Expressions On-Line


This first on-line show by the members of Seattle CPSA Chapter 207 features two categories: a main gallery and a signature gallery. (Signature members earn CPSA and/or CPX status by acceptance into the annual CPSA International Exhibition and/or the Explore This! three times in a period of ten years.)

The show was judged by Denise Howard who awarded a First Place, Second Place, Third Place and two Honorable Mentions in the two categories. Denise did not have access to the artists’ names during the judging process.

Low Light by Constance Speth, CPSA
Room With Light 3 by Constance Speth, CPSA

Many of the pieces are for sale with their price and whether the painting is framed or not listed. If you would like to purchase a piece, contact chapter Vice-President Karen Smith ( who will get you in contact with the artist. You will need to work with the artist to solidify packing, shipping and/or delivery. Those additional costs are not included in the prices listed here.

In Memory of Constance Speth, CPSA

In addition to the entries, our late member Constance Speth, CPSA, donated two paintings to our chapter. Constance was an Ellensburg-based artist who created drawings, paintings, and prints that explored light, shadow, and form. Speth taught at Central Washington University starting in 1964 until her retirement. She received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education from Central Washington University in 1955 and 1964, respectively, and a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Idaho in Moscow in 1984.

If you would like to make an offer on either piece, contact chapter Vice-President Karen Smith ( All funds from sales will be donated to our chapter, per Constance’s wishes. Both pieces measure 14.25″ x 21.5″.

Judge’s Statement

It was an honor and a pleasure to judge this exhibition for DC 207 Seattle. The range of experience levels, styles, and subject matter made it both challenging and stimulating. DC207 has many accomplished and promising artists!

The results of any subjective judging always lead exhibitors to wonder “What was the judge thinking when they picked this entry over that one for an award?” In order of descending importance, my criteria are visual/aesthetic impact, composition, and technical skill. So a piece that might not be as masterfully rendered as another might nonetheless have greater impact due to the subject depicted, the story it suggests, the emotion it evokes, or the way the scene is composed and cropped. Composition can make or break an artwork, by holding the viewer’s eye or leaving him feeling that something’s “off”. These criteria are important regardless of the medium, the subject matter, or whether the style is representational or completely abstract. With these criteria in mind, perhaps you can see why I chose some pieces over others. Of course, it’s still subjective!

The best piece of artistic advice I’ve ever received is “Show me something I’ve never seen before.” This can be interpreted in several ways; it’s up to you, the artist, to decide how it applies to your work. Keep drawing!

About Denise Howard

Denise Howard grew up on a farm in rural Missouri surrounded by animals and nature.  As soon as she could hold a pencil, she started drawing everything, and her world revolved around her art until she finished college. She earned a B.A. in Art and a B.S. in Math/Computer Science concurrently from Truman State University, and later an M.S. in Computer Science from Ohio State University, focused on computer graphics. She worked for several Silicon Valley companies, was one of the developers of iPhoto at Apple and earned movie credits on Antz and Shrek at PDI/Dreamworks. Software engineering left little time or energy for creating art for 25+ years.

Finally, the urge to return to her art became too strong to ignore, so she began committing the time to pursue it as a second career and quickly began receiving local, national and international recognition for her realist-colored pencil and graphite work. She is a signature member of the Colored Pencil Society of America (CPSA, CPX) and the UK Colored Pencil Society (UKCPS), and has Master Pencil Artist Status (MPAS) with the Pencil Art Society (PAS). She is national Communications Director of the CPSA. She is the author of 101 Textures in Colored Pencil (Quarto Publishing, 2017) and a co-author of The Complete Book of Textures for Artists (Quarto Publishing, 2020).

She lives in Santa Clara, California with her husband, two cats, and a garden full of native plants and hummingbirds.

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