A Blog about Finding Inspiration

"We have a wonderful world to be inspired by and each new day is like an adventure into the unknown, where things that require a second glance can be captured in time on a canvas for anyone to enjoy forever." (Louise Corke)

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Easter week at CAG 3 "13

It was my turn to Gallery Sit at the Charleston Artists Guild Gallery.  So glad I had refreshed my wall with Spring flowers.  The gallery  was busy busy busy with tourists and locals who were  there to celebrate the start of Spring and Easter weekend.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Long Shoals State Park Still a WIP 3'13

I spent most of the morning working on the larger of the two paintings,  This one looks close to finished to me.  I', going to sit on it a few days before I decide whether to sign off on it.

Fisinshed 3"13

 I made some minor adjustment to the rock shapes and shading.
This is about as good as it is going to get.
Now I just need to name it and sign it.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Finishing touches. 3 '13

Above is  my reference photo for one of the two paintings I worked on in the Saluda workshop. It was the basi sfor the smaller of the two paintings I started last week in the Working Large Workshop.

  Above is how the painting looked at the time the workshop was over.  I had  roughed in the composition and covered the canvas with large areas of color.

I spent  the day working on this painting  I modified the shape of the rocks to more closely resemble a small gay-scale I had done of the scene.  Then I started  laying in some saturated colors and enhancing the highlights on the large rocks.  I am going to let it dry a couple of days while I study it for any minor changes, but right now I'm pretty happy with the results. 

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Working Large Workshop: Saturday 3 '13

Saturday was the last day of the workshop.   We each continued to work on our painting(s), while Bill walked around coaching each of us individually.    I worked on my 30x40" painting until noon then set it aside  because I wanted it to be as dry as possible when I put it in the car.  After lunch I worked on the 18" x 24 " painting and  brought it to the same stage as the first,  Neither a complete.   Both will require fine tuning of shapes, and textures and highlights, but I am quite happy with both.

Several, like me, had miles and miles to go after the workshop ended.. About three o clock we ended the painting and gathered into a group around a set of easels for a critique. One at a time each set our paintings onto the easels.  Bill keeps his comments constructive and too the point, and he was very respectful of the opinions of the others in the group .
This was a very advanced group of painters, so often the comments from the other artists in the group were really helpful.  Often their insights were as informative as those of the instructor. When they finished critiquing my work, I not only felt good about it, I had a clear idea of where I wanted to make changes.   ( I will post some new photos of the two paintings when I complete them).

   More importantly, as the workshop's title promised, I feel I can now face the prospect of  "Working Large Without Fear"

Friday, March 22, 2013

Working Large Workshop: Friday 3 '13

When we walked into the studio on Friday morning, Bill had the large canvas he had stretched the day before, toned, and set up on his easel with the reference photo below it.
He immediately began  applying blue lines for the design and blocking in large blocks of color
All the while he answered questions about materials, techniques from the artists in the workshop.  I learned a lot from the demo... like how to thin the oil paint  with Liquin and stand oil, and how long to let a layer on a large painting dry before moving onto the next layer..  That my sound simple, but it can mean all the difference between having a bright vibrant painting or having mud.
Bill coaching Patty with her painting
 After the demo,  we were instructed to work on our own painting  for the remainder of the day In the meanwhile Bill went from person to person coaching them on how to solve the issues their painting presented.
30" x 40" painting when I stopped working on it on Friday pm.
In my case, Bill encouraged me to  let the paint set up a bit on  my first painting by starting a second painting. I agreed to let the first could dry overnight..  By the time the day ended I had a good beginning on a 18" x 24" painting from a different reference photo,
and had worked up a hearty appetite for the wonderful group dinner we had at the Purple Onion in Saluda  that evening.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Working Large Workshop: Thursday 3"13

 Bill jumped right into instruction on the first morning of the workshop with a demonstration of how he  proofs his concept on a small  canvas before  working on a large one.  Above you can see how he taped  a reference photo to the side of his easel, then loosely sketched out the design in a thin blue wash onto a toned canvas.   He then filled in the design with large blocks of additional color which were build up from dark to light.  This gave him the first rough layer of the final painting.  
Stopping there, Bill asked each of us to put a thin wash of color upon the canvas supports we had brought with us, and select a reference photo  ( from his collection or one our own) to use as the basis for our first painting.
 I had already selected my reference photos and toned my canvas with red iron oxide prior to arriving at the workshop, so I set up my  workstation and began painting.  By lunch time I too had my design roughed in and was ready to start applying  the first large blocks of color.
But first things first.... a group lunch at the Saluda Grill.
After lunch, Bill gave us a demonstration of how to wrap a canvas onto a stretcher frame.
That was a learning experience for me.  Not at all difficult ( if you are 6'+ like Bill).  It gave me more confidence for  how I can work if I can't find the size canvas I need locally.

What is all that white stuff? 3"13

What is all that white stuff? I got snowed on Wed. nite in North Carolina. Big surprise... caught me totally unprepared. I was late to the workshop the next morning because I couldn't see through the ice on the windshield, and I didn't have an ice-scraper in the car, so it took me an extra twenty minutes of using the defroster on high to clear the windows enough to drive safely.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Working Large Workshop Reception 3'13

I am in Saluda, North Carolina for the  William Jameson workshop
"Working Large Without Fear"
Jeannette, Maryann, Anne, Judy, Patty
The workshop opened on Wed. evening  with a reception hosted by Ann and Bill Jameson for all of the artists and their families .
Eddie and Bill
It was a great chance to get to know one another and the spouses

and to learn one another's skills
Then Bill gave  us a tour of the studio space we would be working in, and gave us an overview of the next three days' agenda.
Bill, Patty, Ron, and Veronique
He also showed us samples of his work,

and what he means by working large.

I must admit... The latter revelation was more than a bit intimidating.
Oh Well, one can's progress unless one tries. Right???

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Chaney Bay 3 '13

Remember that photo I posted of Chaney Bay in full bloom on 12/12/13? ( see  photo above)
I finally got around to painting it this week. Yellow is a difficult color for me to work with, but I really wanted to capture the 'stop ya dead in your tracks' dazzle of the yellow marsh daisies.
 I think I nailed it.  The painting will go on exhibit at CAG tomorrow.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Seacoast Art Gallery at The Market Common

Halleluiah! It's official everyone!! There will be a new Seacoast Art Gallery at The Market Common!!! The Spring Member Art Show will kick it off on April 17th!  Check it out at http://seacoastartistguild.com/

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Mary Stuart Hay Reception a Huge Success 3 '13

Mary and her musician, Mike Wolk
The Charleston Artists Guild Gallery's  Reception for their  Featured Artist , Mary Stuart Hay was a huge success last night both financially and socially.  The gallery was hopping with art lovers from the moment the doors opened.

Mr Hay with guests
I always used to scoff at  my mother's insistence that the accordion should be my instrument of choice.  Well guess what we had for entertainment at the CAG Friday Art Walk Reception last night?  That's right,  an accordionist  belting out  European cafe music. I am no longer scoffing. The guy was more popular than the pied piper. I kid you not.. he had them singing "Amore" at the top of their lungs. 

Friday was also the  opening night of the Wine and food festival, and the streets of Charleston were filled with tourists milling from one part of town to another. 

Whenever our gallery got a little empty, the musician would walk outside and stand on the street playing; then he'd come back in followed by throngs of people. 

 I don't know who was the bigger success -- the featured artist Mary Stuart Hay, or her wandering minstrel.   It was a lot of fun.