Anstruther Beach, 6.5 x 10" watercolour
Anstruther Schooner, 6.5 x 10" watercolour
View From Anstruther, 6.5 x 22", watercolour
Kellie Castle, 22 x 15", watercolour
I have finally decided to post the paintings I did in Scotland. I haven't worked at all on these since I have been home, and I find them quite unsatifying to look at, although I do like the first one. As I have been processing my experience at Stephen Quiller's workshop in Scotland, I have realized several things. Firstly, although I am a plein air painter, my usual medium for this is oils, and my approach is direct. Stephen's medium is watermedia, and he employs many layerings of lifting and applying colour to build up the painting. In addition to these fundamental differences, I was working on unfamiliar paper (300lb rather than the 140 I am used to -the 300lb seems to suck up the colour resulting in lifefless colour in my hands), in an unfamiliar climate (much more humid which makes a huge difference in drying times), with unfamiliar subject matter (not used to boats and buildings, never painted Scotland before -different light), vertically (I paint flat in watercolour), on top of the different style of painting. Now I can use these as excuses, or I can focus on what WAS great about the workshop. Stephen taught me so much about simplification of a complex scene, focus to keep the main things main, and technical paint application methods. All of these I can take into my work here back home. Although the paintings aren't anything I am very proud of, it was an experience I will never forget!
I just read Robert Genn's latest clickback describing the phenomenon of post-workshop letdown -a good read! This got me thinking about my own experience, and I have to say, you must give a workshop time to percolate, meditate on the whole thing, and come to terms with the good and the not so good of it. I think the same is true of any classes that you take. As the teacher, and also being a student, I think I realize the joys and limitations of studying with a mentor. My attitude is "Take what you think is good and leave the rest. Be true to yourself and your vision and don't give it up for anything -rather hone it to perfection. Mine your instructor for everything you can get, and then make it personally yours".
To purchase any of these, or commission your own painting, please email me.