Ambassador of the Week: Kris Parins

Meet Kris Parins, this week’s top American Watercolor Weekly Ambassador!

Tufted Puffins II (watercolor on paper, 21.5 x14.25 in.)

“The puffin’s major appeal to me, as an artist, was the graphic quality of the brilliantly colored beak contrasting with the black-and-white feathers,” says Parins. “Combined with a high-contrast reflective pattern on the surface of the water, my painting plan came together. Then it rattled around in my head for nine more years until I was ready to commit the idea to paper.

“Most of my studio paintings employ a technique of applying masking fluid and then pouring liquefied watercolor. For this subject, I felt it was necessary to include more detail than I typically do, finishing the faces of the birds with a small brush.


“Turn, Turn, Turn” (watercolor, 29.25” x 21.75 in.)

“The screwdrivers are lined up on the workbench, waiting for the next project. The workshop is on the property of our family’s old Wisconsin fishing camp from the 1930s, and the tools have been used by many hands over the years. The title refers to the Pete Seger song lyric “To every thing there is a season, turn, turn, turn,” adapted from the Book of Ecclesiastes. The workshop is about to experience a turnover of owners, and may be forever changed; the turn of the screw!


“Sleigh Ride” (watercolor on paper, 21 x 29 in.)

“Two Belgian draft horses pull a sleigh on a December morning when the mercury has not risen above zero. The park ranger is nearly hidden by the steam rising off the horses, and the horses are caked in ice and frost from their own breath. The painting was inspired by the weak winter sun in Jackson Hole, Wyoming at the Elk Refuge.”

Kris Parins

After earning an art degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Kris studied graphic design. She worked as an art director and account executive for many years, and created watercolor illustrations for her clients’ product graphics.

Since 1998, she has devoted her creative energy toward fine art in watercolor. The transparency and vibrancy, combined with an element of surprise, continue to keep her interested in this challenging medium. Kris’ computer and camera are integral to her creative process. Frequent travels provide fresh input and continue to develop her way of seeing.

A Signature Member of AWS, NWS, and TWSA, Kris Parins’ award-winning paintings and articles have been featured in American Artist Watercolor, Watercolor Artist, and International Artist magazines. She was selected as “One to Watch” by Watercolor Artist magazine. Additionally, her work is featured in five editions of Splash, the Best of Watercolor.

Become an American Watercolor Ambassador for a chance to be featured in an upcoming issue of the American Watercolor Weekly newsletter.



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