Original fine art Oil Paintings by Dorothy Riley Ellis

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about me

Most mornings I am up with the birds and painting in my sunporch/studio, happy as the proverbial lark. Learning with every canvas, observing my missteps and changing a tone or a value means that I am growing. Asking for a critique from a veteran painter or an admired teacher has helped beyond measure.


After taking about 20 credits in Fine Art at Rowen College in N.J. I had a long hiatus before I could focus on learning to paint again.


Northeast Pennsylvania became my home for the next twenty-five years. I retired from Nursing, and having fledged my three children, I found a good teacher who refreshed what I had learned and encouraged me. That was 2010-2011.


Seeking a warmer climate led me to Virginia. I joined Prince William Art Society and Manassas Artists Guild. Attended workshops with those groups and also at the Workhouse Arts Center on Lorton, VA, a former prison that housed the women suffragists—now an art center that has, galleries and studios.


Always I felt like a beginner, so hungry to learn to paint what I saw around me and to express my love of our beautiful country. Going to galleries I felt like a kid in a candy store window, wanting to know how to paint like that...and that!


I took a painting course with Jef Sturm, and then some more. I switched to oils because I could see the beautiful blends one could achieve. He handed me the keys, all I had to do was learn and paint. And paint some more.