Miniature Art Workshops

Events at the Hispanic Arts Building,
New Mexico Expo Fairgrounds

All Workshops 9:30am-4:30pm

Click here for 2019 Mini Workshop Registration

Miniature Art Workshops

Animalia in Miniature
Ruth Vreeland

Students will learn the basics of handling watercolor paints and brushes, and explore a variety of techniques (glazing, layering, methods for saving the white of the paper, juxtapositioning of color, key techniques in creating the perfect neutral color, softening and/or losing a few edges). 

Painting subjects will be mostly Zoo animals, using Ruth’s reference photos. Students may also bring in a reference photo of their own to use, if the lighting provides good contrast and the photo has clear detail. We will also briefly explore the fundamentals of composition, contrast of values, the essentials of a good initial drawing, how to achieve perfect chiaroscuro and working from great vs. bad photo references. 


Ruth began drawing at an early age and painting in oils at the age of
ten, at her childhood home in Fresno, California. She has won
numerous fine art and design awards throughout her life and was
highly influenced as a teen by the west coast artists of Carmel, CA,
taking instruction from some of them in oils and watercolor.
Particularly of interest to Ruth were the techniques used for “trompe l’oiel” – a term meaning “to fool the eye” with photographic
realism, and utilizing the Old Master’s technique of”chiaroscuro.”
An art major in college, Ruth bad a lengthy successful career as a
Graphic Designer in her adopted state of New Mexico where she has
lived for 38 years. In addition, she taught graphic design and desktop
publishing for several years at a local art college. Her love of
teaching will always be important and rewarding: she bas been
teaching watercolor to her artistic grandchildren since 20 II, and they now win blue ribbons in the NM State Fair. Ruth has also taught
many structured workshops for family, friends, and fellow churchmembers.

In 2018, she began teaching at the NM Art League.
Ruth prefers to paint still-life and portraiture. Working in various
mediums since childhood, and concentrating on oil paintings for
many years, she completely transitioned over to watercolor in 2009,
finding it to be an exciting, fast medium in which to work – where
the water is a moving vehicle to carry the pigment into unexpected
places. She is now a frequent top-award winner and Signature
Member of the NM Watercolor Society, as well as a Signature
Member of the Western Federation of Watercolor Societies.
The beautiful subject matter offered by the Southwest, in New
Mexico’s “Land of Enchantment” has given Ruth much inspiration
through the years, although she continues to enjoy portraiture
(humans and pets!) more than anything else. She finds the human
face to be beautiful beyond compare, discovering the Creator and
“Master Artist” living in every pair of eyes.

Pysanky Egg Art
Jane Chevalier

Learn Ukrainian batik style egg art. Pysanka means to write on egg shell. In this class you will learn the basics of layering hot beeswax and aniline dye to create your own Pysanka. You will take home 2 – 3 Pysanky, as time and ability allows. We will be working with empty chicken egg shells but you will learn how to empty whole eggs. History, tradition, symbolism, color meanings, kistky types (hot wax pen), wax types, writing on different egg shells and more will be covered.

The artist will have supplies for purchase if you wish to continue doing pysanka after the workshop.


Jane Chevalier has been making Pysanky for more than thirty years. Her award winning Ukrainian batik style eggs can be found in New Mexico art galleries, her online sites and home based studio.  The designs you see are her own creations. Influenced by her Native American heritage, many of her designs have a southwest flare. Jane’s egg shell jewelry is made from dyed, cut egg shell that has been reinforced with jewelry grade epoxy for strength.

The art of Pysanky is a process of alternating layers of aniline dye and hot beeswax. After each dip in dye hot wax is drawn over the dye to preserve it from subsequent dying. This process is repeated till the design is finished. The wax is then removed from the shell but the dye remains. Varnish is applied to protect the design and strengthen the shell.

Become a Skywatcher
Katherine Irish

This pastel workshop will have you approaching skies in exhilarating colors with personality. Big skies over the desert, approaching weather, defined by the size and shapes of clouds. Perfect your composition and value to communicate the intended feeling. Skies teach us of our ever-changing experience in life, a moment never to be repeated, never the same.



Katherine Irish has earned IAPS – Masters Circle, a Signature Member of the Pastel Society of America, the New Mexico Pastel Society, Pastel Society of the Southwest, Pastel Society of the West Coast and Member of Excellence of the Southeast Pastel Society. She is an award-winning artist who exhibits in juried and invitational shows nationally. She currently exhibits at Marigold Arts in Santa Fe and Onyx Swann in Albuquerque.

Katherine knew that she is an artist from an early age. She studied art at DePauw University from 1971-1975. She attended the Tyler School of Art in Rome in 1973 and interned with New York artist, Willard Midgette in 1974.
Katherine returned to New York in 1976, and received a master’s degree in art therapy in 1979, from Pratt Institute. During this time, she painted and drew many of the people she encountered on the streets of New York. She met with members of the Street Painters, attending critiques. She studied art at the School of Visual Arts, Pratt Institute, and the Art Students League. She was a frequent visitor to New York galleries and New York’s many magnificent art museums. Katherine’s first one-woman show was in New York at the Marie Pellicone Gallery in 1982.

Katherine’s desire to live rurally and paint New Mexico landscapes grew after taking a three-month painting trip to New Mexico in 1981. In 1982, she moved to Taos, New Mexico to pursue a career in art. She studied with Marc Bergerson, a New York artist affiliated with Abstract Expressionist painters from 1985-1990. Katherine was the curator for the first three Spirit in Art shows held during the Taos Spring Arts Celebration in 1985 – 1987. She moved to Albuquerque in 1993 and then to Placitas in 2000. Katherine joined Albert Handel’s Mentor Program in 2013 and has appreciated the artistic and professional growth that she has experienced under his tutelage.

Katherine began working seriously in pastel in 2002. She continues to find inspiration in New Mexico landscapes, the cobalt blue skies and brilliant reds and greens found in plants and geological formations. Sunsets incorporate many abstract patterns as well as beautiful layers of color.