Saturday, March 6, 2010
Marc Chatov Workshop
I was very fortunate to be able to attend Marc Chatov's workshop - for the second time. The first experience I had with Marc was in college. It was an oil painting/portrait workshop. At that point in my life I had pulled away from painting or drawing people. I was doing my best to experiment with different forms of art, to stand outside of my box. Going back to his workshop this year, I realized that painting people is indeed my passion. I have always been fascinated by the human form an shape. Even as a child I remember studying people's features and watching their facial expressions. The bigger the nose, the better. I love how alike and different we all are. I love trying to capture the spirit of someone in a painting.
So again, this workshop was a portrait painting workshop. Not only did we have the opportunity to paint a portrait from life, we were also able to paint the human form as well. Instead of focusing on the "likeness" of the model, he brought our focus to learning how to "see" blocks of shapes and colors. We were asked to avoid drawing lines. Lines only form as two masses of color collide. This appraoch was VERY different from the approach of the dry brush technique I learned from Marc many years ago. This technique was much different and more difficut - definitely out of my comfort zone. We were not even to sketch the form, just to block in shapes of color and then begin to layer over the top. We were painting wet into wet. I have always learned "thick over thin" and "light over dark". There was a certain part of my brain that had to let go of all of the things I had learned from myself and teachers in my past, and to trust this new process. The first day was almost painful, but by the second day I began to understand.
I find that the knowlege I attained there in the studio has carried me to a new place in my own paintings. I am starting some paintings using this new technique. I will post as soon as I get moving. For now, here are pictures from the workshop.