Thursday, August 27, 2009

Day 4 - Curtis Atelier - The Boatyard

Most of us arrived at low tide and set up to paint as we had to get 3 9x12's done--it's not a race, but. Where was Bill? Even though we all started ahead of Bill, as usual, he finished his 4 paintings when we did three. I finished my first one first, but by third one only had about 30 minutes on it before the critique started. David was pleased with us as a group and said we all did better today. We also could see that all our fellow artists were doing better. It's a good hard working group. I didn't take any notes today as I was working feverishly, it's not a race.
Tomorrow--the finale--we will return to the Quarry where we will complete our 3-day effort on our large canvas--one day ahead of a big bad storm. I'm looking forward to tomorrow as it's always a surprise to see what will happen.
I won't be blogging for Day 5 until Wednesday, September 2nd as I'll be away. I hope to hear back from everyone in our group from time to time to see what you are doing. I'm in a show at the Beverly Farms Library, Sept. 2-29. Come to the reception Thurs Sept. 10, 6-8 p.m.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Day 3 - Return to Halibut Point Quarry

So here we are for our second day of a 3-day painting at the Quarry. First order of business is setting up in the high wind. It took me a whole hour to get ready to paint, but then first we were to scrape down our canvas. Then He said, 'draw' 'draw' 'draw' for the first 2 hours. What do you think that means? Well, I drew and found it was very rewarding, I liked it a lot, it works great especially w/rocks--BUT--He didn't mean 'draw'. Go figure.

1. Use liquin for fast drying.
2. Use veridian for work by the water.
3. Use the 20-foot brush.
4. Put sky holes in then paint around them.
5. Put more design in trees near center/middle area.

Remember: It's not a race, but whoever finishes first.
Understatement: "Rocks are hard".
Jokes today: 1) Pianoman, 2) Helicoptor and 3) The Talking Dog. Friday I'll tell you these jokes.
Tomorrow's task, paint 3 9x12s in impressionist manner in 5 hours.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Curtis Atelier - Day 2 - "The Breezeway"

David chose this site because it is an amazing cool, shady and breezy spot as it was a very hot, sunny day. The tide was coming in so he wanted us to paint our first one before the tide came in. The task today was to complete 3 9x12's between 1 and 5:30 p.m. hitting the right color notes as our primary goal. All six students completed 3 paintings in the time allotted--Connie finished first (I think she actually started before anyone else), and Bill painted the fastest (since he had larger canvases)! During the day, David regailed us with many interesting stories of the folklore of the area (I think his family goes back to the days of the 'witches' of Dogtown), and he tells good jokes, too! OK, OK, he did spend most of his time actually instructing! We finished the day with a critique--it was a great day for everyone. In my case, by the third one, things changed. There definately is something about thinking only about the shapes and color relationships--not thinking about the things. Working quickly forces you to "attack" AND you can 'get' the time of day better. In my opinion, I need to use more paint and stronger color.

Tomorrow we return to Monday's location on our 20x24 3-day piece where we will scrape it down and continue. We are starting earlier to hopefully get something done before the expected rain storm.

Monday, August 24, 2009

David Curtis Atelier-Day 1

The site for today was Halibut Point in Rockport, a quarry by the sea. The lesson was to start a 20x24 canvas which we will work on three days this week. The idea was to work on design, draw, paint thin, key the painting for about 5 p.m using only one of each, red, blue, yellow and white and do a block-in of three or four values. OK, plenty of time (5 hours). It was suggested to draw several times during the day to see which time of day gave you the best composition or placement of light and shadow. I started out slowly, thinking I have lots of time. Wouldn't you know it? By 3 p.m. big thunder clouds came overhead and it rained. There should be a cute French word for "painting in the rain" because it always happens! We packed up and went to the Rockport Art Assoc. classroom to continue for the day.

There are 6 in the class, Bill, Sandy, Susan, Connie, Claire and myself. Three of us had cameras. I didn't have that much accomplished and had to refer to my shot of the site. So every 2 minutes my camera shut off and I had to be continuously turning it on and finding my shot. Everyone seemed to have a good grasp of the lesson. At the end of the day, we were instructed to "stitch" all our edges to prepare for the next time we would work on it. This prevents ridges and makes the next layer work better. In the photo of my block-in, the upper left corner is stitched.

Tomorrow we do three 9x12's, one every 2 hours, working on colors and impressions rather than good design.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The night before........(The Atelier!)

OK, I'm psyched. I'm excited. I'm hoping that I'll learn something, and that some of the things that are taught, actually stick in my brain. I'm making sure that I have all the right equipment. We start every day at 1 p.m.. I guess we are going for evening light. 1 p.m to 6 p.m.

I didn't mention that I'm going to Port Clyde, Maine after this 5-day atelier with David Curtis, and after that, I'm off to the famous painting spot for the last 100 years: Monhegan Island. I'll have to update this blog on Wednesday when I return from the long weekend. I hope I'll have something good to show you. The weather is supposed to be warm, maybe hot, and humid.

These workshops always state that they will take you to the next level......let's hope. I guess this is the challenge: Next level or not?