Monday, September 5, 2011

September 8- Three Square Inches of Inspiration

a 3" part of Dreama Tolle Perry's painting 'Wanted'

Have you ever copied another person's painting to try to figure out how they did it? I have and it can be really helpful! For instance, I'm  inspired by the painting above. (Please be sure to go fall in love with Dreama's work!)

However, copying can have its drawbacks. I often find that I'm less than satisfied with the end result. It's a bit of a losing situation, after all. I can't really do what the artist did, yet I'm constrained from making it too much my own by the premise. So, why copy the whole thing? I mean, you learn things from different parts of the painting, so maybe just looking at those parts would be helpful.

That's how the idea for this class was born. I want you to be inspired. Look for work that you want to emulate. Any subject, and kind, any time... Analyze what it is you like about this work, and locate the areas that just jazz you. Choose 3” square portions to replicate. This gives you the opportunity to examine the colors, strokes, layering, and details the artist chose to use, as well as giving you a look at the underlying abstraction in each small section. It’s fascinating to see how just a small section of a painting can be a work of art in itself.

It's far more helpful if the painting is in the same (or an applicable) medium, and about the same scale as it was originally painted. If you find a reproduction that was originally a 24" x 36" painting and is reduced to 6" x 8" in size, when you print it you'll be trying to copy strokes the size of cat hairs! Instead, consider using  the work by other artists that you have on your walls at home, or search the internet to find a painting that's one-to-one in size (not easy to find--and you may need permission to print it), or come to class and use one of my pastels...which I hope will be inspiring. (I'll bring my portfolio with me.) You might find smaller paintings reproduced in books or magazines that approximate the scale of the original.

We'll do three different little paintings 3" in size in class, all of which may be derived from the same painting, or different ones. That's up to you. It's very helpful to make a 3" square viewfinder out of stiff paper or mat board to use for finding that area that inspires you, and to put in place over the painting as you work. Yes, you may take a photo, crop and print it, and paint from that, if you prefer, but make sure it's printed the same size as the original, and that the color and quality are excellent. Painting from the real thing is best--but we can be flexible and still learn things! Do what appeals most to you. 

You're welcome to bring three small pieces of paper, or mask out three areas on one sheet--it doesn't really matter. You might find it so much fun you want to do more of them, so take that possibility into consideration. They aren't laborious and don't take very long to do. Feel free to bring other paintings you're working on to continue in class, as well.

I bet you’ll start to look at everyone’s paintings differently after this class! It’s quite inspiring. 

As usual, the class is $25.00, payable at the door. If you have not already signed up and plan to attend, please RSVP now. The studio opens about 11:00, and class is from11:30-2:30. (Feel free to bring your lunch. We have a microwave.) Remember, we're at the new location at CCF.

See you Thursday!