Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘YCAC’

Painting Workshop 2018

Like most Americans, I have found the last couple of days have been exhausting. My reasons are most likely different than most other Americans. I was fortunate in not being able to watch the proceedings surrounding the Supreme Court and instead spent the last two days leading a painting workshop up in Penn Yan.

Tiring but not maddening. I feel so fortunate.

It’s a two day workshop and these people do an amazing amount of work in a very short time. Probably too much. Working off a piece that I am painting in front of them, they basically finish two decent sized paintings in two days, start to finish. The last half of each day is a flurry of activity as each of them moves quickly to bring the painting to state of completion.

There is little time to consider each movement. Just paint.

At the end of each day I am always stunned by how well they have adapted to techniques that are not easy and require a bit of practice, more than the short time in this workshop affords, in order to have any degree of mastery. I look at the work completed and realize that what they have done is much more than I do normally do in any two days in my studio. I am not sure they even realize how much they have done.

Hopefully, they take some small bit of the experience with them. Maybe look at the pieces they’ve done and say Wow, I did that!

It was great group and I feel fortunate to have gotten to now each of them a bit more. I am sincerely proud of each of them and how much they have done in the short time we worked together.

But like I said it’s exhausting, a lot of work and anxiety for a guy whose real comfort zone is in my studio tucked away from the rest of the world. I am not sure if I am going to do it again but if I do, it will be because the folks who come each year treat me so well. I think if I do opt to do it again, we would only work on one painting and work at an easier pace where they can take more time to consider what they are doing.

But that is the future. As to the present, many thanks to to the great folks I spent the last two days with. It was my pleasure.

Read Full Post »

The Studio Barn at Sunny Point

As had been mentioned here in the recent past, I will be leading a workshop next week at Sunny Point on the shores of beautiful Keuka Lake here in the Finger Lakes of New York. Sponsored by the Arts Center of Yates County, this is a two day workshop that runs from about 9 AM until 4 PM on September 28 and 29, Thursday and Friday of next week.

This is my third workshop here and in the first two years we focused on my watercolor based method which is what I call a reductive process. You put paint on then take much of it off, creating the edges and transparency that define this style. It was a lot of fun and a little messy.

This year we are going to be working on what I call an additive process which starts with a dark surface, in this case a textured canvas with a layer of black paint. Layers of paint are added, each layer defining form and creating light. The piece at the bottom is an example of the kind of work we’ll be doing. It’s typically a bit slower process with a little more control, more meditative in approach. But we are going to be moving along at a pretty good pace which should make for some interesting work.

It should be a good couple of days in a great environment with the lake just paces away and the glorious fall foliage ablaze on the surrounding hills. All that with some hard work, good fun and a few surprises along the way. I don’t know how many more times I will be doing this type of event so if you would like to share some time painting with me, come on up.

More info can be had by clicking here.

Read Full Post »

2015 YCAC Workshop- The class hard at workThe best teacher is the one who suggests rather than dogmatizes, and inspires his listener with the wish to teach himself.

Edward Bulwer- Lytton

**************************

 

I tried to bear these words from English novelist Edward Bulwer-Lytton (famous for coining the phrase “the pen is mightier than the sword” and the most famous of beginning lines, “it was a dark and stormy night“) in mind when I began instructing a two day workshop on Thursday at the Art Center in Penn Yan.  Having never taken an art course or workshop outside of a disastrous college drawing class thirty-some years ago, I had little reference material on which to base my instruction to the group.  I wanted to show them some of my techniques and have them hopefully incorporate them in their own work or be able to use these techniques as a springboard into something new of their own making.  I just wasn’t sure how to get that across but I knew that just having them leave inspired to want to paint would be my main objective.

After the first day, I wasn’t sure I was cut out for this task at all.

I started with a quick demonstration and then sent the group immediately into the paint with limited direction on where they could  go with it.  I just wanted them to work with the process and get used to seeing the paint move and mix.  But by the end of the day I could see that many of the group were frustrated in trying to master the technique and I was afraid I had put too much in front of them.  Going home that first evening, I realized I was asking them to learn a process in several hours that had taken me thousands of hours to master.  It would be like a musician playing a fairly difficult piece then asking someone who was observing to play it in a few hours.

So on the second day I showed a simplified version of the technique.  The work of the day before, frustrating as it had seemed,  seemed to set the groundwork for making the new work seem easy to handle.  They watched my demo in the morning and they just took off like a rocket after that.

Bonnie B. With her finished painting

Bonnie B. With her finished painting

I was blown away by what happened.  Each member of the group went in their own direction, those with some prior experience seamlessly meshing the technique with their own prior experience and creating pieces that were uniquely their own.  I was amazed at how much solid work was produced in such a short time by this group.  By the end of the day, my frustrations and anxieties were completely lifted and I left feeling that something of value had been transferred to this group, something they could use for to help them find their own path forward.

It was very satisfying.

Many, many thanks to everyone in the workshop.  You were patient, intent, fun and easy to work with.  You made my first venture into teaching a wonderful experience and provided a lot of inspiration that I will carry forward with me.  While I am glad that you may have learned something from me, be assured that I learned as much from you and for that, I can’t express my gratitude enough.  Thank you, Paulina, Jackie, Patti, Suzanne, Frank, Gini, Joy, Bonnie and Grace.  I listed the names from the front of the room to the rear.  Grace was obviously a trouble-maker so she was relegated to the rear table.

Thanks also to Kris Pearson at the YCAC for her dogged perseverance in getting me to head this workshop.  She was determined to have me do this and succeeded despite my initial resistance.  I am glad she did.

Frank B. showing off his distinct style

Frank B. showing off his distinct style

*********

Next:  TOMORROW, SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 20–  GALLERY TALK  at the PRINCIPLE GALLERY  in ALEXANDRIA- 1 PM

Come on info a lively talk on art and stuff and you might win this painting!

There Will a Drawing For This Painting at the Gallery Talk on Sunday

There Will a Drawing For This Painting at the Gallery Talk on Sunday

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: