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Now in print! Limited First Edition Memoir Authored by Judith Carducci

“... rivaling in a special way the writings of Robert Henri ... This book is a triumph ... not to be missed! ” — Dr. Louis Zona, Executive Director, Chief Curator The Butler Institute of American Art

Role Reversal:My Life In-Out-In Art

An autobiography by Judith Carducci

300 page high quality softcover with over 300 artwork images and photos

$100 plus $10 shipping for this splendid coffee table art book memoir!

“The title of the book forecasts the upheaval in the life of a serious woman artist ... It ends on a bright note of fulfillment, but tempered by regret for three decades lost, bracketed by an early budding career as a classically trained professional artist and by a restart and success after a hiatus of more than 30 years. This is the story of how it unfolded.” — Judith B. Carducci

And a second book!

Steel Table Still Lifes: Reflections

100 page collector's edition coffee table sized high-quality softcover with over 100 artwork images

Only 50 available!

$125 plus $10 shipping

“This book should be in every artists library as a beautiful reminder to look more deeply into your subjects and the reason you paint them.” —Kimberly S. Moore PSA

“With her smartly written and beautifully illustrated book, Judith Carducci provides an intimate look into her process for building stilllife painting, and an understanding of her “why to”. Through her imaginative choice and placement of objects as diverse as old work boots, onions, a cast iron horse and miniature sculptures, Judy reveals the inherent worth and potential of objects for narration and visual aesthetic.... a wealth of insight and inspiration.” —George Danhires, Painter/Sculptor

To order your book(s)

Email Judith at that you are purchasing the book and let her know

1. whether you wish to mail a check or use Zelle.

2. Include your shipping address in your email and the quantity of books, prices and total payment amount including shipping.

If you wish to mail a check, Judith will respond with her mailing address.

If you wish to pay with your Zelle account, please use Judith's Zelle email address: Zelle will send her a confirmation email.

Once payment is received and your shipping address is known, Judith will ship the book(s) to you and email you with shipping confirmation.

2022 News

Pastel Journal publishes a chapter from Role Reversal in the Fall 2022 Issue

The current (Fall, 2022) issue of the Pastel Journal has a 7-page article based on a chapter from her soon-to-be published memoir, Role Reversal, describing the creation of Judith’s self-portrait at age 86, “Daughter of the Commonwealth, With Attitude”.


2021 News

Seeking publishers to print and distribute two unique art books

During the 2020-21 pandemic isolation Judith stayed busy, writing Role Reversal - My Life in-out-in Art and Steel Table Still Life - Reflections.

She is currently sending proposals to publishers, but has discovered that the pandemic wreaked havoc on an already upended art book publication market. For example, old stand-by art publishers like Watson-Guptill have been bought out by Random House, and and North Light Books now resembles the Cheshire Cat who just faded away leaving a mysterious disembodied grin (in this case the remnants of the name floating in random places on the web but leading to no publisher of art BOOKS.) So, she is actively looking for new channels and connections (outside of self-publishing) to make these dreamy coffee-table books a reality and source of inspiration and enjoyment for many.

Steel Table Still Lifes: Reflections is about what happened when I (a fine artist) acquired a stainless steel kitchen table: its impact on my life and art, and its role in helping me cope with the effects of isolating for months during the pandemic.

Along the way the reader will gain some understanding of the art of still life and the “how-to” and “why-to” of it. A great many books are written about “how-to”: acquiring the eye-hand coordination and the ability to make the many decisions involved in producing a piece of fine art. Few books are written, especially by the artists ourselves, about “why-to.” Why does an artist paint this painting or draw this drawing? And why this way? I think the “how-to” is the body; the “why-to” is the soul that gives the body life and meaning.

These are my stories and how the answer to “Why?” has come to me over time. I hope you will enjoy my artistic process. If you are an artist these stories will speak to your own journey of artistic discovery. If you are not an artist, I hope you will understand better some of the reasons why we do what we do.

— Judith B. Carducci
For years students, colleagues and friends have asked me to write an autobiography. Recently a librarian told me there is a need for books by artists about their lives, which was also what was being requested of me: people wanted my story.

Artists primarily communicate visually rather than verbally, and as they pass away, their feelings about their personal experiences and the impact of them are lost.

I have been a mentor and role model for artists worldwide. I have contended with career interruptions and late starts resulting from the legal and social limits on females in the early 20th century, the impact of changing social roles, and the search for success in the 21st century with its electronic communications, speed and social media.

Role Reversal is my story of my life: from becoming an artist in early childhood, through the upheaval of the transition of American Art from representational to abstract, through gender discrimination and the implications of marriage and motherhood, to ultimate success and the challenge of navigating the 2020s including the pandemic.

— Judith B. Carducci

From the Fall 2020 issue of The Art of the Portrait:

Cecilia Beaux Forum

With Gratitude

In 2005, the Portrait Society of America formed the Cecilia Beaux Forum as a committee to address particular considerations faced by women in the arts. The purpose of the Cecilia Beaux Forum is to strengthen the role of women artists by providing programs and resources to enhance the quality of, as well as, the public's knowledge and appreciation of their work. Judith Carducci was appointed by Ed Jonas as the first chair and has served in the position until her recent resignation. The Portrait Society is grateful for her many years of service as well as oversight of a countless number of volunteers who have served on the Literature, Exhibits, Social Media and Mentoring Committees.

Recently, Judy shared the history the Forum and how the program has impacted her life and others.

"The extraordinary men who founded and served on the boards (Executive and Advisory) of the Portrait Society of America had become concerned about the women members. It was clear that something in women’s experience was different. Their careers were not as flourishing, their work not attracting the notice or awards in the same degree as that of the men. They decided it behooved them to do something to encourage and support the women. A hearty thank you to those alert men and to Ed Jonas for creating and naming the Forum! They established a dedicated program for the women, the Cecilia Beaux Forum (CBF) – named for the woman contemporary of Sargent thought by many his equal in ability. They created a seat on the Executive Board for the Chair of CBF, and asked me to serve, and I have until the pandemic and the limitations of age led to my recent resignation. Women, because of our societal roles of wife and mother, and because of the age’s long history of male domination, have experienced late starts and interrupted careers. Historically women were excluded for much of the best art training, and in particular the foundational figure drawing and painting classes.

Because I have endured late starts and interruptions and yet was able to achieve success, recognition, and happiness even late in life, I have represented hope to women – and men – who are experiencing those challenges. To be part of a program to give people mentoring and tools to work toward their goals in our profession, and to be part of the team of artists who volunteer their time to these ends, has been a great privilege.

The Portrait Society of America has been the most important factor, besides my family, in my life since its first conference in 1999, and I have treasured it and the friendships of a lifetime that have been nurtured in it."

Judy, thank you for your leadership and wise council, over the past 15 years, the Cecilia Beaux Forum has had an indelible impact on women in the arts.

— Christine Egnoski

Judith participates in a Celia Beaux Forum panel discussion at the Portrait Society of America Convention in 2017


Judith competes in the Portrait Society of America International Self-Portrait Project

August 25, 2020

A huge thank you to all who participated in the The International Self Portrait Project by voting for Judith's "Pandemic 1, Isolating." You helped raise $37,687 to support the ongoing educational programming of the Portrait Society of America.

After staying up to watch the final bidding, Judith emailed the Portrait Society:

"Congratulations on the very successful project, and kudos to whoever came up with such a great idea! It was fun to watch the elbows being thrown at the end. As a fundraiser it was terrific; as a competition about quality it was of no value; as an illustration of how members have been dealing with how to use their time during the pandemic it was interesting; as entertainment it was a lot of fun. As the clock wound down, my friends and I had good seats and plenty of popcorn! We were surprised that Cort sat back and didn’t make a final bid for first or second since he was so close - so there was that unexpected twist as well. It really had everything. Way to go! - Judy"


2019 News & Events

Judith takes First Place with her self-portrait "Puppet with the Evil Eye and I"

Congratulations to Judith for taking First Place with her rule-breaking 2018 Self-portrait, "Puppet with the Evil Eye and I" at the Akron Society of Artists 88th Annual Member Show in the Cuyahoga Valley Art Center

Judith offered her creative process on her Facebook page in 2018, when the work was first posted there:

"Another birthday, another self portrait: 'Puppet with the Evil Eye, and I'

The challenge was the expressions. At first glance, the puppet is cute/sweet, but almost immediately that changes to creepy/scary/sinister. (David’s fiancée says “that will never hang in MY house!”). I wanted to be sure to capture that. My expression needed to be a little bit amused and more apprehension.

To enhance the tension and discomfort I broke some “rules”. I jammed Frantisek down into the LL corner, with his feet braced against the edge. The entire center of interest is left of center, and I’m stuck in a narrow space with the little evil being, jammed between him and the table into a narrow space against a wall with a dark shadow that keeps me from a possible escape out the right. I’m also menaced by the pole with the mechanism of his strings. All of the angles and shapes are very carefully constructed for direction and tension. All the colors and values are carefully chosen - my sweater and shirt and the color and value of the background. (Note that the color scheme is elementary and raw: the three primary colors?) This is the largest and most ambitious of the Tabletop series. The steel tabletop is painted with iridescent pastels and it shimmers.

I set up in my dressing room which has morning light from the east, as does my kitchen. I set up with the puppet on the dressing table and me reflected in the mirror on the wall above it. After painting the two portraits, I moved us into the kitchen where I put the puppet on the steel table to paint the reflections. I took a selfie with my iPhone to get an idea of my reflections in the tabletop and adapted them to the needs of the painting.
The background and shadow were entirely invented. This was the perfect opportunity to make a RED signature - something I have had a habit of deriding and have never before done. It felt like flipping the bird! Artistic acting-out at age 83! I love breaking rules!!"

Judith teaches— no— takes a workshop from Martin Campos

Photo credit: Bruce Stebner

Judith and Martin Campos at Martin’s workshop hosted by Akron Society of Artists in October. She comments

“Wonderful workshop! Crammed with ideas to take away and chew on. How not to crank out potboilers, be stuck in the same-old, plumb the depths, break your head, and thank the gods and fates for art. And thanks to Martin for his gift of teaching.”

by Judith Carducci

Judith participates in the Celia Beaux Forum at the Portrait Society of America Convention

Artist Judy Tkacs writes "An early morning session that always draws a dedicated crowd is the Cecilia Beaux Forum presentation. This year's panel was moderated by Dawn Whitelaw and included Ying-He Liu, Judith Carducci, Gregory Mortenson, Alicia Ponzio, John Seibels Walker, and Lea Wight"

Photo credits: Judy Takács

2018 News & Events

Judith Awarded Emeritus Status at the Akron Society of Artists

May 24, 2018 — Last night the Akron Society of Artists gave Judy a handsome diploma for having achieved Emeritus status. Judy writes "I am highly honored! And it’s historic, dating from the originating of the Society as all-male. It declares that the artist “has attained this honor through his (sic) long and faithful service to the arts.” I love it!

Judith participates in the Portrait Society of America's annual Face-off at their 2018 annual convention

Photo credits: Michelle Schleider and Judy Takács—   Look for Judith's final results here

2017 News & Events

International Artists Magazine features "Never Without Inspiration"

Congratulations, Judith, for a fine article about self-portraits! You can find many of Judith's self-portraits on her "Adult Portraits" gallery page, including those she has created every year since turning 80.

Judith conducts a joint demo at the Portrait Society of America Convention

and is once again a part of the Celia Beaux Forum panel as Forum Chair. Judy writes "Michelle Dunaway and I did a joint demo in which we talked with each other and the audience while painting the portrait of an older man with a splendid white beard and a jaunty red beret. Michelle painted in oil and I in pastel. (My piece was immediately bought, with the fee donated to benefit the Portrait Society to support its quality programs on behalf of representational art worldwide.)"

Photo credit: Aida Garrity 

Photo Credit: Kimberly S. Moore.

2016 News & Events

The Cleveland Museum of Art celebrated its 100th birthday

Cleveland Museum of Art Centennial Festival

Judith writes "The Cleveland Museum of Art celebrated its 100th Birthday with a weekend of gala events coinciding with Cleveland's big annual Equinox Party, and including an outdoor concert by the Cleveland Symphony Orchestra. Area artists were invited to show their work in 'The Artists Village,' tents provided by CMA; and a few plein air artists were invited to paint under umbrellas set up around Wade Lagoon. The weather was beautiful, and lots of people came to look and chat. CMA provided wonderful volunteers for support, plenty of water during the hot summer weather, lunch, and an honorarium. I keenly enjoyed the weekend. (By the way: I was invited because the committee chairman saw my painting of "The Lily Pond" in the AGC "52 Weeks/52 Works" desk calendar.)"

Check out Judith's six paintings in her Plein Air gallery and the event here:

Gallery Inn desk

The Gallery Inn Interior Series

Judy writes about her February 2016 visit to Old San Juan

I was invited by Jan D'Esopo, owner of The Gallery Inn in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico, to do a project she had in mind: the Inn is unusual because it is a museum of art - all of which has been created right there rather than collected from elsewhere and brought there; it was her idea that interior scenes could be painted and hung where guests could see both the painting of the scene and the scene itself while standing on the very spot where the artist had stood.

A painting I did several years ago of the Night Desk of the Inn hangs next to the reception desk and was an inspiration for her idea for the project.

I love to paint interiors, and the Inn with its beautiful rooms and patios infused with soft light is an artist's delight. It was a veritable treasure hunt locating the views, and the results are these six pastel paintings done in three days. (See all six paintings on Judy's new "Interiors" gallery page)

Steinway pianist

Janet D'Esopo is the Founder of the Steinway Society of Puerto Rico, and the Inn is the home of concerts that take place in the elegant Music Room depicted in two of the paintings. The magnificent Steinway grand piano that belonged to her father who acquired it from Yale University, is one of the world's great instruments. Musicians come from all over the world to play there. While I was doing the project, the Ukrainian pianist, Martin Labasevitch, gave a concert-lecture on Pictures at an Exhibition, and a chamber music trio of renowned violinist, cellist, and pianist rehearsed their program for a concert to take pace at the Symphony Hall in San Juan that weekend. (The sculpture of the horse in one of the paintings of The Music Room is the work of Jan D'Esopo, who studied with the famous sculptor, Bruno Lucchesi, whose work also graces The Inn. A little terra cotta Madonna and Child by Lucchesi, which he reportedly sculpted using a credit card as his tool, is the subject of one of my paintings on my web site.)



2015 News & Events

Have Pastels, Will Travel . . .

Judith B. Carducci, PSA, PSS and Kimberly S. Moore, PSA Show

Sunday, August 30 - Thursday, October 22
Artists Reception:  Sunday, October 4, noon to 2:00 PM

St. Paul's Episcopal Church, 1361 West Market St., Akron, Ohio 44313

Gallery hours: M-F 9 AM - 7PM;  Sat 10 AM - noon;  Sun, noon - 2 PM


Check the Alla Prima Page for more demos

2015 Portrait Society of America Art of the Portrait Convention

In April, Judith once again participated in the "Face-off" demonstration challenge, completing an alla-prima portrait of the model posed after John Singer Sargent's "Madame X" She also gave a second pastel portrait demonstration, and oversaw the workshops of the Celia Beaux Forum.

photos courtesy of fellow portrait artist Judy Takacs Pendergast

Judith's First Solo Exhibition Butler Institute of American Art
Giffuni Gallery of Pastel Art March 8th - May 3rd

Known for pastel portraiture, Judith Carducci has also created many still lifes and plein air paintings and drawings. This exhibition will survey her recent works in all of these genres.


Scenes from Judith's Opening Reception, March 8th 2015 — courtesy of portrait artist Judy Takacs Pendergast
More photos and friends comments can be found on Judith's Facebook page



The Butler Institute of American Art acquires two of Judith's paintings

Two of Judith's paintings from her solo show have been selected for the museum's permanent collection: "The Widow" a poignant self-portrait, and "New Day Coming — Fort San Cristobal" painted on location in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico. Congratulations, Judith!


April 1–April 24 :: Ohio Arts Council Riffe Gallery Lobby Exhibition

The Magic of Monhegan: Seven Women Paint The Island's Charm

Featuring artworks from Judith and six other artist friends who painted together during last September's trip to Monhegan Island: Kimberly S. Moore, Greer Jennison, Susan Porges, Carol Medhurst, Jeane McKinney, and Aida Garrity

Cecilia Beaux Forum features Judith in

"Our Portraits Ourselves" blog post, February 2015

Judith's work in portraiture is the focus of a major article from the Portrait Society of America for February.

It covers many of her self portraits, including her recent imagined self portrait in Vanitas III "L ' Envoi" self portraits and focuses on the new Vanitas III self portrait which will be in her solo show, opening at the Butler Institute of American Art on Sunday, March 8th.

2014 News :: Events :: Reviews

November 2014 Exhibition at the Salmagundi

My “Posthumous Portrait of My Mother” will be in an inaugural invitational show by Portraits Inc., “Today’s Portraits:  Emerging Artists and Leading Masters,” at the Salmagundi Art Club in NYC, Nov. 12 - 20.  Opening reception Friday, Nov. 14, 6-8 PM.

The curator writes:  “The show offers an exciting opportunity to present to the public the best work being done in contemporary portraiture.”  Twenty-five portraitists have been invited to show their work. Here is a link:

On Painting Lefty in Amsterdam, France, Ohio and Maine

The artist, Kimberly Moore, and I had been watching the Great Courses DVDs on Gothic Cathedrals and decided to go to Prague to see the splendid cathedral there (which was featured in the series) and the gorgeous city.  On the day we arrived, I stepped off an unmarked step in a corridor in the hotel, into the air, and fractured my (right, naturally) shoulder in three places.  I didn't get any painting done in Prague, sadly, but I had gone to Amsterdam afterward solely to paint (having toured that fascinating city years ago) and there was no way I was going to miss the chance.  So I did two paintings on the last two days there - on the sidewalk in front of the 17th century canal house inn where we were staying.  We then went on to France where I've taught for ten years, and I continued my lefty painting, for a total of ten in Europe on this trip.  Right after arriving home, I taught a 3-day plein air workshop in Ohio, demonstrating lefty, for another 4 studies.

Next, I'm off to Monhegan Island, Maine.

I'd wondered if or how painting with the non-dominant hand might influence my style, but I'm not sure it has.  Others may judge, but the experience has reminded me that we paint (and write) with our brains, not so much with our hands.  I had polio at age eleven, and the "Sister Kenny" treatment then used required lying on one's back with feet against a board.  The hospital staff knew how important drawing was to my morale, and allowed me to draw by holding a pencil between my toes, on a sketchbook propped against the footboard.  So I'd experienced one other alternative drawing route.

My arm is newly out of the harness, and still too weak and painful for painting, so I'll continue "exploring my sinister side" as one of my friends put it, on the annual painting trip to Monhegan Island, Maine, with friends, September 6 through 16.  And I've signed up to teach again in France in mid-October, 2016.  I hope you'll join me:  it's a beautiful inspiring place!  No matter which hand you use.

— Judy

Typed lefty from my iPad, September 2014


Portrait Society Signature Status Awarded in early April

I was awakened at 2:20 AM in Istanbul by a phone call from Shane Neal of the Portrait Society of America (obviously surprised to find me in Istanbul) to tell me that I have been awarded Signature status in the Portrait Society.

The signature status has just been inaugurated, after many years of consideration and planning, and the first members to be awarded it will be announced at the annual conference in Washington this weekend, April 26-27. I am especially pleased because of my respect and love for the Society and its goals, and my deep commitment to it.

The application form and procedure are on the Society's web site:!signature-status/cylg

WVIZ PBS 2014 program segment on Judy Carducci

The segment premiered Thursday night, March 27th and was rebroadcast on Saturday at 4PM and Sunday at 12:30 PM, on the WVIZ/PBS show "Applause." (FYI that's channel 25 on Direct and Dish.)

If you live outside the broadcast area, or missed it, you can find the program online here

It's a magnificent vignette of Judy's zest for gesture that captures the spirit of her subjects. Classic Judy at her best, with gestural figure paintings as best supporting actors and actresses along with friend, Kim Moore.

AS PROMISED: Review of three weeks' use of the Easy L Lite, in Greece and Istanbul: very happy!

Having done nearly 30 paintings in the past three weeks on mainland Greece, the Peloponnese, the Greek islands of Santorini and Mykonos, and in Istanbul, I can say that the Easy L met my every hope. It was wonderful to have a sturdy, lightweight, convenient easel that set up in seconds without a hitch, survived a sudden drenching downpour without warping, and held every size and shape panel I wanted to use for plein air painting.

I have the standard box, and as a pastelist don't need the brush holder, palette, or brass hooks. I'd thought I'd use the brass hooks for my roll of paper towels, but find that the carrying strap works fine for that purpose. Note: I bought the box without the tripod and am using a light-weight German tripod.

My framer cut a piece of black non-warping foam core to fit in the outside slot of the "wet painting" carrier on the back of the box, so I can keep small odd-sized painting panels in there, but I only used it once, since I paint on sizes that don't usually fit that space. I've asked the company if they will make me a box that doesn't have the "wet painting carrier" feature, which will result in an even slenderer box, and they have told me they will do that and it will be ready next month.

I will then have two Easy L's - the standard and one custom-made for a pastelist.

My Great American Art Works pastel box of 60 half-sticks fits perfectly in the Easy L, with just room for a large fat charcoal stick and a charcoal pencil and kneaded eraser if wanted, so that is a great convenience as the box of pastels then takes up no additional room in luggage. I found that the Easy L and the tripod fit easily into my Club Glove duffel along with my painting panels and clothing for three weeks, with extra room and weight to spare. For painting in narrow steep city streets and on mountainsides, I carried everything I needed - Easy L with box of pastel and charcoal, tripod, roll of paper towels) in one of the featherlight Signilar recyclable washable bags over my shoulder, with hands free for a hiking stick and the balance one needs in her 80th year.

Bottom line:
Beautifully made, sturdy, smoothly operating, convenient, light weight easel for travel and plein air painting. Served me well on rough terrain and in bad weather with no problems at all. Very fast set up and take down. Easily packable for artists wanting to take only one piece of luggage for foreign or long-distance travel.

Test-driving my new easel, the Easy L Lite, with a German tripod - March 19th, 2014

— as Guest Artist of the Ohio Portrait Painters portrait painting session at the McConnell Art Center in Worthington, Ohio. Click HERE for a brief slide show:

Soltek Warning Update - March 28th, 2014

I have repeatedly stated to Todd at Soltek and Jacob at Madison Art that: when I receive a box with a new Soltek easel to replace my defective easel, I will put the scrap easel in the box the new one arrives in and send it back. NO ONE is to send me an empty pre-paid box.

On Friday, one empty box was delivered to my door by UPS.

When convenient, if I have the time, I will contact UPS and ask that the package be picked up and returned to sender.

Equipment advice:  Caveat Emptor (Buyer Beware) - Soltek Easels

February 2014

A year ago, as a treat, I bought myself a Soltek Easel, having researched portable easels.  My trusty old half-size Julian french easel having been around the world a few times had finally needed retirement.  The Soltek was expensive and I had heard that it was temperamental, but I decided to take the plunge.  

It is a wonderful design, but is not at all sturdy and not worth the price. Temperamental is not really the word I'd use to describe it;  fragile is more accurate.

The very first time I used it, a piece came off and disappeared.  It was one of the pieces that holds the painting panel to the

support.  I was teaching at the time, in Puerto Rico.  When I returned home, I notified the art supply store from which I'd bought it and they notified the company and a few months later a replacement piece arrived from the company.

Last September, while painting on Monhegan Island in Maine,  I found myself having a hard time folding the easel.  I discovered that the entire front panel, which is plastic, had split in two, through a rivet, making the entire box unstable.

The people who were with me advised that the company should give me a new easel, not just repair it. I have just talked with the manager of the company and he says he's sorry I'm having trouble with the easel but the warranty is for only a year (I bought it slightly over a year ago) and he "cannot" send me another easel.  He says "the best" the company can do is for me to ship it back (at my expense) and they will repair it.

I am about to leave to teach in Florida, and shortly after that to teach and paint in Greece, Istanbul, Prague, Amsterdam and southern France, and then back again to Monhegan, as well as various other workshops in the United States.  I cannot be without a portable easel and cannot wait months for a usable Soltek. Of course the company "can" replace my easel.  He chooses not to.  He tells me "If you hadn't procrastinated" and had called before the year was up, he could have replaced the easel.  So it's MY fault.  And he's  - repeatedly - "sorry." He chooses not to replace what is either a lemon or simply a fragile design.

I wonder how many other lemons there are waiting to be bought?  Or is it just too fragile for its design, and needs to be made of better materials? I am warning all my students that, if they hope for a Soltek, this is the kind of experience they may expect for the high price.

March 2014

A man from Soltek contacted me and said that HE, not the man I talked with on the phone, is the manager.  He said he will send a replacement part and I can fix the easel;  he compares my asking for a new easel to expecting a new car when mine has a broken windshield.  However, this is not a windshield - it's the integrity of the whole body -- unsafe to drive. He told one artist who wrote to the company in response to my caveat that the company prides itself on its good customer relations and he is in touch with me to "take care of " me.

I have just received a package containing a replacement for the second broken part to my Soltek easel.  I had told the (second) man claiming to be the manager that this was not a satisfactory solution to the problem.  He has ignored that.

Meanwhile, I am researching other easels and learning a great deal from colleagues with many years of hands-on research and satisfactory experience which I will share.

I have been hearing from artists that they agree with my comments regarding the Soltek.  One person has posted on my Facebook page that I must have a lemon.  If so, apparently there are a lot of lemons out there, and that artist is rarely fortunate.

Caution:  my experience shows that (1) a company employee lied to me when I phoned;  (2) the company representative does not stand behind the product;  (3)  blamed me for their choice not to replace the easel;  (4)  minimized the severity of the problem.

Do not, therefore, take the word of anybody in the company if you are told that they have "taken care of" the problem. If and when the company ever does that, I will let everybody know right away.

Bottom line: I am returning the part to the company which needs it because, as Mr. Wilcox sees it, any company that would replace an expensive failed product when it could send the customer a cheap part "would go out of business." So the Soltek is made of cheap parts and doesn't have the resources to stand behind the product.

I am not in the business of repairing wrecks, so will take a new easel on my travels and scrap the Soltek.

March 12 Update

I've just received an e-mail from Mr. Todd Wilcox (the second representative of the company to tell me HE is the manager) telling me that if I box up the easel, he will have UPS pick it up at the company's expense so the company can "make sure it is fully repaired and fully functional."

I have repeatedly told them that is not satisfactory. I have told him that when and if the company sends me a (new) replacement easel, I will put the broken one in the box the new one arrives in and send it back to them.

This product is not worth the trouble of my boxing it up, waiting for it to be picked up, waiting (it was months last time waiting for the missing part) for it to be returned while being without a portable easel for my travels.  To say nothing of the aggravation of trying to get the company to do what is right.

Meanwhile:  I have just received the preliminary plans for a 12-day painting tour of Australia for next year, August into early September. Details will be posted as soon as we have the plans firmed up. So if any of you would like to start thinking about a wonderful adventure, this is a good time to do so -- and to be sure you have a reliable, convenient, light weight easel to travel with.

March 20 Installment - Madison Art

Jacob, at Madison Art (whence I bought the Soltek easel) is trying hard to "take care of" the problem that the Soltek company will not deal with.

His latest offer, which I have rejected, is that he will "ask Soltek to send [me] a shipping box with a pre-paid label... [and] maybe [i] will at least have a somewhat usable spare easel for all the money and aggravation [I] spent.

I have repeatedly stated clearly that the only solution I consider acceptable is that Soltek send me a new easel to replace the one I have which is either a lemon from the start or a faulty product. For some reason, neither Jacob nor Soltek is registering this repeated "broken record."  My response to this is puzzlement - what is interfering with my communication and how do I get heard? - and irritation:  I'm being discounted and ignored while they come up with different plans. 

Meanwhile,  Madison Art has no negative reviews posted on their site which describes the Soltek as "durable."  I wonder if Madison will post my review?

I now have a new different easel, which comes highly recommended and I have 'test-driven it" and will give it a strenuous workout when I leave for nearly a month in Europe shortly.  I will report on what I think of my new "set up" when I return. 

The Soltek, meanwhile, is scrap.

— Judith B. Carducci, PSA

March 6 -April 27 2014

The Magic of Monhegan - Six Women Paint The Island's Charm
Peggy R. McConnell Arts Center, Worthington, Ohio

The opening reception is from 6:00 to 8:00 PM on Thursday, March 6, 2014. The show runs through April 27.

Judith Carducci, Aida Garrity, Carol Medhurst, Kimberley Moore, Susan Porges, and Greer Jennison are friends who have been painting together each September from 2011 (and will return again this year) on this coastal Maine island that has inspired American plein air painters for over 200 years. Approximately 60 paintings will be in the show.

Fresh Canvas— Portrait of Artist Judy Gaiser

March 7 - April 5

Group Ten & Friends Show

Group Ten Gallery is hosting a one-month show, from March 7 through April 5 with guest artists. Come see works by:

- John Sharp
- Brant Gebhart
- Nicholas Evans-Cato
- Charles Basham
- Tom Webb
- John Pavlicek
- Larry Walker
- Judy Carducci
- Alan Peters
- Zach Smolko 

Please join us for an opening reception on Friday, March 7, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

138 E. Main Street, Kent, Ohio 44240

2013 News :: Events

August-September 2013

As She Sees It

Hillsdale College in Michigan is hosting a solo show for Judith's pastel works with an

Artist's reception and demonstration
Tuesday August 27th 6:30-8pm

Sage Center for the Arts Daughtrey Gallery
81 East College Street, Hillsdale, MI 49242

Gallery Hours:
Mon-Thurs 9am - 9pm
Friday 9am - 7pm
Saturday 10am - 7pm
Sunday 1pm - 7pm

Download a pdf of the show card for more information: 2013hillsdale.pdf


April 2013 :: Judith teaches at the Portrait Society of America's Art of the Portrait Conference

On the afternoon of day two, after chairing the Celia Beaux Forum at 7am, Judith took the easel to paint a portrait of James Gurney (author and illustrator of Dinotopia)

Blogger and portrait artist Matthew D. Innis writes "Carducci ... had the audience roaring with laughter." James Gurney blogged "She charmed the audience with limericks and solid painting advice as she worked. It was fun to be on the other side of the easel. Thanks, Judy! "

Read Matthew's entire post to catch the spirit and excellence of this annual event with more photos of Judith's demo, start to finish.

My Work with Portrait Society of America

I continue to serve on the Executive Board and the faculty of the Portrait Society of America, and as Chairman of its Cecilia Beaux Forum. I conducted the Society's Portrait Academy at the Richeson School of Art in Kimberley, Wisconsin (see, and attended board meetings in NYC and Tallahassee, Florida, where I served on the jury that reviewed nearly 1,600 entries for the 2007 international portrait competition. At the annual convention, "The Art of the Portrait," in May 2007, I served as moderator for plenary sessions, conducted the 2nd annual meeting of the Cecilia Beaux Forum, and did portfolio reviews.

As Chairman of the Cecilia Beaux Forum, I have overseen the creation and activities of three committees: Literature, which writes and publishes articles on past and contemporary women artists; Exhibitions, which disseminates information on major shows for women to enter, and is planning a major exhibition of art by distinguished women in a prestigious venue; and Mentoring, which has begun a program of scholarships for women to receive career consultation with the eminent career and marketing consultant Calvin Goodman of California, and has designed an ongoing mentoring program for both men and women members of the Portrait Society. The Forum has a web page which is part, and the quarterly journal includes a letter by me in each issue, as well as an article on a past or contemporary woman artist.

2012 News :: Events

North Light Books features Judith's work in Strokes of Genious 4 : The Best of Drawing

Limited quantities are available on their website

Click to see an image of page 27

MY NAME IS BLUE | JUDITH B. CARDUCCI Soft vine charcoal, black-and-white Conté crayon on Canson Mi-Tientes paper 19" * 24" (48cm * 61cm)

Some of my friends and I hired Blue one evening for figure drawing. I didn’t like the full-figure pose, but I love gesture, and the expressive tilt of his head and his wonderful hair with its texture and action were exciting and inspiring. I had bought a stack of unusually colored Canson paper at a sale. It seemed to me that the black-and-white drawing tools begged for the brilliant orange-gold.

What I did on Summer Vacation 2012:

I had a great time (as only a lover of portaits can) painting Chief Thomas A. Plunkett and his son, Lieutenant "Tommy" Plunkett.

"Two In, Two Out" is a gift to the village of Reminderville, Ohio, to honor their firefighters.

Attention Carducci fans who are artists, the Exhibition is also a juried show. Download the pdf for more information.

The Salmagrundi Club is currently under restoration. We will announce the exact show dates when we know more.

Also of note from American Artist:

Judith's recent Puerto Rico workshop is covered in the Fall 2012 issue

" Plein Air Paradise," by Michael Gormley, Editorial Director of American Artist magazine, covers my workshop in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico last Dec. The article appears on pp. 42-47, in the American Artist Special Issue, "Workshop" Michael Gormley was a participant in the workshop

Judy's work is showing at Highland Library - until August 10th, 2012 :: located at 4160 Ridge Road, Medina, Ohio

The show runs through Friday, August 10th and includes Judy's drawings and plein air paintings. "En Plein Air" is a method of painting quickly on location, catching the whole landscape in one session.

Library hours are listed at

Artists whose work is in the permanent collection of the Sargent-Laessig Museum, which features the work of Ohio artists, show at the Library as a program of the Museum on behalf of the community. Judith's recent drawings "Kelsey" (at left) and "Antonio Verde" have just been purchased by the Museum.

Judith will be presenting two programs at the 2012 Portrait Society of America "Art of the Portrait" conference in Philadelphia May 24-27

Dear friends,

I am excited to tell you about the 2012 Art of the Portrait Conference in Philadelphia over Memorial Day Weekend, May 24-27. I will be holding a program, "Phases of the Artistic Journey," along with Ellen Cooper and Rhoda Sherbellas a part of the Cecilia Beaux Forum.

I am also leading a program called the "Use & Misuse of Photography in Portraiture." Please join me in Philadelphia. To sign up for the conference and receive further details, please visit

Hudson Ohio Solo show January 13 - March 7, 2012

My solo show will open at the Moos Gallery on the campus of the Western Reserve Academy on Jan. 13 and will hang through March 7.

The Gallery is in the Knight Fine Arts Center, 30 North Oviatt Street, Hudson, Ohio 44236.

Gallery hours for the public are: 8am - 3pm Monday throught Friday
and 8am to 12 noon on Saturday on days that school is in session at WRA. Contact: Tom Armbruster, Visual Art Dept., 330-650-9792

There will be approximately 30 works representing the breadth of my work from commissioned and non-commissioned portraits, still life, and plein air paintings in pastel and oil.

2011 News :: Events

October 2011 :: Judith teaches "Body Parts For Portraitists: Ears, Eyes and Hands" —

as part of The Portrait Academy, put on by the Portrait Society of America and the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art. Faculty were: Judith B. Carducci, Jean-Paul Tibbles (from England), Gwenneth Barth-White (from Switzerland), Rose Frantzen (from Iowa) and her husband, Chuck Morris.


Judith adds "My charcoal sketch (charcoal, black and white conte' crayon, on full sheet of gray
Canson Mi-Tientes paper) is of 'Edward.'" (Private collection)

The Dreamer, 1894
Oil on canvas, 33 X 25"
Collection of the Butler Institute of America

Judith co-creates the "Inspiring Figures" National Show

The Portrait Society of America and the Butler Institute of America are hosting "Inspiring Figures," a national show of the work of American women artists including work by artists of the past, work by ten outstanding invited women, and twenty works selected by means of a competition.

The show is a result of the work of the Exhibition Committee of the Portrait Society's Cecilia Beaux Forum which Judith Carducci serves as Chairman. Judy was one of the three jurors of the show, along with Dr. Louis Zona, Director of the Butler, and the renowned sculptor, Rhoda Sherbell.

Sept 12: Opening Reception & Awards Ceremony

Sept 24-25: Portrait Academy, with Dawn Whitelaw and Judith Carducci (more info on Judy's workshop page)

Oct 8 1-2:00pm: Lecture, "The Politics of Portraiture: Cecilia Beaux, Mary Cassatt, and Thomas Eakins (with a little bit of Sargent thrown in) by Sylvia Yount, Curator of American Art of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts

Oct 8 2- 3:15pm: Film, "Who Does She Think She Is?"

Oct 9 10-11:30am: Panel of participating artists, Judith Carducci, moderator

Oct 9 1-3:30pm: portrait demonstration by Judith Carducci

Carducci Paintings Acquisitioned

The Sargent-Laessig Museum of Fine Arts, Hinckley, Ohio, has acquired two of my works for its permanent collection: " Sabrina Fair," a full-length nude which won Best of Show at "The Nude," the Lexington, Kentucky annual national show; and "Young, Tan, Buff & Handsome" (Josh,) a half-figure pastel of a young man in dramatic light.

Sabrina Fair was also nationally published in the lead article of "The Art of the Portrait— the Journal of the Portrait Society of America," Vol. III, Issue 13 in the fall of 2001.

2010 News :: Events

Judith competes in the 2010 Portrait Society of America "Art of the Portrait" Convention Face-off Competition

"The Virginian" completed in 2 1/2 hours, April 2010 during the opening competition at the Portrait Society of America Convention in Washington DC.


2009 News :: Events

NEW Judith Carducci DVD: The Portrait Society of America 2009 People’s Choice Special Artist Demonstration

By popular demand, this vibrant, award-winning artist with over 30 years of experience as an instructor brings the canvas to life in rich pastel. Robert Liberace models, as Judith makes us laugh and energizes the live audience and home viewers alike with her enthusiastic technique and vivid palette.

$62.50 USD limited edition DVD Order Online
By phone:1-877-772-4321
By Mail: Portrait Society of America
attn: Educational DVDs. P.O. Box 11272, Tallahassee, FL 32302

Hat's Off To Judy Carducci winner of Portrait Society of America's 2009 "Face off" Competition —by Betsy M. Kellum, PSA, PSWC-DP 4/29/09

I just returned from the Portrait Society of America's convention in the Washington DC area, where the best portrait artists in the country gather to provide lectures, presentations and demos. It was most inspiring. Expecting to see the oils dominate, with pastel running a distant second (or third!), you can imagine my surprise and delight when Judy Carducci stole the show with her pastel work. On the opening night, she participated with about 15 fabulous artists in a "Face Off"....each painting a portrait in a two and a half hour time frame. Judy not only won the Face-Off (by popular vote) but sold her painting for the highest price. Additionally, she was awarded a second demonstration, on stage, with the entire convention participants watching. What a wonderful promotion for pastels! Between our pastel societies, publications such as The Pastel Journal and artists such as Judy, pastel will get the validation that is deserves. Cheers to Judy for a job well done. 


Fresh for Spring 2009 :: Dr. Louis Zona Portrait Completed

The Portrait Society of America has named Louis Zona, executive director of the Butler Institute of American Art in Youngstown, as the winner of its Leadership in the Arts award. Artist Judith Carducci was commissioned by the Society to paint a portrait of Zona.

Link to the January 14 Youngstown Vindicator article covering the commencement of this portrait on site at the Butler.

The award was presented and the portrait unveiled at the Society's convention in Washington, DC on April 24th.

New box top, same great colors!

Judith Carducci Portrait Pastel 78 Color Assortment on sale through

Judith demonstrates for three educational DVDs in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico from Signilar

Judy's Plein Air Workshop in Puerto Rico was hosted by Signilar, and in 2009 Signilar filmed Judy's demonstrations for three instructional videos: two about plein air painting and one demonstrating still-life. Check them out on Judith's new DVD page.

2008 News :: Events

The Market at Salat, France

Judy had taught in Southern France in the late Fall of '06 and could hardly wait to return. Now she can hardly wait to return again: June 1-10 of 2010 is already scheduled. For more information, view her workshops page.

She is also looking for possible dates in September of '09. Watch for the announcement!

American Artist magazine editor, Steve Doherty, writes about Judy's workshop in southern France.

See article in the publication's Fall '08 Workshop issue.

In late June and early July, while the lavender was in bloom and the weather perfect, Judy taught plein air painting in the Lot River Valley of southern France.

Participants, working in the medium of their own choice: oil, watercolor, ink, graphite, pastel - painted medieval walled towns, farmers markets, and bridges dating from Roman Gaul, while living in the gorgeous Domaine du Haut Baran, owned and restored by William and Rosalie Haas of Cincinnati (see

Rosalie cooked gourmet dinners, and breakfasts were taken outside on the beautiful terrace of the same golden stone of which the Domaine was built. William, who spent much of his childhood in the area and loves its history and speaks fluent French, took participants on personal guided tours (including a trip to see the breathtaking prehistoric cave paintings), advised on wine and local food, and knew what subjects were best painted in morning light or afternoon light.

The workshop was sponsored by Bob Strohsahl, manufacturer of Great American Artworks pastels, and each participant received a complimentary box of the pastels. He also introduced his new "cigar box" of 60 half sticks, designed for painting en plein air.

See the photo in the article, showing Judy's painting of a lavender field and chateau, with the box of half sticks she used to create it.

Participants declared the experience "the painting trip of a lifetime."

Toledo Firefighters Honored

On August 16, 2008, at a reception at #13 Fire Station in Toledo, Ohio, the president and curator of the Toledo Firefighters Museum accepted, on behalf of the museum, the gift of Judith's pastel drawing, done on location at the station. Judith had come to know the firefighters of #13 when their lieutenant, Roger Vorraber, posed for her demo at a workshop and subsequently invited her to the station. Judith donated the drawing, which will hang permanently at #13, in gratitude for the extraordinary service firefighters give to the community. Following the reception and lunch, Judith was given a tour of the Firefighters Museum, truly a jewel among museums.

Judith featured twice on Cleveland's Fox 8 News

When the VitaminWater commercial with LeBron James came out in May, Fox News (Cleveland) sent their award-winning reporter, Dan Coughlin, to interview Judith for a segment on their evening news. He and the photographer wanted some film of her working at her easel, so she did a quick charcoal sketch of Dan and they used it as the "teaser" to introduce the segment. Dan then returned to pose for two more sittings so Judith could complete the sketch as a formal pastel portrait. The portrait was then shown on a reprise segment on Fox 8 News, July 25.

Pastel portrait of award-winning journalist, Dan Coughlin, Ampersand Pastelbord 30" x 24". Collection of Mr. & Mrs. Dan Coughlin.

Click on the image for a larger view.

Judith Sketches in Commercial with Lebron James

Judith comments "Soon after he began rehearsing, Lebron spotted the sketches I was doing of him and stopped suddenly, exclaiming that I was "actually doing those" - not just acting a part. He then had the director show everybody the sketches.

I smile when art surprises folks with wonder, even those who seem to 'have it all.' Isn't that the way it should be?"

Link to a local newspaper article by David Carducci

Judith played the part of a courtroom sketch artist in a Vitamin Water commercial starring Lebron James, the Cleveland Cavaliers' record-setting basketball player. Judith sketched both crew and cast, and the final drawing - an action sketch of Lebron tossing a basketball behind his back - will be used in the commercial and advertising, according to the director. Allfive pages of sketches she did were purchased by the agency. Lebron was charasmatic and gracious and made the experience fun for everyone, as can be seen in the photo. The filming took place March 24 & 25, at the Cleveland Convention Center.

Watch for the commercial on national TV and cable channels, beginning in May. Sports Illustrated has also published an article about the commerical in their May 2008 issue.

5/29/08 — Now showing on YouTube at

Judith's Plein Air Pastel Painting Selected for Hudson Directory

Judith participated in a paint-out in the fall of 2007, sponsored by the Hudson Fine Art and Framing Gallery. One of her many works done over the three-day period was selected for the community's phone directory.

Europe isn't the only beneficiary of Carducci "en plein air" genius— so is her home town.


Pastel Society of America National Show:

"Labor Dispute" won the Janet T. Royce Award at the Pastel Society of America's annual national open show at the National Arts Club in NYC, Sept. 5-20, 2008.

AAAA Award:
In October 2007, I returned from three months abroad (two weeks in China, two months painting and teaching in Italy, a week in Istanbul and Ephesus and cruising the Greek islands, and a week touring mainland Greece and Athens) to congratulations and the information that the Akron Area Arts Alliance - a consortium of 40 organizations including the art museum, the orchestra, the ballet, the Kent State Univ. and Univ. of Akron art departments, the theaters, and the artists groups - had awarded me its biennial "prestigious Outstanding Visual Artist Award." The award was presented at a gala banquet at the Tangier Restaurant in Akron on Nov. 10, and now graces my desk.

Thanks from Kent State University:
At halftime at the varsity basketball game on November 10th, 2007, I was called to center court to join Director of Athletics Laing Kennedy to be publicly thanked by the University for the painting "Kent State Football," which was shown on the big screen. Framed giclee prints of the painting are being given as special gifts to donors and supporters of the University. It was also announced that my portrait of Ben Curtis is planned for the new building for the golf program, as well as another still life, "Kent State Basketball."
"The Wizard" won Best of Show at the Hudson Society of Artists 2007 Midwinter Show
"Wild Mane" won First Place at the Summit Art Space Kaleidoscope Show in December 2006.

2006-2007 News :: Events Highlights

I contributed to an article, "8 Wonders of the Pastel World," by Anne Hevener, in the December 2007 issue of the Pastel Journal, pp. 21-29.

The June 2007 issue of Akron Life & Leisure Magazine featured me as their "Artist of the Year." The magazine hosted a solo show of my work at Mocha Maiden Gallery in Akron. As part of their promotion, my portrait of Akron artist P.R.Miller, "The Wizard," was auctioned for the benefit of Children's Hospital.

The Winter 2007 issue of The Pastelagram the journal of the Pastel Society of America, featured my essay on how one's art evolves over time. The five-page article, featuring six of my paintings, included three paintings of local people and an interior of the Akron Society of Artists' studio.

The December/January 2007 issue of International Artist had a feature article, "Judith Carducci, Inspired by the Beauty in Life," which showed eight of my paintings, seven of which wereof people from the Northeast Ohio area.

December 2006 issue of The Pastel Journal had a four-page feature article on my work, "Portraits of Life," which showed four of my paintings, including two people from the local Akron area.

November 2006 issue of The Artist's Magazine :: I contributed to a feature article in "Projecting & Art," in which a portrait of Tom Mullins and a painting I did of the sink in the Akron Society of Artists studio were reproduced.