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Mini Workshop March 2024

The clothed life-drawing mini workshop was well attended this month, with the added variety of different models to draw.

This, combined with coffee breaks and a chance to chat and see other members' work meant the afternoon went smoothly and was enjoyed by all.  The results, whether by the more experienced or those new to life-drawing were excellent - just a few of which you can see below.

The summer months offer our day-long workshops with professional artists, but rest assured the mini workshops will return in the autumn. Sarah D

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Summer Workshop with Jean Turton, May 2024

This was an enjoyable session for all participants, who had the opportunity to complete 3 different pictures.  Yvonne said, 'it was an interesting subject to get to grips with ... the technique did expand us and took us out of our comfort zone."  Maria reported, " I enjoyed experimenting with Chinese brushes and painting strokes in a different way.  I liked the fluidity of the technique and Jean made it very easy to follow."

Yvonne added, "The first thing we had to do was get used to holding the brush in the manner close to holding a dart.  Jean explained the different types of brushes and demonstrated how they might be used.  Black Chinese ink played a major role in the painting process, as one should be able to get seven shades from this and it is an important part of the overall result.  The paper provided was very different to the usual cartridge or watercolour paper.  Each demonstration was quite exact and lengthy.

As no one had used this technique before, we need to connect to  our 'chi' and not over-work our paintings or try to correct what we perceived as a mistake.  I think some of us will go on to use the brush technique in our next watercolour painting.  I know I will!"

You can see below, the results were very effective.

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Summer Workshop with Stewart Beckett, June 2024

Stewart provided a very interesting, focused and valuable workshop for those of us wanting to improve our acrylic landscape techniques.  Some of the attendees were experienced in this medium and subject, others were just beginning, but all benefited from his expert advice.  Stewart demonstrated how he approached each stage of the painting, giving us time to work on our own pieces for each stage, before going on to the next.  As we painted, at each stage, Stewart took time to give each person gentle guidance on how to develop the composition, using a different brush stroke, or by changing a colour mix, or by deepening or lightening tones.  Most of us worked on a version of the same coastal scene Stewart painted, but a few chose a different scene, although following the same methods.

At the end of the workshop, we all displayed our finished (or nearly finished!) paintings and Stewart encouraged us to self-evaluate.  He then gave suggestions of how we could remedy any of the areas we felt didn't work.  I am sure most of us will go home and try to put some of these into action.

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Stewart's painting

Workshop results!

Summer Workshop with Rodney Kingston, July 2024 

An enthusiastic group gathered in the hall at All Saints School for a portrait oil-painting workshop with Rodney Kingston.  Rodney explained we were the 'guinea pigs' as he was trying out a different method (for him) of teaching - breaking down the various stages of the portrait, giving us the time to work on that before moving to the next.  He painted his own portrait alongside us. At each stage, Rodney worked around the group, giving individual advice and encouragement.  A few people were less familiar with working in oils and this was an opportunity to work with, and get tips from an expert.  We had all chosen our particular portrait subject and worked from a photograph of a family member, or one taken from an on-line image library.  Everyone concentrated hard and produced some very impressive results.  One of the group, who paints portraits regularly, said she is going to follow Rodney's methods after doing this workshop.  Another commenting on social media, said it was 'so much fun, learning and hard work'.  So, the 'guinea pigs' were very happy! 

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