Saturday, October 27, 2007

OK. One more old photo. Here is Jack painting outdoors in 1975. This was during the Art Students League days, before moving to Vermont. We used to take Frank Mason's Landscaping Painting class every June in Vermont. It always struck me that an entire group of artists would put their jobs on hold, go to Vermont, and take this month long plein air workshop. It was intense, and we worked really hard. The classes met 3 times a week: one was a sunrise class, one was a sunset class and the other one was a class where you brought in work that you did on your own for the critique. We would spend the entire month camping out, on the land where we now live, and doing landscapes. It was a lot of fun. Frank, who is now 86 years old, is still teaching this workshop every June, as well as still teaching at the Art Students League. He imparted a love of painting from life that has left an indelible mark.

Here is a view of the north wall in 1983. Paintings used to hang all around the room. The cabinets are now along the north wall under the window. We heated the studio, in those days, with a wood burning stove that stood in the middle with a long stove pipe, that vented to the outside, just above the window. It was pretty cold in there, and it took a while to get toasty. You can see a homemade easel and Becky is peeking out at the bottom left of the photo. This picture has good light (no flash). The light is soft and the shadows are luminous.

Here I am in 1983. The baby is my son Daniel. You can see the still life set-up and the painting. We painted a lot of hexagons for a while, and this one is on linen. Another table for still life is set up on the model stand, which is on the east side of the studio in the photo. This picture, too, was taken with a flash, so you are not getting the real light, which was very dramatic.
Here is a picture of Jack in the studio in 1981. He is sitting on the model stand against the south wall. Note that this is pre-water heater and pre great shelf. We used to have paintings hanging all around the room and stacked along the floor. You can see the door to the outside, which is on the east side of the studio.
Well, here I am in 1981. The baby in the backpack is my daughter Elisabeth. As you can see, some things never change.....I still paint and hold babies at the same time (see the first photo at the beginning of my blog). My old easel is holding a still life that I did that year of nasturtiums. Behind me is the south wall of the studio with the door that leads into the house. The studio was a cream color then, and we didn't envision having to have so many shelves and storage racks. You can see another one of my casts on the wall. The camera had an automatic flash, so you are not getting the real "studio light".

I thought it would be fun to take a look at the Winslow Art Studio in the 80's and 90's. We only have a few pictures to share. Obviously, this is before we had a digital camera . This first picture is of the sign we hung on our garage in 1980. Yes, Jack made the sign.

Studio Photo Explanations

Since one commenter requested photos of my studio, I quickly took several shots and posted it below, but I didn't have time to give a here we go: We built the studio when we moved to Vermont in 1979. It is attached to our house, and it is 16'x20'. From the doorway (bottom photo), I am looking towards the north side, where we have a big window that starts about 8' off the floor. This gives us great light. North light is constant. It doesn't change, and since we paint basically paint from life, and we are painting an illusion of light, the light on the subject (flowers, people, whatever) has to be the same. Jack built the cabinets,that you see under the window, around 1990. Our growing collection of props and materials are housed behind these doors. On top of the cabinets, you can see some of my casts.

My easel (present this year) stands on the west side of the room. You can see my still life table with its faux marble top and painting storage racks below. Jack built this, too. I set up still life here, as well as on the dresser to the right of this. So, my light usually come from the above right, unless I get to set up on the other side of the room. Jack also built the painting storage racks to the left of the still life table. Storage is a problem if you are a prolific painter.

On the east side of the room is Jack's easel with a landscape that he is working up from one of his plein air studies. The study is on my old easel which is to the right of this. You can see our skeleton, some pigments, a model stand which is covered with boxes of mat board at the moment, and another storage thing with props in front of a door to the outside.

On the south side, there is a shelf that runs across the room with more stored paintings, and yes, you guessed it....Jack built this, too. You can also see our water heater, the huge frame that was on one of Jack's large paintings that hung in the store, some mahl sticks and a dart board (go figure). The quote that runs along the bottom of the shelf is by J. M. Whistler and reads:

As music is the poetry of sound, so is painting the poetry of sight.

Since I consider myself a poetic realist, this quote says it all. I love quotes and have them around the studio for inspiration and help.

So, that's my studio...somewhat messy, somewhat disorganized, somewhat corny, but with dramatic light that lends mystery and importance to somewhat ordinary objects.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007