Welcome and thank you for visiting my web studio. Here you can find out what's new on my easel, recent commissions, works in progress and new directions. I'll also share current news about upcoming shows and events.

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A Beautiful, Limited Edition Book
by Sydni Sterling on 
 One of the fruits of this summer’s work is Italian Panels, a collaboration with my husband, poet Mike Dillon. The book features fourteen paintings and twenty-three prose “panels” as it explores vivid, memorable moments where past and present cross paths in that beautiful country.


The painted images exist outside my usual body of work and were inspired by the back and forth process between image and written word. We’d been exploring the possibilities of such a project for a long time and are very happy with the results.

Below: "Breakfast Room, Ravenna" — 30" x 24" — acrylic on canvas


Italian Panels was hand-bound at The Bremerton Letterpress Co. in a limited edition of 50 copies using letterpress printed covers on French Paper Company’s Kraft-Tone paper. Interior pages were printed offset on Mohawk Super Fine paper by Blue Sky Printing.


Typeface is Didot, from a group of typefaces produced by the Didot family of France in 1784.


Signed copies of Italian Panels will be available for sale in my studio during Art in the Woods, along with a few of the original paintings featured in the book.


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From the Heart of Summer
by Sydni Sterling on 
  From the Heart of Summer 

“The longer you look at an object, the more abstract it becomes, and, ironically, the more real.” Lucian Freud

Though the summer has been much cooler than the last three, I’ve moved my easel into the garden. I love the long days and getting up with the birds to paint (ospreys are particularly plentiful this year). The light outdoors is so much better. For me, it’s all about the light.

My annual Indianola Days open house with celebrated fiber artist Melinda West is on deck — July 23-24, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. For those of you who haven’t experienced Indianola Days, it’s a wonderful, community event tied to late summer’s lowest tide. There’s a sandcastle contest, salmon bake, games, fun run, pet parade and Saturday night dance.

My studio and garden will be filled with our new work. We’ll also be working on new projects both days. To learn more about Melinda’s beautiful creations, please visit: www.melindawest.com

One of the delights I find in painting is the daily summons to challenge myself. As time goes on, that summons becomes stronger. Since spring, I’ve developed a lighter palette, which complements the bright, primary colors that characterize my art. The new paintings rely much more on texture and a fluid, expressive line — the painterly word is “loose.” To the eye of the beholder, it means more motion and adventurous energy.

Working outside lends itself to this approach. I feel good about the results.

I hope to see you this summer, whether it’s in one of three local venues, or in the Bay Area.




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A Wonderful Honor
by Sydni Sterling on 

 The CVG Show, a statewide, juried art show hosted by Collective Visions Gallery in Bremerton, held its ninth annual event Saturday, January 23. The festivities took place at the venerable Admiral Theatre in downtown Bremerton. A good crowd turned out for dinner and the awards ceremony.

Eight hundred pieces were entered for the show, and 130 were chosen. It was a great honor for my painting, "Domenica,"  to receive the Mayor's Award for Best of Show.

The exhibit runs through February 25. If you'd like to see it, check the CVG website for hours. It's well worth the trip: The artwork, from all over the state, is diverse and really good.

Interesting things are happening in downtown Bremerton. We discovered, a block away from CVG, a husband and wife team with a new letterpress business: You can watch them work their antique presses to put ink to paper as it was done in centuries past. They're artists, and artisans, and their work is beautiful.

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"Firmament" accepted for CVG Juried Show
by Sydni Sterling on 

I’ve had a new large scale painting accepted into the 2009 CVG Show, a statewide juried art show held at the Collective Visions Gallery in Bremerton, WA. My acrylic painting, titled “Firmament” is one of 130 artworks chosen by exhibition juror Gary Faigin, Artistic Director of the Gage Academy in Seattle, from over 800 works submitted by artists throughout Washington State. Accepted artists will be competing for $8,000 in prizes and purchase awards and will be on display at CVG during the month of February. For a complete schedule of events visit www.collectivevisions.com.

For this triptych measuring 24” x 84”, I’ve revisited a technique that I haven’t used in a while. Using modeling paste mixed with acrylic medium I can make my brushstrokes form into three dimensional sculpted elements. This further confuses the illusion of depth in the two dimensional picture plane. The painting of koi fish and fall leaves, has three levels on the canvas: the bottom of the pond, the invisible water with fish (distorted by the water), and the surface. The fourth level is created by the floating “leaves” on he surface.

My triptych "Firmament".The title was taken from the following poem by Denise Levertov.


Fish in the sky of water -- silvery
as traveling moon through cloud–hills --
down current whisks, or deeper
fins into depths, to rise or sagely
wait in the milky mist of
disturbed sediment, wheeling briskly
at least whim, at one
with the aqueous everything in shines in.

                            -- Denise Levertov   


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February Landscape show
by Sydni Sterling on 

In February, I’ll be participating in a group landscape show at the Simon Gallery in Yakima, WA. I don’t normally do landscapes but I’ve been intrigued by vineyards as a subject for some time. Vineyards are appealing for their graphic qualities such as the way the vines wrap themselves around the contours of the hills. My husband and I have taken many happy strolls through the farms in eastern Washington around Lake Chelan and Yakima’s Rattlesnake Ridge. The result is this “Vineyard Suite” of five small paintings that try to capture those walks. In each painting the landscape is distilled to the basic elements with fluid brushstrokes evoking the warmth of the place along with specific views. Together, the paintings are designed to move the viewer  through the landscape much in the way we really experience the space around us.

For more information, please visit http://www.simongallery.net/

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