Posted by Deborah on August 31, 2013
On August 10th at about noon the first students arrived in my studio to spend the next two weekends exploring the painting experience. Although a self-described “reluctant teacher” this spring after a few months of living with my new studio I realized I couldn’t keep this place to myself and offered a class entitled “A Somewhat Experimental Offering to Those of You Who Would Like to Journey into Image Development and Oil Technique Over a Two Weekend Period in a Beautiful Setting” . I think because I’ve taken but two or three art classes in my life I find teaching art to be a mystery that only those who have been taught to teach it can fathom. For me making art is a process of self-discovery and so in all the classes I’ve taught in the past, I have made that the central objective—to explore one’s personal point of view. That leaves subject matter in the hands of each student and translation in the hands of the teacher. Technique is merely a well-worn path one uses to find the perfect view.
Because of space limitations we could only accomodate six students, which turned out to be a good number—enough to spark discussion and provide diversity in experience but not so many that giving personal attention to everyone became difficult.
On day one we concentrated on image conception and development. “What do I want to paint”? When we faced our blank canvases or panels the next day we were armed with ideas that had begun to be realized on paper.
We did underpaintings, we got our sketches finalized.
Some people went home with their barely begun surfaces, worked on them during the week or just looked at them. Others left the colored panels behind and let their minds work without tools. The following weekend each person followed through with their vision and even though no one “finished” a painting—everyone was well on their way to developing a work of art that truly represented her mind and heart.
Thank you dear brave people who came to my first class at Huckleberry Farm Studios. You have given me courage to continue offering classes. I’m working on developing different class contents which I can offer once a season. My next class will likely be in the Winter and will depend on some more brave souls to come here to explore their personal points of view during the metallic dark of the Oregon Coast in February.
This piece, begun as a demonstration in this class, will always have the influences of those who witnessed its development between it’s layers.