Saturday, September 15, 2007
Here I am painting another demo for a plein air landscape class that I taught in CT for Sylvan Gallery (http://www.sylvangallery.com/). Outdoor painting takes a great deal of preparation. I mix a value scale of landscape colors so that I can paint very fast. You can only paint for 2 (maybe 3) hours before the light is so completely different, which of course, changes the whole painting. Most of my paintings are small oil sketches. Painting and explaining why I am using certain colors and principles are very helpful to new artists. It is invaluable to a student to see how an artist works and solves a visual problem. I ask questions so that the students can see what I am trying to solve, so my demos are interactive. Being able to answer the questions is a form of mental painting, and mental painting comes before the physical. It gives you a direction, and by actively being engaged in problem solving, keeps the painting moving forward. The workshop format is intensive. It is for learning how to start and use artistic principles rather than trying to complete a salable painting. All of my classes are process oriented, not project oriented. The student, then, returns home armed with information that they can incorporate into their own work at their own pace.