Well, I’m saying spider but I’m actually still on the web. No pun intended.
Last week I went to the monthly meeting of the La Mirada Art Club to talk about my work and demonstrate part of my process for them. I was fortunate that one of the members agreed to take some pics of me working while I was assembling the refractured watercolor.
The poem in it reads:
Dawn leaves me speechless
These gold and turquoise jewels
precious beyond words.
Mary started out as a friend of a friend on facebook and then took my Painting for Absolute Beginner’s class, then became a very close friend. Shortly after that class, a couple years ago, I helped her create a painting for a friend. I hadn’t realized that she had not had time since then to pick up the brushes. A lot of life had happened. A few weeks ago I went over to help guide her through another painting. This time she has a new home with a wonderful front porch. We have to paint out on the front porch because she has cats and I have allergies.
Mary lives quite a way from me so we get our painting stints in sporadically and yesterday morning I was able to swing by for a couple hours before her grandson’s party and my reception for her to make progress on this sunset.
We weren’t able to finish yesterday but hope that we will do in the next session. She made good progress. Part of the challenge has been vision issues. Mary recently had major eye surgery. She can see colors better now, but the amount of light is difficult for her and towards the end as the sun came over, she had to resort to the shades.
Riverside Art Museum is holding a fundraiser called Art Bark in the Park to which I applied and was assigned a pup. I decided to paint the pup in oil – a skyscape with lawns on the bottom of each paw with dogs on, and my sonnet about dogs painted into the clouds. So far I’ve done the sky and the lawns. I will need to wait a week or so until that is dry enough to add the dogs and poems. I didn’t know until I picked up the dog that I was getting a beagle.
And it’s possible to paint on the back, so I have another canvas to dream up!
Last night I guided a small group through a paint and wine class at Vanguard Gallery in Moreno Valley. One of my students had already taken classes with me, including the Absolute Beginners class and was happy to work through this painting of winter solstice sunrise across the Salton Sea to hone some of the skills.
This month is shaping up to be really interesting – as you can read in my Newsletter.
One of the things that I didn’t mention is that I’m also involved in curating another solo show at the Vanguard Gallery, this time for long-time associate Nick Foschi. I’ll get to hang two shows in two days. About 50 linear feet for Nick and about 7 for me! Just hoping that my flu symptoms wane enough to give a demo/talk on Wednesday evening in Redondo Beach.
Sometimes it’s a big class, sometimes a small one. This month I goofed and brought the painting I’d intended to work with next* month – which is easy to understand when I’d been planning three classes next month and had the planner turned to September. Nevertheless, all the students, one of whom is a returning student, had fun painting ‘The Old Red Overalls’. Hmm, I really need to start picking some simpler subjects. One thing that teaching has taught me is how difficult it actually is for beginners or someone with just a little experience! The student on the left is an accomplished gardener and decided my ‘rows of crop’ were closest to red lettuce. Her crop looked a lot more like red lettuce. Good work all of you!
I am planning out the paintings that I will coach people through in my paint-and-wine classes for the rest of the year (I try to plan ahead so that when last minute stuff happens, I have time for it….). As I didn’t want to always present skyscapes and waterscapes, I turned to my fellow bloggers for a little inspiration and soon found it.
Victor Rakmil is a photographer who, like me, is apparently a birdaholic. I was utterly taken by the fifth photo on this blog entry and he gave me permission to use it as a basis for one of my class paintings. Here’s ‘Merganser Parade’, planned for October at the Vanguard Gallery in Moreno Valley.
Last night I held a private paint-and-wine party at a home in Indio. The host had chosen a photo that she took at Cottonwood Creek and the whole group did a great rendition, though we struggled a little with lighting towards the end. [Note to self: take a couple lamps on private parties just in case – not all homes are lit like studios and galleries.]
Last night was one of the Paint Night Out nights at the Vanguard Gallery. We had originally hoped to hold this in a local night club but this didn’t work out for various reasons. However for the venue I had prepared something a little different – a couple of cocktail glasses to enjoy! And I think everyone did enjoy the night. One gal was a long time friend who surprised me by turning up – and said that one of the most encouraging parts of the class was when her painting wasn’t going as expected and I would say ‘it’s ok, we can fix that’. It took a lot of the fear out of trying to paint.