Two Watercolor Artists Journey Through the Landscape

The Modesto Junior College Department of Art presents Two Watercolor Artists Journey Through the Landscape with artwork by Dan Petersen and Dale Laitinen, from January 21-February 13 in the MJC Art Gallery on the East Campus, 435 College Avenue, Modesto.  The gallery is open 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday through Friday and admission is free.

Dan Peterson's watercolor painting, Timberline at Twilight depicts a pond, lined with evergreens at the foot of a mountain.Dan Petersen received a Master of Arts degree in watercolor from San Jose State University in 1962. Following graduation, he began teaching art on the high school level in Manteca, California. In 1967, Dan accepted a position as watercolor instructor at Modesto Junior College and thus began a 40-year career teaching watercolor and drawing at the college level. After retiring from being a full time art professor at Modesto Junior College in 2003, Petersen remains active producing paintings that are available to Christian organizations and art collectors.  In addition to his teaching career, Dan gained recognition in the profession of watercolor painting:  A member of both American and National Watercolor Societies, winner of more than 150 awards in national, regional and local shows, including Watercolor USA, California State Fair, and 13 Best of Shows in the regional spring show at Gallo Winery, Modesto.  He has had numerous one-man shows and has judged art exhibits throughout the state.  His contributions to developing local artists has placed him in Modesto High School's Hall of Fame in 2007.

This watercolor landscape by Dale Laitinen depicts the mountains of Yosemite National Park beneith a blue sky Dale Laitinen paints the natural landscape because of its promise of an infinite portal to the imagination. His paintings marry the underlying design of nature with objective reality to go beyond the surface appearance of things.

He works in both water media and oil, with subjects ranging from representation-al to abstract. Laitinen is a graduate in Fine Art of San Jose State in California, and a signature member of the National Watercolor Society and Watercolor West and travels widely teaching workshops and is a national art juror. Laitinen is also proud to be  former student of Mr. Petersen. Dale has authored many articles and has been featured in several magazine and book publications. Blue Shadow Country is the title of his self-published book, available at In addition is featured in  two videos, available through Creative Catalyst Productions. He resides in a Pine and Cedar forest in Pioneer, CA; in a house, not in the trees.

A public reception for the artist is scheduled for Thursday, January 30, 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. with the artists taking questions around 6 p.m. in the MJC Art Gallery.  The reception is free of charge and light refreshments are served.