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12th Annual ISAP International Open Exhibition

Charles Harrington, Juror

August 8 - September 6, 2009 — Santa Cruz, California, USA

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The Juror of the 12th Exhibition

Juror's Statement | Artist's Statement | Paintings | Publications | Workshops


Charles Harrington

For more information about Charles and his work, visit his website.



Serving as juror for an art exhibition is always a bittersweet experience for me. It gives me great pleasure to help fellow artists gain well deserved peer recognition. On the other hand, there is always the disappointment that comes from having to reject otherwise deserving works simply because there is limited display space for the exhibition. For those whose works were accepted into this show, congratulations.

For those who didn’t make it in this year: talent, hard work, and persistence are a combination that eventually results in success. I look forward to seeing your work in future exhibitions.

At the risk of sounding simplistic, here are four broad criteria that I used to jury this show.

First Impression: A successful work of art should immediately capture and hold the attention of a viewer. Failure to do so usually indicates problems at the design level. Strong works of art almost always identify themselves at the first impression.

Communication: Painting is a voice through which the artist communicates who he or she is and what they have to say to the world. Is this painting getting my attention; and what is this artist trying to say to me through it?

Design: Commonly accepted design principles related to painting are well documented and should be the foundation of every painter’s education and practice. Although history is replete with examples of artists who successfully bend those rules, more numerous are those who ignore them to the detriment of their work.

Control of Your Medium: A skillful control of your chosen medium comes as a result of study and experience. The artist must learn the capabilities and the limitations of his or her chosen medium; then, apply it with confidence. Confidence and competence communicates through the finished work.

Thanks for allowing me to share this exhibition with you.

Charles Harrington


For biographical details about Charles, we recommend that you visit Charles' website.
However, we happily share with you (from the same website) his description of his style,
his philosophy of art, his sources of inspiration – in short, the...



I am primarily a landscape painter. It is in the beauty and the complexities of my natural environment that I find inspiration for most of my paintings; however, my academic and practical experience in architecture gives me an appreciation for and a fascination with the built environment and it's partnership with the natural. As a result, many of my paintings will include buildings or other evidence of man's contribution to his environment. Throughout history man has created his "places" of shelter, worship, recreation, commerce, etc. within, and hopefully in harmony with, his natural environment. I find this combination of natural and man-made subjects replete with inspiration for paintings.

Although I often find a metaphoric message or a story to be told in a specific natural or man-made subject, my objective is more often to simply share a moment, a mood, or the beauty of a "place". It is my hope that the inspiration and the depth of feeling that motivated me to paint a particular subject will resonate with the viewer in a meaningful way.

Charles Harrington



Charles is a realist in style; he loves to paint landscapes, as you can see below.
The following paintings are some examples of his work:


Bridge Over McKisic Creek

36 x 48 in., acrylic on canvas



The Church at Lamy

21 x 29 in., acrylic on paper



Last Snow at Tanyard Creek

24 x 24 in., acrylic on masonite panel



Near Buffalo Point
This painting was selected for the 2004 Arts for the Parks top 100 Exhibition.

21 x 21 in., acrylic on paper



Winter Tapestry

24 x 24 in., acrylic on masonite panel



St. Mark's

21 x 21 in., acrylic on paper




Acrylics: The Watercolor Alternative is published by North Light Books.
Click here to go to their website.

A DVD of the same name has been produced as a teaching video. It can serve as a stand-alone
instructional aid or as a companion to the book. North Light is offering a 1/3 reduced price
of $19.99 – check it out here!



Charles presents workshops several times a year. Monitor his website for details of future offerings.

In the meantime, you can enjoy his new workshop on DVD, called
"Acrylic Landscapes the Watercolor Way."

The following (partial) review is taken from Charles' website. Visit the site for more details.

"Charles draws on the best features of both acrylic and watercolor in his acrylic landscape painting workshop. He achieves the subtle color shifts and luminous transparency of watercolor while attaining the durability of acrylic. He also introduces tools and techniques perfected over years as an architectural illustrator.

"At home in the Ozarks, Charles introduces his portable plein air kit and paints a study that will serve as his reference in the studio. Back indoors, Charles works in the watercolorist’s style. He uses light preliminary washes and thin layers of pigment, allowing him to vary colors at every stage. Charles modifies his larger painting from his original plein air reference to achieve stronger design and value balance."

This workshop on DVD is presented by Creative Catalyst Productions.
Visit their website for this and other instructional videos.


In summary, it should be obvious that Charles is a strong advocate of the acrylic medium in fine art. This is clear in his own work, as well as in the books, videos, and workshops he offers in support of artists using acrylic.

Charles has also expressed his firm support of ISAP, the International Association of Acrylic Painters, as the only international society dedicated to representing and encouraging acrylic painters around the world. We are fortunate indeed for the participation, support, and guidance of a master of our chosen medium.

Thank you, Charles!


Charles Harrington


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