Cheerful and Colorful Paintings

Cheerful and Colorful Paintings in Oil, Acrylic, Mixed Media and Collage

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Nicholas Simmons Workshop ~ Monday, June 9, 2008

Nicholas' Painting Day 1 of the workshop

Traditional watercolor on cold press paper

Nicholas Simmons

The Artist Showplace Class

There were 27 eager workshop students gathered this morning early (9:30 a.m.) at the Artists' Showplace today for our Nicholas Simmons workshop. Fresh Sushi , a print of his prize winning painting greeted us as we unloaded and chose our tables.

This was Nick’s first Texas workshop and he enjoyed putting faces with many of his email friends and making more friends who had traveled great distances to study with this wonder boy of the watercolor world. The morning was spent by lecture and some short demos and he even had some of the students participating. He has an art theory about good art with 3 questions to ask.

1. Do I like it?

2. Could I do that or paint something similar? Yes…that’s why we’re here..we want to paint like Nick. He thinks technique can be learned and most artists are at this stage. Now for the kicker.

3. Would I have thought to do it? Why didn’t I think of it? That’s the interesting question. All great art comes from imagination and creativity. One look at Fresh Sushi hanging on the wall and I’d have to regretfully fail on No. 3.

Nicholas encouraged us to paint large, experiment with nonstandard sizes and shapes and while in his workshop “Do Nick’s thing while here” – in other words follow instructions and when he arrives at your table to check your work, don’t have a finished painting for him to view but wait for his demo and explanation. He encouraged us to embrace the blossom or crawl back and even encouraged them to happen. Let the hair dryer become your best friend to create unpredictable edges.

Today we used cold press paper and traditional watercolor for our paintings after Nick told us several things he hates to see in watercolors and we will use the fluid acrylics on Tuesday. One of these things that drives him crazy is “clunky buildings” so our mission today was to paint a non-clunky building and he mentioned artists that we should study their work for good building examples. Since our time is limited, a simple structure was chosen and we were admonished to do a simple building well.

Here is my simple building. I wish you could join us for Tuesday’s class.

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