Stella Mays writes:

'For me as an artist the draw of the natural world is irresistible. Painting wild animals in their natural environment offers an opportunity to escape this shrinking congested world, at least for now… But habitat loss threatens most of my subjects and supporting conservation is at the core of my work.I always work in pastel, the vibrancy and immediacy suits my artistic style and impatient nature! Since becoming a mum I have less time to work but more ideas than ever. When I get to my studio it is hard to slow down, the result of this is less meticulous pictures with more original compositions, ironically just what I aspired to when I had all the time in the world!

I was born in London in 1973 and for as long as I can remember I have always loved nature. I started drawing horses at an early age. Since then I have painted a wide range of subjects although big cats have become a favourite. As an artist I am self taught and work in pastel. I am fascinated by the way light falls on a subject, while an ambition to create original compositions increasingly influences my work. I have been fortunate to sell work all over the world often in support of conservation. Art for me is a way to express my passion for wildlife and to communicate the need to protect the natural world.'


For this challenge, you can choose whatever species you like, but we want to see both parent and child. Show us paintings of either a single parent or both, with one or several of their offspring. No big herd, though, it should still be an animal portrait. The deadline is October, 25, every member may upload 2 entries. Happy painting!


Stan Sperlak, PSA is known for his dramatic landscape paintings of the sea, marshes and sky. He studied painting and drawing at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia, PA. Over the past decade he has maintained a teaching studio where a marsh, farm and forest meet on the Crow Creek in Goshen, NJ. It is there on 37 acres, that he has created a nature sanctuary and has begun creating sculptural and environmental art installations. His works have appeared in numerous magazines and books on painting. He is a signature member of the Pastel Society of America, the Maryland Pastel Society, and served on the board of The Mid Atlantic Plein Air Painters Association.


Stan Sperlak PSA our judge for the September Get Dusty Competition has choosen:

The winner is Polina Balashova with "The Low Sun" Congratulations! She wins a set of 10 PanPastel colors and a set of Sofft tools from our sponsor PanPastel.

the low sun 20190925 2014857913

In second place is Dorothea Schulz PGE with "Dawn in Montmelardin third place is Svenja Starke with "Frost Morning".

dawn in montmelard 20190919 1055699017 frosty morning 20190921 1142798771

Lisa Ober, our judge for the July / August Get Dusty Competition has choosen:

The winner is Motti Shoval with "Shmuel Staircase" Congratulations! Motti wins a set of 10 PanPastel colors and a set of Sofft tools from our sponsor PanPastel.

shmuel staircase 20190722 1992160926

In second place is Silja Salmistu with "Raft of the Medusain third place is George Tsakiris with "Textures".

the raft of the medusa 20190824 1153296990 textures 20190718 1468270075