If you don’t like the cold weather and you want to get away, New Smyrna Florida is the place to go in January. The warm weather and kindly atmosphere of the Artist’s Workshop art center their will surely warm you up. I stayed at the Night Swan Bed and Breakfast.
We started the first night with a demonstration in painting with the eco-friendly paints using a painting knife with M. Graham Walnut oil. If you are going to paint why not be healthy about it. Followed with a book signing of my new book, “Plein Air Painting for Everyone”. This was a very enthusiastic crowd and I was glad I brought the extra books.
The following three days encompassed a studio workshop with demonstrating, exercises, mentoring and discussions on how to use painting knives, but more importantly on how to develop a painting.
We started the workshop with a word or phrase for the artists to concentrate on though the workshop. The word actually was one of the painters name only by coincidence. The word was “Grace”. I find in workshops that painters put to much pressure on them and don’t give themselves enough forgiveness to learn and develop. When you are learning new things you have to be reasonable and patient.
I enjoy when I am able to mentor a painter, using acrylics or oil paint to develop and further themselves. The group had all levels of painters in it and the final products where remarkable with no two styles alike. They all told me they where learning so much. Each painter took what I gave them and as I emphasized, took the needed time to develop.
The painters requested that I return next year to teach a portrait class that emphasizes understanding the facial features using a unique program I developed.
This painting above was part of my workshop demonstration. I consider the painting abstract realism since the design and image can stand on its own as an abstract painting but has its connect to a realistic place, even a figure. The lighting and color are controlled to enhance the balance of the design.