Painting of the Week

Painting of the Week – Reformative Power

Reformative Power – Painting of the Week

In April of 2018, Paul and I went on a tour of Southern France. It was a wonderful review of art history and I went camera crazy. In Vienne, our guide led us into a side door of a large cathedral -that I didn’t hear the name of- because a darling Shih Tzu invited me to take his picture.  The interior was amazing. She showed us a masterfully carved zodiac sign that was also served as an arch. Oddly, there was some sort of adjustment made and they sawed off one end of it to make it fit. I wondered if anyone lost their head over such a grievous error. Anyhow, I walked out, turned around, looked at the main entrance and recognized what I believed to be “Notre Dame” and shot a photo of the Facade.

It was one sad spring day when Notre Dame was burning, and I was looking for subject matter to paint. Going through my photos, the choice became obvious. How lucky “I thought I was” to have seen the cathedral before the tragic fire. The iconography was challenging to paint and needed to be greatly simplified to keep the watercolor fresh. Completed in time, I entered it in a big contest and left town to visit my daughter in California. On my return, they were showing the cathedral burning on the news again and I told Paul “I painted Notre Dame” and went to show him the painting.

To my horror Paul said “That’s not Notre Dame Ellen, we never went to Paris”.

“Ooh ouch, oh no” I said, “I hope it doesn’t get in or I’ll look like a complete idiot”. Entry required a description and of course I wrote something like the above information. My painting was actually of the Vienne Cathedral (French: Cathédrale Saint-Maurice de Vienne) a medieval Roman Catholic church in the city of VienneFrance and only had some similar characteristics to Notre Dame. Luckily, because of my Red River Watercolor Society connection, I was able to call the California society president and change my write up before the final deadline.

Reformative Power is on display right now in Minnesota at the North Star Watermedia Juried Exhibition until November 14th, 2019.  Click here for information on the exhibit.


I will be at three” Pride of Dakota” Holiday Showcase Events this year. Please put these on your calendar!


“10% off all things with Sunflowers” is one of the specials for the Grand Forks Pride of Dakota Holiday Showcase!


Grand Forks – Alerus Center (Booth 905) this weekend!

Ask or watch for my super show specials!

Show Hours:

Friday, November 1                  4:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Saturday, November 2            9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Sunday, November 3
              11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.           


Fargo – Scheels Arena  (Booths C27-28)

Show Hours:

Friday, November 22                  4:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Saturday, November 23            9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Sunday, November 24
              11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.      

Bismarck Civic Center (Booth to be announced)

Show Hours:

Friday, December 6             4:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Saturday, December 7          9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Sunday, December 8
             11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.         


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