Saturday, July 19, 2014

Last Weekend's Watercolor Workshop

This time last week 12 students and I embarked on a mess of a watercolor workshop. I say mess because we sure made one heck of one, watercolor was dripping, running and puddling all over the place - my favorite type of mess!

Here's some of my recollections on the weekend workshop;
We used an image from Kate Watson, one of my Tuesday Evening Students - she took this photo while in Ghana - it's a striking image of a sunset. Thanks Kate - we had a messy blast using your image.

Here's a group shot from the workshop, all of the students are in front while their images are precariously placed behind them. This workshop was posted late on a Tuesday afternoon and was full by Friday afternoon. One came as far as Jacksonville, Florida and another (my new best friend) came from Omaha, Nebraska!

Here's the images we all painted. I loved seeing folks letting gravity work with water and the pigments "happen" vs. painting with intention. You have to let go and let the paint do its thing with gravity - so many wonderful effects happen. Not so easy to keep colors clean if you want to keep "painting" but you can get such clean dramatic effects if you leave it alone. We painted the dramatic wet on wet sky using pipettes and spray bottles filled with water, and lots and lots of paper towels.

Here's a shot of my Mom, my lovely cousin Karen and me! For us it was a family affair.

Here's a shot of me with my new best friend - Susan Stevens from Omaha, Nebraska. Susan is a remarkable watercolorist with an amazing story of love, passion and a special journey. I know we are going to see a lot of wonderful images from her.

I used a new approach for this workshop.  I used an overhead camera connected to a projector that showed what I was doing projected into a wall so folks could stay in their seats. No more up and down to see what I was doing. No more yo yo'ing. I also video taped the whole thing so the students will have a great resource that can be revisited and viewed at their convenience.

thanks for stopping by...

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

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Sunday, April 27, 2014

Painting Spring Flowers at Filoli

We just finished a two day workshop at Filoli sketching and painting the spring flowers the garden provides, but everyone wanted to paint their own images. At lunch on the first day, I ran all over the garden and took some shots of roses, peonies, foxgloves, allium, wisteria, and when I was almost done I heard a peacock squawking. I followed the sound and took some pictures of this big beautiful bird. It seemed to me the focusing light and little beeps entranced this big bird so I was able to get some close shots - he actually came up to me!

After lunch we all decided to look at the photos, I showed them how I crop, resize and color correct the images, and then how I transfer the image onto paper and finally onto the watercolor paper.

Day two was geared towards getting our sketch onto watercolor paper and then painting to the finish.

Below are some shots of the image and of course the squawking peacock.

Sally Holmes at Filoli
Sally Holmes by Guy Magallanes at the end of the day
I had to add more (of course) to deepen the colors and added some glazes to bring it to this point.

 I ended up tilting the image a bit, and had to paint more "darks" to the background so it would fit within a Mat, it's a close fit but I like the rhythm and the little dew drops.

 Here's the peacock.
 Some things to remember:
  • Edit out anything that takes away from a strong focus.
  • Mingling colors and then leaving them alone, and learning how much pigment to water ratio is needed.
  • If there's too much color just add water and wick it up with a thirsty brush.
  • We can always add a glaze of color to deepen or brighten shapes.
  • When working with "darks" it's better to use the colors that are used in the image, we made our "dark" with the red and green color. You won't end up with a dead black color, you'll have a lively dark that belongs because it's made from the colors in the painting.
  • When adding a dark wash for the background, keep adding more color as you move across the painting.
Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Blast from the past

My Aunt Rachel sorted through some of the many photographs she inherited from my Grandmother, and started sending them out to us.

So glad to get these, and there are so many surprises.

Below is my magical Auntie Cee and me. She is the Artist of the family - the one who gave me a roll of butcher paper when I was 5, and my first professional oil set including brushes in a wooden box that also served as an easel when I was 7 years old. I couldn't paint indoors, only in the backyard where I couldn't ruin any furniture or walls. In this picture I must have been in my early 20's or late teens. I think she was getting ready to smack me one!

Below is one of my favorite pictures with my favorite cousin Debra! This is in our backyard on Heather Way in South San Francisco and look how I'm dressed. Even back then I was such a colorful little person - I'm almost 3 years old. I've got a plaid raincoat and red golashes and it looks like Debra made some horns from the hoodie!?
I think this was a prelude to the mud bath she gave me. I had to be hosed down outside before I could come into the house.

Below is a picture of me and my little Grandma as we strolled the grounds at Shadow Brooke a highfalutin restaurant in the Santa Cruz mountains. We had to take a tram ride up to the summit to get into the restaurant, and it was bright red, we had a wonderful time. Oh I remember it well.

Thanks for stopping by....

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

She did it again!

Margaret Inokuma did it again! Her dramatic cymbidium image is currently in a Student/Instructor show at the Visitor's Center at Filoli. If you want to see it you had better get to Filoli because it will be going home to some lucky collector. Margaret has been in 3 shows with me and has sold 2 of her beautiful images out of the three shows.

She took a workshop with the incredibly talented Terri Hill, and was so inspired to try out Terri's color blending passages wet on wet before deciding on the image she was going to paint on the page.
Margaret decided on some gorgeous cymbidiums and framed them in an intense background, and then later decided to darken the background so the cymbidiums would pop off the page.

Below are the images of the background as she started darkening the background and a bad shot of her final image. It glows in real life.

Way to go Margaret!

Thanks for stopping by...

Friday, February 14, 2014

Aeonium Design Wall

All the aeoniums all in a their rows! You can see the progress of my Friday students and how different and how similar they all are. Quite a show...

We get to add shadows next week and take off the masking and finish next week!

Thanks for stopping by

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Aeonium in all it's splendor - so far!

We've been working on this gorgeous aeonium in the Friday morning class.
This has been such a fun project to work on and here are the results so far...

 Above you can see the masking and the underpainting which was painted using Thalo Blue.

We've added colors wet on wet working each shape individually adding a mix of colors and letting them mingle in the shape. (Except for the center shape, we wet the whole center shape and then loaded color while wet)

Thanks for stopping by...

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Masked Succulent

Here's what the image looks like after all the masking is completed.
This is where you should be this Friday, so we can begin painting.

Masked Succulent ready for paint
Can hardly wait for Friday morning!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Friday Design Wall

Before we start the next class image we always have a critique of the last class image. We find out what worked and how to make the image stronger and a better way to finish. I also brought along my "Siena, Italy" image along with the "Coyote" image which we started in January of last year.

Friday Design Wall January 10, 2014
We may post more images of the koi later as people finish. This was a fun project, lots of wet into wet and masking too.
The Siena, Italy painting was so much fun. I wanted to do a loose image, and parts of it were very loose, but ended up being tight with the details, but I'm so very happy with how it turned out.
The Coyote image I thought would be very quick, and ended up being so challenging. With the close cropping it helped to really see the coyote in its natural surroundings.

I'm so happy to start the year with the next image of the succulent, and the challenges that await us.

Thanks for stopping by...

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Friday Class Image is selected

Here is the image we are painting starting this coming Friday - January 10th.

We are using 4 colors to complete this gorgeous image!
To see all the materials needed for this 7 week class, please click on the link below:!project-oriented-classes/c6fq

This is going to be a fun session.