Plein air painting at Heather Farm

The Gardens at Heather Farm in Walnut Creek is a beautiful setting for a picnic, wedding, photo session...and plein air painting, of course!

Annegret van Gemeren

Betsy Trtek

Mary Frances Crabtree

Cathy McNutt

Carol Husslein


Free Mother's Day gift + family fun at our Spring Art Show & Sale!

Come to our Spring Art Show & Sale on Saturday, April 30 at the Concord Library (10am - 4:30pm)!

  • Free gift to the first 50 women in the door - a handmade artisan soap 
  • Free kid's crafting activity
  • Free steel drum performance on the patio (11am - 1pm)

This is the place to shop for one-of-a-kind handmade gifts and original art from talented local artists!

Click here to print our flyer - or click here to invite your Facebook friends. See you there!


April Sketch Night - Roses and Tequila


We met at La Pinata for dinner and margaritas - we brought roses and other blooms for inspiration - but the restaurant provided plenty of sketch-worthy options from the bottles and food to the murals on the walls - even the contours of the glassware is great practice.

What's really great about sketching in public is making art more interesting and accessible for people. Several of our neighboring diners showed interest and asked us about CAA. Brochures were ready for them!

Join us on May 3rd for our first outdoor sketch night of the year at the Markham Arboretum - watch your email for more details!

Around the table from left:  Mary Frances, Julie, Catherine, Bill, Linda, Sandy (Lisa took the pic)



Mary Frances





Deena & Donna - Artisan Soap Makers

About five years ago, Deena and her sister Donna made some soaps for gifts. Then shortly after that, they held a school program where kids chose their favorite colors and fragrances to make liquid soap.

From there, a new passion and a new business was born. Deena & Donna makes a full array of lovingly handcrafted artisan-quality bath and body products.

As our guest artist at the April meeting, Deena will show us how to paint molded soaps with skin-safe mica powders. She will provide a free handmade glycerin soap to each of us and we get to paint our own. Choose from a variety of soap sizes, designs and colors, in either scented or unscented.

Bring your own small round brush (#3 or #4) to the meeting, as well as a liner brush for detailing. 

A small selection of soaps and lotions will also be available for sale, and we'll be raffling off a nice gift basket. Join us on Tuesday, April 12th for some fresh, clean fun - let's enjoy learning something new about the art of soapmaking!


Take (or teach) one of our new art workshops!

We are so happy to announce our new partnership with The Artist's Den on Salvio Street in downtown Concord. We will be renting their classroom/gallery space on nights and weekends for our new workshops - click here for all the details and register online with PayPal.

We are offering two very affordable workshops this month, taught by CAA members - mixed media stenciling techniques with acrylic inks and paints on raw canvas (all skill levels), and an introduction to drawing and watercolor for beginners (limited to 10 students).

Sign up yourself, bring a friend and let's have some fun! Everyone is welcome, and CAA members get discounted rates.

We have many more workshops with local art and craft teachers in the works - stay tuned for a variety of topics - including charcoal portraits, watercolor, monoprinting with gel plates, bookbinding, Chinese brush painting and more!

If you have a creative technique to share, earn extra money teaching a CAA workshop. Email us at concordartassociation@yahoo.com to propose your topic and we'll send you all the details.


Plein air painting at Lime Ridge

concord art association plein air painting
Annegret van Gemeren

It was a lovely day for a group of artists to make a short trek to the perfect spot for plein air painting. After much-needed rainfall here in Northern California, Lime Ridge Open Space was simply gorgeous. Coyote pups were frolicking, raccoons and squirrels were scampering, birds were singing and wildflowers were blooming. Every leaf on every tree was shining in the breeze after having all the dust and debris washed away in the weekend storm. The sky couldn't have been more blue; the hills couldn't have been more green. 

Mary Frances Crabtree

We go to beautiful places like this all over the Bay Area each month, from March to October. If you have a day job, it's totally worth taking a vacation day (or a sick day, shhhh...we won't tell) to join us. And even if you're not sure whether plein air painting is for you, bring your camera and a journal and come anyway. It's relaxing and peaceful - nothing better than a day spent being inspired by nature. Visit us on Facebook to see more pictures and video!

June Vega

Cathy McNutt and her model man

Even in the shade, Carol Husslein's palette is bright and colorful

concord art association plein air painting
Everyone made great progress on their paintings in just a couple hours


All about working with rice paper and Chinese ink

concord art association barbara bornet stumph

Last week at our general member meeting, guest artist Barbara Stumph shared loads of great tips and product recommendations for the art of Chinese brush painting on rice paper, and she also showed us lots of beautiful samples. If you missed the meeting, you can click here to download a PDF of her talking points.

chinese brush painting barbara bornet stumph

Barbara opened the meeting with a very sweet "blessings" song. She is both knowledgeable and passionate about the traditions and techniques of Chinese art.

She demonstrated brush techniques for painting Chinese numbers and we all went home with a lovely packet of rice paper samples, both plain and painted.

After her talk and demo, members spent time painting on rocks and exploring the treasured books and paintings she brought.

Kim Lawson tries her hand at rock painting with a Chinese brush and inks

Many thanks to Barbara for sharing her wit and wisdom with us! Be sure to come to the April meeting when we'll learn more about painting on handmade soap with mica flakes. Our general meetings at the Concord Library are always free and open to the public - come be inspired!


March Mini Member Art Show

concord art association Member Art Show

We had a record turn-out for our member mini art show at the March meeting! We love it when members share their latest work - inspiring!

concord art association lupe jimeno
1st Place:  Old House by Lupe Jimeno - watercolor
concord art association mary frances crabtree
2nd Place:  Louisiana Bayou by Mary Frances Crabtree
Pen and ink (cropped)
concord art association bev haggerty
3rd Place (tie): Diablo Hills in Spring by Bev Haggerty - watercolor

3rd Place (tie): Liberty Plaza I by Annegret van Gemeren - watercolor

concord art association member mini art show
The Other Side of Mt. Diablo by June Vega - watercolor

concord art association member mini art show
On the Shore by Jeslyn Cantrell - acrylic

concord art association member mini art show
Patio Pot by Bobbe Anderson - acrylic

concord art association member mini art show
Merida Palms by Marie Tapia - mixed media

concord art association member mini art show
Autumn Reflections by Cathy McNutt - acrylic

concord art association member mini art show
What's For Dinner? by Betty McBride - dry watercolor

concord art association member mini art show
Flowers of Spring by Claudia Bubeck - acrylic

concord art association member mini art show
The Missing Six by Dora Acosta - watercolor


We sketched our cake and ate it, too!

Marie sketched her fruit tart in triplicate

Our first Sketch Night was lots of fun - we met at Bonjour Bakery to sketch (and eat) some delectable pastries and desserts.

Clockwise from left - Uni, Marie, Cathy, Bob, Mary Frances, Lynn, Paul

There was plenty of space and the bakery was happy to have us. Lisa took this picture of the group...her brother Paul joined us too, but he was more interested in watching his iPad than drawing. :-)

Cathy's chocolate bonbons and bear claw draw

Mary Frances used a cool white on black technique

Lynn's cake slice is berry, berry nice

Uni went the charcoal route for cappuccino and tiramisu

Marie was kind enough to wait to eat her fruit tart so Uni could sketch a burst of it