Some exciting art happening around here…even in the middle of summer. I am taking two online classes that have gotten me so excited about painting. One is Gillian Lee Smith’s Unearth, Gather, Create…which I am loving. She is very detailed, and I love listening to her Scottish/English accent, as she is teaching us to use lots of different materials, and dig deeper into our art. She is even encouraging us to do self portraits. So here goes…
This is a pencil drawing from a selfie of mine. It sure is difficult getting the proportions of a familiar face just right!
But I was also determined to paint it…and in using just Ivory Black and Titanium White paint, I was able to concentrate on the values and shapes of the face, without worrying about color. Painting the eyes…ah, that was the tough part! But the funny thing is, as I was painting the eyes, I kept seeing family members, past and present, show up. I guess it’s all genetics, after all. This portrait, this simply painted portrait, is probably the truest and most honest portrait of myself I have ever painted. I see myself in those eyes. And I feel like this is a huge accomplishment in trying to get ME on the painted surface. It is the vulnerable me…with no pretense, no hiding. Just me.
I have lots of teachers of classes to thank for getting me this far, and definetely have Gillian to thank, for pushing me forward with the confidence and skill to do this (as I wipe the sweat off my brow).
My next class, that started earlier this week, is with Jeanne-Marie Webb…an artist I have “known” since years back…we have been in many Misty Mawn’s online classes together. I have admired her art for a very long time! And in 2015, she embarked on an art quest…to paint 365 portraits on…TEA BAGS! At the end of last year, I was happy to be able to purchase one of her works of art on a tea bag…
Isn’t she lovely???
She is now teaching this class online, Tiny Bags of Love, and I jumped at the chance to learn from her. I am really enjoying the videos, that concentrate on drawing and painting, and not just using drawing skills, but also painting intuitively. By the way, this class is closed, but a second class starts August 15th, so click on the link above if you are interested.
Here’s what I have worked on so far…
And I even worked on tea stained coffee filters
I have to say, I jumped in feet first, painting furiously, then moving on to the assignment of drawing small portraits.
I have wanted so much, to paint more loosely…and with these small and fast paintings, I feel like I am striving towards that goal. Who knew that looseness would come by working on tiny “canvases”?!?! I am using Celestial Seasonings tea bags, because they are larger and more of a square format, and they work very well with a little gesso painted on first.
When paint isn’t available, it sure is great to have a cheapie little PaperMate mechanical pencil to do some drawing. The 1st set of drawings above, were intuitive drawings with no references. The second set, were taken from some of my 5 x 7 inch paintings, shrunk down to 2 x 2 inches. I hope to paint more tea bags next week!
I am also trying to be diligent with my daily scribble art drawings. Even if I can’t paint, I can always take a few minutes to draw. It’s calming to me, and also helping me with my painting skills.