Gold Medal Fellowship

In 2014, NWWS developed a higher level of signature status, the Gold Medal Fellowship (GMF), to encourage Signature members to submit their best work to NWWS exhibitions.

Its purpose is to motivate, stimulate, excite and inspire NWWS Signature members in good standing to create and submit award-winning paintings to NWWS exhibitions, promoting further development as artists and helping artists achieve higher status within the Northwest Watercolor Society.


How to Achieve GMF

This highly distinguished status is obtained using a point-based system. An NWWS member must first be a Signature member and then will begin accruing additional points for Gold Medal Fellowship.

Requirements for Gold Medal Fellowship Status:
  • Must first have achieved Signature Status
  • Must accrue 5 award points
  • Must have received at least 3 of those 5 points from the International Open Exhibition.

There is an exception. If a non-Signature member is accepted into either the Annual International Open Exhibition or the Waterworks Exhibition and this exhibition completes the Signature membership requirements for him/her AND he/she receives any award in that same exhibition, then those award points will be counted toward Gold Medal Fellowship.

Gaining points is not retroactive. No award points are extended to Signature members from any NWWS Exhibitions held before this program was approved and begun in 2014.

Any awards prior to achieving Signature membership are not counted toward Gold Medal Fellowship unless the award is per the exception noted above.

International Open Exhibition Awards:
First Place
5 points
Second Place
4 points
Third Place
3 points
Other Awards
2 points
Waterworks Unplugged Exhibition Awards:
First Place
3 points
Second Place
2 points
Third Place
1 points
Elaine Daily Birnbaum

While art was an interest in my life from early on, I was encouraged to pursue an education in the health sciences. However, as soon as I graduated from college, I started taking a variety of art classes in the evenings. My first forays were with collage and acrylic paints. Later, I started to work with watercolors and, eventually, ended up combining the mediums to create mixed watermedia paintings. I have had the opportunity to take workshops from a number of talented art instructors, initially learning techniques in using the various mediums, and later, exposing myself to a variety of art philosophies. I am an intuitive painter. Each painting is a process of discovery that begins with no preconceived image. As I apply and remove paint, I enter another dimension, mentally, that allows me to respond intuitively to suggested images, or even to an idea I wish to explore. Developing the corresponding visual image in a painting relies deeply on my personal knowledge and experience, and, therefore, is a uniquely personal expression. Although my paintings are abstract in nature, they contain a universal connection that, hopefully, allows any viewer, whether or not they fully understand my particular art language, to experience a sense of interest and intrigue, as well as an emotional response.

Elaine Daily-Birnbaum Watermedia

Bev Jozwiak

Bev’s current style is the direct result of her own personal journey. Art has been in her life for as long as she can remember. She is the first formally trained artist in her family, but by no means the first artist. Her great aunts, grandmother, aunt and father were painters.

Whether painting in acrylic or watercolor, the goal is the same: to create an impressionistic painting with rich, varied color, good design, great values, a piece that will last by using archival materials. She never wants the viewer to think her paintings look like photographs, but rather to see the brushwork, the love, and energy that goes into each and every piece.

Jozwiak’s skill as a painter has garnered her national acclaim as one of America’s premier painters. Bev has had a plethora of successful one woman shows for prestigious galleries. Her work has been published in magazines: American Art Collector, Watercolor Magic, The Artist, Watercolor Magazine, and International Watercolor Magazine, in books: Art Journey-Animals, Incite, Best of Acrylic, and Splash, Best of watercolor. She is author of the book, Painting Life with Life.

Bev has earned her signature status in AWS, NWS, TWSA, WW, NWWS, and many more.

Carla O’Connor

To say that I was born with a brush in my hand would not be to far from the truth. My mother, Bette Hedblom (1996 AWS Emily Lowe Memorial Award), was an artist herself. She was strong willed, independent, competent and a world traveler. Though a single mother of limited means she made sure that I had the finest art materials from the very beginning. Her company sent her to Europe on a buying trip and I accompanied her at the age of nine. We crossed on the Queen Mary and I painted on location in oil and watercolor in Paris, France and Venice, Italy.

The human form has been the touchstone of my art from my earliest training. I strive to combine the three dimensional figurative form with the two dimensional abstract surround.

My work addresses the passage of time – a response to the internal and external events that change and shape our lives. It has evolved like a continuous spiral, always circling around from inevitable endings to new beginnings and provides me with a visual narrative to express those moments and experiences—both minuscule and monumental. It is my means to communicate a personal vision to the strengths and fragility of life.

Liz Walker

Though I was an art major in college, I learned most of my watermedia skills and methods in workshops taught by nationally recognized art instructors.

Over the years, I have discovered how to combine techniques and incorporate them into my own style of painting. I approach subject matter (mostly women and figures) in an intuitive way, often carving out subject matter from my own hand marbled papers, or by using dried acrylic “skins” which I collage onto my substrate. I rarely start with a drawing or even a plan, preferring to paint on paper that is covered with acrylic paint rather than working on white paper. As I respond to what is taking place on the paper, I add marks or cover up sections as needed. I frequently change my mind about a painting halfway through and end up completely revamping the colors and composition on the fly. The finished painting that emerges in the end often surprises me (and, I hope, the viewer).

I feel fortunate to be a part of the larger community of talented watermedia artists whose friendships I have cultivated through my art career. My goal is to impart a sense of storytelling in my work while continuously improving and refining my artistic skills..

Laurie Goldstein Warren

When faced with a blank sheet of watercolor paper, I may revisit a subject I’ve painted before, but choose a whole different method of painting it. For example, if I originally worked with traditional tools, such as brushes, I will repaint the subject with only my mouth atomizer. When you change the techniques used in painting, you not only have to change your tools, but your method of transition through the painting. I find this revitalizes my passion for the subject, makes me think and see it in a whole new light.

William G Hook

William Hook is a Seattle based artist, internationally known for his masterful watercolor interpretations of industrial and urban settings. His drawing and observational skills were developed during a 40 year career as a highly respected and awarded architectural illustrator and architect. A turning point in his artwork occurred in 2007 when he was awarded a NIAUSI Fellowship for a two month residency in Civita di Bagnoregio, Italy to just paint. He has since focused his efforts toward freeing his artwork from the constraints of illustration and sees his art career as a process of change and development as he searches for more evocative, introspective and powerful means of capturing his interests.

Ted Nuttall

For as long as I can remember, I have been a fascinated spectator of human behavior – the quintessential people watcher. I naturally seek the unique character in everyone I encounter. Often, as I observe someone in his or her everyday environment, I am rewarded with a moment when a gesture or expression combine with the play of light and shadow. A contemplative smile, hands cradling a book or carefully tying a shoe, a shadow cast by a pair of wire-rimmed glasses – and there occurs a pivotal instant when a story appears. My paintings are an attempt to compose and thoughtfully record the nuances that transfixed these moments, these stories, in my mind.

Charles Henry Rouse

Charles Rouse has been painting watercolors for more than forty years. His education in both commercial and fine art allowed for great latitude, especially as a college art instructor. Today, Charles continues his artistic path, constantly experimenting and perfecting his techniques, creating an alternate reality with paint and paper.

His love of travel and photography has inspired him to record what he sees and feels through the wonderful media of watercolor. His works have been in numerous national shows and have won many awards.

Charles has earned Signature Membership in NWWS, AWS, CWA, NWS, SDWS, TWS and WFWS.