Thursday, March 26, 2015

Michael Blessing Quick Draws to First Place Bid

Artist Michael Blessing’s painting, Raising The Bar, received the high bid at the C.M. Russell Museum's  "Quick-Draw" competition in Great Falls, Montana last weekend.
         The artist was shocked and honored by the $17,500 bid. In the “Quick-Draw” competition, artists are given just a few hours to complete their work while interacting with the crowd before it is auctioned off. This is the second consecutive year that Blessing has won the competition.  In other news from last weekend, Blessing's painting Postcard From Miles City received a bid of $8000, well over the estimated “high” projection, and was third highest in the Russell Museum’s First Strike auction.
         Painting is documenting history for Blessing. The colorful graphic nature of neon signs has attracted him since childhood. 

The Greenwich Workshop just published Michael Blessing’s Whiskey Before Breakfast, another painting that reveals a great deal about the artist’s concept of the Neon West. It is as much a state of mind as it is a visual record of the West. 

Monday, March 2, 2015

William S. Phillips' First Forever Stamp

In August 2015, the United States Postal Service will release aviation artist William S. Phillips’ 33rd stamp but this stamp is also a “first.” It will be Phillips’ first Forever stamp, and it will honor the U.S. Coast Guard. 
The Postal Service relied on the Greenwich Workshop artist to do the research and get the details right, not an easy job at any size and particularly in this case, when the original painting was only about 5x7 inches.
The USPS explains that “this stamp honors the United States Coast Guard for its role in protecting the security of the nation and advancing its vital maritime interests.”
The painting “depicts two icons of the Coast Guard: the cutter Eagle, a three-masted sailing ship known as ‘America’s Tall Ship,’ and an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter, the standard rescue aircraft of the Coast Guard.”
Phillips, a Vietnam veteran, is also a former police officer and firefighter. In 1988, Phillips was chosen to be a U.S. Navy combat artist. For his outstanding work, the artist was awarded the Navy’s Meritorious Public Service Award and the Air Force Sergeants Association’s Americanism Medal.
In 1994, the US Postal Service commissioned Phillips to paint the Classic American Aircraft Series.
In 2004, he was chosen by the National Park Service to be the first Artist in Residence at the Grand Canyon where his assignment included paintings to interpret the park’s purpose as a place of pleasure and its importance as a national treasure. 
Artist William S. Phillips, in the course of his nearly 30-year relationship with the famed WWII Doolittle Raiders, has recreated, in over a dozen paintings, moments before and during their historic mission, thereby bringing to life scenes that would otherwise be lost to history. In October, 2013, the artist was inducted into the Oregon Aviation Hall of Honor, along with Doolittle Raider co-pilot Robert Emmens.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Lt. Col. Edward Saylor, Doolittle Raider, dies at 94

Lt. Col. Edward Saylor, one of four surviving Doolittle Raiders who attacked Japan in World War II during a daring 1942 mission, died of natural causes on January 28, 2015 in Sumner, Washington.
"Mission Complete, the Journey Continues" a William S. Phillips
 fine art edition, countersigned by Lt. Col. Edward Saylor      
    Saylor was born on March 15, 1920, in Brusett, Montana. He enlisted December 7, 1939 at Fort George Wright, Washington and attended the Air Corps Training School, Chanute Field, Illinois. He served throughout World War II in enlisted status both stateside and overseas until March, 1945. Saylor served in the Air Force for 28 years before retiring as a lieutenant colonel.
            He was a young flight engineer-gunner and among the 80 airmen who volunteered to fly the unprecedented mission that sent B-25 bombers from a carrier at sea to attack Tokyo on April 28, 1942, following Pearl Harbor.
            Last year, the Raiders received the Congressional Gold Medal for heroism and valor. The three surviving Doolittle raiders are Lt. Col. Richard Cole, Staff Sgt. David Thatcher and Lt. Col. Robert Hite.
            No funeral is planned. His wish was to be buried beside his wife and that donations be made to the Wounded Warrior Project.

Lt. Col Saylor’s life and story was featured in a New York Times story from 2/1/14:

The Greenwich Workshop is honored to have had the opportunity to meet Mr. Saylor many times as he generously countersigned  fine art editions of artist William S. Phillips’ paintings of the Doolittle Raiders mission. An E-book about the Doolittle Raiders and featuring Phillips paintings can be viewed on our website here:

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Scott Gustafson's New Book Chosen for 2015 Illinois Reads Statewide Literacy Campaign

Scott Gustafson’s new book, Classic Bedtime Stories, published by Greenwich Workshop Press, has been selected for the 2015 Illinois Reads program. Under the auspices of the Illinois Reading Council, Illinois Reads is an annual statewide project to promote reading for all Illinois citizens. The thirty-six titles chosen, for ages newborn to adult, will be introduced into classrooms, public health facilities, public and school libraries, and bookstores throughout Illinois. The Illinois Reads program will be formally launched on Saturday, April 18, 2015 in Westmont, IL, followed by book signings.
been chosen as one of the books for the annual

This is the second time one of Gustafson’s books has been chosen by Illinois Reads. His Favorite Nursery Rhymes from Mother Goose was one of the books chosen for Illinois Reads’ inaugural and first ever statewide literacy project in 2013.

Each year the Illinois Reading Council (IRC) holds an annual conference to provide literacy opportunities for approximately 3,000 educators from around the state of Illinois. The 2015 event, October 1-3, will take place at the Peoria Civic Center in Peoria, Illinois. At the Illinois Reads Luncheon on Friday, each author/illustrator will be invited to sit at a table with teachers and librarians to discuss their work. An autograph session will follow. 
Scott Gustafson at the Illinois READS
launch March 13, 2013

Friday, October 31, 2014

Scott Gustafson's "Classic Bedtime Stories" Wins GOLD medal in Moonbeam Children's Book Awards, 2014 Picture Book for all Ages Category

Scott Gustafson's new book, "Classic Bedtime Stories," published in September by Greenwich Workshop Press, has won the Gold Award in its category in the Moonbeam Children's Book Awards, which are dedicated to the notion that reading to and with your children will inspire them to become lifelong readers and learners.

Presented by Jenkins Group and, "the Moonbeam Children's Book Awards are intended to bring increased recognition to exemplary children's books and their creators, and to support childhood literacy and life-long reading. The Awards recognize and reward the best of these books and bring them to the attention of parents, booksellers, librarians - and to children themselves."

Greenwich Workshop Press is proud of this recognition, and thrilled that our first printing sold out within a couple of weeks. The second printing of "Classic Bedtime Stories" will be in the warehouse before Thanksgiving, just in time to fill wish-lists and stockings for the holidays. 

Meanwhile, this book and Gustafson's "Classic Fairy Tales" and "Favorite Nursery Rhymes from Mother Goose" are now available as e-books for iPad, Kindle Fire, Google Play, and Kobo. Congratulations to Scott Gustafson!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Doolittle Raiders Awarded Congressional Gold Medal

The House of Representatives and Senate passed a measure that would bestow The Congressional Gold Medal on the famed Doolittle Tokyo Raiders for their "outstanding heroism, valor, skill and service to the United States in conducting the bombings of Tokyo."
Approaching the
Gate to Destiny
The Congressional Gold Medal is the nation's highest award for distinguished achievements.

The Doolittle Raiders, led by Army Air Forces Lt. Col. James Doolittle, took off from the aircraft carrier USS Hornet in 16 B-25 bombers on April 18, 1942, to attack military targets in Tokyo and other cities. The raid was prompted by the attack on Pearl Harbor four months earlier

"This Congressional Gold Medal was hard earned and long overdue for a group of heroes who literally turned the tide for America in the Pacific Theater of World War II," Rep. Pete Olson, R-Texas, who sponsored the bill in the House, said in a statement to Air Force Times. "I'm proud to have carried the mantle to see these men receive the honor they so richly deserve."
Into The Rising Storm
The Senate overwhelmingly passed the bill this week as well

Brian Anderson, the sergeant at arms for the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders, and his wife, Cyndee, started knocking on doors on Capitol Hill two years ago looking for congressional support for the award. They visited all 100 Senate offices and 435 House offices. At the time, five Doolittle Raiders were still alive.

"Time wasn't exactly on my side," Anderson said Tuesday.
Westbound: A Date with the General
The Andersons found a sponsor in Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, who represents the home state of Raider Thomas Griffin, a Cincinnati native.

Griffin died Feb. 26, 2013, the same day Brown and Sen. John Boozman, R-Ark., introduced the bill in the Senate.

"The Doolittle Raiders symbolize the courage and valor of so many who fought for this country," Brown said in an interview with Air Force Times. "This historical incident is important to me, and to this country." With four Doolittle Raiders surviving, "time is of the essence," Anderson said.

Once President Barack Obama signs the bill, a design of the medal will be sent to the U.S. Mint, said Anderson, who would not disclose the design or its artist.
Into The Arms of the Dragon
One medal will be made, as the House bill states, and it will be given to the National Museum of the United States Air Force for display.

For Anderson, who was in the gallery for the House vote Monday night, the two-year effort represents a lifelong interest in the Raiders, sparked by a book report assignment on the Tokyo raid.

"They should be everybody's heroes, and this is their legacy," Anderson said. "When anyone looks up the Congressional Gold Medal, people should see that the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders' names will be associated with that medal."

View Bill Phillips Entire Doolittle Raider Series

Thursday, May 15, 2014

The Patriotic Art of Concealment

Stars and Stripes Fine Art Canvas
The word freedom is a powerful, emotionally charged word, evoking ideas of independence, free will, opportunity and inalienable rights. Freedom enables change, learning, understanding, rescue and salvation. The very nature of the word "freedom," however, implies that there are those who are not free.

In honor of Memorial Day and those who gave us these freedoms, Judy Larson turns her unique artistic signature her meticulous scratch board technique and “art of concealment” to the Stars and Stripes. Scratch board demands exacting skill, producing work with explicit detail and providing a great opportunity to conceal one image within another.

Stars and Stripes incorporates thirteen stripes on the feather in the horse’s tail, 50 stars on the horse’s rump and a hidden eagle on the horse’s face. All are symbols of our great land, the United States of America. (View the key to the hidden imagery)