The awards reception for the 35th Anniversary Exhibition of the Potomac Valley Watercolorists took place tonight at Strathmore Mansion in Bethesda. It was a bitterly cold night, but there was a very good turnout - lots of fur coats, high fashion, and my wife even wore her chapka. I gave a brief talk, and then 21 awards were given out. Seen above is Elaine Hoffman with her remarkable painting Face Off, which I awarded first prize. It is a marvel of transparent watercolor painting, rendered in a loose but utterly commanding and convincing style. The palette is superb, the composition killer, and the picture truly transcends the rather unexpected subject matter (hockey players). I wish I had painted it! There are many very fine name painters in this organization, so there was plenty of first rate competition. Congratulations to Elaine, and thanks to PVW for inviting me to judge. The workshop I'm doing in conjunction with this show takes place January 23-24 in Alexandria. It's full but there is a waiting list - contact Marilyn Milici for information.