Mary Lou Peters



Mary Lou Peters
P.O. Box 855
Mackinaw City, MI 49701
(231) 627-8069
(231) 818-6365 (cell)



Announcing my new Christmas card for 2017: a Mackinac Island scene, for sure! This one was inspired as I walked on the boardwalk this summer. I imagined what it might look like in December—an early winter scene with two children bringing home a festive tree they’d picked out to decorate for their own shared bedroom.


I have many other Christmas and seasonal cards available—please check them out on my website, Quantity discount pricing for orders of over 20 cards is available.


September and October are my favorite months for travel, so that’s what I’ve been doing. I spent a day with my plein air painter friends at Chateau Chantal, a beautiful vineyard just north of Traverse City where I painted up on a hill with 360 degree vistas.

One weekend was spent at ArtPrize, a city-wide display of art in Grand Rapids. All kinds of fantastic creative art had me scratching my head as I asked, “How do these artists think of all these unusual and unique ideas?!”

On another weekend I taught a class to beginners at a Women on Fire retreat in Miami Beach, Florida. Such fun to share my love of watercolor painting with so many positive women in a class called “Painting Under the Palm Trees!”

I have just returned from southern Italy and Venice after touring with a group of six ladies. So many memories, so many sketchbook pages! I don’t have plans for these to be made into cards or prints. They’re remaining in my sketchbook for now to serve as inspiration for possible future paintings. At the end of that Italian excursion I spent three days with our tour guide in Oxford, home of one of the most prestigious universities in the UK. One of the high points was my trip to Highclere Castle, site of filming of the PBS series “Downton Abbey.” What a thrill to walk where Lady Mary walked and listen to the stories about the stars of the series. And yes, I know it’s pretend and all for show, but I was hooked on the series and the characters are all so real to me. I was thrilled to be there! I’ll be sharing some of these sketches in future newsletters.




BIG Arts Center, Sanibel Island, Florida

On January 8 and 9 from 9 to 3 each day (with a one hour lunch break) I will offer a Watercolor Sketchbook Journal class. You will learn to record and keep your memories in your own illustrated journal. See your world through new eyes as you quickly paint pages from your travels, your gardens, your holidays, and your everyday life in your own charming illustrated journal. Cost: $149 BIG Arts members, $186 non-members.

On Thursdays from January 11 through February 8, 1:30-4:30, I will teach Watercolor Painting for All Levels at BIG Arts.  Students with all levels of experience are welcome. Instruction customized to students’ needs will be emphasized. My goal for this series of classes is to extend your knowledge of watercolor painting through demonstrations and individual instruction as we focus on a different design element or technique each week. Supply list will be provided when you register. Cost: $145 BIG Arts members,  $181 non-members.

Introduction to Watercolor Painting will be taught on Tuesday, February 6 from 1-4. Everything is supplied—you don’t have to bring a thing. Get an idea of what watercolor painting is all about without having to buy your own supplies. And it’s a wonderful way to spend an afternoon of your vacation on beautiful Sanibel Island! Cost: $45 BIG Arts members, $56 non-members.

For more information or to register please call BIG Arts at 239-395-0900.

I’ve already had inquiries about classes for next spring and summer. It’s way too early to make any concrete plans for these classes because the sponsoring organizations don’t have their full schedules ready yet. But watch future newsletters and website updates for classes.

I AM planning a two-day sketchbook journaling class in my garden in June, this one with a nature theme.  Watch for details in future newsletters about this new classs.

Next summer I have been invited back to Mackinac Island to teach a two-day workshop through the Mackinac Arts Council—date to be announced later this spring.



An extended class, Watercolor Techniques for students of all levels will be held at my home studio between Mackinaw City and Cheboygan on four consecutive Wednesdays in April (4, 11, 18, and 25) from 1-4 p.m. During each class session I will spend some time demonstrating a new technique then assisting students as they try it out for themselves. For the rest of the class period students will work on their own paintings with my assistance as I customize instruction to students’ needs. Supply list is on my website, Cost for this four-week class is $110. Please call 231-818-6365 for more information or to register.


I am available to host a group in my home studio for a class that I call “A Gentle Introduction to Watercolor Painting.” I will furnish all supplies for this class and you leave with a painting that you’ve created, suitable for an 8x10 frame. Cost is $35 per student with a minimum of six students. Call for more information and to arrange a date for you and your friends: 231-818-6365.


An Introduction to Watercolor class is scheduled for August 8, 2018 from 10 till noon at the Tawas Bay Art Gallery at 302 Newman Street in downtown East Tawas, Michigan. All supplies will be furnished and the cost is $35. We will be painting pretty hollyhocks that morning! Call the gallery to register for this class: (989) 362-5613.



My meditations books make perfect gifts for every occasion—written and illustrated by me, each page has a painting, a Bible verse, a meditation and a prayer. The etiquette book is written by my friend, Jerrye Roberts Bagley, a Mississippi etiquette instructor) and illustrated by me. It’s full of simple helpful hints that are easy enough for children to read and follow.

My spiral bound book, “A Visit to Mackinac Island” makes a cute little gift for young readers.

See more information on my website.


Thank you to all you followers of my Facebook page, "Watercolor Paintings by Mary Lou Peters." It’s fun to see what you think of my almost-daily posts of new paintings and all-time favorites. If you’re not yet a follower, please join us!


What has fed your soul this past season? For me, it’s travel. There’s nothing like experiencing another culture while in the company of someone who knows the details of the area. Janet Simmonds of Grand Tourist is my go-to person for travel experiences. She’s fun, knowledgeable, a detail person—everything I look for in a tour guide. I have been on three trips with Janet and it’s absolutely the best way for me to go. If you’d like to know more, visit  Her brand of travel has truly changed my idea of the world. And as Nikki Giovanni (contemporary American poet) said in an August 2017 interview with Debbie Phillips, founder of Women on Fire, “If you aren’t changing, you’re either not thinking or you’re scared, and you don’t want to be either one of those things.”

Enjoy the change of the upcoming season!