Preview Show This Week!

This coming Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, Artist Open Studio participants are having a FREE PREVIEW of works at the Mistlin Gallery. Its a chance for you to see the variety of artists’ work, purchase your tour book, and plan which studios you want to visit.

PrintHours for the preview are 2 – 7 p.m., March 27-29. Mistlin Gallery is located at 1015 J Street in downtown Modesto.

Tour maps are $10 each (free for youths 18 years or younger!). Your tour map is your “ticket” to get into any of our 36 locations, with 58 artists in total.

Maps are available for purchase at the following locations:

Mistlin Gallery, 1015 J. Street, Downtown Modesto

Chartreuse Muse, 918 10th Street, Downtown Modesto

Modesto Convention and Visitors Bureau, 10th & K Streets, Modesto

Carnegie Art Center, 250 N. Broadway, Turlock

Oakdale Chamber of Commerce, 590 N. Yosemite, Oakdale

In addition to being your admission to the Tour, your map will include the location and a short description of what each artist specializes in.

The tour book includes an entry form for a drawing to win one of 7 original works of art. Entries will be collected by artists on the tour. These entries will be on view at this week’s preview show.

Keep an eye on this blog for more updates and artist highlights leading up to the big weekend! If you have questions, email


Artist Registration Open through Jan. 2016

We’ve already received over 30 Artist registrations!

Oil painting by Chella, one of our 2016 tour artists.

Oil painting by Chella, one of our 2016 tour artists.

Don’t procrastinate. Next year’s tour will be April 23-24, 2016. The earlier we can promote and advertise, the better attendance we get. Interested Stanislaus County artists can register until Jan. 15. The registration fee is $75.

You can download and print the registration information here and mail it in with your fee and photo. Your high resolution photos can be emailed to


Online registration is also available at (There is an extra fee for online registration.)

Or pick up a registration form at Mistlin Gallery, 1015 J Street, Modesto or Carnegie Art Center in Turlock.

We are looking forward to a successful 6th year! Hope to see you there.

66 Artists Will Participate in Our 5th Year

Sixty-six artists will be sharing, selling and demonstrating their work at this year’s Open Studio Tour, April 25-26. Of those, 16 are new to the tour, and 50 are returning from last year or years past.

This is the 5th year of our tour, originally headed by Alice Richards and supported by the Stanislaus Travel and Tourism Roundtable. The tour’s goal is to involve artists from all nine cities of Stanislaus County and who open their studios with an atmosphere of learning for visitors. This is also an opportunity for artists to exhibit, demonstrate and sell their work.

2015 Tour Book cover featuring the work of founding chair, Alice Richards.

2015 Tour Book cover featuring the work of founding chair, Alice Richards.

In 2009, a four member Steering Committee met for a year to plan, promote and publicize the tour. Over fifty artists signed up. Tour maps were designed and sold for $10. The Artist Open Studio tour has been a success these past four years with as many as 75 artists included. This year, 2015, marks 5 years of the tour’s existence. Congratulations to the volunteers who have made this, and past years, a reality.

To celebrate our 5th anniversary, the Open Studio committee has decided to give away FIVE $200 gift certificates to tourists, drawn from the entry forms returned to any participating studio. The drawing will take place the week following the tour, and will be good towards purchase of any original art at any studio through the month of May.

Tour books will be on sale the first of March for $10 at the following locations: Carnegie Art Center in Turlock, Mistlin Art Gallery, Chartreuse Muse Gallery and Modesto Convention and Visitor’s Bureau in Modesto, and the Oakdale Chamber of Commerce. Map booklets can also be purchased from any participating artist.

Announcing the 2014 Purchase Awards

Chinese Lanterns, photograph by Lorraine Nilson.

Chinese Lanterns, photograph by Lorraine Nilson.

We are gearing up for the 2014 tour! These 5 artists have received this year’s purchase award. Congratulations!

Muse Lot, oil painting by Jack Morris.

Muse Lot, oil painting by Jack Morris.

Sunflower and Caterpillar, ink painting by Barbara Gill.

Sunflower and Caterpillar, ink painting by Barbara Gill.

Yes, We Are Happy Cows, watercolor by Elizabeth Ingebretsen.

Yes, We Are Happy Cows, watercolor by Elizabeth Ingebretsen.

Landscape wood tray by Tom Donalson.

Landscape wood tray by Tom Donalson.

Featured Artist: Jack McBride

ImageMy goal is to produce inspiring fine art landscape photographs that lead people to want to visit that location because it creates some sort of emotional response in them. As an artist — as opposed to a photojournalist— I try to capture my feelings for a scene, not just deliver a literal interpretation of what’s there. Sometimes that means altering my images to blend different exposures of the scene, removing certain elements, changing perspectives, or even combining photographs from different locations or times. If you want to see reality just look out the window, if you want to see something more inspiring and interesting take a look at my photographs.

To those who would say that altering reality is a crime against nature, I would say that’s what artists have been doing for centuries, it’s called “artistic license”. Sadly many “art authorities” still view black & white photography as the “real thing”. Yet what could be more unrealistic than removing all the color from an image? Furthermore if color film had been introduced before black & white, does anyone imagine that the latter would have ever existed? 

I have worked in film formats ranging from 35mm, to 2 ¼” x 2 ¼”, to 4” x 5” in both black and white and color; plus I have processed and printed images from all of them in professional darkrooms. After struggling for forty years to find economical and archival methods of printing my color photographs, the introduction of digital photography and printing has finally enabled me to do that in an artful and technically pleasing way.


Jack McBride, photographer