I'm baaaack! Fell in a black hole of the blogosphere for a while and amÂ slooowly recovering from a very busy and intenseÂ workshop at my studio this past weekend. Church Hill Photography took some great environmental shots of one of the demo portionsÂ of the class on the first day, so I thought I'd share them here.Â (BTW, Elaine Odell of Church Hill Photography also made the excellent portrait of me in my studio, so be sure to check out her website if your looking for a photographer who really knows her stuff!) While I've taught off-site at other hosted locations, this was the first time I've actually hosted a workshop myself, and preparing for it was quite a bit more work than I'd imagined because I had to prep both my lessons and the space itself.Â The participants did some great work though, and were enthusiastic and so much fun. And it was really exciting for me to share ideas about color, shape, values, and composition. Hopefully everyone felt like they learned a lot. I know I did!
After a brief discussion of color mixing (and especially mixing greens)Â I did a little landscape demo. This is a good long shot that shows me sketching out my composition at my setup, as well asÂ the studio beyond. The participants worked in the front two rooms, so we had to configure the space in a way that would protect those beautiful wood floors. Hence the lovely blue spill-resistant floor coverings!
Here's a cool shotÂ through the easel. There's a large mirror to my back, which I use to check my compositions in reverse. It really does help to give me a "fresh look" at my work. That cutie just over my shoulder in the gray tee is my talented niece Molly, a fine emerging artist who I was delighted to have come all the way from Texas to take the class and visit. The "man in black" looming in the doorway is my husband and partner Dave. As always, he was a HUGE help to me, keeping everything running smoothly.
This shot shows the demo piece, coming right along.
The workshop was pretty action packed, but by being in the studio we were able to really focus some of the more important elements of painting as they pertain to the landscape, in conditions that were controllable. I hope to do some plein air classes too in addition to the studio intensive, as this "takes it to the next level" and throws a whole other slew of concerns into the pot (watch this page for future workshop listings). Luckily I hadn't planned a plein air class for this past weekend though, as we had some really varied weather ranging from cloudburstÂ thunderstorms to overcast damp chill.
On Monday Molly and I took a road trip up to Charlottesville so that she could see Jefferson's Monticello. Wow! What an absolutely gorgeous day--the redbuds, fruit trees, dogwoods and tulips were going crazy. I hope I can get up back up there some time soon to paint some of it-- and paint some local plein air scenes as well. Right after I take care of a few neglected household and business matters, that is. Whatever I paint, I'll be sure to post here first, so stay tuned....