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