Shō Snapshots: Land & Sky in Oils and Acrylics – 2 Artists / 2 Perspectives

Left: “Evening Mist” by Denise Antaya
Right: “Expecting you” by Ober-Rae Starr Livingstone

I am SO EXCITED for this event! I am admittedly a bit of a hermit. However, when I got the invite to this workshop from Lorraine, I had to sign up. This event is an AWESOME way to truly hone your painting skills, regardless of whether or not you are a die-hard landscape painter (which admittedly I am not). The workshop offers an opportunity to have access to two outstanding painters who have garnered an impressive portfolio of exhibitions and exposure. Both Denise Antaya and Ober-Rae Starr Livingstone are masters in their own right, and have teamed up in the upcoming “Land & Sky in Oils and Acrylics – 2 Artists / 2 Perspectives Workshop”.

The “Land & Sky in Oils and Acrylics – 2 Artists / 2 Perspectives” Workshop is to be held at Shō Art, Spirit, and Performance, April 3-5th. The workshop kicks off Friday, April 3rd with a meet and greet with Denise and Ober-Rae, as well as the other attendees. That evening the two Instructors will share valuable information which includes how to start showing your work in galleries. In the following two days the instructors will give detailed direction with reference to their own painting process.

In the acrylics portion of the workshop:

“A Letter From Home” by Ober-Rae Starr Livingstone

Ober-Rae will take his signature style and break it down into steps to display how you can create the vibrant skies he is known for in Acrylics. He will show how working from a photograph does not have to limit the imagination when using composition, value and colour to create drama.

In the oils portion of the workshop:

“Going Home” by Denise Antaya

Watch Denise take a painting from the grisaille to finished work using Oils. She will talk about the photo reference and how a plein air practice helps to point out the deficiencies of working exclusively from photos. She will address composition and simplifying the reference and why she makes the choices she does when creating a painting.

Additionally, each artist attending will be working throughout each day on their own paintings with plenty of one-on-one time with their instructor. The workshop will end an intimate showing of the attending artists’ work and a discussion on the process. As an added bonus, each artist will have the opportunity to show their work in an art show dedicated to the work completed in this workshop in the following weeks.

Denise and Ober-Rae shared some awesome insight on what attendees can expect, as well as, a brief overview of their own careers and what brought them together to create this event.

Can you describe just how this amazing workshop came to be?

“To The Sea” by Ober-Rae Starr Livingstone

Ober-Rae: I have talked numerous times to my friends Lorraine, Phil, Susan, and Barry of Shō of the fact that Windsor is an area with lots going on in the Arts in general but about a need in the painting community to offer a way for artists who are serious painters to work together and help develop a community that is known for Fine Art. Obviously Shō is vitally committed to creating and providing a space for artists from all fields of the Arts to come together and find new ways to communicate and work together.

One day, while talking to Lorraine, Phil, and Susan they suggested a way to help get things rolling with bringing together some artists in the area who are serious about painting and are looking for ways to expand their skills would be to offer a workshop followed by an art show for the participants. They asked me if I would like to give a workshop and I said I would definitely be interested.

This discussion was followed a few days later by running into Denise at a weekly “Windsor and Essex County Plein Air Artists” paint out and asking her if she would be interested in doing an oil painting workshop in conjunction with the acrylic painting workshop I was planning. She was excited about the prospect and thought that an event offering both mediums was a great idea and would be happy to team up on putting the workshop together.

“Catching the Light” by Denise Antaya

That has also been my experience with Shō. They are very eager to support growth in the arts locally. Tell me, what are some of the things that you both are most excited to share?

“The Garment” by Ober-Rae Starr Livingstone

Ober-Rae: The ability to express one’s personal vision and feeling through paint is an inspiring and rewarding experience and we are excited at the possibility of helping others to discover some tools that may allow them to express their vision more effectively.

“The Hideway” by Denise Antaya

We are looking forward to be able to share what we have learned about how important it is to develop your own personal language in order to express your vision.

We are also excited to bring artists from the area together – to work together, get to know one another a little better, and help one another find opportunities to show their work in more venues.

For more info on this event, please be sure to check out their event page on Facebook by clicking on the button below. I know I can’t wait. Hope to see you there!

Artist Bios

Denise Antaya

Artist Denise Antaya

Denise Antaya was born in Windsor, ON. She has been an artist for as long as she can remember. After a 31 year career in Advertising, Denise decided it was time to focus on painting landscapes full time. She attended the Academy of Realist Art in

Toronto for three years and attended various Plein Air workshops.

She primarily works in Oils on linen or wood.The everyday themes in Denise Antaya’s oil paintings combine her love of nature and her fascination with light and how it transforms an often overlooked scene. With her fearless approach to

composition Denise pushes realism to just the right balance of detail and poetry. Her subjects range from season to season but almost always represents the natural environment untouched by man. She has the ability to capture a moment and even transport one back to a quieter, simpler time.

With over 40 exhibitions across Canada and the United States, her paintings have earned  a dozen awards.

“Puddles” by Denise Antaya


• ARC Salon in 2019 – Honourable mention for “Puddles”. 
• ARC Salon in 2018 and 2017 – Finalist for two paintings each year
• In 2017 she earned her ARC (Art Renewal Center) Associate Living Master designation and is working towards her Living Master Designation
• IGOR (International Guild of Realism) in 2017 – Best Landscape
• Paint Ontario in 2016 – Grand Prize – Best in Show

Denise appeared on Landscape Artist of the Year Canada in 2019. Show aired on Makeful in February/March 2020. It will also air on CBC in the fall. Stay tuned to watch Denise compete for title of LAOTYC.
Her website can be found at

Ober-Rae Starr Livingstone

Artist Ober-Rae Starr Livingstone

Ober-Rae Starr Livingstone is a self-taught artist who has been painting for over 40 years and started out as an abstract painter. Over the years his work evolved into more representational work and he became known largely for what he refers to as ‘skyscapes’.

He is now known not only for his paintings of large skies but also for his landscapes.  Over the last 10 years his work has been published in over a dozen leading art magazines and art blogs.

 Ober-Rae has been invited to be a Faculty Member of the Plein Air Convention 2020 along with 70 leading artists from around the world.

“Feeling Your Touch” by Ober-Rae Starr Livingstone

Ober-Rae is a Member of the Board of Directors for the National Oil and Acrylic Painters Society (NOAPS) and was a Member of the Board for Artcite from 2018 – 2020. He is a Signature Member of both the National Oil and Acrylic Painters Society and the International Society of Acrylic Painters as well as being a member of the Oil Painters of America.
His website can be found at

Written by: Christy Litster

Christy Litster is a Visionary Artist living in Windsor, Ont., Canada. Her work ranges from mixed media abstracts to psychedelic digital mandalas. Visionary art aims to transcend the physical world and portray a wider version of awareness, often including spiritual or mystical themes.

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