Thursday, August 3, 2017

The Light in August

"Painted Path" 8x10 oil on Ampersand Gessobord (collection artist)
Happy August everyone! Many thanks to all my summer students who keep painting and working hard despite the many other enjoyable distractions of summer.
Happy hard-working oil painters in my Denver oil painting summer class
New August Oil Painting Workshop
Before my group painting classes resume this fall, I’m really looking forward to teaching an enjoyable 2 day “summer retreat” oil painting workshop at the Foothills Art Center in Golden on August 23/24. Think of it as a 2 day painting vacation—with comfortable AC! We’ll learn lots so come join us! You may get info and register for the workshop here:

Summer’s Picture Perfect
Quick reminder that summer is the perfect season for what I like to call “image collection.”  Whether your summer travels take to you exotic locales or just really enjoy local exploration like I do here are some quick tips for taking painting reference photos:
  • Venues like cafes, parks, farmer’s markets, gardens, street scenes, festivals, neighborhoods, trails, marinas, the beach, etc. all make for interesting photo references you could use later for a class or workshop. 
  • What makes a strong painting reference photo? That’s going to differ depending on your art goals but in general it might be a subject you enjoy (like my pinto horse today), or dramatic light and shadow, interesting shapes or textures, eye catching color, early or evening light, etc. Again the more photos you take the more ideas and options you’ll have.
  • Once you have man photos it can be very helpful to take a few hours and sort them into groups or galleries with painting themes like landscapes, still lifes, flowers, skies and clouds, animals, people,etc. This makes it much easier and quicker to find just the right photo when you need it later. 
Finally, be sure to have some kind of back up for your photos—either with a cloud, online storage, or on a memory stick just in case. Happy photo gathering--Have a wonderful summer and hope to see you in a class soon!

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