"When Words Aren't Enough"

Featuring: Barbara O'Leary & Students


Barbara O’Leary

The joy I experience in painting comes from several sources. The paint itself is wonderfully tactile. The colors are exuberant or moody, intense and complex. The subjects are close to me, both physically and emotionally. I see the sun travel over our gardens… the clouds and rain… the seasons. I have watched a child become aware of the world. I am watching our human presence and relationship to the natural world. My belief in the necessity of contact with nature, for the quiet and beauty, only grows.

Joan Brown

Since retiring as an elementary school reading specialist six years ago, I have been challenging my mind by expressing myself in painting. I also love spending time with my family and friends, reading, learning Spanish, and traveling both near and far.

Ginny Chapman

When words were not enough I drew a quick line sketch to illustrate a point with my students who are deaf.  In retirement I added color to make an artful picture. 

Rejane Henn

I started painting as a teenager while living in France. After coming to the United States, getting married and raising a family, I began attending classes in drawing and watercolor in Dubuque, Iowa, but it was after moving to the Kansas City area in 2002 that I started painting again. Painting with Barbara O'Leary and like-minded friends has been a very enjoyable experience, both in learning the art and techniques of watercolor, but also in learning that painting is truly a means of expression.  Indeed, "words are not enough!”

Bernadette Kautio

I am a Minnesota farm girl raised during the 50s and 60s. I have always been creative and as a young girl learned to sew, knit, and do many crafts. After my retirement I decided to work on accomplishing items on my “bucket list” and that’s when I signed up for weekly painting lessons through JCP&R with Barb O’Leary. Watercolor painting has brought enrichment in my life more than I can say. I love to paint almost any subject, but especially animals, people, landscapes and all the beauty that surrounds me every day.

Donna McCalmon

I have always enjoyed watercolor painting. My uncle was an artist and as a child I loved watching him paint.  I have been painting for many years off and on.

Connie Neal 

After working in our printing business for 43 years, I began painting shortly before I retired. I started with oils and have ventured into watercolor, acrylic, pastels and collage. I love “playing” with color and texture – it is always a surprise. Painting has opened my eyes to things around me that I previously took for granted. I do impressionistic landscapes and enjoy hearing what other people see in them – maybe a mood, or a feeling that is evoked by my work. I am a firm believer that every person should have a passion, and I am delighted that painting has become my passion.

Sue Russell

Sue is a psychologist and psychoanalyst who finds joy and renewal in animals of all kinds. Being raised in the mountains of Montana has given her close relationships with horses, mules, an orphaned deer and moose, as well as chipmunks and dogs. She has taken art class for three years with Barbara O’Leary through the Johnson County over 50 program.

Susan Strongman

I am a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism. I wanted to explore another form of communication. In my sixties I started taking art lessons from Barbara O’Leary, a kind and patient teacher. My goal is to have fun and learn something everyday.

Betty Swisher

My career with oil, brush and canvas has gone through many phases. Being self-taught to begin with, I decided in order to improve my painting skills, I needed to enroll in an art class. I believe you never stop learning, so I have continued with art classes through the years. My creative ability is heightened by being part of an art class and surrounded by outstanding artists. I work in oil on canvas and some fiberboard. My paintings vary in theme, scenes, flowers and portraits. While traveling to foreign countries I have captured people and scenes on film, producing, captivating, and tender material for my paintings. I am married to my high school sweetheart. We have 2 fine sons, 4 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren. I am also a professional writer.