One of the side benefits of holding an art exhibit is that gallery-goers have lots of questions which presents an opportunity to think through what went into making our art.
|First Bell ©2016 Dorothy Lorenze|
In my painting, First Bell, the challenge was rendering brass shadows and highlights in a believable way.
Luckily, painting brass is not quite as challenging for Todd Casey, my painting coach. So he did a demo resulting in this beautiful little pitcher and pear. Todd made it feel accessible.
|©2016 Todd M Casey courtesy Rehs Gallery|
Brass is "brassy" and it's easy to overdo the shininess. Seeing Todd's depth of color helped me to realize that brass can still be brassy with less overall shine. In fact it's the contrast with the duller, darker colors that helps you see the shine.
I was also reminded that to round the form, the darks on the light side should appear lighter than the lights on the dark side. Word juggling! While it makes your brain hurt to think about it, in a demonstration, you can see it.
Tackling a painting challenge in a workshop with Todd is like doing it with a safety net. Todd has taught me how to see better, how to find the subtlest difference between colors and values. And how accurate drawing creates the structure for representational painting.
He's a master artist and master teacher, sharing all he's learned from experiences at Water Street Atelier, Grand Central Academy, San Francisco's Academy of Art, as well as working with with Warren Chang, Max Ginsburg, Jacob Collins and more.
The quote below aptly expresses my belief about raising the bar for ourselves with each painting -
"One must have a high opinion of a work of art - not the work one is creating at the moment, but of that which one desires to achieve one day. Without this it is not worthwhile working." Edgar Degas
Painting workshops challenge, inspire and support us in raising our own painting levels.
And helps us to see.
And just to show that even non-painters "get it" here's a poet and philosopher on the subject -
"It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see." Henry David Thoreau
Thanks for joining me on my painting journey.