Cheerful and Colorful Paintings

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

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Donna Zagotta Workshop ~ Artists' Showplace Gallery ~ Watercolor and Gouache ~ La Cima Chef

"La Cima Chef"
6 1/2 x 8 Watercolor and Gouache on Crescent #115 watercolor board, hot press
This is the first painting I did on Wednesday and Thursday. The other one will be posted with the slide show of student work so please check back. Read HERE for our CBC paintings at the La Cima Club.

Donna lecturing to us about "Design Ideas for Maximizing Creativity" at the Artists' Showplace Gallery for the July 13-17 workshop.
Donna has a blog now so she can continue to dialog with her students and reach out to them. She invites you for a visit.

One of Donna's Paintings.
Donna and Nancy. I was showing off my new Wal Mart tee shirt that shows Texas and the rest of the US as everything "NOT Texas" and that includes Michigan where Donna is from. I took from her two years ago and you can read about that workshop HERE.
There were 20 eager artists/students to learn from artist/instructor Donna. We didn't get our brushes wet until Wednesday and Monday and Tuesday was an in depth study of our "personal relationship" with Shape, Value, Color, Line and Texture. There is no right or wrong way to use the elements and there is only one way and it's YOUR way. She has been on a 25 year quest to become more creative in her painting style. Donna said "I can't teach you how to paint. The best way to learn to paint is paint, paint, and paint." The medium must match your personality. She doesn't like oil because they take too long to dry and acrylics dry too fast and gouache dries up too easily so what works for her is regular watercolor paints with the W N white designer gouache.
She has numerous articles in magazines and her studio was featured in a recent August 2009 Watercolor Artist and if you have the April 2008 Watercolor magazine you can follow along with our workshop with her article Make a Statement. See other articles listed HERE.
Each student arrived with some of their current work and photos of artists' work they admired. I arrived with Gustav Klimt and Toulouse-Lautrec books and some recent acrylic work. These discussions were to help us develop and work toward connecting an image to our name and our style. She cautioned about never going beyond the style of our early teachers but to continue on a personal journey of who you really are. "Who you are is found in who-what you love, " Donna said. "The painting is done when you love it" another quote we heard during the 5 days.
We learned to use shape and value for the structure of the painting and color, line and texture for pattern embellishment and decorating and when we reach this stage we were told to forget the reference material. . There was discussion out of context as it's hard to juggle all the elements at one time during the painting process. The painting is hard to visualize in the beginning but confidence builds as you continue painting.
Donna uses transparent and opaque watercolor (likes Holbein) with Winsor Newton Permanent White Designers Gouache on Crescent Board #115 Hot Press watercolor board. She likes "stiffish" brushes and prefers Winsor Newton Regency Gold series 500. She prefers working smaller than 11 x 15 except for her show pieces and likes to mat the smaller paintings in wide mats.
Donna "Creativity trumps accuracy."
David Friend "The Creative Way to Paint" "According to the experts, we all have more creative ability than we can ever use. Most of us realize only a tiny fraction of our hidden talent."
Watch for the next blog post to see a student work slide show from the workshop.

Nancy Standlee
a Texas Daily Painter &
member of Canvas by Canvas
Texas Collaborative Artists

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Ginny Stiles said...

Oh my gosh Nancy...I cannot thank you enough for introducing me to Donna Zagotta. WOW. I am just amazed. I went right to her blog and spent WAY too long reading and reading. She is a brilliant teacher and a fascinating artist. AND I loved your your painting in the workshop! I'll be back to re-read things again and look at your other links another day. I HAVE to get some sleep!

Nancy Standlee said...

Hello, Ginny, I'm so glad you liked the post about Donna. If you can get some of the articles she's written you would enjoy I know. In a later post I'll add something about her new DVD coming out. Thanks for the comment about my painting. Wait till you see the next one..

Anonymous said...

Hi Nancy, I found your blog through Myrna Wacknov's blog. I enjoyed your posting about Donna's workshop. It sounds like an intense week!

Nancy Standlee said...

Hi, Peggy, thanks for the visit. I met Myrna online after she published in one of the art magazines, then we got her to Texas. Donna and Myrna are friends and both excellent teachers. It was fun to hear Donna talk about the new DVD she will have soon. I've seen your name and site and think you and Donna would be friends; however, she begins with a realistic photo.

Margie said...

You had to wait till Wed. to paint!
Yikes, I'd be climbing the wall. You did a good job on the chef!!!

Nancy Standlee said...

I know, Margie, I was beginning to feel the panic, but I got some of these steps firmly implanted now about shape, value, color line and texture and how they fit into a creative way of working. I told her I did feel like the lecture could be broken down into steps where we could "do" something mixed in with the lecture. Donna has 25 years experience and she has developed this way and feels like it works for her. We did struggle with some "fluffing our cushion" issues.

Anonymous said...

Hello, Nancy I searched your blog through goggling.In your blog have depth knowledge about How to painting
.Wish I were attend your lecture