1” x 1 ½” to 1” x 3” images from your color or B&W laser printer by placing them in with the wax. Learn fantastic skills and have fun in this exciting new class at 310 ART. (Extra materials will be available for purchase should you wish to create more.) Be sure to bring a drink and lunch! 



  • Soul Totem and Shield Making-Taking Encaustic to 3-D 
July 11 and July 12, 2020                                                                                                                                                                                           10-4  pm
Beginners welcome or even if you have prior experience with Encaustic you can enhance your skills. Gina will cover safety and basics of Encaustics as needed. 
A totem is considered something such as and animal or plant that s the symbol for a family, tribe, etc. especially among the Native Americans. In America today, a totem can be a carved or painted form, person; it could be a realistic or abstract idea. 

In this workshop we will dive right in exploring the sculptural possibilities of plaster cloth, wax and encaustic making a totem and shield which best represents your personal idea or creative desire.  Rigid and absorbent when dry, plaster cloth makes a wonderful support for dimensional encaustic work. Once the form is created, we will apply Encaustic medium and fuse it to the sculptural composition using a variety of techniques. In the class, we will have a 12” disc and 12” rectangular shape to use as a base for the plaster cloth.  As the structures near completion, you will learn how to add found or small personal objects into the sculptures to create your ‘totem’ and discuss ways to finish and display your totem. As we create, we will contemplate our forms and their meanings to us personally, or you can choose to go abstract. Gina will bring the two forms, plaster cloth, decorative papers, Encaustic Medium and pigments, oil sticks, oil pastels, and tools. 
Bring your own fodder such as decorative papers, ephemera, small rusty nails, thin fabrics, found objects, thin wire, organic matter, buttons, etc. Bring paper towels, Wet Ones, and Scissors. 
​​

AT The Art Box, in Lynchburg
  • Coming Soon:     Contact Gina for more info!                                                                                                                                                       Encaustic Monotype                                                                                                                                                                                              4  5 day Encaustic Emersion for ALL Levels (These new to the medium are welcome as Gina will cover the basics.)
Some of the other classes I teach are:

  • Making Altered and Handmade Books 

  • Cold Wax Alchemy

  • Soldered Silver or Encaustic Pendants

  • Encaustic, Beginning and Advanced, and  Encaustic Printmaking

  • Art Critiques and Individual Study (Private Lessons for adults and children individually or groups.)

Sunday, October 20, 2019

Time Flies Encaustic, Wabi-Sabi Bookmaking, 3-D Encaustic Works, Cold Wax and Oil

What a busy summer...leading right into fall.
I have been astounded by all the wonderful classes, creative visions, and most of all new friendships.
My heart is full, yet I need time now to rejuvenate.

Feeling the need to work in new directions. Hoping the coming winter months provide me with
time to reflect and experiment in new ways. Time to look at developing new classes, and time to take some classes and travel.

It is also a time to purge. Time to evaluate older works and perhaps give them new homes, or a new life by working over them. I am looking forward to fall and winter in preparation for a new spring.

Here are a few highlights of the year.














Thursday, June 20, 2019

Asheville! 310 Art!

I just got back from a week in Asheville. I spent three glorious days teaching at 310 Art.
This year was my seventh year going to 310. I have been very fortunate to have made new friends and met so many creative souls.

This year was the first year for the Contemporary Shrine class with image transfers. WOW, such powerful stories at the end. A special thank you for sharing your story!

Here are a few of the images. I will add more soon.
In the meantime, I am planning a third NEW class.....Stay tuned for Spring 2020!
My heart is full!















Sunday, May 5, 2019

Melting Point: Contemporary Encaustic Works 2019

Melting Point: Contemporary Encaustic Works

SARAH B. SMITH GALLERY

Encaustic, the ancient art that dates back to the Greeks and uses hot pigmented beeswax, has made a resurgence in the art world after a quiet 3,000 year hiatus.  This exhibit is a curated selection of artists from the mid-Atlantic who all use encaustic in their work in dynamic ways.
Even with a shared interest in this unique medium, the work itself has a wide range of approaches: from organic to geometric to the narrative and sculptural.  
Participating Artists:

Saturday, February 2, 2019

Sunday, October 28, 2018

New Works

Ah, I have been teaching and painting and trying to balance life in all areas....So fortunate for studio time....here is one of my latest cold wax pieces. 



This month I have had the pleasure of meeting several new folks in my classes! what a delight to see the creativity flow. when a person comes in and tells me they have never had an art class and then they leave with not one, but several pieces of work they (and I) adore, it makes my day complete. 

In the world today, I feel we just need more outlets for creative expression. All of us...in some form need, art, music, or dance....we need it. It's hearing, it makes the world stop for a while, and we feel refreshed....at least I know I do. 

If you are ready for a class, I am teaching this coming weekend in Lynchburg at the Art Box,
if you are interested, use the contact form above or contact the Art Bx, Lynchburg. Also, you can check out the new winter listings for the Studio School. I have several classes for the beginner and advanced student alike. 

Enjoy the fall.....
Happy creating!

Monday, September 3, 2018

New Works, Fall Shows

Wow, what a long hot summer!
I have had some great studio days and have been exploring new techniques and mediums.
Fall will be on us very quickly and I am ready for the next two shows on my agenda.


Emerald Cove (C) encaustic 8" x 8"


First will be the Lynchburg Art Show at E.C. Glass High School on September 15th (rain date September 16th) from 10-4. This is a wonderful show, in case you have not experienced it, and if you have I hope you come back and say hello!

Next, November 9th and 10th at Towers Mall, upper Level, the Studio School will present the Art Blast. This year we are in our new indoor location. So far we have 22 artists participating and we anticipate 20 more. This is also our grand opening since we moved to the Towers location. Hope you will come by and say hello and check out our new space.

Happy creating and stay cool!

Friday, July 20, 2018

Working in 3-D with Encaustic and Mixed Media Processes

A new direction! 
Last summer I began exploring 3-D with encaustic mediums. During this journey, I have been entranced with the house, bird, and the circle shapes. I plan on continuing this path. By encompassing the forms, I find I can bring a creative narrative to my work. As an artist, I have not yet been satisfied with direction, as I hear from other artists they too are always moving forward to find perfection. I feel now that I am on the right path. I am excited about the wax, materials, elements and feel of the works. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do. 






Artist Statement:

Houses:
The house can be a powerful symbol of the self, and often serves that purpose in dreams and art. This particular symbol perfectly captures the nature of the human self: we are all made of the same basic psychological stuff, but we’re all uniquely complex in our individual personalities and lifestyles.

My encaustic houses are a symbol of personal identity; these house sculptures are part of an inner dreamscape, deep thoughts, natural awakenings, and sensory mechanisms that are part of the soul, some of which I cannot even pretend to explain. The houses are the perfect vessel to be come a reliquary of sorts, to hold those moments or emotions captured within.  

















Encaustic Printmaking at the Studio School!





What a fantastic class!

About Encaustic:

Encaustic, a wax-based painting medium characterized by luminous color and lush surface, flourished more than 2,000 years ago in Greco-Roman Egypt.

Encaustic, from the Greek encuastikos, means to "heat" or "burn". Heat is use at every stage of encaustic painting. The medium consists of beeswax melted with a small amount of resin to impact harness and pigment for the rich colors adde to the molten wax.

Painting requires quick work, as the wax begins to harden the moment it leaves the heat source. The heat binds each layer to the one set own before it, so while the image my consist of discrete compositional elements, structurally the entire surface is one carefully crafted mass, a "whole ball of wax", if you will. 


About Monotypes:

Monotypes are prized because of their unique textual qualities. They are made by drawing on glass or a plate of smooth metal or stone with a greasy substance such as printer's ink or oil paint. Then the drawing is pressed by hand onto a sheet of absorbent paper or is printed on an etching press. 

For me, I find the process very meditative. Colors  and textures can be achieved in so many ways with Encaustic, but the paper, ah...the papers! So many possibilities! Here are just a few of the class examples!