On Tuesday I had one of the best days I have had for a long time, exhausting and exhilarating at the same time.
For a long time I have had problems placing figures in my paintings, I know the proportions and physiology of the human form and perspective, but I struggle with making the figures looking as tho’ they belong naturally in the composition, unless they are the subject of the painting; looking at many others painting’s I am not alone.
When I’m painting out in the Norfolk Broads I can get away with not using figures because I don’t see any, I like it that way. But as I paint more in urban and populated areas I can’t really get away with that excuse.
As part of the Royal Institute of Oil Painters (ROI) open exhibition progamme at Mall Galleries there was a one day workshop, with Roger Dellar (ROI RI VPPS), adding dynamism to urban scenes using figures, just what I needed. The workshop date also coincided with the evening of painting with ROI members in the gallery, definitely worth a trip to London for.
Being a student when being used to teaching is a strange feeling, the joy of painting is that you never stop learning and Roger was a great teacher. Working from a photograph of a scene I had struggled with in Essaouira earlier this year. I was pleased with the result and the amount of learning I gained.
The painting was completed using three colours of Pip Seymour Oils; Cobalt Blue Deep, Madder Lake Deep, Cobalt Yellow – Aureolin and Titanium White.
Following the daytime workshop, it was a joy to take part in the life portrait session surrounded by members of the ROI who were also painting. There were three models including Ian Cryer the president of the ROI and Adebanji Alade who I had met a couple of times, he has a lovely sunny disposition. I am not a portrait painter but thought just go for it, as I am always telling my students. We had 3 x 3/4 hour sessions so just over 2 hours to complete our piece.
At the end of the evening I was exhausted and exhilarated the adrenaline was running, I had painted a not too bad portrait and I had caught up with lots of people. Tim & Mike who came to Essaouira in March, Michele Del Campo who won 3rd prize for his portrait of Ian Cryer, good friend and great artist Haidee-Jo Summers.
I was surprised there was only a small group for Roger Dellar’s workshop, I was expecting a large crowd, it was a shame for him there were not more people taking part, I was probably the most experienced painter there and I had been nervous about going.
All I can say is no matter your experience never be nervous about taking part in classes and workshops if the tutor is good they will be able to cope with all levels of experience and make you comfortable and as I said at the beginning “the joy of painting is that you never stop learning”Links:
The Royal Institute of Oil Painters
For Linda’s Painting Tuition and Holidays go to http://www.paintncanvasholidays.co.uk