Friday, August 26, 2016

September Grumbacher Instructor Schedule

Its been a busy few weeks gearing up for fall with my video projects and a brand new Cafepress shop with my work!
Illustration of Kathleen Ardelle one of the Ziegfeld Follies
Yep. I turned this watercolor and gouache painting into EARRINGS!

And for those of you who are interested in taking private drawing classes or acrylic painting classes with a Certified Grumbacher Instructor, my class schedule is up for September! 

Here is an example of a still-life in progress from my Basic Still Life class done by one of my very talented students (whom was generous enough to permit me to show you).

His capture of the reflections was so gorgeous I had to show you.
This was the reference object for his still-life painting.

You may either sign-up online or in person at the Michaels location in Riverhead, NY.  

How each class works 

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Exhibiting in The Contemporary Portrait

Its funny how life is. You go into things knowing you have to do them or maybe you intuit that where you're going is exactly where you're supposed to be.

A little interesting story: Two weeks ago, I tried to sell a drawing. Not just any drawing, but a charcoal portrait I completed after a sketch night with a live model named Julia (see next post to view it).

I was putting several items up for sale and this piece was the fourth, however, the submit button wouldn't work. I must've tried four times and even reloaded the page. At that same moment, a flash of an exhibit with this piece framed flashed into my head, but I disregarded it as wishful thinking.

But as I learn time and time again, those flashes of insight mean pay attention and breathe. With the 'submit' button not working, I was literally being blocked from selling this piece. Something I've come to realize is that sometimes things are harder for us for a reason. And ultimately, a much more amazing reason than we could possibly comprehend at that moment.

This week, I found out she was accepted into The Contemporary Portrait exhibition curated by Deanne Shashoua and Michael Lyons Wier of the Lyons Wier Gallery in New York, NY. You may read more about the month-long exhibit and reception details for 6/17 here.

I will add more to this post once the reception is complete.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Why Do You Create?

Everyone has a different reason why they draw, paint, write, create or do anything. Just like anything in life, the reasons you do it have more of an effect on your creations than you may realize.

Some people do it because they're good at it. Some people do it just for the joy of it (RIP Bob Ross).
Some do it because it pays the bills. And others do it because it brings them a feeling of accomplishment.

None of these reasons are wrong or right, but whatever you're doing, it will either move you forward or hold you back.

Many people don't create because they believed lies they were told in the past. They might not have had a steady stream of motivators or people in their lives who inspired them to fulfill their potential. You might have had these people in school...maybe yours were certain teachers. Or maybe you have a relative who put you on a pedestal and made you believe you could be or do anything. And you believed it. But now they're gone and so is that piece that believed it. Get it back.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Now Teaching: Grumbacher Fine Art Classes!

Along with this really long winter, I've been hibernating indoors with my art, video and music projects! And it is all paying off.

old man painting nude figure
We see things as we are.
I am officially a Certified Grumbacher Fine Art Instructor teaching classes in Long Island, NY. If any of you are interested, feel free to sign up or send those you know will benefit from them. If you are not familiar with my work, here are some examples.

My first LIVE painting demonstration is this coming Saturday 11-3PM at the Riverhead, NY location! ADDED BONUS: Anyone who signs up on Saturday the 16th for my Beginner Floral Painting class on either April 23rd FROM 1-3PM or my Intermediate Portrait Class April 30th from 1-5PM will receive 50% off the class rate!

About My Drawing and Painting Classes

I have a zero comparison or talking down about your own work policy. Anyone caught doing this will be asked to leave.

two plastic figurines that look frightened
Fear is an illusion. Transcend it.

Just kidding. Art is not about whose work is better. Creating your best work is completely subjective. But your own success does depend on how much you trust yourself. This class will help you to do that, by providing you with techniques and tools to make the journey a little easier.

Artists don't become advanced artists or professional artists by accident. They practice and keep learning. They gain more and more tools in their mental arsenal to integrate with their passion for creating. The more techniques and tools you learn, the more you grow. In a way, we artists are like scientists...experimenting with joy and determination and often failing, but growing nonetheless. The more you fail in art, the more you are practicing and one day you will see those failures become blessings and 'happy mistakes'.

The point is to have fun. Realistically, you cannot learn much from only one class. But you can learn some things. Each class will have a different subject and application process, so you will learn something different from each one.

In the 2-hour Beginner Floral Class, you will learn techniques that the Masters use to not only see things better, but to also gain a better understanding of shapes, relationships, light and shadow.

In the 4-hour Portrait Class, you will learn my exact process for portraits and the other options available to you and when to use them. You will learn canvas prep, then how to get the proper forms on the canvas. After this we will follow with detail.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Masking Tips and Tricks For Watercolor Still-Life Paintings

Ten years ago, I absolutely was terrified of watercolors. They were so permanent. And I was so impulsive. These two forces contrasted into terrible, overworked, muddy messes.

But then, over the past couple of years, something happened. I became less impulsive and started to work on trusting myself. I went back to basics and did the very thing my first and greatest teacher told me to do. I was four years old.

"How do you draw, daddy?"

"Well..." he looked at me with a light in his eyes and placed an orange-flavored Tang bottle in front of me along with a piece of computer paper and a pencil. 

"Draw exactly what you see," he instructed. And that I did.

When we see truth without filters, creativity becomes natural.
My family was astounded to see I drew not just the outline of the bottle, but the label, the different parts to the lid and every detail I could see. To me, it was like putting together a puzzle and I was completely immersed in it for two hours. The fact that it impressed my dad made me so happy because I was in awe of the two paintings I saw of his. To me, he was the most amazing artist alive.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

CSOPA 'Faces of Children' Exhibition at Lockwood-Mathews Mansion

 If you follow me on Facebook, you already know this story, but the past two months have been a whirlwind of activity, both creatively and spiritually. Even though I did encounter some health challenges, I overcame them with a vengeance and focused on the positivity and gratitude which permeated every fiber of my being whenever I simply thought of the opportunities and experiences I've had since 11/11/11, my first exhibition.

Of course, I will include my work in progression for the Childhood Portraits Exhibition by the Connecticut Portrait Society (CSOPA), since it gives you a glimpse inside my often chaotic mind. I offer no apologies for this since I've come to accept that it is after the chaos that things always seem to fall into place. It's the nature of the ebb and flow of the Universe and without it, we wouldn't learn or grow. This progression was definitely a learning process for me just as all my more messy configurations tend to be.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Upcoming Exhibition - March 2015

I know it's been awhile. And if you follow my food allergy blog, you'll understand why. However, deadlines seem to light a fire under my butt faster than anything else and this past month is no exception.

Ever since I began portrait art, I avoided acrylics like the plague. It just seemed I could never control them the way I could with oils. So I never gave them a chance. It seems I did this with many mediums. I avoid until I force myself to use it. Lo and behold, I came to a startling realization.

A true artist can tame and even master almost any medium if you have a solid art foundation to begin with. What I mean by foundation is figure drawing from a live model or simply practice, from when you first could pick up a pencil.

What does this mean for you? Just because you fail trying out watercolor that one time doesn't mean you should avoid that medium forever. In fact, you are doing yourself a great disservice if you do! Trying different mediums adds to your portfolio and your technical skills.

watercolor palette
What medium or style of art scares you? That's the one that will teach you the most!

And if you can't get a grasp on a specific aspect of the drawing or painting? YouTube has a ton of tutorial videos which can help you add art techniques to your arsenal.