Rancho Bernardo Artists Win Top Awards

Janet Gilliland and Cheryl Dicus, artists and residents of Rancho Bernardo, California, have won two of the top awards in the highly competitive April 2023 San Diego Watercolor Society (SDWS) Member’s exhibition “Blooming Thoughts”, an in-gallery show of the SDWS at 2825 Dewey Road in Liberty Station, San Diego, CA. Gilliland’s painting, titled “Balboa Park Cherry Blossoms”, was selected by prominent Palm Desert artist Robin St. Louis for the Best Of Theme award. St. Louis said of  the painting, “It is very pretty! I like the pink and green color palette. She has done an especially nice job with the shadows on the flowers. I like that she blurred out the background.  This painting is fresh and springy.” Dicus’s painting, titled “The Corgies” won Best of Miniatures. The juror commented “This is a strong painting. I like the viewpoint and the angle on the dogs. The repetition, the poses, and the colors all contribute to the strength of the painting.” These two works were selected out of over 280 entries to the show.

Janet Gilliland feels she was born an artist and remembers her first art lesson in kindergarten.  She took every art class offered in school and loved every one of them. Early on, she worked mainly worked in pen and ink because of its portability and economy of supplies. She later moved into oils and acrylics and discovered watercolors through a class taught by a high school friend. She has since earned Signature Status with the San Diego Watercolor Society, having been accepted at least three times in the annual SDWS International Exhibition, and exhibits her work there as well as at the Bronze Silver and Gold Gallery in Cambria, CA. Her work has been seen in Splash, the Best of Watercolor, Garden Compass Magazine, and she was a finalist in The Artists magazine competition. More of her work can be found at https://watercolouraddictsgallery.com/gallery27.htm

Cheryl Dicus has lived in Rancho Bernardo for 35 years, where she raised 4 daughters. She worked at Poway Unified School District in the Special Education department. She also worked at the before & after school programs, where she taught the arts & crafts to the students. In 2016 she retired to paint in watercolor which she had begun studying in 2005 at Adult Education classes.  Cheryl loves watercolor painting & volunteering at SDWS, and has been the recipient of several awards there for her work.

The SDWS Gallery Exhibit will run through Saturday April 29, 2023 at the SDWS gallery at 2528 Dewey Road in Liberty Station. Paintings can be viewed and purchased from the gallery as well as on the SDWS website at https://sdws.org/galleryart.php?cat=7016


The San Diego Watercolor Society, a 501(C)(3) non-profit organization founded in 1965, is dedicated to expanding the appreciation of and involvement in watermedia painting through education, exhibition and promotion.  More information can be found at http://www.sdws.org.

“Balboa Park Cherry Blossoms” by Janet Gilliland
Watercolor, 12 x 10″
“The Corgies” by Cheryl Dicus
Watercolor, 9 x 11″

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