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Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Elusives Exhibit with GNSI Finger Lakes

Elusives at Cumming Nature Center

Enjoy art, maple syrup and pancakes this weekend and next!

Guild of Natural Science Illustrators - Finger Lakes Chapter members will be at Cumming Nature Center on March 24th from 10:00 am - 2:00 pm for a reception and some nature sketching. Maple syrup and pancakes too! Free and open to the public.

"Elusives: The Natural World We Seldom See"

Our exhibit showcasing creatures and plants that live in the shadows, under rocks, and in the depths of the water or the woods. Currently at the Cumming Nature Center in Naples, NY, through May 13, 2018.

My painting, "Hologram Moth" is on display in this group show. I have limited edition prints with hand applied copper leaf available for sale in my etsy shop:

"Hologram Moth" watercolor and copper leaf by Bridget Bossart van Otterloo
Read more about my process in creating this paintings on this post:

You can view the GNSI Elusives show catalog by following this link:
Elusives Catalog

Maple Sugaring Weekends

March 17–18 and March 24–25

A springtime tradition for many Western New York families, Maple Sugaring Weekends returns.
Join us as we celebrate 40 years of serving up steaming-hot stacks of pancakes at the beautiful Cumming Nature Center! Take in the gorgeous landscape, enjoy a hearty, locally sourced meal, and wander the trails. On the trail, learn how a tree makes sap and discover the different processing techniques while enjoying the outdoors.

Pancake Breakfast: 9am–1pm
(*Gluten-free pancakes available)
Trail Demonstrations: 10am–2pm

Cumming Nature Center

6472 Gulick Road
Naples, NY 14512
Information: 585.374.6160

Wednesday–Friday: 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Saturday–Sunday: 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Monday, February 19, 2018

The Sanctuary Show

Sisters, oil and gold leaf, five 7x5 inch canvas panels, by Bridget Bossart van Otterloo
Remember the beginning of this piece from last winter? Inspired by the Women's March back in January of 2017, I wrote about her start in a post called "Postcards from the Past". My finished artwork, Sisters, was accepted into the juried Sanctuary Show along with work by 35 artists. 
The Sanctuary Show is on exhibit now through April 6, 2018 at the Evelyn Peeler Peacock Gallery, ARTS Council of the Southern Finger Lakes, 79 West Market Street, in Corning, NY.

I hope you'll join us for an Opening Reception during Corning's Urban Arts Crawl - Friday, February 23, 5- 8pm.

Sisters was inspired by a visit to Seneca Falls last January for the Women's March. The portraits of these five women were painted from postcards that I picked up at the Women's Hall of Fame. From left to right they are: Lucretia Coffin Mott, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Caroline Parker (Seneca), Jane Clothier Master Hunt, and Mary Ann M'Clintock. These women helped to plan the First Women's Rights Convention held in Seneca Falls in 1848. They drafted the Declaration of Sentiments stating “all men and women are created equal”. The Women's movement was inspired by the Haudenosaunee women living in Western New York and their systems of gender equality.
The design in gold leaf connecting all these women is the Wampum Belt of the Iroquois Confederacy.
Iroquois Confederacy Wampum Belt
This belt symbolizes the five nations of the Iroquois Confederacy: Seneca, Cayuga, Onondaga, Oneida, and Mohawk.
The third layer of symbolism incorporates the White Pine at a different life cycles on each panel. For the Haudenosaunee, the white pine is the tree of peace. The Central Onogaga Nation is represented by the Great White Pine tree in the Wampum Belt design.
Native Americans inspired the women of Western New York towards change, and forming the nation of the United States into what it is today. Our values of peace, equality and acceptance can be traced back to their influence. 

The Sanctuary Show seeks to capture the grace and humanity that sanctuaries highlight, revealing the very best of our communities - the unwillingness to live in fear of the other, the unwillingness to give in to hate-fueled political or ideological bigotry, and the unwillingness to close our doors to those who most need safety and protection.

Thirty-five regional artists explore this notion through a variety of responses across a diversity of mediums and techniques including painting, photography, pate de verre, ceramics, fiber art, and more.

The Sanctuary Show Programming

Sanctuary Speakers Panel

How are the themes expressed in the artistic works of The Sanctuary Show experienced in life by people in our community? Join us Tuesday, March 13 at 6pm for the Sanctuary Speakers panel in the Evelyn Peeler Peacock Gallery at The ARTS Council. We will hear from the life experiences of people who have sought political sanctuary, who have built religious sanctuaries, and who maintain the resources and community connections that make our region a sanctuary for immigrants and refugees today.

pARTner Up: Using the Creative Process to Explore Sanctuary

What would it be like to move to a new country and not speak the language? How about leaving your friends behind or not being able to eat the food you're used to eating? These are some of the questions we will explore during pARTner Up: Using the Creative Process to Explore Immigration, Refugees, and Sanctuary. Visual artist Filomena Jack and poet Michael Czarnecki will lead participants through the concept of seeking sanctuary in a new place. Join us Saturday, March 24 from 1-2:30pm at the Chemung County Historical Society for this unique family program, free and open to the public.

Evelyn Peeler Peacock Gallery at The ARTS Council of the Southern Finger Lakes

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

2018 Exhibits and Events

wheel thrown and hand painted pottery by Bridget Bossart van Otterloo
"Italian Table" wheel thrown and hand painted pottery by Bridget Bossart van Otterloo

The Ritual Table: A Place of Memory; A State of Mind

February 924, 2018

An exhibit of functional and non-functional ceramics. 
Opening Reception, Friday, February 9, 5:00 – 7:00 pm
Houghton Gallery, 171 Cedar Arts Center
155 Cedar Street, Corning, NY 14830

"Sisters" 5 panels 7x5" each, oil and gold leaf by Bridget Bossart van Otterloo

Sanctuary Show

February 14April 6, 2018

Opening Reception, Friday, February 23, 5:00 – 8:00 pm
The Evelyn Peeler Peacock Gallery
The Arts Council of the Southern Finger Lakes
79 West Market Street Corning, NY 14830

Elusives: The Natural World We Seldom See 

Guild of Natural Science Illustrators, Finger Lakes Chapter

February 3May 13, 2018

Reception with the Artists during their Maple Sugaring Event: 
Saturday March 24, 10:00 am – 2:00 pm. 585.374.6160
Cumming Nature Center
6472 Gulick Road, Naples, NY 14512

"Light Through the Trees" oil and silver leaf

Arts in Bloom

Open Studio Sale and Demo Weekend

April 28April 29, 2018

Saturday, April 28th 10:00 am – 7:00 pm. 
Sunday, April 29th 12:00 – 5:00 pm. 
RSVP to Facebook Event. Arts in Bloom
10 Jackson Circle, Corning NY 14830

 "Still Life with Hydrangeas" watercolor

World of Watercolors

June 130, 2018

Solo Exhibit and Workshop. 
Opening Reception, Friday June 1, 5:00 – 8:00 pm. 
Botanical Workshop, Sunday June 10, 1-5pm
Franklin Street Gallery
209 N. Franklin Street, Watkins Glen, NY 14891
607-535-2571 |

"Iris Symphony" oil and silver leaf

Ode to Joy

May 5June 16, 2018

Opening Reception, Saturday May 19, 5:30 – 8:00 pm.
Oxford Gallery
267 Oxford Street, Rochester, NY 14607. 585-271-5885

"Bee on Blueberry Blossoms" oil and silver leaf

171 Summer Mosaics: Pollinators

July 19July 22, 2018

Private Preview, July 19, 5:50 – 7:30 pm. 
Mosaic Reception, July 20, 7:00 – 9:00 pm.
Houghton Gallery, 171 Cedar Arts Center
155 Cedar Street, Corning NY 14830. 607-936-4647

Plein Air Painting and Poetry

Summer and Fall 2018

Collaborative Project with Poet, Michael Czarnecki. Funded by 2018 NYSCA Decentralization Individual Artist Grant. ARTS Council of the Southern Finger Lakes.
Follow our Facebook group for Free Workshops and Exhibits with Poetry Readings and Artist Talks: Plein Air Painting and Poetry, Steuben County Dates TBA at 171 Cedar Arts Center and Southeast Steuben County Library.

I hope to see you at one of these events this year! I plan to add a few more, so stay tuned.
Happy Creating!

Monday, December 18, 2017

Elusive Hologram Moth

"Hologram Moth" 11x12 watercolor and copper by Bridget Bossart van Otterloo

Hologram Moth, Step by Step

I've been hiding out in my studio lately, avoiding most of the holiday craziness. Here's one of the many projects I've been working on. I thought you'd enjoy reading and seeing a little about my process. 

"Hologram Moth" (Aka Green-patched Looper Moth) Diachrysia balluca 

My painting of this Hologram Moth was created for a traveling educational exhibit with the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators, Finger Lakes Chapter, in Ithaca NY. The title and theme of this exhibit is "Elusives, the Natural World we Seldom See." It will be an educational collaboration with the Rochester Museum & Science Center/Cumming Nature Center. On exhibit there late January through April, 2018, then traveling to other venues. 

This painting was created with many thin layers of watercolor paint, building up to the final detail. I added the copper leaf to illustrate the iridescence on this moth's wings. The Hologram Moth's coloring makes it elusive to predators in the woods. This mostly green-brown moth has a wingspan of 4.3-4.8 cm. The fore-wings have large patches of dull, metallic green over much of the outer two-thirds. I used some of the remaining leaves from my raspberry bushes as a reference for the background. Raspberry and hops are a few of her favorite foods. 
Keep an eye out for this beautiful moth the next time you're out hiking in our region. 

My Process:

 Beginning drawing, and first layers of watercolor

Step 1: I started with a pencil drawing of the moth, then began adding some light layers of watercolor. In this style of watercolor painting I always start with the lightest colors in the painting, as it is impossible to go lighter again once the paint has dried.

Adding the copper leaf.
Step 2: Adding some copper leaf to illustrate the iridescence on the moth's wings. The above photo shows the brand of gilding supplies I prefer- Golden Leaf products.

Starting the background of raspberry leaves.
Step 3: I cut the remaining raspberry leaves from my garden to use as a reference for the background. Raspberries are one of the Hologram Moth's favorite foods. The leaves have been changing color in their jar of water since I cut them, having their own little Autumn again.

Step 4 to Finish: I'm happy with the results, shown in the photo of the final painting below. My moth is camouflaged in her oasis of raspberry leaves, with just her copper patches to give her away.

Here is a short video showing the final stages of my painting process:

I'm offering high quality archival digital prints of this painting over in my Etsy shop. Follow this link to order:

"Hologram Moth", 11x12 image with a 2 inch white border. 
$60. Plus tax and shipping
This is a Limited Edition Archival High Quality Digital Print on Watercolor Paper with hand applied Copper Leaf. Signed by the Artist

Final "Hologram Moth" 11x12 watercolor. Prints Available
I hope this post brought you some peace and distraction from any holiday stress. Thank you for your interest in my artwork. 

My best, 

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

New Paintings, New Gallery, New Events!

Evening Irises 15x15 oil by Bridget Bossart van Otterloo
I'm excited to announce a new partnership with Quintus Gallery in Watkins Glen, NY. Quintus Art Gallery is a beautiful, contemporary exhibit space on the shore of Seneca Lake.
One of my newest paintings, Evening Irises (shown above) is now hanging in the Quintus Gallery. Kathleen Quinn, gallery curator, will pair my painting with a wine from Dr. Frank's during a special Workshop and Art Pairing on November 4th. Kathleen will talk about the design concepts in my work during the reception following the workshop. Check out more information in the link below.

For me, "Evening Irises" expresses the stormy twilight of this year. There have been many ups and downs, and there's beauty in all of it. Visually, Evening Irises is a new concept for me - my first botanical painting incorporating a sky in the background. There is a story behind the painting. I know my story, maybe you see a little of your story in the painting as well?
May Day Lilacs, 15x15 oil by Bridget Bossart van Otterloo
I think of May Day Lilacs as Evening Irises's companion piece. She is the contrasting cheerful sunny day to his stormy twilight. See more paintings and view the gallery of latest work on my website: 
I always love to hear your interpretations and your favorites, so please feel free to comment and write back.

Upcoming Events:

Quintus Gallery on Seneca Lake, Watkins Glen, NY.
Party with a purpose! 2nd Annual Wearable Art Gala 
Thursday, September 28, 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Quintus Gallery is partnering with the Community Foundation of Elmira-Corning and the Finger Lakes for the Second Annual Wearable Art Gala.
All proceeds will benefit the Schuyler County Fund. For more information follow this link: Quintus Gallery Wearable Art Gala

Quintus Gallery
Catawba Grapes, 6x15 oil by Bridget Bossart van Otterloo
My painting, Catawba Grapes, will be in the silent auction along with some other fantastic artwork. These grapes were picked in a family vineyard on the east side of Seneca Lake. One of my favorite things to do here in the Finger Lakes is to pick my own fresh fruits at local vineyards and farms. 

Workshop and Art Pairing at Quintus Gallery

"Quintus Gallery believes learning to draw and paint requires observing from real life with a mindful focus. Art is more than copying a painting, it is an artist's direct and spontaneous expression when it is interpreted from real life. Meet Bridget Bossart van Otterloo, an accomplished painter who knows that it’s important to draw and paint from real life and while doing so, to be mindfully present. Experience the thrill of drawing (and painting) from an actual live arrangement of autumn fruits and flowers. Bridget will demonstrate and guide you through her signature techniques of Botanical drawing, along with providing individualized instruction. Learn the classical botanical style of applying thin transparent layers of watercolor, color mixing and dry brush techniques.

At the end of class, we celebrate with an Art Pairing reception. Enjoy a glass of Dr. Frank’s fine wine as gallery curator pairs Bridget’s most recent oil painting, “Evening Irises” (shown above) with a specialty wine, appetizer, design concept and musical rhythm. Reception compliments of Quintus Gallery."

This class is a joy and for all levels, no experience necessary. Materials are included in the price of the class.

Place: Quintus Gallery • 65 Salt Point Rd. • Watkins Glen, NY
Time: Saturday • November 11 • 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM
Investment: $57- Includes all materials and ARTpair reception.
Register here:

18th Gallery Gala at the Arnot Art Museum

Fresh Raspberries, 11x14 oil by Bridget Bossart van Otterloo
Fresh Raspberries and two other paintings of mine will be in the 18th Gallery Gala at the Arnot Museum in Elmira NY, on exhibit now through December 22, 2017. The Gala Auction Sale will be held on November 17, 2017. Tickets are $25 per person. Support your local Artists and a fantastic museum at this fun event. If you can't attend there will be an on-line bidding option this year. Find more information on their website:

I hope to see you this fall for one of these events!
My best,

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

What's your Moon?

Moon Phases, Mosaics Show at 171 Cedar Arts Center

If you've been following my work, you know that I've been in a moon phase lately. I've really been feeling the pull of the moon this year, are you too? All of my pieces from the Mosaics Moon Phases show at 171 Cedar Arts Center have found new homes! It's so satisfying to see my work go out into the world. For this show I chose to paint the moon phases of seven months-

Row One: November's Snow Moon
Pink Moon
Row Two: April's Pink Moon
Row Three: June's Strawberry Moon
Row Four: July's Honey Moon
Row Five: September's Harvest Moon
Row Six: October's Blood Moon 
Row Seven: February's Storm Moon 
Harvest Moon

I'm happy to send you larger images of any of the moon above. 50 images is too many to post. Here are two of my favorite full moons: (left) September's Harvest Moon, and February's Pink Moon (right)

If you missed this short and sweet show and still desire a moon, let me know. I'm opening up the chance to commission your own moon painting. Contact me at
Here's a very cool website to look up moon phases by day and find out your moon:

I'm looking forward to this year's Solar Eclipse! What are your plans for viewing it?
Solar Eclipse, aluminum and copper leaf on birch panel. 

Share some lunar love with me and send me your photos of the moon. I may turn them into paintings.
Happy painting and moon viewing!

My best, 

Follow me on Facebook (@BossartvanOtterloo) and Instagram (@bbvo_studio).

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Sketching on the Farm, Summer 2017

Sketching on Bluebird Trail Farm

I'm excited to announce a new collaboration with a local farm, Bluebird Trail Farm! I will be teaching a series of workshops on this beautiful farm this summer. These workshops are for all experience levels. All supplies are included in the cost and students will bring home a finished and frame-able work of art at the end of each workshop. I hope you can join me!

Sketching the view from the porch.

Landscape Watercolor Painting

July 11th, 2017 from 5:00pm – 8:00pm 

Enjoy an evening of sketching the beautiful rolling hills of Blue Bird Trail Farm. Bridget will introduce you to some basic watercolor techniques for landscape painting. All supplies are included in the cost of this workshop. All experience levels are welcome. Students will take home a finished frame-able work of art.

Wild Flowers -  Botanical Drawing & Watercolor Painting
Autumn Bouquet

July 25th, 2017 from 5:00pm – 8:00pm

Learn the basics of drawing and painting plants in this botanical workshop for all experience levels. Bridget will show you how to draw and paint plants with accurate detail. We will collect a bouquet of wildflowers from the farm to draw and paint. All supplies are included in the cost of this workshop. Students will take home a finished frame-able work of art and their bouquet of flowers.

Sketching chickens
Sketching Animals
August 1st, 2017 from 5:00pm – 8:00pm

Spend some time surrounded by goats, alpacas, ducks, bunnies and more! Bridget will show you some easy and quick sketching techniques for capturing animals in motion. We’ll use graphite, colored pencil, and watercolor. All supplies are included in the cost of this workshop and students will take home finished works of art.

Sketching Garlic

Garden Party 
August 22nd, 2017 from 5:00pm – 8:00pm

Join us for a delightful evening in the garden. Pick your favorite veggie or fruit from the garden, draw and paint it, then we’ll prepare our subjects in a delicious dinner. Bridget will walk you through some easy drawing and watercolor techniques. All supplies are included in the cost of this workshop. Students will go home with a full belly and a frame-able work of art!

Each workshop is $40 per person.

Visit Bluebird Trail Farm's website for more information and to register:

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

My Story

Painting in my Corning, NY studio.

How did I come to be working here in the Finger Lakes Region?


I shared my story with the Finger Lakes Wine Country Magazine in their summer travel issue.
If you're local, the Finger Lakes Wine Country travel magazine is arriving in mailboxes and at information centers this week!

Here's my interview:

Come for a visit, stay for a lifetime

Why relocate to Finger Lakes Wine Country?

Sure the region is well known for world-class wines and picture-perfect landscapes, but did you know we're also home to businesses and industries that lead advances in science and technology? Finger Lakes Wine Country is a great place to live, work, and conduct business.
Read the stories of people who tapped into the wealth of business opportunities the region offers.

Bridget Bossart van Otterloo

Corning, NY

Where were you born and raised?  
I was born and raised in Northern New Jersey.
What brought you to or kept you in this area? 
I came to Corning after college to work as a Studio Apprentice to a well-known artist in the area - the late Thomas Buechner.
Why did you choose to start your business here? 
My art business has evolved over time - I've build up clients, art appreciators, and students over the past 15 years here in the Finger Lakes area. It's an affordable and beautiful place for artists to live. I've always felt that the community here is very supportive of the arts.
What’s Finger Lakes Wine Country’s best kept secret? 
The fantastic parks, waterfalls and trails around the lakes; plus, stopping for a beer or wine after taking in nature.
If someone were to tell you they were thinking about moving here and starting a business, what would be your best advice as to why they should do it?  
It's a beautiful place to live and work. There are museums, great Main streets, gorgeous parks, and plenty to do without the crowdedness of a big city. The arts community here in Corning is very strong and growing fast.

 You can access the digital version here:

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Arts in Bloom, Steuben County Arts Trail

Visit me in my Corning, NY studio this weekend!

I've been spring cleaning in my studio, getting ready for our 5th annual
Arts in Bloom, Steuben County Arts Trail!

You're invited to visit my studio this coming weekend,
Saturday, April 29 10:00 am - 7:00 pm, 
and Sunday, April 30, 12:00 pm - 5:00 pm

10 Jackson Circle, Corning NY

I'll have:
Studio sale prices!
  • New work to preview 
  • Mini oil paintings
  • Discounted unframed watercolors
  • Watercolor cards
  • Hand-painted pottery
  • Oil painting demo on Saturday
  • Watercolor painting demo on Sunday 

There are 15 stops along this year's Arts Trail. For a map and more information visit:
Map of Arts Trail at:  
Hope to see you this weekend, 

    Sunday, April 2, 2017

    Painting Flowers from Life - Amaryllis

    "Amaryllis" 36x24 watercolor by Bridget Bossart van Otterloo

    I began this painting in back in February. Patiently waiting for the double blossoms to open, I watered and moved my amaryllis around following the sun. Knowing I wanted to paint this amaryllis life size, I picked out a large sheet of paper and planned out the composition with a very light pencil sketch. I started with the blossom on the left, the fist one to start opening. The intricate curling green sepals attracted my attention.
    I began with the first Amaryllis bud.
    As the blossoms unfurled, I continued to paint with a combination of flat layers of color and dry brush detail. This classical botanical style of painting begins with light layers of color, followed by more and more layers of detail and color. Each petal has at least 5 layers, or passes, of paint on it.
    Work in progress- Amaryllis blossoms taking shape.
    I prefer to paint plants from life because there is so much more information and energy in the living plant. A photograph is limited as to how much detail and light it can capture, although I do use photographs to finish a painting.

    I always find it hard to get rid of my plants, even after they've passed their prime. I still have the dried amaryllis blossoms in my studio, and I've been thinking about painting their delicate veins.
    Finished plant and finished painting.

    Come paint with me in my home studio and try out this botanical watercolor painting technique. I have two workshop dates left this spring, April 8th and May 27th. We'll be working from plants, following the technique I talked about in this post. Email me at with any questions and to register.
    • April 8, 2017 - Botanical Drawing and Watercolor
      Working with live plant specimens, students will learn to draw and paint plants with accurate detail. We will go over the basics of botanical drawing and watercolor painting techniques. I will be teaching the classical botanical style of working in thin transparent layers of watercolor.
    • May 27, 2017 - Botanical Drawing and Watercolor – Spring Flowers
      Working with live plant specimens, students will learn to draw and paint plants with accurate detail. We will go over the basics of botanical drawing and watercolor painting techniques. I will be teaching the classical botanical style of working in thin transparent layers of watercolor.
    Happy painting!

    Follow me on Facebook (@BossartvanOtterloo) and Instagram (@bbvo_studio).