Monday, March 28, 2011

Apple Slices

I taught an all day painting workshop yesterday at Pelham Art Center. There were 10 students, who ranged from very advanced to total beginner ( in other words, students who had never painted or drawn before). That is a typical mix and its challenging to teach so much in so little time. I am often very pleasantly surprised when working with the total beginners, their approach is so fresh. I hesitate to say "childlike" because that sounds derogatory, which is not the intention. But there is a pureness to the way they bravely apply paint to canvas - so direct, so uninhibited, such interesting color choices.
My painting demonstration took about 45 minutes. I talk the whole time I'm painting in order to explain everything from how to hold the brush to how to apply the paint, how to mix the colors, how to find and stay with the correct values, how to match colors to values, etc.
The workshop is called "How to paint Fast, Loose and Bold". After the demo its time for a lunch break and then time for the students to paint. My goal is to have them complete 3 paintings in about 4 hours, the first painting is done in 45 minutes, the second in 1/2 hr and the last one in 15 minutes. Its challenging! But I was very impressed with the outcome of the work, and took a picture of their paintings (not all the work is shown). Three paintings down, many more to go... Bravo, everyone!

Apple Slices
8x10" Acrylic on Canvas


Tina Concetta Revie said...

I enjoyed reading your blog Patti! I love your bold fresh brushstrokes.I admire painters who can lay one brushstroke and get the light and shadow perfect with the first stroke.Love your tulips and glass paintings!

Patti Mollica said...

Hi Tina - I'm glad you are enjoying the blog. and yes - the limited brushstrokes... at the WS I gave this analogy to one of the painters who specifically asked me to help her get rid of all the extraneous detail. I proposed: pretend I was going to take a dollar away from you for every stroke you put down - I bet you'd find a way to use fewer brushstrokes and get them accurate. She got it - and painted one of the most complicated paintings in the group so fast, she amazed us all. I was shocked - but no more so than her. Try it - less is more. Thanks for your comments!

Laurel Alanna McBrine said...

Sounds very interesting and challenging!

Jerry Stocks said...

I am amazed at the talent of your students, and it helps to have such a great teacher as you.

Patti Mollica said...

its actually amazing how well students do when they don't have time to futz around with details or freak out - the 15 minute paintings are often the best and the freshest - pure confidence (or the appearance of it), no second guessing. its a great exercise for anyone, no matter what level of painting they are at.