Sunday, July 15, 2012

Women of Watercolor ~ Guild of Artists

Women of Watercolor Board of Directors

Executive Board 2012-2014
·       President – Angela Wrahtz
·       Vice President – Karen Berg
·       Secretary – Sharon Hansen
·       Co-Treasurers – Jullane Rich & Angela Wrahtz

Committee Chairwomen
·       Newsletter – Karen Berg
·       Art Shows – Sue Anne Seckora
·       Sunshine! – Cherri Roskie
·       Excursions – Sharon Hansen
·       International Adventures – Holly Johnson
·       Marketing – Angela Wrahtz
·       Website – Mary Fran Anderson
·       Exhibitions – Open
·       Hospitality – Open
·       Fundraising – Open
·       Webmaster – Open
·       Properties -- Open
·       Bylaws Committee – Angela Wrahtz & Karen Berg
·       NonProfit Formation – Angela Wrahtz

Women of Watercolor
P.O. Box 4668
Tualatin, Oregon  97062

Message from Angela Wrahtz, President, WOW

Thank you to everyone who made our second year and the year exciting and unforgettable! Our painting group is a place where friendship and passion around a common interest have continue to win us recognition and new members. What follows is a report on 2011- 2012. (This Blogsite version of the Annual Report omits graphic elements, photos, and spreadsheets. For hardcopy all inclusive version of report, write to address above.)

Highlights from our Second Year:
It all starts and ends with people. We are an amazing group of talented women and skilled artists. We have so many different interesting stories in our collective backgrounds and so much potential to do whatever it is we wish with our gifts and talents. Some of us want to keep it simple and have no goals other than to get out of the house once a month to paint with the girls. Others want to produce more and become more professional. WOW accommodates EVERYONE.

Leadership & Elections.
The Board, comprised of Angela Wrahtz, President, Candace Erickson, VP, Karen Berg, Secretary, and Jullane Rich, Treasurer, supported by a number of Committee Chairs worked hard to implement a vision that put a priority on art shows that were not just “gallery style” shows but also provided the best opportunity for participating artists to sell their art. This was after a survey in the Spring of 2011 indicated that a majority of the membership was interested in this kind of opportunity. The Membership essentially re-elected the Board with Angela Wrahtz continuing as President, Karen Berg stepping up to VP, Sharon Hansen taking on the role of WOW Secretary, and the Treasurer position being a job share between Jullane Rich and Angela Wrahtz as Co-Treasurers, until a full time Treasurer can be identified and appointed
We began the WOW calendar year (July 1, 2012) with 32 returning members and ended the calendar year (June 30, 2012) with 14 new members, for a total of 46 members.

Communication & Marketing
We expanded our ways of communication to include on online presence.

WOW Newsletter.
Karen Berg volunteered her unique skill set as writer/editor/artist to create our wonderful WOW Newsletter, a great instrument for helping us to each other better as members, to expand our information and resources as artists, and to facilitate communication about activities and events within our group and to our friends in the community. The Newsletter is as visually exciting as it is full of great content. The Membership is encouraged to submit articles on topics that would be of interest to the larger group. Look at each edition to learn more about your WOW colleagues as several are featured each time. Can you think of another arts organization that has its equal when it comes to the newsletter?
In advance of a WOW website, Angela Wrahtz created a Blogsite for information sharing online.

WOW on Facebook.
Jullane Rich created a WOW Facebook interest group for sharing digital images of paintings in progress, completed work, and also for stories from life.

WOW on Google Docs.
Life just got easier posting documents on Google docs where key documents and databases in the organization can be uploaded, created, shared and updated. Membership information is recorded here as well as some financial information. We plan to expand our use of Google Docs and train our members on how to use it.

WOW Banner & Lawn signs.
A 10 foot banner was created to announce art shows.It was used in downtown Tualatin for our Spring art show and has removable date and location lettering which can be replaced at a nominal cost for future events. 10 lawn signs with the new logo are ready to go for future art shows that take place at the Tualatin Heritage Center.

Art Shows & Logo.
Fall Art Show 2011 ~ Falling for Irresistible art.
September 2011, our first “affordable art” show focusing on smaller pieces selling for not more than $300. It ran 2 days…Friday and Saturday. Every artist in the show sold something whether that was paintings or art cards. Total sales were over $4,000 and left us encouraged that we could run commercially successful shows for our guild. The show was self-supporting, with fees and donations covering the cost of the exhibition.

Spring art Show 2012 ~ art Garden
Our first Spring art show was held in early May the weekend before Mother’s Day with 20 artists participating. Another gorgeously designed show, this event ran 3 days and brought in 300 people with sales being somewhat disappointing ($2,500 of art and cards sold) after our Fall show which had such success. We learned a lot from this effort and have a good analysis and set of guidelines to follow for any future shows. It is clear that more involvement from the membership is needed to expand our marketing efforts and bring in visitors from areas outside of Tualatin.

Updated Logo by Candace Eriickson.
There is nothing like a logo to give a group a sense of strong identity. The logo art for WOW, identifying us to the world, branding us as our unique selves and created by Candace Erickson, was updated by her so that a large digital file could be created for large marketing pieces like the WOW banner. Thank you, Candace, for your excellent work and contribution. Do you recognize any of the faces in the logo?

Teaching mission.
In line with WOW’s mission to function as a legal nonprofit organization with a teaching mission, WOW expanded its offerings for learning opportunities.

Teacher Linda Aman.
WOW encourages its members to take formal classes and workshops offered by Linda Aman in the third week of the month.

These “group painting sessions” represent the original intention of the group and have been the basic idea of WOW. We encourage each other to paint, get inspiration, positive feedback and critique from each other. We have an average of 12 to 16 artists currently at these sessions and room for more. WOW offers GPS’s every month of the year except December.

Workshops by other instructors.
WOW has added workshops into the GPS schedule. Our first new workshop, “Writing the Artist Bio and Artist Statement” offered by Angela Wrahtz in June, was well attended and proved useful. Two sessions were offered. Based on feedback and going forward, each month when there is not a regularly scheduled General Meeting for the Membership, WOW will offer informative workshops on topics requested by the members. A schedule of offerings will be posted on the Blogsite and in the WOW Newsletter for 2012 and 2013.

More Fun Stuff!    
Holiday Tea/ December Event.
In December Hospitality Chair, Dianne Hicks, along with Karen Berg, Acting Secretary, organized a fun holiday event.

Trip to M. Grahame Paints.
Thank you to Sharon Hansen for organizing a number of social outings throughout the year but most notably the field trip to the manufacturing facility of M. Grahame Paints where a group of us stuck our fingers in pigment and barraged Art Graham with questions about the making of his superior paints.

Vision and Direction.
After the ART GARDEN Spring art show, the Board met and assess what we learned from the experience. People were tired from the effort of doing two art shows in short order. We learned that to do art shows the right way requires more than 4months of pre-show planning. It takes a good 9 months to get goals defined and an appropriate size group of committed team members together to do it. When art shows are being planned, all other important activities seem to stall. The Board decided to take off a year at least from doing another art show and focus on other important priorities like becoming a nonprofit and finding possible new venues for shows. The Board wants to focus on the education mission and develop the workshop calendar, develop communications with a quality website, and to allow members the opportunity to get to know each other in a relaxed setting. Focusing on fun GPS’s and possible excursions is what we are going to do for now. This will allow the Board to identify members who potentially have skills and interest to participate on committees and on the Board.
Organizational Status & Finances.
WOW is as yet an unincorporated business association functioning as a nonprofit organization.  There is no burning need to become a legal nonprofit except to establish a relationship with the IRS that in the future will allow WOW to exist without an undue tax reporting burden. Because WOW still falls well below the $5,000 per year on a 3 year rolling average for income, there is no obligation to report with the IRS. If we wish to compete for arts grants and do any meaningful fundraising, WOW will need legal nonprofit status, and more on that later. Regardless, WOW exists for the benefit of its membership.

Complete financial reports including a Profit & Loss Statement and Balance Sheet provided on request.

Thank you Partners & Volunteers.

WOW continues to have a great relationship with the Tualatin Heritage Center. One of the special projects we embarked upon this past year was the creation of a unique gift, a watercolor painting/quilt of the Tualatin Heritage Center. Nearly 20 artists created “squares” based on a photograph taken by Karen Berg. The project is not yet completed, but the Board anticipates delivering a finished product this Fall.

WOW is blessed with a wonderful Board. Everyone who serves on the Board is a volunteer with a heart of service and a special skill set to help get the job done. It’s a privilege to work with all of you. It pleases me to know our Board members have a good time conducting the business of the group!

I’d like to let you know there are opportunities to participate on any number of Committees. If you think you have some time and skills you’d like to offer up, speak to one of our Board members about your interests and questions. We could really use your help and I promise it will be worth the effort you make.

If you have a friend or spouse or someone else close to you who could potentially make a contribution to the group in terms of legal advice, CPA work, or other professional services, please let me know. Small organizations like ours get by through their network of people. We couldn’t possibly contract and pay for all the services we occasionally need.

Most importantly, continue to invite your artist friends to join our circle. The more the merrier, as they say!

Thank you, and I look forward to our painting time together in the coming year!

Angela Wrahtz

Angela Wrahtz
President, W.O.W.