I felt very well prepared, as I now have a secret weapon in my teaching arsenal.
Last year I created an online course that readers of this blog will be familiar with. The course is organized in 13 bite-sized pieces that very effectively de-mystifies the classical 'glazing technique' where multiple transparent layers are applied judiciously to arrive at a rich, life-like finish that appears to 'glow from within' when executed properly.
Over the years you may have attended 'art classes' where the general gist was 'do your own thing'...'be creative'...'have fun'...AKA FLOUNDER and STRUGGLE without a whole lot of actual hand's-on technical guidance from the instructor. My approach is the exact opposite, as I lay out a specific technical strategy that when followed EMPOWERS and PROPELS you to a whole new level of satisfaction with your technical approach. Having set this straight, you will find that the actual image becomes clarified and dynamic.
My approach of transparent glazing is eminently 'teachable' to anyone with basic drawing skills.
The nine participants at the Lanigan Workshop succeeded in creating beautiful, lustrous still-life studies based on the 13-step method.
My wife Sharon suggested beforehand that I play the '48-Second Painting' video -that covers the 13 steps- prior to the instruction and it turns out that this was a great idea! After the nine gals saw all of the steps covered in the video, they could more easily visualize and appreciate the process. This video is serving now as a powerful teaching tool to introduce the scope of the technique, like a map through the territory of glazing to a finished painting in 13 steps.
After we viewed the '48-Second Painting' video, we set up a sprawling still-life on a table-top and had everyone form a semi-circle around for a good sight-line. We all used a small paper 'view-finder' ( a 5" x 7" piece of paper with a postage-stamp sized hole cut out of the center) to 'zoom in' on a particular detail of the collection of objects on the table.
All nine paintings lined up for comparison and analysis after three steps.
|Carefully applying the second glaze of transparent red.|
|Progressing into the transparent violet glaze, continuing to 'separate the light from the dark'.|
|The bustle of an active studio...|
The 'objects that Claire paints appear to be in glowing space and also suffused with light from within. Note the characteristic 'surface continuity' of the piece, how no one shape or area appears to be in isolation or 'stitched in' with the composition.
Rather, there is a 'unified field' that binds the whole in successively more persuasive detail and resolution with each transparent (or translucent) glaze.
All of the objects co-mingle comfortably with their shared atmosphere, charged with a glowing pallette of transparent colors.
|If the happy smiling faces are any indication, I would say that this introductory session was a big success! Left to Right: Julie, Claire, Rosalie, Brenda, Shauna, Edmee, Michael, Dianne, Melanie and Lorna.|
At this moment we are planning a follow-up session at Lanigan so what does that tell you? The chemistry was great, the reception was warm and friendly and the appetite to learn more about this exciting technique has been whetted! If YOU would like to organize a hand's-on painting workshop in your community, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss the details.
In the meantime, happy creating!