New Print Available: “West Hall”

“West Hall”,
by Robert Leedy, 2009,
archival gicleé print on Hahnemühle William Turner 310 gsm watercolor paper,
11″ x 16″ (image size),
from a limited, signed, edition of 150.
(produced from the original watercolor painted in 1977)


I painted this watercolor well over 30 years ago.  I was a student at Valdosta State University in the small Southeastern town of Valdosta, Georgia. Back then enrollment was around 4,000 students. Today, that number approaches 12,000.  The campus is beautiful and every time I see this painting, I think of my watercolor professor, Joseph Pember.  Mr. Pember was a big proponent of plein aire painting and his watercolor classes were usually full during Spring Quarter. Like many of the VSU philosophy classes during springtime, the majority of Mr. Pember’s were conducted outside.  Nothing made me happier than a beautiful, sunny, spring morning where I was painting watercolors en plein aire. Life doesn’t get any better than that!

A little over a year ago, I attended a Faculty Art exhibition at VSU. The draw for me was that former art faculty members were also invited to hang works in the show.  I was excited about the prospect of seeing some of my professors from 30 years back. It was great to see Russell McCrae, Don Penney, Ruth Kahler, Bruce Wallace, and William Martin. Unfortunately, Lee Bennett passed away some years ago while Irene Dodd (who was the Department Head) and Joe Pember were unable to make the opening. Earlier this year, Dr. Martin attended one of my shows in Lake Wales, Florida (where he now resides.)

In addition to seeing some of the old, familiar faces, It was also a big pleasure to meet some of the current art faculty at Valdosta State.

Over the years, I’ve had people ask me about prints of this painting. Many were former students at Valdosta State. I approached my printer, Garry McElwee, of Artist Services in Jacksonville, Florida about doing an edition of prints from the original painting. (Ironically, Garry and his wife, Sandy, owned a graphic design firm and were my first employers upon my graduation from VSU in the Fall of 1979.) In addition to creating archival fine art prints, Garry is a graduate of the School of Fine Arts at Florida State University and a commercial photographer with a vast knowledge base of digital imaging. He is a master of color management and the prints he produces are truly amazing. We worked together in creating a limited edition (150) of archival gicleé prints from the painting, “West Hall”.

The painting is of West Hall which is the main campus building which serves as the focal point of the University.  Despite numerous cosmetic changes, it’s overall look hasn’t changed much since I was there.

The prints are absolutely gorgeous. It is difficult to determine that they are not original watercolors. Signed and numbered, they are printed on a high quality watercolor paper with pigment-based inks. A final coating spray was applied to protect from  UV rays and moisture. Under normal care and proper framing, the prints should remain vibrant  for many generations…

Prints of “West Hall” are now available – along with several other new prints – on my art web site: RobertLeedyArt.Com

 [SAD NOTE, July 2014]: Joe Pember passed away a few years ago. I saw his daughter, Mary, at the Faculty Show mentioned above and told her how much of an impact he had on my art. At the time, he was at an assisted living facility in St. Mary’s, Georgia where Mary lives. I hope she relayed the message…

The Art of Robert Leedy

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