Ambassador of the Week: Jan Guarino

Meet Jan Guarinothis week’s top American Watercolor Weekly Ambassador!

Every painting I choose to paint focuses on the question: what drew me to this subject? As I move through this question, I then look at my world through a filter that says to me, what’s next and then go where the answers may lead me. It may be a place I visited during my travels, I will be called to a particular photo, or a painting I started en plein air. It may be a photograph someone shows me of a person, a child, a couple that captured a moment, an expression, a posture. It is in that moment that I pause and realize I am overcome by a stirring, an ache — and I must paint it.

“By the Light”

“By The Light” (watercolor painting) during a recent artists painting trip to Provence, we were in this lovely church and the light coming in the window cast a beautiful glow on these folks. It just spoke to me and when that happens the painting pours out of me.

Concert Here Tonight

“Concert Here Tonight” (watercolor painting) From a photo I took in Dubrovnik on an artists painting trip. The war they endured was one of the bloodiest in recent history. The bullet holes that are in the painting were actually everywhere in the town and surrounding areas. While today this doorway provides a lovely candlelight concert within, years ago it provided a very different kind of protection during the war.

Desert Dance

“Desert Dance” (watercolor painting) I totally enjoyed painting this caravan of camel riders through the Sahara desert. The colors on the sand, the long shadows from the setting sun and the postures of the camels and their riders were a joy to depict.

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PleinAir Magazine and American Watercolor Weekly Editor-in-Chief With more than 20 years experience in art publishing, Kelly Kane has served previously as Editor-in-Chief of Watercolor Artist magazine and Content Director for The Artist’s Magazine, Drawing, Acrylic Artist, and Pastel Journal. She has interviewed many of the preeminent artists of our time and written numerous articles about painting, drawing, art education and art history. She is now the Editor-in-Chief of PleinAir Magazine and the American Watercolor Weekly newsletter. Click here to send her an email.


  1. It is great to see Jan Guarino being recognized here. She is not just a great painter but an outstanding teacher and a wonderful person. She has been opening my eyes to what watercolor should be all about. Congrats to you Jan

  2. I have recently been so fortunate to learn of Jan’s online classes and value not only her gift as an artist but also her gift as a tutor. She is generous in sharing her process, giving many clear explanations of what she is doing and why. I am learning so much from her. Location prevents me from taking live classes with Jan but oh how I envy those who can!


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