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Monday, August 28, 2006

Intermediate Watercolor Class

Week two of my Hithergreen Center class. We're making a lot of progress. People who didn't have a clue about transparency, washes or dry brush are getting it right. Even the level of drawing is improving. Critiques are such fun--to see the variety of subject matter and colors used, more individual choices and less what-you-see-is-what-you-get. There are a couple of students who tend toward the English style of painting, which I love, although I don't do it. This style isn't popular in the grand world of watercolor competition in the U.S. but it is absolutely lovely, so fresh and transparent. We're going to see if the center will allow us to have an art exhibition on the walls around the central core. There have been shows there from other classes and several paintings remain that have been there for many months. Time for a change! No class on Labor Day and the following week I have a right-brain-drawing teacher substituting while I go to New Jersey to teach a color workshop. When I return, we'll learn about matting and framing so they can show their pieces to the best advantage. I think everyone in this class has the capability of coming up with something worthwhile for the show. I know they'll be thrilled to see their work hanging. I just need to get permission to do it and we're off and running. It isn't that exhibitions are so important, rather that it adds a boost to the creative spirit to see the fruits of your labor on display.

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Blogger Annette said...

So, Nita. You've created a new school of painting! The WYSIWYG school. I love having a name for it and have had a few of those students. It is always a joy when they can "see" new things.

Exhibitions are also important in helping students "see." They promptly find mistakes when the work is up, have confidence built when it looks better than expected and often can't wait to see what else they paint. Oh, wait. Tha't not just students, is it?!

8:38 AM  
Blogger Nita said...

Love your comment, Annette. Especially about the new WYSIWYG school of painting!

10:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is "the English way" of painting. How does it differ?

Sharon, Kanycma Art

8:20 AM  
Blogger Nita said...

Good question, Sharon. My statement was no doubt too great a generalization. I should have said, "...what I think of as English-style watercolor." I base my observation on some of the books by English watercolorists that have been distributed in the U.S. throughout the years. The techniques are usually highly transparent, with the occasional use of body-color white, for landscape and floral or still-life subjects. They remind me of the elegant watercolor paintings of J.M.W. Turner, John Sell Cotman, John Blockley and other fine painters of the 19th and 20th centuries. I'm sure there must be experimental and mixed-watermedia painters in the UK who don't fit my description.

10:08 AM  

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