Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Terry Isaac Workshop photos

Hey, everyone! I'm baacckk! I just returned from my workshop in Vancouver, WA. with Terry Isaac. It was awesome, awesome, awesome!! Not only is Terry a wonderful artist, but he is an awesome teacher as well. It was three whole days of intensive learning and painting and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it! We covered painting techniques in acrylic, spent a little time gathering photo reference around the workshop site and talked about marketing. And we worked hard on completing a painting in the time we had. It was inspiring, exhilarating and exhausting, too! If you ever have an opportunity to study with Terry I would highly recommend it! This is a photo of me and Terry with our paintings.

Here we are all hard at work while Terry offers advice. We had a class of nine people of varying ages and experience and all wonderful artists in their own right. I learned so much from the other students and it always amazes me how a group of people can all paint the same image and all create such different paintings. It was very inspirational! Thanks to Bev at Arts Desire for hosting the workshop!

And here is my painting! It's actually still in progress. I had time to block in the basic areas and do a little refining, but still need to come back and tighten it up quite a bit. The foreground grasses need finishing as well as details on the elk, but even at this stage it doesn't look too bad. You have the general idea anyway!

Well, now that I'm back I have a lot of information to try and digest and start applying to my own work without having Terry there to offer pointers. I'm really inspired and anxious to try my hand at this medium on my own and see where it leads me. Like my friend Judy says..."Art is a journey with twists and turns and something new to learn around every corner!" And if nothing else, it's always an interesting journey!!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Great Blue Heron Study in Gouache

Early one morning I went out for my usual walk with Maggie along the river. The sun was just breaking over the hill tops and the morning was clear and still. As I rounded a corner there stood a Great Blue Heron on a rocky outcropping. The early morning sun was illuminating his feathers causing a bright contrast between sunlight and shadow. He seemed to be glowing. He stood there perfectly balanced on one leg, a lone sentinel. The moment seemed magical and an idea for a painting and the title ( which will be a secret until the painting is done!) came to me all at once. Lucky for me I had remembered to bring my camera this time so the moment was recorded for future reference.

This little painting is a study painting for a larger one I'd like to paint soon. It's been painted fairly loose for me and was meant to be so. I was mostly trying to capture an impression, a feeling, a moment in time. It will, hopefully, help me to work out problems on the larger painting. However, I am pleased with how this small one turned out and probably won't change too much in the final, larger painting. I know already that the larger one will be painted tighter overall and I will be adding some additional details like small twigs and branches to frame the heron, but I like the feeling I'm getting from this already. This small one will be for sale in a few weeks after I finish the larger piece. This painting is just 2.5" x 3.5" (ACEO/ATC size) and is another done in gouache.

Well, I leave tomorrow morning for a painting workshop with Terry Isaac at a place called Arts Desire in Vancouver, WA. Terry is an internationally known wildlife artist who paints in acrylic. I have been interested in his work for a number of years and have been waiting for an opportunity to go to a workshop with him for about as long. I'm hoping that this will improve my ability to paint with acrylic and help me to start integrating more backgrounds and environment in all my paintings as this seems to be a weak area for me. Terry likes to paint "magical moments" in nature and I'm interested in capturing those as well. I see so many special moments when I'm out on my walks and I'd love to be able to do a better job of painting those so that others, who might not have an opportunity to ever see such wonderful things, might be able to enjoy them. That's my hope and desire anyway.

Guess I'd better go finish packing. I'll be gone for six days....two days of travel and four days of non-stop painting and learning! Can't hardly wait!! I expect to be overflowing with enthusiasm and ideas when I get back and will share as soon as I can. See you then!!