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Artist Profile: Bill Abel

Watercolorist Bill Abel has been a fixture in the Falls Church art community for decades. To celebrate his contribution to the arts, we are looking back on his inspirations.

Bill Abel is a self-taught watercolor artist living and working in the city of Falls Church. His technique develops and evolves as he works, teaches others, and learns, experimenting with different surfaces and papers to discover the unique qualities of each as they react to the medium. You can see an illustrated explanation of Bill's techniques on display by his artwork at the Park Avenue Gallery, including his use of abstract mid-value underpaintings to give balance, temperature, and energy to a piece. When asked about his influences, Bill says:

"My apprenticeship with Tony Van Hasselt and Judi Wagner, two internationally popular instructors and masters in their own time, had a big influence. The spirit of my grandfather and syndicated cartoonist Dudley Fisher, whom I never got to meet, but certainly inspired me to practice art as a valid career path."

Bill has been a participant in the Gallery Without Walls program from Falls Church Arts, and his work has appeared all over town at local businesses. He's also done personal and corporate commissions, including a great deal of portraiture. He is known for his unique depictions of everyday life and his featuring of the the Little City in many of his works. His message is a simple one:

"Art is alive in every person, it’s about heritage, and it’s personal. Any work attempted with sincerity and in an effort to achieve mastery in the process is a work of art!"

For more information about Bill, or to see a full gallery of his work, visit his website,

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