Studio Locations


Donna's Studio
Paseo de Guayabitos, (just off the main street, beside the Oxxo, near Teriyaki Alex )
Rincon de Guayabitos, Riviera Nayarit, Mexico

Galeria San Francisco
#1 Calle San Francisco, San Miguel de Allende, GTO., Mexico

tel: (cell) 045 322 888 7219

Sunday, December 28, 2014

2014 Dec 30th Last plein air

"Morning Glories and Nopal "waterecolor. 15.5 x 9.5 in. available for sale.
This was done as a demo done in the studio last week with my watercolors students. Turned out to be fun for everyone. 

Plein air next week on Tues. afternoon DEC 30th we will meet in the jardin for our last plein air for 2014!  TIME 2:00 pm center of Jardin. I will be there so just scout around. Can't say exactly where we'll be. Depends on the light and shadows. Bring a hat and dress in layers but it should be warm in the afternoon. View finder and camera for reference photos.

it's been a fabulous year and it should be an interesting 2015 season here too for plein air painting. Some of the high lights for me in the last year is seeing the improvements that my students have made. I always enjoy seeing students advancing to the next level, and many have. I look forward to seeing students returning and a whole new crop of new ones!!
Just a reminder we will be having our 3rd annual student show at the end of January, on the 30th from 5 til 8 pm running until Feb 1st.. The Friday class on Jan.30th will be changed to 10:30 to 1:30 to allow set up time for the show. We'll have more about that later.

Donna, Linda & Tom painting on Recreo .

Sunday, December 21, 2014

2014 Painting on Recreo results from Tues. Dec 9th

 'SHADOWS ON RECREO' oil on panel 12"x 16 " This was so much fun to paint. I have walked by this scene so many times and decided yes it was time to paint it.Tom and I were joined by Linda working in watercolors and a new student Barbara came by to have a look. We took up the spot reserved for the  deliveries to the store behind us called "Solutions" and we managed to dodge most of the traffic. The key here  in painting this was how much saturation or intensity of color to use. The warm blue building was slightly lighter then the background cooler blue sky. Interesting juxtapositions. And also getting enough intensity into the orange shadows was tricky too. When in doubt it seems best to go a little stronger then you normally would as when viewed indoors it will not look as saturated.
Plein air next week will be cancelled due to Christmas holidays. Stay tuned  for the last one for this year on the afternoon of 30th of December. Location to be announced soon.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Plein air 2014 December 16th

Plein Air on Recreo  Tuesday Dec 9th at 1:30 pm
Here's a delightful scene on Recreo between Correo and Hospicio -Thought we could have some fun with this. It's right across the street from Solutions. You can zoom in or add more sky. Lots of approaches to play with. Use lots of texture, palette knife , or just do the blue house and door. The challenge will be in trying to capture the light and shadow colors. Let me know if you're coming. After last's weeks complicated Aldama scene, this will give us a bit of a break.We'll be painting in the afternoon so it should be ok temperature wise. There's Casa Cafe on the corner of Hospicio and Recreo, very handy for cafe and snacks and the all important use of facilities if needed. See you there. Donna
 And here's our paintings from last week. The ultimate challenge!
"Calle Aldama" oil 14" x 18" by Tom Dickson
"Aldama Afternoon" oil 12 x 16" by Donna Dickson  It was fun and challenging to do such a complicated scene.

Monday, December 1, 2014

2014 December 1st plein air on Aldama

Calle Aldama, for our first plein air of December! This is near the corner of Terraplen and Aldama. We'll be there at 2:30 pm to get set up. Lots of color and of course the quintessential scene of San Miguel. Should be warmer in the afternoon as well. Let me know if you're coming . There's a new cafe across the street from where we'll be for reinforcements.  Don't forget your camera view finder, paper towel etc. For those that can't make it Monday I will also be painting here on Tues. at the the same time.This week only.  D

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

2014 Nov 25 Results from this mornings plein air and last week

Linda, moi y Kassie.  Linda was working in watercolor this morning, very challenging when the paint dries so quickly here.

Here's Kassie and I with our paintings of the Cuesta de San Jose Church in oils. It's a tranquil churchyard hardly a soul around.
" The Church, Cuesta de San Jose" oil 9 x 12"

" Corner of Aldama" oil 9 x 12" this is from last Tuesday. It's been fun painting with Linda and Kassie.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

2014 Nov 25th Tues plein air coming up

Here's where we'll be painting Tues. morning around 9:30am Nov. 25/ 2014      I was fooling around in Photoshop filters with this image. Looks pretty cool.
This church is looking good in it's new colors . The old Cuesta church color was a decidedly blah pink. Still we did paint the odd rendition of it and it turned out okay. It's a nice quiet spot to paint. Wear layers as we won't know what kind of weather we'll get at this time of year. No washrooms near by so don't go overboard with too much cafe before leaving. Maybe try chocolate instead of liquid to get you're energy up!  See you on location .Donna
 Directions straight up Cuesta de San Jose from Nunez and keep on Cuesta . You'll note Calle Montitlan going off on your left , don't turn just keep straight ahead up hill and it's just about 1/2 block more on your right. Any questions e mail me.

Monday, November 17, 2014

2014 Nov 17 th Tues plein air

Plein air Tuesday morning we're meeting at the Parque Juarez corner where Aldama and Tenerias meet at 9:15 am. 
 Weather permitting of course. The forecast is calling for partly cloudy high of  23C  -   73 F  so not too bad as long as it comes up quickly from overnight from around 7 or 8 C or about 45F
Should be a fun location. I'll post pics from the area next post. See you there Donna

Beach umbrellas from our trip to Guayabitos last week

Sunday, November 2, 2014

November plein air Tues Nov 4th 9:15 am Calle Aparicio

Calle Aparicio
Alley way off Tecolote  great shadows
We'll meet at 9:15 Tuesday at the entrance to Aparicio at Nunez There's lots of options in the area. Dress warmly it's been cool in the early morning. Let me know if you're coming .  Donna
Alleyway with a church top view

Sunday, October 5, 2014

2014 October plein air In the Jardin

In the studio this week Juliana has just turned 6.  Here she's drying her acrylic painting.

Tues Oct 7 -  9 :30 am . We'll be meeting to paint en plein air in the Jardin near the bandstand. From there we will select our quarry. Don't forget your camera, for reference photos, hat , dress in layers, view finder, brushes, thinner, paint and equipment and paper towel, Coffee and tea are easily at hand around the Jardin.

Lots of parades this week end .  Lots of color in celebration of San Miguel de Allende's birthday
Blessing of the horses on Saturday. 100's of horses all around the Jardin.This photo is from the gallery balcony, always at the center of things Hopefully all the week end activities will be over for a tranquil plein air.
So Tues at 9:30 am Oct 7th weather permitting! If in doubt send me a quick  email early, about 8:30. Or we can just paint from inside our courtyard. Fingers crossed for good weather. Donna

Sunday, September 28, 2014

September and Fall is here No plein air this week

Bajio Valley watercolor 5"x 7" A quick sketch of the clouds over the Presa.  
This week no plein air scheduled as we'll be away for Tuesday. But next week for sure. Hoping to do something in Centro.  It's been cloudy lately so haven't had much luck with plein air this past week. Just the one quick impression. Classes continuing in the studio and welcoming back returnees! Donna

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

2014 September Paintings

The Lake  El Charco del Ingenio  8" x 10" oil on panel plein air
          Fun today. There has been lots of rain so the lake is full. In the winter it will be all dried up. Loved painting the light and shadows as they danced across the hills. Despite forgetting my easel I made due without it. Where there's a will there's a way. I don't recommend it but it can be done. I used the palette knife quite a bit in this one and thick over thin on a medium toned ground. I mapped in the shadows with thin paint before they changed. It' s a good idea not to chase the light, just stay with one pattern. A quiet day on my own not  many in the park today.
Light from the Window 8 x 8 " oil
And here's 2 paintings from the studio, from a photo by Billie Mercer with her permission.  I did a watercolor version and an oil. I'd love to know which one you like best. In the oil version I used a lot of modelling with the palette knife to get the old layered look and mood.
"Light from the Window " watercolor 10.5 x 10.5 "  I painted the watercolor version first. I actually like them both. It's interesting playing around with texture in both mediums. In the watercolor  I employed a variety of techniques, splatter, salt, washes etc. to achieve the old look of the walls.
Classes continuing in the studio Wed. Thurs. and Friday mornings from 10 til 1 pm. I'm open Saturdays 11 til 3pm if you want to drop by.
The February plein Air Workshop is filling up. It's Feb.23rd to 27th. open to all . Oils, Acrylics or Watercolors. There's a link at the top of the page to the workshop details. 

Saturday, September 6, 2014

2014 September classes begin

SS. Master built in Vancouver 1922 False Creek Harbour from Granville Island - I really wanted to paint this but couldn't find a suitable spot out of the sun.
2 Fawns and mother deer grazing on Cypress Mtn. overlooking Vancouver Harbor
A watercolor I did paint  from Vancouver - A  1929 Glascow built tug The St. Eval. It was converted to a pleisure craft, by Dennis Washington owner of the Seaspan fleet of tugs. This I painted from the Lonsdale Quay. It was a beautiful sunny day, perfect for painting. approx. 8" x 10"

At  Deep Cove
Porteau Cove towards Whistler  A spot that would be fun to paint from, lots of mountain and island views
A touch of Fall in the Lynn Valley, North Vancouver

Leaving Vancouver early dawn with Mtn. peaks lit up
At Dawn a pink glow over the Tswassen Ferry Terminal 
Back home in San Miguel after my travels to B.C. I had a great visit with family. Our schedule for next week
Tues Sept 9th Plein air  meet at the entrance to the gallery at 9 :15 am be prepared for what ever weather -we'll be painting in centro.
Wed, Sept 10th - watercolors in the studio at 10 am til 1 pm
Thurs, Sept 11th - oils and acrylics in the studio 10 to 1 pm
Friday Sept 12th - oils and acrylics more advanced  10 to 1 pm
If you are new and need more info about classes ... e mail me at

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

2014 Sept. Class schedule changes

Afternoon Guanatjuato" 12 x 16 " oil  this one was inspired by our plein air workshop last February when we painted in Guanajuato. A fun day for all. I completed this in the studio. ..... So I  will be away in Vancouver for "quince dias" 2 weeks so.... Classes will resume Plein air on the  Sept 9th at 9:15 location in centro. TBA. Sept 10th watercolors in the studio ....Sept 11th and 12th  oils and acrylics in the studio all studio classes  10 am to 1 pm Stay tuned for pictures and hopefully paintings from Vancouver! Here's some more paintings completed lately.

Morning on Cuesta de Loreto 11 x 14" I love the colorful streets in my neighborhood.
Afternoon Light with Cactus. 11 x 14" watercolor  This a great street to paint from, steep and cobblestones. Lots of character. Let me know if you'll be coming to the next session of classes. And Adios to those I will not see when I get back. Donna

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Plein air results from Tues. Aug 12 2014

"CRUZ DEL PUEBLO VISTA" oil 10 x10" This was a challenging scene. The light kept altering with cloud and sun. A time when you have to really hold on to your first impression and not chase the light. This a great little street all stairs, very steep and the residents are pretty spry. The older lady walking thru' my painting lives above this scene an goes back and forth to town every day.
Alice painting this morning in watercolors
Linda doing watercolors, the new benches are a hit with students.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

2014 August plein air Tues August 12th 9:15 am

Hi all,  we'll be meeting on Calle Cruz del Pueblo this week at 9:15 am. The street that is all stairs no traffic! Cruz del Pueblo begins above Salida a Queretero, just above Garita. So walking up from centro you could come up Correo or San Francisco turn right onto Salida a Quert. and go along til you see Garita below you on your right and to your left going up stairs is Cruz del Pueblo. If you taxi up the driver can let you out there as we will be painting at the lower end closest to salida. If you're driving you can take the next street up the Salida that you can turn left, which is Cuesta de Loreto. Very narrow opening by the little chapel of Loreto. Very steep too. You go up only about a half block and turn left onto Cabello, this will take you to the top of Cruz del Pueblo and there is parking along there. You can then walk down as we will meet in the lower end of Cruz.
This is in the lower section with just one set of steps from here down to Salida a Queretero
Flowers on the Cruz . Lots of nice landscaping and new benches
Weather permitting it should be fun.
Here' a great view and can be done sitting if you like. I prefer to stand so that you can get back from your picture. 

This is on the upper end of Cruz del Pueblo a great view as well. As we have painted from this area many times we are choosing to paint from lower down. Not to say you can't get some great photos to take away with you.  Go easy on coffee consumption as near by washroom options are not too plentiful. Recreo and Hospicio at the Cafe de Casa is the closest, which is a steep downhill about 2 blocks  from where we will be. Don't forget a sun hat and your paints and equipment and camera.  You will need your camera for reference photos for finishing you painting. Usually the light has changed so much by the time you finish painting it is good to a have a reference for the light and shade of the early morning.The weather is supposed to be nice. If not we'll go next week. See you Tuesday.

Friday, August 1, 2014

2014 plein air MONDAY Aug. 4th, 9:15am Calle Suspiros

Last night's sunset from our roof top!
 A sunset to inspire the muse! The last of July. next week plein air will be Monday morning instead of Tues. We're meeting on Aug. 4th  at 9:15 am on Suspiros, just off Tenerias.
Here's a taxi coming along on Suspiros

On Tenerias just around the corner from Suspiros looking towards Juarez Park, so we have 2 choices tomorrow morning. The only problem with the Tenerias location is the best view is from the sunny side.
This was nice with the woman sweeping. We will probably get people walking thru' here that will
look good too.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

2014 July 29 Todays plein air

This is taken later in the morning our shadows are retreating
here's part of our group today at Atotonilco. A pretty tranquil morning and a challenge to paint that church!
This guy came over to have a look at what we were doing.

Alice hard at work .
"Early Morning"- Atotonilco watercolor 11" x 15" a wonderful morning to paint!
Linda at Atotonilco Next week we will paint in town on Monday morning  so we can all get to the Tues market-La Placita as it is called. Location TBA A colorful street for sure.