Thursday, November 29, 2012

This Workshop Was A Blast!

Not all of us are able to attend live workshops. But a few years ago I DID attend a painting workshop... only in book form! 

I was recently organizing my studio, and came across some paintings I did for that workshop, and thought I'd tell you about the book. I loved it so much, I gave it away for someone else to enjoy. :-)

It's titled:

Oil Painting
The Workshop Experience

by Ted Goerschner

You can currently find it on Amazon, and a good used hardcover can be found for under $5. (Amazon LINK) You can click on their "look inside" feature to get a peek inside the book.

Even though nowadays I mostly paint with acrylics, back then I was experimenting with a type of watersoluble oils. I had a blast with that workshop! And most of the painting principles he taught are also useful for acrylic painters.

Mr Goerschner teachs the use of toned grays as a part of your palette, for color harmony, and his examples are impressionistic.

Here is one of my little paintings (all are about 5 X 7) which showed how he uses the grays. Looking at it now, I'm not thrilled with my greens from back then (too yellowy and unnatural), but I was happy with how it turned out in spite of that (as always, just click any pics to enlarge):

Here's a detail...

He uses visual critiques in the book. He shows paintings which need help, and then how to improve them. I'm a visual learner, so this was very helpful to me. He includes a dozen student paintings, which he corrects.

Mr Goerschner writes a lot about Design, and how to achieve a good painting that is designed on purpose, rather than hoping it turns out well. He covers color mixing, composition; all the basics that go into a well-designed painting.

Here is one landscape lesson which focused on composition. I painted it loosely, and I enjoyed how the underpainting showed through:

Close up details...

While he mainly focused on landscapes, he did include still life paintings. Here is my version of a floral still life. I'm not wild about how the vases turned out, but loved the strong orange/blue color scheme:

And a detail...

All the information needed to do the workshop is included, even for beginners. The book is set up in assignments as though you are taking his week long workshop, except you can follow along at your own pace. I enjoyed his teaching method of using step-by-step examples.

Note, he is not teaching how to paint like HIM, but how to paint well, period. Bottomline... I can highly recommend it.

Hope you enjoyed this book review. It's made me want to buy another copy of his book and take the workshop over again! :-D

Happy painting,


Thursday, November 15, 2012

A Pig With A Story

Ever hear the saying "Everybody has a story"??
Well, I have a thing for flying pigs. 

And my story is... to me they mean Hope and Possibilities. They encourage me to believe in my dreams, in spite of circumstances or what others tell me.

Above my computer, I have this small piggy:

(as usual, can click on pics to enlarge)

Yesterday I finished my latest flying pig project:

 And my clay flying piggy has a story, too. He started life off in the studio of Etsy artist Jean Fleming (HERE).  He came to me "nekkid", as an unfinished bisque plaque. 

I sealed the bisque clay (fired but unglazed clay) with acrylic medium...

Then I created a scarf around his little neck out of modeling paste, to keep him warm as he flew. ;-)

After the modeling paste cured for a few days,  he got a coating of cream acrylic paint and shadows mostly out of burnt umber and a little burnt sienna.

I dinked around with colored pencils, deciding what color scheme to use for his scarf. I wanted bright and cheerful! The acrylics I used for this project are called Atelier Interactives. Love them! They are formulated to have a long open time, making it so easy to get soft edges and shading. Here's a link to their website, with more info and demos.

And here he is, all decked out in his colorful scarf and ready to soar!

In a week or two after the acrylics have totally "cured", he'll get a protective coat of varnish. If you'd like your own little flying piggy, you can visit Jean at her Etsy store (HERE), and tell her what word you'd like stamped on your own flying pig.

Happy painting & hoping & dreaming & BELIEVING,