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TVNPA Art Rotation

It was fun rotating art at the Tri-Valley Nonprofit Alliance’s (TVNPA)  CommoinPoint Nonprofit Center in Livermore on May 29 along with the Livermore Art Association. The center has 44 PAL artists’ works on display across all the rooms and hallways, many of which are for sale.  Participating PAL artists are Rekha Joshi, Iliana Chirikhanova, Chaity Mukherjee, Shweta Agrawal, Tejal Shah, Judy Rice, Chih Chun Eroles, HoumanPazouki, Chelsea Tikotsky, Lori Larks, Rucha Chattur, Melissa Mandegarian, Tuan Karsevar and Meghana Mitragotri. Just within a couple of days, Iliana sold 2 pieces! The next rotation will take place after four to six months. Thanks so much to everyone who entered stunning works and helped install the exhibit.
To learn more about TVNPA, visit

A Memorable PAL Art Day Out 

What a wonderful Art Day Out on May 23, 2024 at Alden Lane Nursery in Livermore! It was a gorgeous day to paint at this lovely venue with beautiful blooms under stunning oak trees. Over 20 artists participated in the event. After strolling around the venue and picking their favourite spots, artists painted subjects including trees, pots, flowers, benches, fountains, fun figures and other hidden treasures. These masterpieces were created in oils, watercolor, pastels, colored pencils, and acrylic.

So much love, admiration, warmth and fun, and of course the delicious donuts and other treats provided throughout the day by the Pleasanton Art League! Thanks to Wei-Ting Chuang for the yummy oranges from her yard. Big thanks to Alden Lane Nursery’s owner Jacqueline Williams-Courtright and the wonderful staff for opening up this beautiful venue and making this happen for us. Thanks so much to everyone who came including those who joined us from Modesto. Stay tuned for the next one!
– Meghana Mitragotri, PAL Programs Chair

Report on PAL at TVAST

After an exciting and busy preparation for the last two months, TVAST 2024 ended successfully. Here are some of my observations and analyses of the event. The team at the firehouse with the Nine artists, Alana Shoars, Neha Singh. Adriana Dedic, Anuja Goyal, Miles Santos, Alka Vaidya, Malvika Oaks and Deepti Saraswat had excellent communication and coordination among them. It was an enjoyable two days. The set up process went smoothly. Thanks to the help provided by Miles in the slat transportation, Lilly for having the tables arranged for us. Thanks to George for guiding the volunteers in set up and arranging of the slats.

In my opinion there could have been more signs guiding people to the firehouse location. In the future we need to do the necessary so we can place more signs in front of businesses to guide people to the event. Thanks to John and Charon for helping us out with payment processing. In terms of sales Saturday was slow for most of us because of the rains. Sunday there was a good flow of people and for some, sales were as expected. As Malvika suggested maybe we could brainstorm to incorporate some more activities to attract more people to the venues.To summarize, the sales were not as expected but it was good connecting and knowing all the artists.

PAL TVAST 2024 Deepti Saraswat

Report on 2024 PAL’s Pals Youth Art Show

High School Winners:

  • Best in Show: “Octoband” by Dana Yang
  • Merit Award: “Man with the Red Turban” by Oeshi Datta
  • Merit Award: “The Dots” by Bavagna Sai Gunti
  • Merit Award: “Caulfield” by James Zhang
  • Honorable Mention: “A Moment of Reflection” by Riana Das
  • Honorable Mention: “The Happiest Place on Earth” by Jiyoon Kim
  • Honorable Mention: “Reflection of the Roots” by Aarushi Rajesh
  • Stoneridge Award: “Cascade” by Sora Kim

View High School Online Show HERE.

Middle School Winners:

  • Best in Show: “Retro Pan-Am Worldport” by Aagam Chhikniwala
  • Merit Award: “Archie” by Vasylyna Brechko
  • Merit Award: “Afternoon Meadow” by Nicholas Philippe
  • Merit Award: “Buster” by Ethan Mosca
  • Honorable Mention:  “Silent Worry” by Zoha Eftekhar
  • Honorable Mention: “The Tiger’s Bloom” by Rose Moniz
  • Honorable Mention: “Cockatiels” by Ria Kamath
  • Stoneridge Award: “Archie” by Vasylyna Brechko

View Middle School Online Show HERE.

2024 PAL’s Pals Youth Art Show: 64 entries, 30 schools, 11 cities! We never imagined the magnitude of success of this youth art show and competition for Middle and High School students! Hundreds of visitors to Pleasanton’s Stoneridge Mall were just stunned by the gorgeous artworks created by the youth in our communities and many were interested in buying art! Many people are responsible for the success of this event and creating a huge positive impact in our community.




  • Students for participating and showcasing stunning art 
  • Parents, for volunteering & encouraging their students to participate
  • Management, staff and Security team at Stoneridge Shopping Center 
  • Tri Valley Nonprofit Alliance (TVNPA) for supporting this program with a grant, flyers in Spanish and connecting us to Exceptional Needs Network (ENN)
  • Kirsten Sprott from ENN to help us reach out to Students with Special Needs
  • PAL’s Pals Committee: Reena Babu, Rekha Joshi, Marion Huff, Lorraine Wells, Meghana Mitragotri, George Garbarino
  • Judges: PAL Members Karen Barry & Peggy Magovern for their thoughtful comments for every student’s artwork, and Ann Chaney from Stoneridge for choosing two “Stoneridge Awards” sponsored by Stoneridge
  • PAL Member Volunteers & their families: George Garbarino, Ron Darcey, Janice Carmo, John DeVilliers, Hope Garay, Jana Lowe, Bill Potter, Ron Rigge, Emelie Rogers, Zelda Kohn, Venkata Mulagada, Renu Chintalapati, May Yin Giang
  • George Garbarino for helping students with framing & wiring
  • Tejal Shah, Hospitality Chair for refreshments
  • PAL Board Members for creating this community program
  • Alameda County Arts Commission and California for the Arts, for donating watercolor activity sheets. Kids at the Mall loved them!
  • Student Volunteers – Aarushi Rajesh, Adharsh Senthilkumar, Kashyap Bavimane, Jamie Yi, Bavagna Sai Gunti, Cole Gable, Aagam Chhikniwala 
  • Pleasanton City Councilmember Valerie Arkin for all the support at the reception
  • Livermore Art Association for extra art panels
  • All the organizations and community members, for all the help and support
  • Our webmaster, Marion Huff has hosted this show on PAL website’s online gallery. Enjoy it here

PAL’s Vice-President George Garbarino’s Message for April 2024

Artist’s Quote for April: “Mistakes are almost always of a sacred nature. Never try to correct them. On the contrary: rationalize them, understand them thoroughly. After that, it will be possible for you to sublimate them.” Salvador Dali

Is it time for the Pleasanton Art League and other art associations in the Tr-Valley to look at a policy that addresses the uses of AI (Artificial Intelligence) in our art? Here are a few thoughts that some artists are considering: Make it illegal to copyright work created wholly, largely, or substantially by machines (AI or otherwise). Require all machine-generated art to be labeled something like “Made by Machine” or “Created by AI” and include the platform it was created on. Establish serious legal penalties for trying to pass AI or machine-generated art off as human. Work to do this in the USA and also standard international law, to protect all human artists, everywhere. What are your thoughts? It might be a subject for one of our General Meetings. Let me know what you think. George at:

I asked Meta AI, and here is what they said:

1. Co-creation: Artists can guide AI algorithms to generate ideas, shapes, or patterns, which they can then refine and build upon.

2. Artistic input: AI can assist with tedious tasks, like generating repetitive elements or exploring multiple design options, allowing artists to focus on the creative direction.

3. Augmenting skills: AI can analyze vast amounts of art historical data, providing insights and inspiration for human artists.

4. Interactive installations: AI can be integrated into interactive art installations, responding to viewer inputs and creating dynamic, immersive experiences.

5. Generative music: AI can generate musical elements, like melodies or beats, which human composers can then arrange and refine.

6. Art critique and feedback: AI can analyze artworks and provide objective feedback, helping artists identify areas for improvement.

7. Collaborative storytelling: AI can generate narrative elements, like plot twists or character development, which human writers can weave into their stories.

8. Artistic exploration: AI can help artists explore new styles, techniques, or themes, expanding their creative horizons.

9. Accessibility: AI-powered tools can assist artists with disabilities or limitations, enabling them to create in new and innovative ways.

10. Ethical considerations: Artists and AI researchers can work together to address questions around authorship, ownership, and the role of AI in creative fields. By combining their strengths, AI and human artists can push the boundaries of creativity, exploring new forms of expression and innovation.

What do you think? Are there any specific collaborations you’d love to see


Report on Imagination Expressed 2024

Imagination Expressed 2024, Pal’s 16th Members’ Show at the Museum on Main opened on Wednesday March 13 with over 140 works of amazing, varied art in watercolor, oil, pastel, clay, wood, colored pencil, acrylics, glass and more! We also displayed over 100 pieces of jewelry. Once again we had so many entries the hanging staff stayed late to fit them all in! Our judge Jeff Dunn selected 9 winners who will receive their awards on Saturday, March 16 at our reception.

Best of Show award went to Melissa Mandegarian for Rythym of Water. Merit awards went to Iliana Chirikhanova for Birth of Hamster, Leslie Hoffmeyer for Why, and Jill Vellinger for Into the Glow. Honorable Mention awards went to Amber De silva for Persephone, Anusha Mishra for The Secret Embrace, Zachary Daly for A Friend,  and Eugenia Zobel for Mouse with Umbrella.

I want to thank the following for their invaluable help with various aspects of this 2024 show: Barbara Blissert, Marion Huff, Norma Webb, Lorraine Wells, Meghana Mitragotri, George and Linda Garbarino, Lisa and Ron Rigge, John DeVilliers, and Ken MacLennan, Curator at Museum on Main.

We hope to have an even better show in 2025! Christine Bourg 

PAL’s Vice-President George Garbarino’s Message for March 2024

Artist’s Quote for March: “Art is not what you see, but what you make others see.” ― Edgar Degas

In 2023 the PAL Executive Board introduced and adopted the following bylaw change. The goal for the Pleasanton Art League was to have members step forward and become active in the leadership of the League as a president-elect. Here is the new language we adopted.

The President serves as the chair of the Board of Directors for two years. The President ensures that the Board of Directors fulfills its responsibilities for the governance of the organization.

The President-Elect is selected in the second year of the President’s term of office and serves for one year and collaborates with the President to learn the role of the President to become familiar with the organization and its governance, and to develop and facilitate officer transition. The President-Elect assists with and supports the President as needed and plans for the Presidential year. The President-Elect shall automatically become President at the end of the term as President-Elect, or in the event that the President becomes unable to fulfill his or her duties during the current term.

During the month of March, the Vice President and a few other executive board members will start interviewing members who have expressed an interest in a leadership role for 2024-2025. If this sounds like something you think you might be interested in taking part in, please email me: as soon as possible.

George Garbarino

PAL’s Vice-President George Garbarino’s Message for February 2024

Artist’s Quote for February:

“Every day I discover even more beautiful things. It is intoxicating me, and I want to paint it all – my head is bursting . . .”

-Claude Monet

Welcome to February—I know you’re asking “What happened to January?” Me too. The Pleasanton Art League has many great art activities ready to go for the rest of 2024, including our great art shows. Our first show of 2024 is “Imagination Expressed” at the Museum on Main in Pleasanton from March 13th through May 11th 2024. Details HERE. Mark your calendars now and start lining up those great works of art for this show. I’ll be looking forward to seeing your art in March. Also, remember to check the complete PAL Calendar for 2024 HERE.

George Garbarino

PAL on Television in February 2024

PAL was thrilled to be invited and featured on a popular local Talk Show on TV30 “Conversations with Mel McKay“. PAL past President and Board Member Meghana Mitragotri represented PAL. The program highlights artworks of PAL Members John DeVilliers, Emelie Rogers, Mike D’Amelio (February PAL Wall artist), and PAL member Lisa Rigge’s workshop in 2023.
This program is being broadcasted all of February on TV28 & TV30  local channels.
Find schedule here .You can click on A-Z and find Conversations with Mel McKay.
Or just click here to watch the episode! (PAL is spotlighted in the second segment)
The program on this link will be available until February 29, 2024.

February 2024 – PAL Display at Pleasanton Library 

Working with the City of Pleasanton, PAL secured a display case at the front door entrance to the library for the month of February.  As our membership grows, we continue to invite all community members throughout the Tri-Valley and beyond, to join us.

Many residents new to the area may not be aware of Pleasanton Art League and the wealth of opportunities available to them through our many events throughout the year.  Both artists and art lovers, youth and adults, will find a warm welcome.

 The Pleasanton Library display includes various art mediums, both 2D and 3D.  View porcelain painting, watercolor, oil, pastel, glass, ceramics and photography. 

Pleasanton Art League would like to thank the following artists: Christine Bourg, Lisa and Ron Rigge, Emelie Rogers, Olga Symonenko, Chelsea Tikotsky, Lorraine Wells and Eugenia Zobel.

A special thank you to Meghana Mitragotri and Lorraine Wells for sharing their graphic skills. For further information or interest, please contact: Emelie Rogers, PAL Membership Chair at:

Report on 2023 Members’ Show at the Firehouse

Firehouse Committee: John DeVillers, Linda Garbarino, Pat Smith, George Garbarino, Charlotte Severin, Sydney Tang and Wei Ting Chuang

The 16th Annual P AL Members’ Show was another BIG success. The 84 pieces of artwork were amazing and we had many volunteers provide so much help. Our sincere thanks to Sydney Tang, the director of the Gallery, for all her guidance and help. We thank our talented artists for their informative demonstrations throughout the exhibit. We are looking forward to another great show in 2024.

Linda Garbarino





PAL Christmas 2023 Art-Day-Out Report

Art-Day-Out was truly a Christmas Special! 
December 3rd was an unforgettable experience for the attendees of PAL’s holiday themed Art-Day-Out. The golden mulberry trees in Meghana’s back yard were the perfect backdrop for viewing Christmas vignettes. The artists (including an adorable tiny tot) had several options from which to choose. There were beautiful holiday utensils, fun figurines and a magical Christmas tree. As a bonus, Swati Rastogi brought her Mehendi cone and indulged many of us in some gorgeous Mehendi art on our palms. Art was not the only treat in store for our participants. Thank you Swati Rastogi for bringing us yummy coriander chutney – cream cheese sandwiches, and to Deepti Saraswat for providing remarkably delicious, homemade soft dhoklas. To top it off, donuts and chai were also served. Thank you to May Yin Giang for her help in setting up the wonderful displays, and to Zina Kassab for helping with taking them down. Every artist received a PAL tote bag. There was laughter, love, warmth and beautiful connections made at this event. Looking forward to more in 2024!
– Jan Loomis & Meghana Mitragotri

Outgoing PAL President’s December 2023 Message

Retiring PAL President Meghana Mitragotri and Past PAL President Beth Okurowski

Reflecting on my two-year term as the President of PAL which comes to an end on December 31, 2023, I feel an immense sense of gratitude for the role I have been entrusted with as an opportunity to serve you all. I have learned to extend my sense of responsibility towards the art community, being a voice for all, and keeping the needs of our organization with a firm sense of integrity in everything we have undertaken.

It has been an incredible honor to represent PAL across various platforms and I am so proud of all that we have accomplished in the last couple of years. The growth in our membership to over 200 is a testament to our successful efforts in making the scope of art abundant and accessible, in turn enhancing our diversity. This has only been possible with the support of our strong and committed team at PAL. My heartfelt thanks to the PAL Board, PAL’s past Presidents, Committee Chairs, Show Chairs, volunteers of all ages, business partners, City of Pleasanton officials & staff, art organizations including LAA, DAC, AVA, my mentors, and everyone who has supported us. Thank you to all the members for your loyalty and participation, you mean the world to PAL!

As I return to being a fulltime artist and resume parental responsibilities towards my high schooler, I am deeply appreciative for the many meaningful relationships within the art community. I hope to continue and advance my artistic journey and will also remain a dedicated volunteer at PAL. This has been one of the most fulfilling experiences of my life and I hope everyone can reap benefits through this wonderful organization.

Please feel free to stay in touch with me at and share your experiences, ideas, and feedback to enable mutual learning and growth. Kindly renew your membership with PAL and invite fellow enthusiasts to join us. Wishing everyone a joyous and festive holiday season!

With gratitude, Meghana Mitragotri, PAL President 2022 & 2023

Compose, Color, Create!

PAL Gallery Wall at TVNPA’s Facility

We’re very grateful to the TriValley Nonprofit Alliance (TVNPA) for giving us an opportunity to create a gallery wall in the new Coworkers’ space at their CommoinPoint Nonprofit Center in Livermore. Eleven pieces of artwork were installed on October 24.

Thanks so much to ten participating PAL artists –  Malavika Oak, Chih Chun Eroles, Swati Rastogi, Ron Rigge, Usha Shukla, Judy Rice, Rekha Joshi, Svetlana Maxon, Kristin Kuipers and Meghana Mitragotri. Big thanks to TVNPA’s President & CEO Kathy Young, TVNPA staff member Angelina, and PAL members Chih Chun Eroles & her husband, Usha, Ron and Kristin for helping with curating the exhibit and installing all the artworks.
Learn more about TVNPA here

PAL President’s November 2023 Message: 200 and still counting!

One of PAL’s goals is to make scope for art abundant and accessible to everyone in our community. After many years, and after a big struggle during the pandemic, we are now an organization with over 200 members and still counting! My heartfelt thanks to all the members, Board members, partners and volunteers for your loyalty, participation, support and for all the help in making our organization accessible to so many people in the Tri-Valley & beyond.
I want to thank our Membership Chair Emelie Rogers for making outstanding efforts to lead our Outreach & Awareness Programs to educate the public about our wonderful organization. Also big thanks to John & Charron DeVilliers, Marion Huff, Wei-Ting Chuang, George Garbarino and everyone else who supported our membership efforts.
Looking ahead to November, visit our gorgeous Fall Members’ Show at the Firehouse Arts Center with an opening reception on Saturday, November 4. You can also enjoy six inspiring PAL Art Demonstrations during the course of the show. While you are there, make sure to visit Lisa Rigge’s solo show upstairs on the PAL Wall.  Our Art Day Out series has been a smashing hit! Big thanks to PAL member Nataliya Gavrilova for coming up with the Food Art idea; it was so much fun! By popular demand, we’re organizing one more Art Day Out in my backyard, this time it’s a Christmas special! Make sure to join in!
Happy Halloween, Everyone!
Meghana Mitragotri, President, Pleasanton Art League

Report on PAL at the Livermore Art Walk 2023, a good learning and fellowship of artists were had at the PAL Booth.

Seasoned artist Claudette McDermott assisted Newcomers to Tent Shows; Zelda Kohn, Shalaka Mulherkar and Olga Symonenko. While sales were meager, the joy of sharing your work, your process and meeting with prospective clients was priceless. “I chatted with a lot of young budding artists, gave advice on safety while using Resin, and see a bright and exciting future for our next generation of artists,” shared Encaustic / Resin Artist Claudette McDermott

September 23, 2023 – PALS Art Day Out 

Food Art/Illustration brought some very adventurous artists to Orloff Park on Saturday, September 23rd.  Having to choose among the four yummy vignettes of decadent desserts, or the deliciously inviting apples and pears, was a challenge our artists met brilliantly.  As a bonus, and to ensure our displays were left intact for painting, donuts were awaiting our participants as they arrived. Having spent the afternoon painting we couldn’t resist playing a game called “Which foods are real, and which foods are fake”. It was hard to stump this group as they all have sharp eyes for detail, but we finally awarded a winner. Congratulations May Yin Giang.  As the day ended, each artist shared their work, which was beyond impressive. With such remarkable results we knew more prizes were needed.  The competition was stiff, but

Jen Hubr and Zelda Kohn caught the judge’s eye.  We hope you enjoy your dessert cookbooks.  Jan Loomis & Meg Mitragotri, PAL Programs Co-chairs, wish to thank everyone who participated in another Art Day Out.

PAL President’s October 2023 Message

September was awesome! I want to thank all the PAL and High School volunteers, and our partners at the Firehouse Arts Center, Museum on Main and Charles.R.Winery for helping us succeed at the Firehouse Art & Music Fest on September 8, Paint Pleasanton on September 9 & 10, and the Annual Potluck on September 11 respectively.

Georgia Jacobs, Tejal Shah, Lorraine Wells, Rebecca Davies and Alka Vaidya

Big thanks to organizers Lorraine Wells, Alka Vaidya and Rebecca Davies for the meticulous planning and execution at the wonderful Paint Pleasanton event. We had a big bump in new members joining us that weekend and I’d like to welcome everyone!
Thanks so much to PAL and LAA Hospitality Chairs Tejal Shah and Georgia Jacobs for planning a fun Potluck and I am so glad that several new members could join in. 
Moving on to October, have you visited the PAL Wall upstairs to see Tuan Karsevar’s creations? You may find a portrait of yourself there! Come and learn all about Sugar Flowers during the General Meeting hosted by PAL on October 9 with the talented Jan Loomis. Meet our wonderful PAL artists at the PAL booth during ArtWalk in Livermore on October 14. The Art Circuit teams will be rotating art at local businesses in Pleasanton and our new partnership with the Tri Valley Nonprofit Alliance (TVNPA) has opened up opportunities for PAL artists to showcase and sell art at the CommonPoint Nonprofit Center in Livermore. Please consider applying.
PAL Members, are you ready to be a part of our last big show of the year? It’s our 16th Annual Fall Members’ Show at the Firehouse Arts Center. The Harrington Gallery can only accommodate 85 pieces, so be sure not to miss your spot – entry deadline October 14!
Good luck, Everyone!
Meghana Mitragotri, President Pleasanton Art League

PAL at Firehouse Art & Music Fest September 8, 2023

The Firehouse Art & Music Fest on September 8 was a wonderful community event.
Thanks to the staff at the Firehouse for inviting partners including PAL, Pleasanton Cultural Arts Council (PCAC), and Museum on Main (MOM). It was great hanging out with our partners! PAL volunteers got to display artwork and it was fun spreading awareness about our organization.
Big thanks to Wei-Ting Chuang for helping kids with beautiful origami art and to four wonderful High School students from Livermore’s Granada High School for volunteering at the PAL booth and helping kids with scratch art, fall leaf colouring & origami. It was heartwarming when one of the students said, “We’re like the official High School PAL volunteering Team!”  PAL has signed-off on four community service hours for each of these students. Some tiny tots refused to leave our booth and wanted to continue with activities at closing after dark, and parents willingly turned on flashlights on their phones to help kids finish what they started!  
Thank you Pat Smith, George Garbarino, Emelie Rogers & Claudette McDermott for joining me in educating visitors about PAL and our initiatives.
Artists & local art teachers including PAL members Claudette & Charlotte Severin performed engaging art demos. Live music encouraged the public to shake-a-leg on the patio that transformed into a lively dance floor! It was a great way of engaging & entertaining the community together with our partners.
– Meghana Mitragotri

PAL President’s July 2023 Message

I had the privilege of representing PAL at the Pleasanton Civic Arts Commission meeting on August 7 where I was able to meet all the staff and introduce PAL during a public comment. I could see and hear myself beaming with pride as I listed PAL’s wonderful initiatives that are made possible by our hard working Board members and volunteers.

Marlene Cody with Meghana

I was also delighted to recently meet PAL’s past president in the early 1990s and a beautiful watercolorist, Marlene Cody who has generously donated her painting supplies to PAL. She has fond memories of working with our Portfolio Editor Norma Webb. 
Are You Ready for an Art Marathon? September is going to be awesome! 
We start the month by participating in the Firehouse Art & Music Fest, Firehouse Arts Center’s open house event on September 8 where PAL will have an activity table. This will be immediately followed by our Plein Air event Paint Pleasanton on September 9 & 10. Last year you made it happen rain or shine, and it was the best ever! Let’s do it again! Show Chairs Lorraine Wells, Alka Vaidya and Becky Davies are working hard in getting everything organized for this event along with the staff at Museum on Main! 
The next day, Monday, September 11 is the Annual Potluck. Every year PAL and LAA organize a fun joint potluck dinner in September in place of a General Meeting. Everyone brings something to share.This is a great opportunity for all members to connect over a delicious meal, engage in interesting conversations, meet our Board members and get to know about anything & everything!
Don’t forget to check out Amy Greenberg’s awesome works on the PAL Wall upstairs at the Firehouse Center, followed by stunning portrait paintings by Tuan Karsevar starting September 16 with his Meet & Greet.
Another fun PAL-Art-Day-Out has been planned for September 23 where we can all indulge in some food art. PAL is presenting another unique workshop, this time with the talented Eugenia.W.Zobel who will teach us all about Porcelain Painting. She is turning 90 this year!
Registration is now open for our last show of the year “PAL’s 16th Annual Fall Members’ Show.”
Meghana Mitragotri, President, Pleasanton Art League

Experience as PAL Workshop Instructor

Meghana Mitragotri and workshop participants

This was my first time teaching a watercolor workshop through PAL (on July 8) and my first time at the Amador Recreation Center in Pleasanton.
I want to take a moment to immensely thank PAL for giving me an opportunity to share my knowledge of watercolor painting with a wonderful group. Though I have been painting for over 30 years, I started off my public art display when I joined PAL in 2017. The organization has helped me grow as an artist, confident enough to teach! My prior work experience as a Talent Development Professional, Facilitator and Adult Learning Principles Expert also helped.
PAL Workshop Chairs Linda and George Garbarino arranged for everything including street signs/directions, refreshments including coffee, tea, sweet treats, yummy bagels and cream cheese, etc., a great introduction, sharing basic guidelines, to taking pictures/videos and posting on social media – the full circle! 
I had a great time interacting with students (many were beginners) who did a fabulous job painting Nasturtiums.
As a continuation of the workshop, I invited the students to my Home Studio to help them complete a watercolor greeting card with Poppies – they turned out so beautiful! Together, we truly experienced the “Joy of Painting with Watercolors!’ – Meghana Mitragotri

PAL Circuit Sale

Judy Rice sold one of her paintings on the Circuit. If you want to join the PAL Circuit, contact the Circuit Chair, Usha Shukla 925 922-1775.






PAL President’s July 2023 Message

Lisa Rigge & workshop participants

Heartfelt thanks to PAL-JMH Show “Healing Spaces” Show Chair John DeVilliers and committee members for putting up a great show, Jan Loomis for organizing a superb PAL-Art-Day-Out at Alden Lane, and Linda & George Garbarino for arranging fabulous workshops with Lisa Rigge and Wei-Ting Chuang.

I hope everyone has planned some fun activities for this summer including visiting the Alameda County Fair in Pleasanton. Several PAL artists have entered the fine art competition!
Apart from enjoying Bryan Adams and Maroon 5 concerts, I have planned my yearly pilgrimage to visit my inspiration in Utah, Roland Lee (, and take his watercolor masterclass! I also plan to use the summer to practice some plein air painting at Paint Pleasanton on September 9 & 10 and create some new art for our PAL Members’ Show at the Firehouse Arts Center this fall. 
I encourage everyone to keep a lookout and sign up for these upcoming events. First, Tejal Shah and Georgia Jacobs, PAL & LAA Hospitality Chairs, are planning a fun PAL-LAA Potluck event at Charles R Winery on September 11. We also have some awesome workshops and programs coming up, including a really fun Art-Day-Out on September 23 involving food! Artist Jan Loomis will be demonstrating Sugar Flowers at the PAL-hosted General Meeting on October 9. On the PAL Wall upstairs at the Firehouse, please enjoy Melissa Mandegarian’s artworks until July 22, followed by Amy Greenberg, Tuan Karsevar and Lisa Rigge. PAL artists will also be performing art demonstrations at the Harrington Gallery as part of the Members’ Show! There’s just so much to look forward to!

But first……Have a great summer! Meghana Mitragotri

PAL President’s June 2023 Message

Way to go Dennis Baker, President – Alliance for the Visual Arts and the whole TVAST Crew! What a great weekend of the 2nd Annual Studio Tours in the Tri-Valley! Thanks to Dennis and everyone who contributed to the success of this event.

TVAST Firehouse Team

PAL was glad to partner with AVA on this project to sponsor the Firehouse Arts Center as a venue for nine PAL artists. Big thanks to Pleasanton City Staff Rachel Prater for working with PAL to support this event and Firehouse Staff Lily Caridis for coordinating details with the team’s Lead Rhonda Chase. The Firehouse was also generous with sponsoring 500 postcards and posters for publicity.
Other participating artists were Jill Vellinger, Deepti Saraswat, Jan Loomis, Mike D’Amelio, Malavika Oak, Anuja Goyal, Claudette McDermott, Miles Santos.
“Veteran” artists that participated in TVAST 2021 and now again in 2023 at the Firehouse shared these thoughtful comments:
Deepti Saraswat – “The nine artists at the firehouse were very comfortably housed in that space. The endearing thing was that there was great comradeship among the artists.”
Rhonda Chase – “It was truly a pleasure to lead such an amazing group of artists. We had an incredible diversity of presentation, media, and styles. Our guests had so much to look at and plenty to interact with, including almost continuous artist demonstrations.”
We were happy to have some new members join the Firehouse Team!
Anjuja Goyal – “It was a pleasure to be part of TVAST and the PAL team. The best part of this event for me was to connect with people and this added ten more new artist friends in my life.”
Malavika Oak – “It was a first of its kind experience for me participating in TVAST.  I enjoyed meeting and getting to know our team—especially getting to know all the different mediums each of them worked with. The maps and leaflets helped too.”
Jill Vellinger – “I was truly amazed at how well organized and promoted the event was! And as a new PAL member, it was wonderful for me to be at the Firehouse and get to know some other artists. It was also a gift to get to meet and talk with so many people who visited and are interested in art, from small children on up. All I can say is, “Wow, wow, wow!”
Claudette McDermott – “I liked the intimacy that the Firehouse Open Studio gave to the artists. The timing for me was extra special because my work was also on the PAL Memorial Wall, so prospective clients were able to “Meet the Artist” exhibiting. As well as enjoy the demo and learn about my Encaustic process.”
These nine artists made a terrific team and put in their heart & soul in making TVAST not just a good event, but a great experience at the Firehouse! I can’t thank them enough for choosing to showcase with PAL and the Firehouse this year. Heartfelt thanks to PAL Treasurers John & Charron DeVilliers for processing payments both days, and to Marty Loomis for helping with transport of art panels.
We hope everyone at other collectives and home studios had a fantastic experience too. Can’t wait for next year!
Up next, read all about the PAL’s Pals Youth Art Show, sign up for Wei-Ting’s workshop, enjoy our “Healing Spaces” show in Walnut Creek and Melissa Mandegarian’s gorgeous works on the PAL Wall at the Firehouse, and more in June. Stay tuned!
Meghana Mitragotri 

Report: Art-Day-Out at the Chateau

When a group of talented artists come together you know it’s going to be a good day. PAL’s Art-Day-Out at the Chateau on May 18th proved to be not only fun but inspiring and challenging. Hosted by Alden Lane Nursery, and with an abundance of sunshine, the conditions were ideal for creating little masterpieces. Before heading off to explore the nursery, each artist received a goodie bag with donations from Dick Blick Art Supplies, Windsor & Newton Paints, and Country Time Lemonade. Our artists were challenged to paint something beyond their typical style and comfort zone. The winner, Pat Smith, created a delightful painting of cartoon-like pink flamingos. We knew we had selected the perfect winner when we noticed the immediate chorus of smiles in reaction to her creation. Throughout the day PAL provided snacks and water, as our artists worked in oils, acrylics, pastel, watercolors, colored pencils and sparkling papers. There were paintings of flowers, fountains, buildings, birds, people, and dragons (yes, I did say dragons).

As our time together ended, we shared our art and experiences. Thank you to Alden Lane Nursery and our generous contributors for this memorable experience.

Report on PAL-John Muir Health Show “Healing Spaces”

PAL JMH 2023

“Tender Loving Care” by Amy D Leung

By the time you read this our wonderful John Muir Hospital (JMH) show “Healing Spaces” will be wrapping up over at the Aspen Surgery Center in Walnut Creek. If you hurry, however, you can still enjoy our beautiful display until July 13th or online at I feel confident in saying it was an unqualified success for everyone involved. We had 54 pieces by 27 artists entered into this Juried and Judged show. A big thank you to all who entered. A show is only as good as the artists who enter it and this one is great!

On behalf of PAL, I want to thank Rosemary and Peter Therkelsen, our John Muir contacts, for inviting us back to the John Muir Hospital Aspen Surgery Center. Their tireless efforts in bringing a string of art exhibits into the Aspen center is an inspiration to us all. Because of them and the entire Auxiliary board, everyday hundreds of patients, their families, and staff members can come to work and be greeted by a touch of beauty to start their often-challenging day. I also want to send a big shout out to our committee members, Marion Huff, Linda and George Garbarino and Lorraine Wells. I couldn’t ask for a more patient, creative, and helpful team!

Many thanks to our nationally known and respected Artist/judge, Randall Sexton. His final selections created a varied tapestry of styles and mediums that really show off the talents of our Art League members. Randall’s comments about the winning pieces at our Zoom reception on May 25th were truly insightful!

On to the winners! Best in Show: Amy D Leung “Tender Loving Care;” (Photo of paint at right.) Merit Award: Usha Shukla “Sunrose 02;” Merit Award: John DeVilliers “Diving Bird;” HM: Linda Garbarino “Rodeo Girl;” HM: Meghana Mitragotri “Snow Canyon, Utah;” HM: Kathleen Hill “Family Outing;” HM: Shalaka Mulherkar “Glacial Serenity 1.” Congratulations to all our winning artists and to all the PAL members who made this show such a success!

John DeVilliers, JMH Show Chair

Community Outreach

Loraine & Emily

We have had such a good response to our Community Outreach at both the PAL’s Pals show at Stoneridge Mall and again at the Farmers’ Market in downtown Pleasanton.  I enthusiastically reach out again and ask members to sign up to sit our PAL table in front of Studio Seven on Saturday July 1st and again on July 15th , from 10 am to 12.  Although we have a “no sale” agreement with Studio Seven, we invite you to bring your art to show and bring awareness of PAL and the benefits of PAL membership.

Emelie Rogers, PAL Membership Chair



A Successful 2023 PAL’s Pals Youth Art Show

Click on thumbnail to view in Gallery mode:

PAL has made history with our first in-person PAL’s Pals Youth Art Show and Competition on Saturday April 29 and Sunday April 30 at Pleasanton’s Stoneridge Shopping Center! We received 59 entries, from 9 cities, 15 Middle Schools and 10 High Schools. These young artists came with an abundance of talent which we were excited to display. The exhibits were not only beautiful, but inspirational.

The reception took place on April 30, and we were honored to have Pleasanton Council member Jeff Nibert in attendance. Stoneridge Mall sponsored a special “Stoneridge Award” for which they selected a Middle School and High School winner.Executive Marketing Director Jessica Carberry presented the awards with each recipient receiving a $20 gift card from their new vendor, Boba Nation!

We want to thank our Show Chair Rekha Joshi for leading this program and putting in an incredible amount of effort and time. She did a great job! We also want to thank our following committee members for their time and dedication:

  • Reena Babu who helped with reviewing entries, artist statements, judges’ comments, hanging and staffing the show.
  • Marion Huff for the online entry process, maintaining student data, judging files, and creating beautiful online galleries of the show.
  • Galina Volkova for juggling between files and working through the nights to arrange for 59 individual student certificates and letters with judges’ comments.
  • Lorraine Wells for giving this show such a memorable name, designing brand logo, posters, flyers, and art show labels.
  • Usha Shukla, Jen Huber, Ranjini Venkatachari and George Garbarino for their insightful comments on every artwork.
  • Emelie Rogers for organizing our Outreach station and to Marie Pascal and Wei-Ting Chuang, for accompanying her in this effort.
  • Lynda Briggs, Thomas See and Tejal Shah for arranging the refreshments.
  • Lisa and Ron Rigge, Bill Potter, Tuan Karsevar for helping with transport of art panels.
  • Treasurers John and Charron DeVilliers for handling donations and volunteering.
  • Vanessa Thomas for capturing beautiful moments and broadcasting the reception on Instagram Live.
  • We are also grateful to all the parent & student volunteers for making this show a tremendous success.

Though this was a youth art show, many of you came to see the show and to the reception, that just shows our strength and unity. PAL is working hard towards making our organization more and more accessible to our communities. Our heartfelt thank you all! It was the perfect way to celebrate April 2023 as Arts, Culture and Creativity Month!

Check out Middle School gallery HERE and High School gallery HERE.

With gratitude, The PAL Board

PAL President’s May 2023 Message

May 2023 is going to be a lot of fun! We first kick-off with the Tri- Valley Artist Studio Tour (TVAST) on May 6 & 7, organized by Dennis Baker and his very creative team at Alliance for the Visual Arts (AVA), PAL is extremely pleased to partner with AVA on this project and to sponsor the Firehouse Arts Center as a venue for nine superb PAL artists. Be sure to visit their “studios”, located upstairs, and all of the other artists in the Tri-Valley. And while you’re at the Firehouse, don’t miss PAL artist Claudette McDermott’s encaustic works on the Nancy Thompson Memorial PAL Wall!

The very next day, on May 8th, PAL will host the General Meeting in Pleasanton with Wei-Ting Chuang, followed on May 13 with a workshop by Lisa Rigge. It doesn’t stop here! Our first PAL-Art-Day- Out, on May 18 is going to be loads of fun with painting together outdoors.

Art shows are always the heartbeat of any art organization. Up next is “Healing Spaces” which begins on May 22. Have you met our Treasurer & PAL John Muir Health Show Chair John DeVilliers? A dedicated PAL volunteer, and an exceptionally talented artist! John is heading the show again this year and I would highly encourage PAL artists to be a part of a show that’s all about community healing. John says, “Last year I experienced the joy and trepidation of running my first art show. Luckily, it was for a very worthy organization, the John Muir Health’s Auxiliary group. The goal of this art show is to help bring a sense of well-being and peace into the sometimes hectic and stressful lives of the patients and staff of John Muir Hospital and, more widely, to the entire surrounding community. Even though I had a sharp learning curve, the challenge and fulfillment of running such a unique and successful show was well worth it.”

Everyone is invited to a Zoom reception on May 25 at 7:00 pm in which judge Randall Sexton will share comments about the winning pieces. Keep a lookout on Constant Contact communications with more details including a Zoom link.

Join in on all the fun and merriment!

Best Wishes, Meghana Mitragotri

A Triumphant Week for Lynda Briggs!

March 31 through April 2 was eventful for our member artist.
Friday, March 31-The City of Pleasanton held a Mural Unveiling Ceremony for Lynda’s 4′ x 6′ artwork “Gentle Beauty”. The mural is the product of a two year collaboration between the Pleasanton Cultural Arts Council, Civic Arts and Parks and Recreation, and city staff.

Saturday, April 1- At the Firehouse Arts Center’s, Harrington Gallery “Fresh Works XI” opening reception, she was the recipient of the prestigious ‘Gary and Nancy Harrington Award”. Show runs through June 10.

Sunday, April 2 – At the Livermore Art Association Spring Show, Lynda received 1st place in Acrylics and also a City of Livermore Award. Hearty congratulations, Lynda! You are a very deserving community contributor!

PAL President’s April 2023 Message

April 2023 Presidents MessageI am truly grateful to PAL MoM Show “Imagination Expressed 2023” Chair Christine Bourg, for all her work and enthusiasm in running one of the best PAL shows at the Museum with 60 participating PAL artists! She was accompanied by Lorraine Wells, PAL webmaster Marion Huff, Lynda Briggs, over 20 volunteers and 10 talented demo artists who engaged visitors – thanks to everyone involved. David Savellano did a great job at judging the show. A huge thanks to Museum curator Ken MacLennan and the staff for all their help including publicity. Over thirty 2D & 3D pieces were sold . We hope artists enjoyed being a part of the show as much as we enjoyed organizing it. 

April 2023 Presidents MessageUp next is PAL’s Pals Youth Art Show & Competition at Pleasanton’s Stoneridge Shopping Center. We are really excited to have Rekha Joshi leading this project as our Show Chair. Rekha has a Master’s degree in Fine Arts, and enjoys working in a variety of mediums. Teaching art is her passion, so she founded Nirmitee Arts, to conduct classes for kids and adults. She has been teaching for over 20 years and volunteers with various art groups. She exhibits on both local and international levels. Rekha says, “I always like to encourage young artists to showcase their talent and creativity! The PAL’s Pals program has the same objective and so I decided to lead the show. This is a great opportunity for Middle and High school students to showcase work, receive judges’ feedback and recognition that will add merit for college applications.” Joining her on the Committee are PAL members Reena Babu, Galina Volkova, Marion Huff and Lorraine Wells. Please spread the word and let’s give our budding artists a wonderful opportunity to participate in an art show like a Pro! 

In the new few pages of this Portfolio, read all about our John Muir Health Show in Walnut Creek, the PAL Art Day Out at Alden Lane in Livermore, PAL Member Wall at the Firehouse and PAL Workshop with Lisa Rigge at the Amador Recreation Center in Pleasanton. Oh what fun!

Best Wishes,
Meghana Mitragotri

Thank you MOM/PAL Demo Artists


PAL is very grateful to the ten members who performed 20 sessions of wonderful art demonstration at Pleasanton’s Museum on Main, as part of our show “Imagination Expressed 2023”. Some of these artists also sold art during their demos! When asked about their experiences, this what some had to say:

Tuan Karsevar – “I really enjoyed sharing my painting process and hopefully it can add some value to other artists. On top of that, I learned a lot from the audience who shared their knowledge during the demo.”
Peggy Magovern – “I think the demos are a fantastic way for people to see just how possible it is to learn a new skill, especially a creative skill that allows for personal growth and discovery. Any questions a visitor might have about art becoming a new activity can be answered, but the personal encouragement that comes from this meeting can perhaps make the difference between a dream and reality.”
Nancy Roberts – “I enjoyed my “faux plein air” demos at the PAL show! I was really inspired by the great questions, suggestions and encouragement from the small, friendly group of fellow artists. We all learned from each other! Just a day before my demo, I’d been painting at the Lafayette Reservoir and the whole sparkling scene was still fresh in my memory — and my brush!” 
Deepti Saraswat – “Doing a demo is wonderful to bring awareness and appreciation of the arts. In addition to my love and gravitation towards watercolors, I enjoy representing Art Originating from different parts of India in different media like acrylics, oils and charcoal pencils. In the future I would love to bring these beautiful and enjoyable art styles to the attention of more people here.” 
Eugenia Zobel – “I have been performing art demonstrations at the Museum since PAL’s very first show here and I have loved every minute of it. I think demos are important for the community and also help the art association.”
Meghana Mitragotri – “One of my favourite things to do is perform art demos for the public. The sheer joy of sharing with each other what we discover in our artistic journeys, is just amazing. This also gives me an opportunity to let people know ‘Don’t be afraid of watercolors, we can fix things!’ I was thrilled that my demo painting found a loving home!”

Report on MOM/PAL Show, Imagination Expressed

The MoM/PAL Show, Imagination Expressed, at the Museum on Main has been a great success! Thank you to those who helped with the show and those who demonstrated their skills and those who posted photos of the art online. There were many visitors – especially on days when we had our artists demonstrating. Despite the nasty weather on many days we should be very proud that our community came out to support our efforts and the Museum. It’s a positive experience for both organizations. A special thanks goes to Ken MacLennan, the Museum’s curator, who has worked with us and the public on sales, set up for demos and more, all to make sure the show has run smoothly! I look forward with the support of all of you wonderful artists, to making the show even more successful in 2024!

Christine Bourg, Show Chair

PAL President’s March 2023 Message plus New PAL Board Members. Welcome!

I am happy to share that all PAL Board positions are filled, and we now have a full PAL Board of Directors for 2023! Every Board Member brings in unique skills and experience that contribute towards making operations smooth, and of course, we all learn immensely as we grow into these roles.

Our newest Board Members are PAL Secretary Alana Shoars, Hospitality Chair Tejal Shah and Co-Chairing Programs with me is Jan Loomis. 

PAL Secretary: Alana Shoars

Alana Shoars was born in Oakland but grew up in the Mid-West.  She spent 30+ years in corporate American holding a variety of Information technology management roles.  She is a self-taught artist who has been painting with a variety of mediums since she was 13 years old.   She now works with acrylics.  Alana has a weakness, she cannot go into an art supply store and come out without buying a new paint brush.   She jokes about starting the Pleasanton Chapter of “Paint Brush Buyers Anonymous”.

PAL Hospitality Chair: Tejal Shah 

Tejal Shah is a mixed media artist from San Francisco, CA. She paints from her soul and dances like no one is watching. She is an art educator & artist. She enjoys using various mediums and colors in her artwork. Nature’s colors are her source of inspiration. She learned various forms of art from her since childhood. Her love for art stays within her, and she finally decided to turn her passion into a profession. Her paintings are a collection of realism, impressionism, and abstract art. She makes epoxy art that includes Geode artwork and functional art pieces.

Along with pursuing her artistic journey, she received a Master’s Degree in Home Economics from M.S. University in India and a Master’s from California State East Bay Hayward, CA, in healthcare administration. She has always been passionate about art, creativity, painting, etc. She finds art to be meditative, divine, inspiring, peaceful, and a happy place for her to be in.

Please check out her work on her website (

PAL Programs Co-Chair: Jan Loomis

Having the need for perpetual learning, Jan Loomis’s life has been spent pursuing art classes that have allowed her to explore the making of pottery, jewelry, assemblages, fiber arts and painting in various mediums. Her work is based on nature, which is abstract to reflect the mood of time and place. She is a lover of the art of Wabi Sabi and values salvaging old objects that speak for the past. Her hope is that her art will elicit a sense of calm and peace. 

Jan says, “As an artist my goal is to continue developing the skills and techniques needed to bring my work from mind to hand. As PAL Programs Co-Chair, I hope to help introduce new mediums to our members, while continuing to explore the areas that will further our goals as artists.”

Thanks so much to these wonderful members for accepting these roles and all the very best. Your contributions to PAL will be invaluable.

Big thanks to our Officer for Nominations, Lisa Rigge, for recruiting these talented individuals. 

A list of PAL Board Members and partners is available here

Best wishes,
Meghana Mitragotri, PAL President

PAL President’s February 2023 Message

It’s been a great start to the year, and I want to convey my gratitude to PAL’s member volunteers who work diligently to create excitement for our artists and the Tri-Valley community. From PAL Wall, Art Circuit, shows, art demos, workshops, and TVAST to general meetings — our volunteers are getting ready for it all!

Please find online and printable versions of the PAL 2023 Calendar of Events on our website, This calendar will be updated periodically.

One of our goals is to build partnerships and engage artists of all ages in our community. We are very thrilled to build a new partnership with Pleasanton’s Stoneridge Shopping Center this year. The center has invited us and generously offered space to host various art activities. We’re looking forward to hosting the PAL’s Pals youth art show at this wonderful venue in April.

Here are some kind words from Andres Ripa, General Manager, Stoneridge Shopping Center:

“Stoneridge is a Regional family shopping center with plenty to offer. We have over 160 stores including name brands, regional and local shops. We strive on partnering with the local community in order to see our community thrive. Our partnership with PAL is a step in the right direction and something we hope to continue to execute on a yearly basis. When we first met the PAL Board, we fell in love with the story of helping young art students bring out their creativity and share a location where they can demonstrate these skills. On top of an art display project, the opportunity for students in our community to win scholarships as part of PAL’s initiatives, is something Stoneridge Shopping Center is fond of.”

Cheers to good times ahead! Meghana Mitragotri President, Pleasanton Art League

Report on Reception and Judging at MOM Show

The reception for the Museum on Main/PAL show held on January 21st was a huge success! There were over 200 visitors to the Museum including artists, their friends and families and members of the community who came in to see the art. There were over 150 pieces created and displayed by 60 artists. Our judge David Savellano presented 10 awards and made insightful comments in a delightfully animated way about each winning piece. Many people commented on the beautiful and varied art on display. PAL members should be proud of the quality and diversity of the art we produce. Special thanks go to the show helpers, Ron Rigge, Brian Bourg, Bill Potter, John DeVilliers, Barbara Blissert, Lisa Rigge, Annette Mack, George and Linda Garbarino, Lorraine Wells, and Peggy Magovern.

The judge for the show was Bay Area artist David Savellano. David worked as an architect for 40 years and then became a full time artist. His specialty is plein air watercolor paintings that capture random moments – on the street, in nature, and wherever else his portable easel takes him. David is also an accomplished teacher. His expert instruction enables students to improve their artistic skills and knowledge.

Enjoy the show at Museum on Main, 603 Main Street, Pleasanton until March 25 and online HERE

MOM Show Chair Christine Bourg, Merit Award Winner Nataliya Gavrilova and Judge David Savellano.

MoM/PAL Show Winners:

Best in Show:

  • Peggy Magovern  for “Carol w/ Blue Sweater”

Merit Awards:

  • Ron Rigge for “Washing”
  • Nataliya Gavrilova for “Apples”
  • Helene Roylance for “Large Blue Plate”

Honorable Mentions;

  • Reena Babu for “Palms”
  • Janine Heath for “Koi Fish Guitar”
  • Meghana Mitragotri for “Bundle of Joy 2”
  • Jill Vellinger for “Transforming Light”
  • Elena Morris for “Livermore Vineyard”
  • Ranjini Venkatachari for “Artist’s Block”
Photos (Award Winners & Candids) from the PAL/MOM Show “Imagination Expressed 2023” Reception. Winning Artist not shown in photos—Merit Award: Helene Roylance. Click on thumbnail to view the images full size.

PAL President’s January 2023 Message

PAL President’s Message The year 2022 began with uncertainty as we were emerging from the shadows of the pandemic, but as a team we have shown great resilience and spirit across this year, for which I am forever indebted to everyone involved! Our PAL Board members have worked tirelessly behind the scenes in streamlining processes and operations efficiently.

Here are some of the highlights of 2022.

  • Created and documented formal job descriptions for every Board position 
  • Standardized & built consistency around art show formats including guidelines, prospectuses, entry forms, awards 
  • New & improved online registration process with volunteer, demo options & easy Sign ups 
  • Revamped, stabilized and automated membership process • Hassle-free & secure customer payment options 
  • Robust budget & accounts reporting system • Refined the Constant Contact communications process in collaboration with LAA 
  • Resumed Art Circuit, Workshop, PAL Wall, and Scholarship programs. 
  • Increased Publicity & Social Media efforts have resulted in significant follow ship
  • 18 fun & interactive art demonstrations by members showcasing a variety of artistic talents at Museum on Main & Firehouse Arts Center 
  • A great website with 35 beautiful individual and three group show online galleries 
  • PAL awareness and outreach programs led to a significant growth in membership (Thanks, Studio Seven Art Gallery, Downtown Pleasanton) 
  • Launched our first juried show “Healing Spaces” in association with John Muir Health, Walnut Creek 
  • First time participation in Livermore’s premier ArtWalk (Thanks, Anne Giancola) PAL was recognized to receive two City Art Proclamations from the Pleasanton Mayor and Council members (Thanks, Alameda County Arts Commission) 
  • Partnered with nonprofit organization, Cantabella Children’s Chorus to create one of the best art opening receptions.


Now looking forward into 2023, we hope to continue to measure and improve all above achievements while building new partnerships. We look forward to providing increased engagements to artists of all ages with many new surprises including four fantastic General Meeting speakers (2D & 3D) and bringing back PAL’s Pals (in-person) Youth Art Show for Middle and High Schoolers. We stand alongside LAA and DAC, collectively promoting and bringing creativity and positivity into our communities. For these partnerships, we are eternally grateful! Jan Loomis, we will dearly miss your invaluable and meticulous work as our 2022 PAL Secretary! Thank you all for your continued support and participation in PAL and all its efforts, and giving me the opportunity in this role again! Kindly renew your memberships with PAL and continue to help our family grow.

My best wishes to you all for happy & healthy 2023!

Meghana Mitragotri, 2023 President, Pleasanton Art League

PAL’s 15th Annual Fall Members’ Show

From top left: Entries from Alan Frank, Linda Geniesse, Claudette McDermott From bottom left: Entries from Mike D’Amelio, Melissa Mandegarian, Susan Helmer

PAL’s 15th Annual Fall Members’ Show

October 29 to December 17, 2022

PAL’s Fifteenth Annual Fall Members’ Show featured 75 2D and 3D works – oils, acrylics, watercolor, linocut, pen & colored pencil, pastels, encaustic hot wax, fused glass, and porcelain art – all by PAL artists. During the show, multiple live artist demonstrations were scheduled. See Demo section below. Read about the show in Pleasanton Weekly HERE. View online show HERE.

Reception Report 

Seema Mahboob judged the show and awarded a Best in Show, three Merit Awards and four Honorable Mentions. Seema did her Master’s degree in Fine Arts from Punjab University. She has extensive experience in teaching both drawing and painting. Her paintings are with numerous private collectors. She is currently teaching at Center for Community Arts and Mount Diablo Adult Education. Her area of focus is in human figure and portraits. Examples of her work are on Instagram:@seemamahboob.art0

Visitors voted for for two additional People’s Choice Awards between October 29 and November 11. PAL is fortunate that the People’s Choice Award this year is sponsored by Livermore’s Way Up Art & Frame, a favorite resource for all Tri-Valley artists.

Awards were presented at a reception on Saturday, November 12 from 1:00 to 3:00 pm. PAL was honored that the Best in Show was awarded by Pleasanton’s Mayor, Karla Brown.

The reception started with a performance by the award-winning Cantabella Children’s Chorus.   Awards immediately followed the performance.  The Cantabella’s Honors Choir and Chamber Choir were featured. The Honors Choir is composed of selected treble voices who have demonstrated the highest quality of musicianship and vocal abilities. Its ensemble is composed of 7th to 12th grade students dedicated to intensive past and present rehearsals. In addition, the Chamber Choir is comprised of advanced singers in the 7th through 12th grades.

Ten Wonderful PAL Art Demonstrations at the Firehouse during PAL’s 15th Annual Fall Members’ Show

Sincere thanks to all ten PAL Demo Artists who performed wonderful art demonstrations at the Harrington Gallery as part of PAL’s 15th Members’ Show. The audience was just in awe of the creative techniques with encaustic hot wax, acrylics, watercolor, colored pencils, east asian brush painting, enamel painting on fused glass and soft pastels. Participating demo artists: Claudette McDermott, Peggy Magovern, Emelie Rogers, Ranjini Venkatachari, Meghana Mitragotri, Rhonda Chase, Leta Eydelberg, Wei-Ting Chuang, Nancy Roberts, and Olga Symonenko. Art demonstrations are always a wonderful way of sharing the love of what one loves doing the most, and PAL is happy to create these opportunities for members who are open to share art styles with the public. These are great ways of promoting self, the ongoing show, the organization, and the venues we partner with. Many artists also use these platforms to brush up public speaking skills and overcome stage fear. So let’s embrace and welcome these exciting opportunities as we bring the demo series once again in our next show in January “Imagination Expressed 2023” – Your PAL Board. T


PAL President’s December 2022 Message

Members Show Reception 2022

PAL Firehouse Show Chairs Linda Garbarino, Pat Smith, and George Garbarino

What a perfect way to wrap up 2022! PAL’s 15th Annual Fall Members’ Show reception at the Firehouse was very successful with a huge turnout, and we’re thankful to everyone who could attend. The performance by the Cantabella Children’s Chorus’ Honors Choir and Chamber Choir was truly wonderful. A big thank you to Show Chairs Pat Smith, Linda & George Garbarino for all their dedication & hard work. Heartfelt thanks to Lynda Briggs for arranging all the refreshments. Thanks to PAL webmaster Marion Huff for her work on the website and beautiful online gallery of the show https://www.pal- , and our graphic designer Lorraine Wells for creating the flyer. This show would not have been possible without the incredible support from Program Assistant, Harrington Gallery Curator Sydney Tang, Recreation Supervisor Mark Duncanson and all the staff at the Firehouse. Thanks to Way Up Art & Frame for sponsoring one of the Merit Awards and to Seema Mahboob for judging the show. We’re very grateful to Pleasanton Mayor Karla Brown & Vice Mayor Valerie Arkin for gracing the occasion! To all 75 participants including 11 demo artists & volunteers- You are amazing! A huge team effort indeed!

2022 has truly been a year to remember with remarkable achievements. My heartfelt thanks to all the Board Members including officers & Show Chairs, partners, members and volunteers for all their time and effort in making PAL reachable and accessible to community members of all ages. Up next in
January, PAL’s 15th Members’ Show at Museum on Main,

“Imagination Expressed 2023” – I hope PAL members will enter this first show of 2023! I wish you all the happiest of holidays

PAL President’s November 2022 Message

2022 Paint Pleasanton Committee.
Alka Vaidya, Rebecca Davies, Lorraine Wells, Ritu Ahluwalia, Marion Huff

RAIN or SHINE, everything turned out super fine at 2022 Paint Pleasanton! The last thing we needed was rain, and it just had to happen that one Sunday! An easy way out could have been just to cancel the event altogether. But committee members Lorraine Wells, Alka Vaidya, Rebecca Davies, Marion Huff and Ritu Ahluwalia, along with the staff at Pleasanton’s Museum on Main were determined to go ahead with this event against all odds. Big thanks to this incredible team! Thanks to Arnie Heller for taking photographs during the art show. Heartfelt thanks to all the artists who not only came out in support of this event, but also for constantly sharing painting progress and vlogs over social media. We’re grateful to the Pleasanton Weekly for publishing a great article that includes comments from a couple of new artists. Read it here

Thanks to all the artists that have entered PAL’s 15th Annual Fall Members’ Show at the Firehouse. Everyone is invited to the reception and awards on Saturday, November 12 at 1:00. The reception will include a special performance by the Cantabella Children’s Chorus, an award-winning group that we are thrilled to partner with. The group’s Honors Choir and Chamber Choir will be in attendance for the event. The Honors Choir is composed of selected treble voices who have demonstrated the highest quality of musicianship and vocal abilities. Its ensemble is composed of 7th to 12th grade students dedicated to intensive past and present rehearsals. In addition, the Chamber Choir is comprised of advanced singers in the 7th through 12th grades.

Best Wishes, Meghana Mitragotri

PAL Recognized and Received Art Proclamation

PAL Recognized and Received Art Proclamation at City Council Meeting for the second time in 2022! It was an honor to represent the Pleasanton Art League and accept an Art Proclamation to recognize October 2022 as National Arts and Humanities Month at the Pleasanton City Council meeting with Mayor Karla Brown and City Council members on October 18; this Proclamation was shared with the Pleasanton Cultural Arts Council (PCAC) . A big THANK YOU to the PAL Board, members, volunteers, and partners for all the support. Heartfelt thanks to the Alameda County Arts Commission for initiating art advocacy at all City Levels. The meeting was broadcast live on Channel 29 and YouTube. Watch PAL President Meghana Mitragotri’s acceptance speech (49 minutes 52 seconds into the meeting)

November 2022 Portfolio

Photo credit: Chuck Deckert. From the left: Councilmember Kathy Narum, Vice Mayor Valerie Arkin, Councilmember Julie Testa, PAL President Meghana Mitragotri, PCAC President Kelly Cousins, Mayor Karla Brown, and Councilmember Jack Balch.

PAL Booth at ArtWalk:

This year, four PAL member artists shared a booth at ArtWalk with PAL liaison, Treasurer & artist John DeVilliers. We had quite the varied group in experience, artistic styles and even media, which demonstrated the breadth and variety of PAL’s membership. While John spoke to attendees about the advantages of joining PAL, Elani Scott (one of the recipients of the 2022 PAL Scholarship Award), Ashley Chase (3-D artist) Sandra Myers (painter) and I, Rhonda Chase (jewelry artist and painter) showed recent works. The five artists got to know each other over the course of the day; learning about Ashley’s origami and sculpture, Elani’s impassioned drawings, my path through art media, and enjoying Sandra’s painting demonstrations.

The PAL booth was located at the new Livermorium Plaza, where visitors could find other art organizations as well, making for a fun day filled with many artists, and a vast sea of amazing artwork.

A big thank you to PAL Vice president George Garbarino for arranging the art panels.

– Rhonda Chase

Paint Pleasanton 2022

Paint Pleasanton 2022Twenty nine artists from far and wide gathered again this year to paint plein air the many historic and beautiful locations in and around the City of Pleasanton during Paint Pleasanton 2022. Starting at the Museum on Main (MOM), 603 Main Street, Pleasanton, on Saturday, Sept. 17 for sign in and ending back inside MOM (due to rain) on Sunday afternoon Sept. 18 for judging, awards and the viewing and purchasing of art. PAL is especially grateful to MOM not only for hosting the event but especially for opening up to the public on Sunday and allowing judging, viewing and awards to proceed inside. The open museum was greeted enthusiastically by everyone.  Many attendees had not been inside the museum before. 

Inklings Coffee donated a Peoples Choice Award and Primrose Bakery wonderful cookies to add to the festivities.  Let’s show our appreciation for their contribution by shopping at their businesses.

Many persons helped make this event memorable.The artists themselves; Sarah Schaefer and Ken MacLennan of the Museum on Main; Paint Pleasanton committee members Lorraine Wells, Alka Vaidya, Rebecca Davies, and Marion Huff; PAL president Meghana Mitragotri and family; PAL hospitality chair Ritu Ahluwalia; Linda and George Garbarino and Arnie Heller for taking photos; many of those already mentioned for publicizing the event before and after.

View many of the beautiful paintings created HERE.

Read about the event in Pleasanton Weekly HERE.

Thanks especially to our judge Georganne Zaro who shared insights from her long career regarding plein air painting. Georganne presented the following awards:

  • Best of  Show: Rolando Barrero – “Firehouse”
  • Merit Awards:
  • Birgit Spaulding – “Sycamore Sky”
  • Malavika Oak – “Coffee at Inklings”
  • Honorable Mentions:
  • Tuan Karsevar – “Red Chairs”
  • Shrey Purohit – “Bernal Landscape”
  • Jenna Hobbs – “Arroyo del Valle”
  • Alka Vaidya presented the People’s Choice Award to: Rolando Barrero – “Firehouse”

PAL President’s Fall 2022 Message:

As we are entering the last quarter of 2022, I just want to thank everyone for a fantastic year thus far.

Many thanks to PAL’s Membership Chair Emelie Rogers for leading the PAL Awareness project during First Weekends in Downtown Pleasanton and all the volunteers that supported her in this effort in spite of extreme weather conditions. A big thank you to Georgia Jacobs and Ritu Ahluwalia (LAA & PAL Hospitality Chairs respectively) for arranging the super successful Potluck and to everyone who came. Our PAL Fall Members’ Show Committee is working really hard to get everything organized for this last members’ show of the year. I hope all PAL Members will participate and avail the opportunity to proudly display a favorite piece of artwork at the awesome Harrington Gallery of the Firehouse Arts Center. Please don’t let anything come in the way; we have a wonderful pool of volunteers that will help anyone who needs help with registration, framing, pick-up & drop-off of artwork and anything else that we can help with. Just let the Show Chairs know and let us help you. Have a blast creating!

Meghana Mitragotri

The PAL Art Circuit is Back On

Oct 2022 Portfolio

George Garbarino filling out the circuit inventory form at Bagel Street Cafe, Pleasanton.

A rotation was done on September 15th. Five teams participated with a total of 28 active participants. The next rotation will be in December.

Following is the list of businesses participating. Businesses where P AL Circuit work hangs:

      • Sallman, Yang, & Alameda CPA’s —- SECTION “A”, Pleasanton.
      • Sallman, Yang, & Alameda CPA’s —- SECTION “B”, Pleasanton.
      • Bagel Street Café, Dublin.
      • Pleasanton Chamber of Commerce, Pleasanton.
      • The Bagel Street Café, Pleasanton.


Usha Shukla, PAL Circuit Chair

More on the PAL Art Circuit HERE.

PAL Info Table in front of Studio Seven Arts

PAL members manned a PAL information table in front of Studio Seven Arts gallery from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm during Pleasanton’s First Weekends on Main.

  • Friday August 5 – Alka Vaidya and Emelie Rogers 
  • Saturday August  6 – Lorraine Wells and Wei Ting Chuang
  • Friday September 3 – John DeVilliers and Bill Potter
  • Saturday September 4 – Jessica Copeman and Emelie Rogers

PAL-John Muir Health 2022 Show “Healing Spaces!”

PAL’s first art exhibition at the John Muir Health Medical Center in Walnut Creek ran from May 23 to July 14, 2022. Show Chair John DeVilliers, show committee (Linda and George Garbarino, Lisa Rigge, Marion Huff and Lorraine Wells) and all the PAL members who submitted artworks combined together to make the show an amazing success.
Jody Mattison ( juried and judged the show. She announced the award-winners and commented about the winning pieces at a Virtual/Zoom Reception on Wednesday, June 8 at 7 pm.
The Winners
Best in show: 
Galina Volkova, “Radiant Red”
Merit awards: 
Linda Garbarino, “Nod to Vincent”
Ron Rigge,  “Vineyard and Truck”
Honorable mentions: 
Chandana Srinath,  “Family”
Amy Leung,  “Concentration for Perfection”
Usha Shukala,  “Achillea 02”
Claudette McDermott,  “Field of Dreams”
View Jody Mattison’s comments HERE. View the Winners Gallery and the complete Show Gallery HERE

PAL President’s Summer 2022 Message

PAL-John Muir Health Show judge Jody Mattison during the virtual reception on June 8 said, “What a beautiful show this has been with such varied artworks!”, and I can’t agree more! Thanks so much to all the amazing artists who entered their healing works of art in this debut show. From speaking to many artists, I gather that this show was an emotional experience and an opportunity to comfort self through art. Heartfelt thanks to our hard-working committee members and John Muir Auxiliary Board (all listed in John’s report) for all the help, guidance, and passion towards this project. I want to thank Show Chair John DeVilliers immensely for his dedication and time. This was John’s first time chairing a show, and he executed his role so diligently. His kind nature makes him extremely approachable and wonderful to work with. You are such a natural, John! Thanks so much for all that you and Charron (his wife) do. It’s not easy being Treasurer and Show Chair at the same time!

We were so happy that JMH Auxiliary Board’s Co-chair Rosemary Therkelsen was able to join us at the reception to share her journey with us. A big thank you to our webmaster Marion Huff for creating a beautiful virtual gallery and giving us a tour; click here to enjoy the gallery https://www.pal- We were glad to record the segment of the virtual reception in which Jody shares her comments about the winning pieces. It was like sitting in a classroom and listening intently to an instructor! Jody annotated the artworks on the screen and explained what appealed to her and what she learnt throughout the process. Her comments were truly educational and inspiring.

This segment with Judge’s comments has now been uploaded to YouTube. Click here and enjoy!

Special thanks to Linda Garbarino for promoting every artist in this show on PAL’s Instagram

Up next is PAL’s Plein Air event Paint Pleasanton 2022 in September followed by PAL’s Members’ Show at the Firehouse in October! Let’s gear up and get more brush mileage!

Best wishes, Meghana Mitragotri

Honor for Linda Garbarino

Pleasanton’s Mayor, Karla Brown, recently presented an award to Linda Garbarino for Community Service to the City of Pleasanton! Linda has been a member of several organizations for years and currently is the President of the Heritage Association, President of the Museum on Main, and of course a very busy member of the Board of the Pleasanton Art League. Congratulations Linda! It is so nice to have you recognized for the work you do!





PAL MOM 2022

“Missing You Already” by Rita Sklar (watercolor)

Rita Sklar was awarded “Best of Show” at the Alameda County Fair! Congratulations Rita! The painting, “Missing You Already” can be seen on






Report on 2022 PAL-John Muir Health Show “Healing Spaces”


By the time you read this our inaugural John Muir Hospital (JMH) show “Healing Spaces” will be wrapping up over at the Aspen Surgery Center in Walnut Creek, however, you can still enjoy the show until July 14th. You can also see the artwork HERE.

I feel confident in saying it was an unqualified success for everyone involved. We had 88 pieces by 33 artists entered into this Juried and Judged show and the final selections were a testament to the talent and expertise of our members.

I’d like to thank Rosemary and Peter Therkelsen, our John Muir contacts, for inviting us to participate in the ongoing efforts of the John Muir Health Medical Center Auxiliary to bring beautiful, healing, works of art into their Aspen Surgery Center. Everyday hundreds of patients, their families, and staff members can come to work and be greeted by a touch of beauty to start their often-challenging day. I also want to send a big shout out to our committee members; Linda and George Garbarino, Lisa Rigge, Marion Huff and Lorraine Wells. You all made me look like I knew what I was doing!

Our wonderful, patient Judge, Jody Mattison, picked out seven beautiful and varied pieces to represent the best our show had to offer. The choices were difficult for her, and she said that she could have easily given out another 4 or 5 awards, there were so many good pieces to choose from. She was also sorry she couldn’t have put more pieces into the show as there were many other excellent pieces entered.

Congratulations to all our winning artists and to all the PAL members who made this show such a success!

John DeVilliers, JMH Show Chair

Farewell to Beth & Peter Okurowski

In NewsThe PAL Board organized a little Farewell to PAL past president Beth Okurowski & PAL past treasurer Peter Okurowski who recently moved to Prescott, Arizona. We thank them immensely for their services and especially steering the ship so gracefully during the two years of the pandemic. Their contributions to the art community will always be trea- sured. Beth is our Parliamentarian and continues to provide guidance on various matters based on her tenure & experience. We will miss you Beth & Peter! Have a good life ahead and keep visiting!

PAL MOM Show, Imagination Expressed 2022

This year’s PAL MOM Show was held from January 12 to March 26, 2022 at  Museum on Main, 503 Main Street, Pleasanton. Local California artist, John Tullis, judged the show. Listen to his comments HERE. View this year’s winners below. Click on thumbnail to view in gallery mode.

PAL Recognized at Pleasanton City Council Meeting!

It was an honor to represent the Pleasanton Art League and accept an Art Proclamation to recognize March 2022 as Art is Education Month and April 2022 as Art, Culture and Creativity Month at the Pleasanton City Council meeting with Mayor Karla Brown and City Council members on March 15. This was a first for PAL! Thank you so much to the PAL Board, members, volunteers, city staff, officials, local business, institutions and other nonprofit organizations for all the support. Heartfelt thanks to the Alameda County Art Commission for encouraging and initiating art advocacy at all City Levels. We’re so happy to share this Proclamation with the Pleasanton Cultural Arts Council (PCAC) and looking forward to our partnership. The virtual meeting was broadcast live on Channel 29 and at or

Hearty Congratulations to the Dublin Arts Collective for receiving this proclamation at Dublin’s City Council Meeting at the same time! – Meghana Mitragotri

New PAL President’s Message

Dear Members,

Bravo! What an incredible couple of years we’ve had! I am so proud of our achievements & innovations to engage with our members. It seemed an insurmountable task to come together when we were forced to distance and time stood still. Yet, we managed to keep art relevant as we persevered through joyful collaboration.

At PAL, it is a privilege to work with creative minds everyday, and a Board that always guides and encourages new ideas. With utmost gratitude to LAA and DAC, our partnerships have made us stronger, together!

I am truly honored to take on this new role and serve alongside brilliant officers, chairpersons, volunteers, and partners. Our unique skills will help us lead the way into exciting opportunities as we continue to build on existing processes focused on efficiency and inclusiveness. Our goal is to create an engaging environment across ages to establish artist connections by exchanging best practices. It is an honor to volunteer for an organization that has been catalytic in building my art career from a hobbyist to a professional. This can be a reality for other aspiring artists too!

I have very big shoes to fill! I am incredibly grateful to Beth Okurowski and her leadership team. Beth is an asset and has been a perfect mentor.

Thank you all for your continued support and participation. Kindly renew your memberships with PAL and invite fellow enthusiasts to join us. Let’s make scope for art abundant and accessible, irrespective of the times ahead!

My best wishes to you all for an exciting 2022

Meghana Mitragotri, 2022 President, Pleasanton Art League

PAL and LAA in the News

“Here’s a great article written by our Board Member Vanessa Thomas on Pleasanton Patch.
She has also posted announcements on Instagram and LinkedIn.
Thanks so much, Vanessa, for all the time and effort you’ve put into drafting & announcing new leaderships at PAL and LAA, and also promoting the January 10 General Meeting. Truly appreciate everything you do for the arts and your help in gaining visibility.”  Submitted by Meghana.

Retiring PAL President’s Message

It is my last month as PAL’s President, and I just want to say a heart-felt word of thanks. It really has been an enormous growing opportunity for me, and I want to thank you for entrusting me with taking a turn at the helm. Having a strong team at your side makes all the difference, and I’d like to thank the PAL board, Show Chairs, Committee Chairs, and all who have volunteered in large or small ways over the past three years. It really does take a village to make it all happen, and I am so proud of all that we’ve accomplished! I would also like to thank LAA and DAC leadership, who through cooperative efforts have made each organization stronger. New and valuable friendships have been forged, which has made my journey all the richer. Our world is changing quickly, and together we’ve managed to propel forward, thrive, and achieve milestones that I could not have imagined when I started. Stay healthy, nurture your creative and unique self, and I’ll see you all next year!

With Gratitude, Beth Okurowski

2022 PAL Executive Board Elections

The following Artists were elected to the PAL Executive Board at the November General Meeting on Monday, November 8, 2021. They will begin their terms on January 1, 2022. Meghana Mitragotri will serve as President, George Garbarino will serve as Vice-President, John DeVillers will serve as Treasurer, and Jan Loomis will serve as Secretary. Thank you to the PAL Nominating Committee: Lisa Rigge, Lorraine Wells, Linda Garbarino and George Garbarino.

PAL Twelfth Annual Members Show at the Firehouse

Theme Award “Above It All”:

  • Robin Leimer “Canyonlands”

Merit Awards:

  • Lynda Briggs “Beyond The Surface”
  • Wei-Ting Chuang  “A Peaceful Corner”
  • Annette Mack “The Park On Bluebell”
  • Ron Rigge “The Letter”
  • Alka Vaidya “Piled up Summer Shoes”

Honorable Mention:

  • Barbara Blissert “Venice Evening”
  • Glenyse Henschel “100% Wool”
  • Amy D. Leung “Bustling Downtown After Rain”
  • Meghana Mitragotri “Bavarian Country Side”
  • Bill Potter “Pre-COVID-Post Anxiety”
  • Nancy Roberts “Diablo Foothills, October”
  • Diane Rodriguez “Waiting For Hoppers”
  • Tejal Shah “A Bucket Full Of Memories”
  • Charlotte Severin “Conquering The Corona Virus “
  • Chandana Srinath “Mother”
  • Eugenia Zobel “Bountiful Harvest”

TVAST 2021 – Tri Valley Artists Studio Tour

The TVAST – Tri Valley Artists Studio Tour – was a successful and inspiring event for all the art associations and individual artists in the Tri Valley. Local people met and were introduced to local artists and art venues for the arts in our area, in some cases for the first time. Many people arrived on their bicycles via the art tour of venues created by Jennifer Huber. It was a successful art event that featured live demos by local artists, painting, sculpting and even creating gorgeous Henna art for free on visitors hands!

Many Artists displayed their work collectively at the Bothwell Art Center in Livermore, the Firehouse Art Center in Pleasanton and the Frame Company in Dublin. Several high school and college students exhibited at Art Process in Dublin. Many artists opened their own studios to show their work.

PAL TVAST Artists at the Firehouse: What an awesome weekend of the TVAST event! The team of nine PAL artists at the Firehouse Arts Center had a blast setting up and decorating studio spaces. They had constant traffic on both days with friends, family, patrons, art lovers, seniors and students visiting from and beyond the valley. We were excited to perform jewelry and painting demonstrations for people of all ages including a big group of Scouts that tried their hand on traditional watercolor and Asian brush painting techniques. Thank you so much to everyone who came out to support the event which resulted in a record number of sales too! At the end of the event, artists enjoyed exchanging art and souvenirs.

PAL artists at Firehouse were: Dave Peterson, Usha Shukla, Jan Loomis, Charlotte Severin, Deepti Saraswat, Marion Huff, Wei-Ting Chuang, Rhonda Chase and Meghana Mitragotri.

Thank you to the staff at the Firehouse and to Lynda Briggs for their incredible support and having PAL artwork up on the PAL Wall upstairs during the event and until December 18. Student volunteers from Foothill and Amador High Schools in Pleasanton, and Granada High School in Livermore did a flawless job at the register with credit card, cash and check payments. PAL will sign off volunteer/service hours for these students. Thanks to fellow artists from other venues who came to the Firehouse. Our sincere thanks to Dennis Baker and Anne Giancola for their vision and work on this project. A big thank you to PAL for all the help and support including getting us this incredible venue, supplying flats and sign boards and arranging the PAL Members’ Show reception to coincide with TVAST weekend. We would love to do this again next year!

Report on PAL’s Paint Pleasanton 2021

Artists enjoyed the beautiful sunny weekend of September 25 and 26 painting in the Pleasanton Art League’s fourth annual plein air competition, “Paint Pleasanton”.  If you were in Pleasanton over that weekend you may have seen some of our many participants out painting Pleasanton’s historic landmarks, buildings and vineyards.  The event attracted widely recognized artists such as Carolyn Lord and Nancy Roberts.

Most artists arrived with the sun on Saturday morning and stayed until sunset to capture the charm of our local area.  After a day and a half of painting the painters returned to the Museum On Main, on Main Street to set up their easels for the entire community to enjoy.  It was an enjoyable and unique show of our valley and village through the artist’s eyes.

The Sunday afternoon show was enhanced by the generous donation of an impressive selection of mouthwatering cookies from our local Primrose Bakery.  Inklings Coffee & Tea, also an avid supporter of our community, donated our first time “Peoples Choice Award”, won by Leta Eydelberg.  Our “Best of Show” award was won by Nancy Roberts, a local resident known for her exciting depictions of our local hills, valleys, orchards and historic buildings.  Judge Jody Mattison also gave out Awards of Merit to Meghana Mitragothi and Leta Eydelberg and Honorable Mention awards went to Carolyn Lord, Jennifer Huber, Brian Fulmer and Srivani Ward.  It was a very enjoyable event, thanks to the Museum on Main’s generous loan of their frontage.

 Paint Pleasanton Winner’s Gallery – Click on thumbnail to view full size.

Paint Pleasanton 2021 in the news:


PAL President Beth Okurowski’s 2021 Summer Message

Since there won’t be another Portfolio until September, here is a look ahead for PAL:

  • PAL members will be manning a PAL information table in front of Studio Seven Arts gallery in Pleasanton on Saturdays between 10:00 am and 1:00 pm during the summer months. If you are at the farmers market, stop by and say “hi”!
  • We have worked with the Museum on Main to nail down dates for Paint Pleasanton, PAL’s annual Plein Air event and show. It will be September 25 and 26. Please check Call for Artists on the PAL website for updates as the time approaches.
  • The first annual TVAST (Tri Valley Artist Studio Tour) will be on November 13th and 14th., with a Preview Show on November 11th (5:00 to 8:00 pm) at the Darcie Kent Wine Lounge. Spaces at the Bothwell Art Center, Alden Lane Nursery, and the Pleasanton Firehouse are filling up quickly. Artists are also gathering in collectives to show in the homes of artists. PAL is offering free rental space at the Firehouse to its members (over $100 value), but there are only two spaces left. Contact Usha Shukla ( if you are interested or want to learn more. Please visit for information about the tour.
  • The annual PAL members’ Show will be held November 6th through December 18th in the Harrington Gallery at the Firehouse Arts Center in Pleasanton. This year’s theme is Above It All. As a supplement to the show this year, the TVAST event will be happening in the upstairs classrooms in the Firehouse during the same time, which creates a great synergy! Visitors can view the show in the gallery then head upstairs to watch TVAST artists demo and show their work!
  • Communications volunteer needed – We are in need of someone to work with our publicity team to create and disseminate Constant Contact bulletins that go out to PAL, LAA, and DAC members. Some technical skills are required. Other similar email programs could be used instead of Constant Contact (like Mail Chimp). If you think you might be interested, please contact me at

Have a wonderful Summer! 

PAL’s Pals 2021 Virtual Show

PAL’s Pals High School and Middle School Virtual Show was found on this website from May 1 – May 31, 2021. A total of 52 entries were received (25 Middle School + 27 High School students) from 26 schools (13 Middle + 13 High Schools) in a variety of media including acrylic, oil, watercolor, alcoholic markers, colored pencils, mixed media, pencil drawing, charcoal, gouache and digital art.

View High School awards HERE. View Middle School awards HERE.

PAL’s Pals in the News

Vanessa Thomas wrote a wonderful article about PAL’s Pals for the Dublin Patch. Read it HERE.

Dolores Fox Ciadelli wrote a piece for the Pleasanton Weekly. Read it HERE.

An article also appears in The Independent. Read it HERE.

Winners of PAL’s Thirteenth Museum on Main Show








Wednesday, January 13 – Saturday, March 6, 2021

David Wagner, an art instructor at Las Positas College, judged the show awarding ribbons and Gift Cards to Way Up Art and Frame

Chloe by Tejal Shah (acrylic)
Portrait of a Woman by John DeVilliers (pastel/colored pencil)
Serenity by Chandana Srinath (acrylic)
Waiting by Maria Grazia Romeo (oil)
Honorable Mentions:
The Admiralty by Helene Marie Roylance (watercolor)
Bristlecone Bark by Ron Rigge (photo)
The Gardeners by Marie Pascal (watercolor)
Heron at Morro Bay by Joanne Spurr (colored pencil)
Historic Napa Vineyard by David Gates (oil)
Mask with Flowers by Robert Nicolosi (mixed media)
Mid-Life, Bishop CA by Lisa Rigge (photo)
Nasturtiums by Meghana Mitragotri (watercolor)
Spring by Wei Ting Chuang (ink and watercolor)
Star in Sterling by Rhonda Chase (sterling silver, crystal and porcelain)

Winner’s Gallery – Click on thumbnail to view full size.

New Group Being Formed

Optimizing Strategies for Social Media (Catchy Title TBD): Now that PAL, LAA and DAC have Facebook, Instagram, Zoom, and Youtube accounts, we would like to form a group to spearhead the effort toward optimizing the use of these powerful social media tools. We’ve seen the benefits of working together to bring our monthly members’ meetings into our homes via Zoom. Our next step is to use our combined brain power to develop coordinated strategies for promoting our shows and events. Topics that we will be digging into include: developing content, frequency of posting, boosting and leveraging, and other methods for getting maximum exposure. Also, establishing posting standards to achieve a cohesive approach, and security. We are seeking your ideas and may also bring in outside expertise. If you are interested in being a part of this exciting group, please send an email to Beth Okurowski with “social media” in the subject line.

PAL President’s January 2021 Message  

“My friend, Irving Lavin, A Renaissance scholar at Princeton’s Institute for Advanced Study, confessed that he had a horrible time writing because he never knew the beginning. Then he figured out that the paper’s beginning was not the same as beginning to write. So he just started writing about an important point in the paper and trusted that he’d find the beginning eventually. Chekhov, when asked by a nephew how he knew where to start, replied, ‘Take your blue book and tear it in half. Begin there.” There’s a difference between a work’s beginning and starting to work.

“I learned this with one of my earliest dances, The Fugue. Being a novice choreographer, I didn’t know how to begin. So I stood up in the center of the room, took a deep breath, stamped my foot, and shouted, “Begin!” Stamping the foot led me to think of the piece as tap dancing. The sound of my shoe against the floor gave me the idea of performing the piece in silence on an electronically amplified stage. To this day that’s how The Fugue starts out – with a stomp that rings in my mind “Begin!”

I guess that’s the real secret to creative preparation. If you’re at a dead end, take a deep breath, stamp your foot, and shout “Begin!” You never know where it will take you.”  (From “Begin!” (Quoted from Pg. 91, Chapter 10, The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp)

With traveling curtailed, I find myself looking over some of my old paintings and wondering if they might be improved. Have I grown enough as a painter to see what went wrong in a piece from years ago? It is always satisfying to finally notice where the painting went ‘off the rails’. Sometimes, it is just an excuse to play with an image that I am not invested in. Other times, there is no saving it, and I sand it down for a new painting.

As Ms. Tharp queried, “Where to begin?” Looking at my painting through a mirror gives me a fresh look at its composition. Viewing the painting through a transparent, red plexiglass reveals where my values missed their target. Sometimes, it’s remixing the colors in a more harmonious way. Other times, cropping is the key. How do you ‘restart’ a work of art?

From Hacienda Pulse, the newsletter serving Hacienda Business Park. The Pleasanton Art League (PAL) is the only nonprofit group dedicated to the visual arts in Pleasanton. PAL’s mission is to make the visual arts an integral part of the fabric of life in the Tri-Valley by encouraging an environment that embraces creativity and its expression. Toward that end, PAL supports facilities, education programs, and events.

Beth Okurowski

Interested in leading an art interest group via Zoom?

The PAL/LAA/DAC Tech Group is reaching out to members who might have an interest in leading an art interest group via Zoom. It could be in any media, or any subject. The Tech Group is happy to help with any/all technical aspects. All you need to do is come up with the idea, set a schedule, and lead the group. Your group will be featured on all three websites and social media outlets. Let’s get a few groups going! For more information, please contact Lorraine Wells at

Looking for Demo Artists

The P AL/ LAA/DAC Tech Group is looking for demo artists to be featured in our monthly, joint- Members’ Meetings on Zoom. While experience in your subject is (of course) required, experience with creating on-line content is not. The Tech Group is ready to help you with video, sound, lighting, and take you through a practice Zoom demo. Please contact Meghana Mitragotri at


The Winners of  PAL’s Eleventh Annual Members’ Show

Four Seasons Award (Theme)

  • Chandana Srinath—“RUTHU-Life Cycle In Seasons”

Merit Awards

  • Marie Pascal—“Rain For Christmas”
  • Lynda Briggs—“Wanderland”
  • Emelie Rogers—“California Poppies”
  • Vanessa Thomas—“Morning Revival”
  • Wei Ting Chuang—“The Words of West Wind”

Honorable Mention Awards

  • Mark Mertens—“Reflections of Diablo”
  • Robyn Leimer—“Winter’s Wonderland”
  • Ron Rigge—“Sunol Respite”
  • Susan Helmer—“Big Boy”
  • Eugenia Zobel—“Mr. & Mrs. Hot Chocolate Mugs”


Click MemberShowWinners for a Gallery view of the winning entries!

A Word About the Meeting Tech Team 

This team consists of Vanessa Thomas, Christine Watters, Lorraine Wells, Meghana Mitragotri and Joyce Moulden. It is currently focused on learning how to use Zoom and other online resources to host online events for our three organizations. Anyone wishing to join in the fun please contact Christine Watters at or any team member. The only qualification is the willingness to learn.

Zoom Meeting Information will be e-mailed prior to the meeting date. Zoom is being provided by DAC (sponsored by Keypoint Credit Union and the City of Dublin).

Usha Shukla, Leadership Award

Usha has been selected to receive a 2020 Alameda County Arts Leadership Award from the Alameda County Arts Commission to recognize individuals for their outstanding achievements and contributions impacting the arts community and the residents of Alameda County. Nominations were submitted by community members. The goal of the program is celebrate and highlight the important work of our arts community leaders throughout the whole County. Award recipients represent the five district areas of the Alameda County Board of Supervisors. Awards will be made on October 6.

A PAL Board member, Usha is a full-time professional artist who works out of her studio in Pleasanton. She creates vibrant, nature-inspired abstract paintings. Usha also serves as the Treasurer of the National League of American Pen Women, Diablo/Alameda Branch. For the last two years, she has served as a juror for the National Congressional High School Art Competition for Congressional District 15, represented by Eric Swalwell. In 2019, Usha started a new Pleasanton chapter of Dining For Women, a global charitable organization and is the Co-Chapter Leader. Her artwork has been featured in solo and group shows at various locations. Her work is collected nationally including at Sutter Hospital in San Francisco and at Boston Children’s Hospital, Boston, MA. She is a member of San Francisco Women Artists, and Global Art Project, an international art collaborative across sixteen countries. She was an invitational artist at the “East on West ” Art Exhibit at the Office of State Senator Scott Weiner, San Francisco.

PAL Contributes to Pleasanton School

Every year, Pleasanton Art League tries to make an effort to encourage and support art programs in various segments in our communities. Especially, at a time like this, when the pandemic has taken away so much from so many, PAL would like to support those who are most in need of art supplies. I am happy to share that PAL was able to contribute close to $350 to Valley View Elementary School, Pleasanton, towards glue sticks and crayons that will be used by 650 students as part of remote learning – a new way of life for us all! A big thank you to Lawrie and Leon (Beth’s Parents-in-law) for making a sizable donation towards PAL’s Scholarship funds; their contribution will make a difference to many budding artists! We truly appreciate the art teacher, Irma Grant, and her efforts in making sure that in no way are the students’ learning paths compromised, and art being an integral part of this important up-bringing.

Meghana Mitragotri PAL Scholarship Chairperson

PAL Receives 501(c)3 Status!

PAL is happy to report that we have received our long-awaited 501(c)3 status! It’s been a long and tricky road, and I want to thank Diana Hostetter, George and Linda Garbarino, and Peter Okurowski who have been instrumental in making this happen. The biggest benefit for PAL is that donations to PAL will now be tax deductible for donors. We have already changed the language on our membership forms to reflect this update.

Beth Okurowski