Starting in 2018 I intend to cut back on the number of workshops I will teach each year. I am also planning to change up the format I’ve used in the past years and attempt to tailor each workshop more to the points of interest at the venue in which the workshop is being held.
My workshops traditionally focus on these five basic subject matters or scenes; nature, country, city, beaches and nature’s moods. While I will continue to use those five genres, they will not be given equal attention as I have done in the past. My new approach will focus on the areas of interest which exist in and around the venue (location) of the workshop.
By way of examples: If the workshop is being conducted in Colorado, I will concentrate on the beauty of the high country; in New England, perhaps its change of seasons. If the workshop is being held in a coastal city of say, California, I will concentrate on beach and city scenes with a possible foray into a national park such as Yosemite to provide relevant subject matter. If the workshop is being held in middle America, rural scenes will likely be the prominent focus.
Nature’s moods are everywhere, but the violent summer thunderstorm of America’s plains is different than the coastal shower along our ocean beaches. Once again, the venue will drive the focus of workshop and should provide an exciting, new approach for my teaching efforts.
This year I will also be getting into the use of multi-water media. As mentioned in the Dry Creek Studio page, I have been experimenting with the use of acrylic paint as a base and then applying transparent watercolors on top of the acrylic base. I have then ‘finished’ the image, adding detail using opaque (gouache) paints. The results have been quite exciting.
The combination of the three mediums opens a whole new world to the watercolor artist. You might say that I’ve had my “Eureka” moment, discovering that there is a whole new world outside that of pure transparent watercolor art.
My workshops generally hold to a seven-hour day (depending on the requirements of the venue/sponsor). I will begin the class at about 9:00AM with my first demonstration of the day followed by a period for attendees to paint their first image. Following lunch (@12:30PM) I will complete a second demonstration followed by a working period and a group critique at about 3:00 PM.
Using the new format, the class will no longer be ‘tied’ to a strict schedule allowing us to spend more (or less) time on one particular subject, driven in part by the interests of the class. This schedule will hold for both the three and five-day workshops.
Here are some recommendations/requirements for materials you will want to have on hand for use at the workshop.
For transparent water colors I use twenty five colors by American Journey. Feel free to choose your own colors. Any professional brand of paint will be fine but stay away from student quality paint. I use American Journey Acrylics, large tubes. M. Graham Artist’s gouache rounds out the paint requirements.
I use a different set of brushes for each medium as they will be affected differently by the type of paint. For the transparent water color I use Miller Pseudo Squirrel brushes. I use #6, #8 & #12 round brushes and ¾, 1 ½ flat brushes by Silver Black Velvet. Any professional brand is acceptable for the 2 inch flat. For the acrylics I use a white nylon #16 (1 ½ inch) and an American Interlock 1 ¼ brush. You will want a second set of these brushes for the gouache medium as well
For transparent water color work I use Arches Natural White Rough, 140 pound, 22 x 30 inches (Arches Cold Press paper is also fine). For the acrylic medium any 300 pound professional paper will do. American Journey hard bound sketch books work fine as does Velum #67 paper. (Whatever you use at home is totally acceptable.)
It’s always a pleasure for me to go back to the mountains of North Carolina. Joe Miller, aka “Cheap Joe” has been one of my sponsors for several years and I enjoy visiting old friends as well as art students from the area.
Carolina. It’s a place well worth visiting even if you’re not an artist! During the workshop season, each week features a guest artist conducting the four or five-day workshop. Media varies with the genre of the hosting instructor.
Contact information is available above and additional information about Cheap Joe’s, including their workshop schedules, can be found at www.cheapjoes.com
In the fall of next year, I will have an opportunity to work with the Utah Watercolor Society, conducting a workshop at their facility in Salt Lake City, Utah. This will be my first chance to work with this organization and it will be a real honor to add my name to the long list of distinguished artists who have conducted workshops sponsored by this group of artists.
The Utah Watercolor Society was founded forty five years ago, on December 30th, 1974. It was created for the purpose of promoting watercolor art and establishing it as a 'standalone' discipline among the other artistic media. The organization sponsors several exhibitions each year to promote and display the work of its members and other artists residing in the state of Utah.
The Society holds monthly meetings wherein established artists from all over the nation as well as in Utah demonstrate their skills, techniques and knowledge to attendees. Workshops may be conducted in their local facilities as well as in various plein-air sites which take full advantage of Utah's colorful outdoors.
The Society also sponsors the annual Mary Straight scholarship open to high school or college students who wish to further their knowledge and skills in the world of art. Additional information can be found on the Society's excellent web site at: www.utahwatercolor.org.
Note: UWS will not be accepting registration for this workshop until summer of 2019.
Images displayed on this website are property of Francese Watercolors. Any reproduction or use of these images without the explicit written consent of the artist is prohibited.