Mary's Favorite Quotes

“Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens”
—Carl Jung

"My role in society, or any artist's or poet's role, is to try and express what we all feel. Not as a preacher, not as a leader, but as a reflection of all of us."
—John Lennon




The Impact of a Mentor

Kami MendlikExcerpt from Kami Mendlik's interview with Savvy Painter online magazine:
"Can you think back to a time when someone helped you on your career path in vital ways? Everyone doesn’t get such a special person in their life. Usually, a mentoring relationship doesn’t just fall into your lap. Kami Mendlik had to hunt down and pursue her mentor Mary Pettis. Kami was relentless because she knew she had to learn from one of the best in her field. Mary was a huge hero and mentor to Kami and only asked for one thing in return for the time and insight she gave, that one day Kami would do the same for another young artist. Kami has fulfilled that promise and delights in the joy of passing down what she has learned on her journey to up and coming artists."

Listen to entire podcast.

What Others Are Saying About Mary's WORKSHOPS

Mary Pettis demonstrates toning and color wash at a 2014 Master Class.Mary Pettis is the consummate teacher for artists in all stages of their development as oil painters. Mary has nurtured my progress for many years. 
—Barb Young

Mary's workshop was Awesome. It was one of the most rewarding things I have ever done for myself. All I can say is Amazing.
—Tom Pace

"Mary's paintings are superlative; and Mary's teaching, expert." 
—Matt and Laurie Kania

I have great admiration for Mary Pettis, as an artist and as a teacher. My admiration for her deepened when she presented a Plein Air Oil Painting Workshop for North Dakota Chautauqua in 2007.   I was impressed to see how skillfully she inspired experienced artists as well as beginners as they painted side by side. Mary has a gift for taking the individual where he or she is at, and giving each one the encouragement and stimulation that often enables them to go beyond their expectations.   Mary sees beauty everywhere. She empowers her students to do the same.
 —Anne-Marit Bergstrom

When Mary paints and teaches, she pulls out of "plein air" beauty and soul.
—"Leah Nardo"  Leah Peterson

What Others Are Saying About Mary's Mentoring / Critique

Mary Pettis demonstrates toning and color wash at a 2014 Master Class.

Mary’s mentoring has greatly advanced my skills and expanded my artistic vision. The time I have spent with her has moved me closer to the artist I want to be.  Mary’s knowledge, enthusiasm, and generosity have been invaluable.
—Michele Combs

I have had the distinct pleasure of being involved with workshops as well as participating in a valuable critique session with Mary Pettis. Since both interactions have benefited my growth as an artist, I can’t say which one I liked better.  They were equally worthwhile.

One aspect that impressed me is Mary’s energy! She is so passionate and excited about the painting process! With a keen eye, she really “speaks” to each individual artist in his/her personal, creative journey. During my “one-on-one” critique session with Mary, I gained valuable insight into my particular style, gained ideas for marketing plans, as well as identified areas where I need to grow and change.

Should these critique sessions be offered again, I would definitely take advantage. When my schedule permits, I would welcome the opportunity to take another workshop from Mary as well.
—Sandi Pillsbury (Gredzens)

I had such a great time with Mary in her studio this morning. Mary and her Masterful Artwork are surrounded by light and color and her wisdom about painting is simply remarkable. I asked Mary about painting clouds in Oil and she wiped up a few colors explaining the difference of clouds over land and over water, showed me some Russian Masters clouds and then painted up beautiful clouds right there saying, “I love to paint! Her enthusiasm is so contagious and her soul speaks volumes. Mary, you are such a delight to know and study oil painting with!
—Cynthia Kath

What Others Are Saying About Mary's Lectures

Plein Air Workshop

Our March 27 meeting featured oil painter, Mary Pettis, who showed us how to make a great start by “painting from the inside-out.”  Mary stressed that we often spend too much time on technique and not enough time deciding on the “why” of the painting. She begins each painting with a clear concept, artistic intent, or message. In her first painting, a wave crashing on a beach, her intent was to show the power, majesty, and glory of the wave.  “Paint the painting in your head first,” she advised. She mixed her paints and jumped right in with large shapes and lines. “Every painting needs a focal path, not necessarily a focal point,” she advised. In her second painting, a tree tunnel on the island of Kauai, she blocked in large shapes, always keeping in mind her intent to show light coming through the trees. 

—Lisa Fertig, Northstar Watermedia Society