The 2012 Santa Fe Mentoring Workshop Comments Off
Sunday • Day 1
We began our mentoring workshop with an informative and inspirational opening at THE EL RAY INN, one of Santa Fe’s oldest Inns. Meeting new artists as well as reconnecting with many returning artist is always thrilling!
Following our meeting…we proceeded to THE PANTRY, a traditional southwest “bill of fare” restaurant established in 1929. Exciting and meaningful way to begin our 6 day painting experience together!
Monday • Day 2
The second day of the mentoring workshop (first day of painting) started with a pastel painting demonstration by Albert…on the glorious grounds of THE EL RAY INN which was the home base for the artist’s stay in Santa Fe.
A few of ALBERT’S ARTIST INSIGHTS:
“Always paint darks to lights and keep darks darker… keep lights transparent.”
“To accentuate the beauty of the dark greens use reddish warm browns and rich purples the same value as the greens.”
“When I paint, I use cast shadows on my trees to show form. I ask myself: Goes the shadow identify form, if it does, I paint it in.”
Tuesday • Day 3
The weather was glorious…the painting was marvelous and Albert’s insights are incredibly informative and inspirational. The assistance at the individual artist’s easels by Albert was so beneficial and watching the progress of all the participants is so moving!
From Jeanine: “We painted at our home/studio today and what a delight to share our home, the grounds and our gardens for all to paint! Amazing subject according to all the artist… how exciting! Fantastic paintings as well! The afternoon demonstration by Albert in his studio was an oil demo. Monochromatic under-painting with raw umber.”
ALBERT’S ARTISTIC INSIGHTS
IS IT A DRAWING… OR IS IT A PAINTING…..
• Drawing with a brush this Under-painting technique defines shapes in the space of one’s painting and allows one to define darks and lights.
• This tecnique for starting a painting is less complicated because of the absence of color.
See the close-up photo below of Albert’s painting so far. He stated that he will continue painting on this piece to resolution.
Wednesday • Day 4
Continuing on the week of our artful workshop with Albert..here in Santa Fe…. realizing why this gorgeous land is called enchanting!
For our fourth day, the morning location was Museum Hill. Albert chose this site to expose the artists to distance views as well as many lovely “close-up” images. The chamisa plants were one of the very favorite and it was truly exciting to see how Albert translated the Chamisa (one of his favorite plants to paint) into an outstanding pastel demonstration. So exciting to watch the participants create their experience onto surfaces and having Albert’s assistance at the easels when needed.
The afternoon included a brief stroll down Canyon Road to visit a few galleries, included a short jaunt thru VENTANA FINE ART GALLERY, a Santa Fe gallery that has hung and sold Albert’s oils as well as pastels for some 24 years.
The day rounded out with another demonstration in Albert’s Studio: a lovely and very powerful watercolor under-painting with pastel
applied over of course leaving the wonderful delicacy of the transparent watercolor showing!
An incredible day… amazing insights… and truly wonderful paintings by all!
Thursday • Day 5
Thursday was another fine day… another wondrous day to explore painting, apply new techniques given in our workshop and off to locations, demonstrations and an evening of information regarding career building.
ALBERT’S ARTISTIC INSIGHTS:
DEMONSTRATION – WATERCOLOR UNDER-PAINTING PASTEL OVER-LAY ON KITTY WALLIS GREY MIST PAPER
• It is surprising how beautiful watercolor can look when being painted on middle tone ground.
• After a simple 10 minute drawing on the surface with a #2-B soft lead pencil, Albert proceeded to paint a transparent watercolor under-painting. Diluting the watercolor greatly in order to achieve a transparent effect. After only a few moments drying time in this high-desert warm temperature…the pastel painting was started.
• Keep layering to get a sense of harmony in leaves and the rhythm of the leaf-growth and where they meet. I like to think of trees as having a personal rhythm, the rhythm being the nature spiral of growth the tree as it grows.
• THE TOUCH…Varying the pressure of the pastel allows one more variation of color from each and every pastel stick, this gives deeper sensitivity for the artist, in turn, added visual pleasure for the viewer.
• By painting different colors of similar values, one creates a sense of atmosphere in their painting and opportunity to get beautiful vibrant colors.
• Work regularly there is an incredible difference in one’s painting as well as one’s career between painting daily and painting some times.
• Let the experience of painting the painting be primary and stop worrying so much about finishing it. Allow the finishing of the painting to happen thru the painting process.
Friday • Day 6
What an amazing day for our fifth day of the workshop… Friday! Spent the entire day up the ski base mountain of Santa Fe. Mother nature sure was in her glory, displaying her grandness! All of us painted in the lush area, Big Tusuque, between two rushing mountain streams, groves of aspen trees twinkling overhead, and many magnificent rock out-croppings, grand images for plein air painters, very inspirational!
For Albert’s demonstration he choose one of his very favorite subjects: a powerful rock formation. See his pastel painting below. Notice the use of color to create the formations, as well as gently strong lines that identify the separation of the individual rocks.
Then take a look at our incredible food spread and all the satisfied, full, smiling “lunchers”!
Given the location, the talent of the artists and the accomplishments of paintings during the critique on site…the day was amazing and once again very gratifying!
Saturday • Day 7
Saturday… the last day of our workshop: THE CLOSING CRITIQUE IS COMPOSED OF THE WEEKS PAINTINGS PLUS A GOOD SAMPLING OF THE ARTIST’S WORK THEY HAVE BROUGHT FROM HOME.
ALBERT’S ARTISTIC INSIGHTS
• “When one feels they have made a “mistake” in their painting…see if that mistake can be adjusted and modified rather then and replaced.”
•”I am often asked the question in the critiques: What do I do in general to improve my work? It is important that each artist knows their strong points and accept them. Imformation will be given to each artist to fortify and allow them to improve their strong points. In general, at this time, do not worry about your weak points.. concentrate on your strong points, and paint thusly. Growth will happen from this quicker then any other way I know.”
• “As I mentioned before… paint as regularly as you can, paint daily when possible and improved paintings will follow. There is nothing like regular painting!”
• “Early in my career… I forced in on drawing. One of the basics of drawing is accurate measuring . I never forgot this. I am aware of it and use it in my painting.”
• As your paintings improve save your best painting…don’t be in a rush to sell them. If necessary, put a higher price on them for many shows insist that works be for sale. Enter your strongest pieces into shows. Really do your research as to which shows you want to enter. OFTEN! KEEP PAINTING AND KEEP IN TOUCH WITH ME!
In celebration of the critique, the workshop week, our friendship, we participated in another beautiful lunch in Albert and Jeanine’s home and garden. What a meal…what a week.
Continuing on day seven of our mentoring workshop…another visit to VENTANA FINE ART GALLERY where Albert gave a personal tour of “the back room” where he is storing works for his next one man show. He explained in details what he feels makes up a powerful one man show and a good gallery. These are additional paintings to those hanging in “the front room” of the gallery. How impressive to see this body of work and the variety and the amazing talent from this master!
Then the artists were encouraged to visit other suggested galleries within the area. In the evening he closing dinner was at The RIO CHAMA Restaurant where all of us gathered and celebrated in their famous open-air courtyard. A marvelous time was had by all!