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About Me and Awards

Donna's Bright Spot

Folk Art
Recent Work June 2015
Donations of Art
Frankie's Story
Paint The Town
Collage & Mixed Media
About Me and Awards
Traditional Art
Oil Pastel Gallery

Self Portrait. Oil Pastel
1st Place and Judges Choice Award
1ST Place and Judges Choice Award

This goes on forever but then I wasn't born yesterday! lol

      My Name is Donna Underwood.The Annapolis Valley (Nova Scotia, Canada) is my homeland. Many of my childhood hours were spent alone, twirling about on my swing and skating on a small patch of ice in the swamp. My best friends were wildflowers, mud puddles, sticks and stones.  Early schooling took place in Victoria Vale (a one room school house) and I graduated from MRHS in 1961.  I received a scholarship to attend the Junior School for the Arts in 1959. My Mother taught me how to rug hook with cut wool strips. From my parents I learned to love and appreciate nature.
      Studies include (my 1st Art Lessons, Oils) in Junior High School from life long inspiration, the late Jean Chipman), watercolors, graphic design, calligraphy, silversmithing, (which I loved with Frank Phillips, weaving (which I hated, it took me 18 hours to weave a dishcloth), at the age of 40, I took up ballet and learned to ride a bicycle, (a year of balance).  Other interests are  landscape gardening, mask making, writing, belly dancing, making things with trash and standup comedy,(I made a 5 minute comedy demo tape, but nobody called) lol.
       I painted my first oil painting at the age of 11 without the help of instructions.
       I drew my 1st nudes at the age of 9 and I got a strapping for doing such a bad drawing. The Teacher thought the drawing was immoral; I thought I couldn't draw.
      Annapolis Valley Exhibition takes place in Lawrencetown, Anna Co NS
      Apple Blossom Festival of Art was held in Kentville or the Greenwood Mall, Kings Co NS
      CAS of NS, Hfx. Juried Show, 1995 - Hon. Mention, Acrylic,
      "The Unity Candle" 16 by 20
      Apple Blossom Festival of Art 2002
      Judge  Livingstone, Acadia University
      1st, Oil Pastel,    "Path of the Feather", 9 by 12
      1st, Mixed Media, "Friends Near and Far", 11 by 16
      Apple Blossom Festival of Art 2003
      3rd Acrylic, "Golden Angel", 8 by 10
       Apple Blossom Festival of Art 2004
       David Ritchie, Art Instructor, Middleton Regional High School, Middleton,NS
       1st and Judges Choice
       Acrylic, 'Work and Play", 24 by 36
       and then the Judge bought the painting;
       it doesn't get any better than this!
       2005 No Entries
       Apple Blossom Festival of Art 2006
       1st, Acrylic, Abstract, "The Dancers" 16 by 20
       Apple Blossom Festival of Art, 2007
       3rd, Acrylic, Animal, Wave Dancer, 8 by 10 Amanda Spears Larencetown, NS
       Apple Blossom Festival of Art, 2008
       2nd, Collage, New Life Sold  Book Room Greenwood Mall
       3rd, Acrylic, Animal, Born to Roam, 16 by 20  A Big Green Cat Face
       Apple Blossom Festival of Art, 2009
       Hon. Mention, Spring Fever, 16 by 20
       Apple Blossom Festival of Art 2010, Judge, Fabienne Leydecker
       Hon Mention,Mixed Media, Blossoms Everywhere
       2nd, Acrylic,Abstract, Back to Nature, Fox, donated
       3rd, Mixed Media, Talisman, 4 by 6 donated
       Annapolis Valley Exhibition 2001
       1st, Acrylic, Landscape,  "Mt. Carleton"  NB 10 by 14
       Annapolis Valley Exhibition 2002, Judge, Monica Forrestall
       1st & Judges Choice, Oil Pastel, self portrait "Redhead"  9 by 12
       1st, Acrylic, Seascape,  "The Bay of Fundy" 24 by 36
       Annapolis Valley Exhibition 2003, Judge, Tom Forrestall
       1st, Acrylic, People, "Off to Market", 16 by 20  " Judge liked her face"
       2nd, Watercolor, Still Life, "The Last Cherry", 10 by 12
       Annapolis Valley Exhbition 2004
       1st and Best Animal  Oil Painting- oil pastel 
        "The Dragon Fly" , 5 by 7
       1st, Acrylic, Self Portrait, "Me", 8 by 10
       1st, Acrylic, Still life, "Fresh Fruit", 8 by 10
       1st, Acrylic, Seascape, "Fundy Tanker at Dusk", 8 by 10
       3rd, Oil Pastel, Landscape, "My Swing", 9 by 12
       2nd, Watercolor, Still life, "Painter's Bench", 9 by 12
       2nd, Acrylic, Flowers, "Lupins", 8 by 10  Sold
       3rd, Acrylic, People, "Mary's Islanders", 8 by 10 donated
       3rd, Painting Any Medium, Mixed Media, "Fundy Pirates", 18 by 24 Tina and Reid Harvey, Scotts Bay NS
        Annapolis Valley Exhibition 2005 no entries
        Annapolis Valley Exhibition 2006
        1st, Acrylic, Mini, "Sunset"
        1st, Abstract, Mixed Media, "A or My Perfect Day", 17 by 23, blue sky, crayons
        1st, Oil Pastel, "Magic Carpet", 9 by 12 pink, woman holds a blue/turq ball
        1st, Acrylic, Self Portrait, "I am Woman", 8 by 10
        1st, Acrylic, Flowers, "Sunflowers in Full Bloom", 16 by 20
        1st, Acrylic, Abstract, "The Dancers", 16 by 20
        1st, Acrylic, Seascape, "Margaretsville Fantasy", 16 by 20
        2nd, Oil Pastel, Self-Portrait.."Me with Hair Bow", 10 by 14
        2nd, Acrylic, Still Life, "A Bed of Roses"
        3rd, Acrylic, Arch., "Old House, Torbrook", 16 by 20 donated
        Special Ribbon, Acrylic Landscape, "Along the Trail", 16 by 20 donated Soldiers Memorial Hospital, Middleton NS  (long narrow waterfall, fall shrub and tree colors)
        Annapolis Valley Exhibition 2007
        1st, Oil, Self portrait , 9 by 12
        1st, Acrylic, Self Portrait, 8 by 10, Missed Again 
        1st, Mini Oil mini, Road Race
        1st, Collage "Cabin Fever" #1, 16 by 20
        2nd Oil Seascape, 12 by 24, added pottery and pebble people, sold
        The remaining placements were not recorded.
        Annapolis Valley Exhibition 2008 Judge, Tom Forrestall
        1st, Oil,  Still Life, Bowl, 9 by 12
        3rd, Oil, Self Portrait, 9 by 12
        2nd, and Best Oil, Animal, Puppy, 9 by 12
        3rd, WC Still Life, Dolls, 4 by 6
        3rd, Acrylic, Abstract, Sunset, 9 by 12 
        1st, Acrylic, Seascape, 8 by 10
        3rd, Acrylic, Roses, 8 by 10 with an empty vase
        3rd, Ptng Any Med, Abstract, Acrylic, Flowers, 16 by 20 
        3rd, Ptng Any Med, People, 8 by 10
        3rd, Ptng Any Med, Acrylic, Mt. Hanley Old House, 16 by 20
        1st, Ptng Any Med. Colllage, Cabin Fever #2, 16 by 20
        1st, Drawing, Ink, Cat ink, 10 by 12  (Blackie)
        2nd, Oil, Mini, Horse 
        1st,  W/C, Mini, Scene, heart frame, house, lots of pink color
        3rd,  Acrylic, Mini, Bubbles
           Annapolis Valley Exhibtion 2009 Judge Tom Forrestall
           1st and Best Oil Painting, Self Portrait, 9 by 12
           1st, Collage, Spring Fever 2, 16 by 20
           1st, Mini, Acrylic, Winter Scene
           2nd, Acrylic, Architecture, Sheds, Wilmot, 10 by 12 
           2nd, Mini, WC Margaretsville Lighthouse,
           Special,  WC Animal, 12 by 16 Brown Bear
           Special,  Abstract, Acrylic, Beyond, 8 by 10
           Special,  Abstract, Egg Delivery, 8 by 10
           Special,  Mini Oil, Storm, 4 by 6 of Margaretsville Lighthouse on paper
           Special, Oil, Abstract, Pink and Green, 9 by 12
          Annapolis Valley Exhibtion 2010 Judge, Wayne Boucher 
          3rd, Oil, Marine boats
          1st. Oil, Self Portrait, 8 by 10
          1st, Oil, Abstract, Count It All Joy, 9 by 12
          1st, Abstract,  WC  Red  Boat Boat Angela Underwood
          Hon Mention, Acrylic, Seascape, The Wave, 5 by 7
          Hon Mention, Acrylic, Animal, Great Heron, 16 by 20
          Special, Still Life, Acrylic, Sir Elton's Stage, 8 by 10
          3rd, Acrylic, Self Portrait, 8 by 10 
          1st, Acrylic, Abstract, Autumn, 8 by 10 
          Hon Mention, Flowers, Any Med., Rose, 6 by 6
          1st, People, Any Med., Acrylic, The Muse Boys, 8 by 10 
          1st, Any Med., Acrylic, Landscape, Spring, 8 by 10
          1st, Any med, Mixed Media,Talisman, 5 by 7
          Hon Mention,  Any Med, Scene, 16 by 20
          1st, Collage, In the Garden, 16 by 20
          Specia,l Drawing Pastel, Woman With Jug, 9 by 12  oil pastel
          1st, Oil Mini, Sunset oil
          1st, WC Mini, Sunrise 
          Special, Acrylic, Mini, Apple Tree
          Annapolis Valley Exhibition 2011, Judge, Eileen Boyd
          3rd, Oil Self Portrait
          Hon Mention, Oil, Abstract, Bubble Gum
          1st, W/C Abstract, untitled
          3rd, W/C People, Mountie, Canada Day night scene
          2nd, Acrylic, Seascape, Tropical Kiss  - big waves
          1st, Acrylic, People, Horse and Rider, Barrel Racing
          3rd, Acrylic, Abstracrt, Fountain of Youth  Sold Dale Selig Kings Co. NS
          Hon Mention, Any Medium, landscape/arch. Guns and Roses  Sold Dale Selig Kings Co NS
          2nd, Collage, Passion Flower
          3rd, Drawing, pastel/charcol, Frosty
          2nd, Oil, Mini, Bride with Dog
          2nd, W/C Mini Marg. Lighthouse
          3rd, Acrylic, Mini, A Little Love -pinks abstract 4 by 6

          2012 awards, listed below
        Soldiers Memorial Hospital, Middleton, 1997, 22 paintings
        Blue Monday, Middleton, Feb 2002, "Reflections of Love"   
        over 50 oil pastel works
        Soldiers Memorial Hospital, Middleton, Dec 03/02 to Feb 4/03 and May 13/03 to Jan 6/04 Showcase Displays, Paintings & Crafts, better known as Donna's Stuff. lol  Described as a delightful display to make one smile and forget their troubles.  
        Soldiers Memorial Hospital, Middleton, 2005, 17 paintings
        VANS, Anna. Royal West, Folio Show, Artists's Books, "Trip North" and Gods of Light".
        VANS, Hfx, Westin Hotel, Art in a Box, "Blue Moon" and "Beyond", March 2 to June 30/07.
        ArtsPlace Mym Gallery, December, A room stuffed with acrylics, oil pastels, collage, rug hooking, crafts, etc, etc, etc, and etc... described as a delightful fun filled room by Donna to bring a smile to your face.
        Gallery 221,  Anthony Street, Annapolis Royal, NS
        The Month of August 2010,  16 paintings on wall, 20 oil pastels in rack, 20 arcylics 8 by 10 in treasure book, 4 by 6 on shelf, 4
        Macdonald Museum, Middleton
        Valley FOLK , Folk art June 26 2011,
        Canada Day Primitve Fok Art hooked mat
        Old Man, Folk Art painting
        Collaged Bird House, Memory Mansion
        5th avenue Piggy Bank
        Pasta Jax and Ribs Restaurant, Middleton, year round
        The Artists' Circle, Margaretsville by the Wharf, every summer
         Nans Rock Shop, Wilmot, 13 paintings on display winter   
        MRHS, Middleton, 1959 Scholarship to Attend Junior School of the Arts
        NS Dept. of Education, 1989 & 1990, best designed fitness t-shirt
        Bridgetown, Esso Quilt Challenge, 1992, one of the two 1st prize winners, wall hanging, "Needin" Gas"
        Annapolis Regional Arts Council, 2001, Folk Art Junk Piggy Bank, Peoples Choice Award
        Just for the fun of it, I wrote an un-edited novel "Betsy's Mind" of 50,000 during International Write a Novel month of November 2003, certificate received.
        Anna. Valley Ex. - Crazy Patch Christmas stocking, 3rd
        Anna. Valley Ex. 2006 -  Decorative Art, 3rd, 5 by 7, folk art house winter scene
        Anna. Valley Ex. 2006 - 2nd stuffed homemade doll 'Uncle Fred"
        Anna. Valley Ex. 2006 - 3rd Primitive hooked mat "Parade"
        Anna. Valley Ex. 2006 - 2nd recycled craft, "Framed Trash Art"
        Wilmot Garden Club 2004 - Members Choice Award, Best Christmas Centre Piece
        Wilmot Garden Club 2005 - Members Choice Award, Best Christmas Wreath
         I work in all mediums and create one of a kind folk art pieces with wood, fabric, junk or from whatever happens to be in my path. A few years ago I lost my creative spirit and then I picked up a box of oil pastels. An end is a new beginning.   Working with oil pastels became a daily committed disciplined habit. Every week I reduced a box of oil pastels to bits. I continued to work fast and furious in this manner for 5 years plus, what I got was 30,000 images and experience.This spring 2011, I sorted through all 30,000 and destroyed thousands but kept thousands.
         Oil Pastels allow me to work spontaneous, aggressive and furious, sometimes I add pencil, ink, paint, or whatever is within my reach. The pastel I have in one hand when I finish a work is the same one I use for beginning the next, regardless of the paper color. These semi-abstracts are simplistic, mysterious, puzzling, beautiful, erotic, frightening, and sometimes they are just a riot of color and marks. It all comes out. I call the images my life in pictures.  The works puzzle me and amaze me; I give full credit to the Divine Creator. I also have a great Muse.  I call them, my muse boys. Many of the works have won awards.
          I paint mainly in acrylics, from memory, of something seen and felt, of places and things of the past and the present and of things to come. I prefer to paint abstracts but I also enjoy painting expressive bold and whimsical paintings which are full of energy, movement, texture and color.
       The Artists' Circle
       VANS, Visual Arts of Nova Scotia
       Annapolis Regional Arts Council
       Macdonald Museum
       When visiting, ask to read my first book, uncensored, it will take you all of 5 minutes. It has over 60 mini works and some unusual text.
       I have at least 90 paintings on the wall and 3 dressers, (not drawers) full of pastel works, I would be happy to show you my art at any time.
      Sometimes I present an Art Show and Tell,to various groups. They say I am inspirational. My work surfaces as a spontaneous subconscious process; I get out materials and just do it. I have learned many things about art but I consider myself self-taught; "You learn by doing, there is no other way" quote by John Holt.
      Why do I paint? Create? It sets me free. It is my journey. It is a healing force. It is my passion and my bliss.
      My life's work was Accounting, Claims Verification and Cost Analysis.
      Now I am retired and at play again.
      I sold my 1st drawing using markers, in the early 60's for 10 cents. I have never been to Tancook Island, NS, nevertheless this drawing was drawn on a piece of paper about 3 by 4 inches in size, of a church on Tancook Island, it was purchased by Don Woods, he said I would be famous someday, but he didn't say for what. lol
       My work had been collected internationally. My work can be seen at my home, the Artists' Circle Summer time Art Shack by the Margaretsville wharf.
Other places to see my work are, Pasta Jax,, now known as the Restaurant, next to SaveEasy in Middleton, The Valley Regional Hospital - The Apple Bin Gallery, VANS, Annapolis West Members shows, The Seniors Art & Photo Gallery Halifax Trade Centre, Annapolis Regional Art Council, Members shows, The Macdonald Museum, Middleton, special shows by the Artists' Circle,
The Greenwood Mall - The Apple Blossom Festival of Art and the Christmas Art Show by the Artists' Circle.
        I particiapte in Middleton's Art from the Heart in October ( no longer held) and Paint the Town at Annapolis Royal in August.
        The past few years I have been working in Acrylics, size 8 by 10, mostly because of storage space . These paintings easily fit into plastic sleeves and are placed in binders which I lend out to anyone that is interested. The works are for sale.
        If you read all of this, thanks! Donna 

Awards 2012 Annapolis Valley EX Tom Forrestall Judge
Any Med. Abstract, Beyond 2nd
Abstract, Acrylic, Swans 2nd
Portrait, Oil, Charlo 2nd
People, Any Med, Goddess 2nd
Portrait, Acrylic, Dawna 2nd
Acrylic, Seascape, Diver 3rd
Oil, Abstract, 1st , Once a Queen (blue, lots of colord dots)
Still life, Acrylic, Blue Bowls 2nd
Mini, Abstract 1st
Seascape,WC 1st and Best in Show, Risser Beach, NS
Age Over 65, 1st and Best in Show,  Acrylic, Beals Brook, NS
W/C Abstract, 3rd, Goldfish and Kitty
Acrylic, Animal, 1st, Ralph the Pelican 16 by 20
Collage, Hon Mention, Evening in Paradise  Sold

Apple Blossom Festival of Art 2013
2nd Acrylic Beals Brook NS
2nd Abstract Acrylic Discovery
Judge Eva Rudinki

Annapolis Valley Exhibition 2013
Judge Brigit Hawkins
Oil Painting, portrait, Me 2nd,
Oil Painting, abstst, Mother Bird, 1st
Acrylic,Port/people Ethel Merman, Roses 3rd or every things coming up roses
Acrylic, stll life, Anna Vlly Ex homecrafts and flowers, hon mention and BEST ptng representing the Vlly Ex.
w/c landscape, Goose Chase Road 3rd
w/c abstract Spring 2nd
Any Med Peop/Collage  Clown face 1st
Any Med Landscp, Twilight 3rd donated
Any Med, Collage, Higgs boson 3rd
Any Med over 65 Lucky Pink Elephant 2nd
Collage snow 3rd
Mini oil abstr 1st
Mini w/c abst 3rd

2014, The Apple Blossom festival did not hold an art show this year.

2014 Annapolis Valley Exhibition
Judge Twila Robar DeCoste
W/C abstract 1st
Acrylic Still Life 2nd
Any Med. Portrait, acrylic 1st
Any med. paint/draw over 65  3rd
Oil Painting mini 2nd
w/c mini 3rd
acrylic mini 3rd
Hon Mention Collage called Out of This World

2015 Annapolis Valley Exhibition Awards Judge Curphey Forrestall
3rd Oil Abstract Ecstey
1st w/c Abstract 4 by 6
2nd People any med. collage strips ( Indian) gift to Doris Luke,  Greenwich, NY
2nd Portrait Acrylic (me)
1st Landscape any med  collage strips (tiny white house in big landscape)
2nd Painting over 65 any med. w/c house and shed
3rd Collage, Frog Pond gift to Marilyn Sewell, Maine
Special Ink Drawing Fort Anne, entered cover of drawings of Fort Anne Book.

3rd Mini Oil Red Dot
3rd Mini Acrylic The Good Book
1st Mini Drawing Doodle circles
1st Acrylic Abstract 16 by 20 An Old Flame
2nd Any Med Abstract collage strips flower gift to Doris Luke  Greenwich,NY

Anna Valley Ex Awards 2016  Judge Brigit Hawkins
Any Med Abstract   - Splash 3rd  16 by 29 blue on board
Collage. Rubble point, made with garbage from Scotts Bay beach 1st place
w/c Mini.  1st place .has a delightful Japanese feel
3rd Abstract Bubble Man  large painting

Annapolis Valley Exhibition Lawrencetown, Annapolis Valley, NS
Judge Curphey Forrestall

Water Color Abstract 1st
Mini Water Color Abstract 1st
Acrylic Abstract 1st After the Fireworks
People Halloween Collage and Paint, 2nd
Self Portrait, Hon Mention
Collage Artifacts Hon Mention
Ptng over 65 painting over photo Hon Mention  The Look Off
2017 Annapolis Valley Ex.
1st after the fireworks, abstract
1st  mini w/c
1st w/c abstract
People, Any medium -  Halloween People
2018 no entries


Mixed Media

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