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Ella Biondi

I’m a NYC person and have learned so much about design, art and art history rite here in New York at Hunter College and the New York Academy of Art. Painting in watercolors and oil is my great love in the studio or outdoors, there is nothing more absorbing for me than painting from observation.  This picture was taken on a painting trip to Bar Harbor, Maine.   Recently I’ve joined the very informal group “Urban Sketchers” who meet at different sites around NYC and spend time sketching the location.  I look forward to incorporating some of these sketches into my studio practice.

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Raylie Dunkel

My favorite subject in high school was art.  

When I told my mother that I wanted to go to school for art she said “How will you earn a living?’  Having no idea how to answer her, I packed away my pencils and my dream and went to college.  

50 years later when I was ready to retire after “earning a living”, I needed to figure out what to do with my time and energy.  Aha, art school I said. And so I did.  

After completing the arts curriculum at the local state college I went on to study at the New York Academy of Art.  Additionally I attend regular drawing sessions in various venues around the city.

My focus is on industrial landscapes, done mostly in oil on board.  I also do figurative work in graphite, chalk and other materials.  Never without a sketchbook, I enjoy traversing the city to capture scenes and people as I find them in parks, cafes, musical venues and, my favorite…..the subway!

I have also become a regular in the Urban Sketchers’ events, where I manage a weekly meet up in various places around the city . The highlight of the year is the International Symposium.  I have now traveled to Singapore, Brazil, England, and cities in the US for this week long immersion in workshops, sketch crawls and social events with other members from as many as 35 countries.

In the long run I did get to pay for a formal art education. Not for me, but my son because when he came to me and said: “I want to go to art school”, I had to say yes. We now share a studio at the MANA Complex in Jersey City.