workshops and events

Workshops & Events

Throughout the year Dots ‘N Doodles will host various events such as our annual Open House and a variety of visiting artist workshops and product demonstrations. We also support our local community partners such as The Astoria Art Loft, listing their classes on our calendar as well as other local community events.

The workshops, demonstrations and events are listed below with sign up instructions and contact information. Each listing will provide a description of the event, the place, the time, the dates, the fees (if applicable) and other pertinent information.

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Encaustic Painting @ The Astoria Art Loft
Jan 30 @ 9:00 am – 11:00 am

Encaustic Painting Presentation and Demonstration


Encaustic Painting Presentation and Demonstration
Geisha series

Scott Leahing will lead a two hour encaustic painting presentation and demonstration.  Scott will introduce this ancient art of using wax as a painting medium and will also demonstrate the use of encaustics in other areas.  The discussion will include materials (waxes, heat etc) used in encaustics and discuss encaustics in terms of painting, mixed media and sculpture. There will be a limited demonstration of techniques using, tissue paper, photos, transfers as well as oil bars, watercolor paints, pastels, India ink, alcohol and shellac if time permits.

There will be some limited group participation.

No supplies are required by participants.

Encaustic painting, also known as hot wax painting, involves using heated beeswax to which colored pigments are added. The liquid or paste is then applied to a surface—usually prepared wood, though canvas and other materials are often used. The simplest encaustic mixture can be made from adding pigments to beeswax, but there are several other recipes that can be used—some containing other types of waxes, dammar resin, linseed oil, or other ingredients. Pure, powdered pigments can be used, though some mixtures use oil paints or other forms of pigment.

Metal tools and special brushes can be used to shape the paint before it cools, or heated metal tools can be used to manipulate the wax once it has cooled onto the surface. Today, tools such as heat lamps, heat guns, and other methods of applying heat allow artists to extend the amount of time they have to work with the material. Because wax is used as the pigment binder, encaustics can be sculpted as well as painted. Other materials can be encased or collaged into the surface, or layered, using the encaustic medium to stick them to the surface.

Drawing Workshop @ The Astoria Art Loft
Aug 5 @ 9:00 am – Aug 7 @ 4:00 pm

David Kitler – International wildlife artist
in Astoria, Oregon

Dots ‘N Doodles Art Supplies and The Astoria Art Loft are proud to present international wildlife artist, David Kitler, to Astoria where he will lead a 3 day comprehensive drawing workshop. David will provide intensive instruction to a limited number of participants

Day 1, am:
David will spend the the morning introducing and reviewing drawing materials (different types of pencils, paper and accompanying materials), after which he will then discuss concepts related to basic shapes and values.

Day 1, pm:
In the afternoon David will engage student participation – either a still life grouping of collected material from outside, going outside to draw, or working from reference brought in by students.

Day 2, am:
On the second morning David continue to explore more on textures and techniques as well as more work on previous days drawing.

Day 2, pm:
On the second afternoon David will introduce water soluble graphite to the mix as well as some journaling discussion. If the weather permits then David will have participants do some drawing outside.

Day 3, am:
On the third morning David will touch on more advanced techniques (airbrushing graphite, drawing on gessoed board, scratch board, etc, and the workshop would finish with an introduction to adding color to a pencil sketch.

David Kitler Video(below) from CCP video Productions

Suggested Supplies – Drawing / Sketching
3H, HB and 3B

Staedtler (white)

loose sheets (for practice)
tracing pad (highly recommended)

Additional Supplies (optional)
blending stump (small or medium)
erasing shield
pencil sharpener (hand held)
sandpaper pad
scalpel (to create chisel edge on pencil)



Born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, David’s appreciation of nature began in his youth, as he explored the Canadian outdoors.  Once he realized that the whole world was only a plane trip away, David embarked on longer reference gathering trips to places such as Kenya, Tanzania, Nepal, India, Brazil, Panama, and Costa Rica, as well as through most of the U.S.A. and Alaska.  In the meantime, David taught himself to draw and paint, experimenting with a variety of media and techniques.

Because of his love of wildlife, David had initially geared his education towards becoming a veterinarian, believing that art could only be treated as a hobby.  Still, while growing up, David received support and encouragement from his mother, who sometimes allowed him to stay up late on school nights so he could finish a drawing.  David still vividly remembers one of the last things his mother ever said to him: “Don’t let anyone ever tell you that you are not an artist.”  Unfortunately soon after, at the age of 17, David lost that source of support in a tragic manner, when David’s mother was killed by his father.  This terrible event impacted David’s life, and that of his four younger siblings, in immeasurable ways.  Introduced abruptly into the adult world, David had to find ways to support himself and secure his future, so he gave up his dream of attending university, and started work at a local factory.

Soon, however, David’s sketches and paintings, which he continued to work on whenever he had a free moment, began to garner attention, opening a door to a world he had not known existed.  It was then that he decided to pursue a degree in art, hoping this would further demonstrate his professional commitment and enhance his credibility.  Fending for himself, David overcame incredible odds and eventually graduated with honours from the Ontario College of Art.

David’s paintings have quickly gained recognition, and are part of corporate and private collections the world over.  David is a member of the prestigious Society of Animal Artists and the Artists for Conservation Foundation (formerly Worldwide Nature Artists Group), and has been invited to exhibit in some of North America’s major art shows, where he has received a number of Best of Show and Excellence awards.

In 1993 David relocated his studio to Calgary, Alberta.  Besides painting, David spends time with his wife, on research trips, and with the many students in his art classes and workshops, with whom he enjoys sharing his passions for nature and art.  Furthermore, he has had the opportunity to spend time in the field with some of the world’s top wildlife artists, including Robert Bateman and Carl Brenders.  A strong supporter of conservation projects and of his community, David continues to donate works in support of fund-raising activities by numerous organizations.

Click Here to see more about David Kitler



The Astoria Art Loft Second Saturday Art Walk @ the Astoria Art Loft
Oct 7 @ 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Join the Astoria Art Loft in it’s 2nd Saturday Art Walk displaying painted floats and painted rocks.  Refreshments provided.

McVarish gallery will host “America is Beautiful” @ McVarish Gallery
Sep 8 @ 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm

This month McVarish gallery will host “America is Beautiful

a provocative series of paintings and installation by Astoria artist, Morrison Pierce.  The 30 piece show looks back at World War II to illustrate the tragedy of war, drawing imagery  from photos of real people and children who lived and died in effects of the biggest and bloodiest conflict in history.

McVarish gallery

Morrison painted this series of scenes in his unique expressionist style, playing ironically with candy colors associated with childhood and innocence, while capturing the sadness and devastation of war. Within the show is a story of two brothers for whom a sad fate is determined when one is sent to war. Works starting on the left entrance area of the gallery represent innocence and childhood under the foreshadow of the imminent war leading into the main exhibit room where the imagery became far more devastating as the conflict rages. He juxtaposes innocence and the presence of evil in a thought provoking way. Its a theme he’s been returning to in various mediums over 20 years. While it’s a reflection on the past it’s also meant to reflect the potential for history to repeat itself in our present political climate.

In Morrison’s words, “‘America is Beautiful’ is a return to the past events in history that can remind us of how far we have come as a society,

or how quickly we could find ourselves right back where we started. It’s a sad reminder of where we have been and how families can be ripped apart just for the color of skin… Love defeats hate and these paintings, although dark in content, seem to show there is light at the end of the tunnel”

   McVarish gallery

It’s certainly not an easy subject, but a noble one to undertake. “How to uncover evil with a mirror for all to see is never an easy task, but one worth the time, if anything is going to change.”

Morrison has been painting and traveling for over twenty years and it shows in his fluidity of ideas and execution. Originally a film major, the cinematic element is still very present in his work and presentation. It can be seen in the way his show is designed to tell a story, even bringing back certain characters in more than on piece. Another unusual characteristic is the linear order of the show.  The story begins on the left side of the gallery and then walks the viewer through the scenes. The final  piece  attempts to show light through darkness, bringing not a happy ending, but maybe an optimistic one. Then adding more drama to the spectacle, the show will also include an installation fraught with morbid symbolism.

 His decision to come to Astoria in 2017 was based on a coin flip. Having traveled to most other cities in the US, this was one he had not seen yet. This will be his first show in Astoria, which he now calls home. “I like the tight knit community of working artists, musicians and free thinkers… and the moody rainy winters.” He brings interesting and vibrant addition to the wealth of art here and has more theatric shows planned at McVarish Gallery in the coming years.

“America is Beautiful” opens with a reception from 5:00- 8:30pm Sat. September 8th and runs until November 11th at McVarish Gallery 160 Tenth Street.