Sunday, November 16, 2008

"Laguna Canyon" ©

John Cosby Workshop Day 5 - This morning Cosby quickly demonstrated painting a tree, using large interesting shapes, capturing the personality of the tree. Then all 15 of us fanned out to locations within the Laguna Canyon park that sits a 1/4 mile from Cosby's studio. After the morning of painting we all went back to his studio for a critique. Not the typical critique, Cosby explained how to critique your own work and with each painting explained how the painting could possibly be improved. Everyone left feeling positive about their week long efforts. In fact there was a tearful group hug at the end, a tribe had been formed. Here are a few of the reoccurring themes of the critique: Watch for predictability, vary the shapes and create randomness. Make sure your trees are grounded with some dark. Avoid sharp contrasts near the edges of the canvas, Interrupt repetition. Small jumps in value creates the feeling of air. Subdue one area of the painting to streighten another areal. Provide an area of rest. Make sure the sky matches the light in the painting. Does the painting convince you of a story? Finally Cosby must have said 20 times, you have to give a little to get a little. I would highly reccommend John Cosby to any painter that is looking to improve. He is one of those instructors that can identifiy your level and weaknesses quickly and offer a path to improving your work, all in postive notes. He has so much to offer, I look forward to the next workshop that I am able to attend.

Oil on Linen panel, 11" X 14"


Marian Fortunati said...

WOW.. Laura.. this is lovely... I love all that you explained about the constant tips. It sounds like a fabulous workshop and I'd love to take his class... even if you don't go, but it would be "funner" if you went too.

Laura Wambsgans said...

Hi Marian, I am so glad to share. A few people have asked for the notes, I would be happy to send them on to you too. I haven't typed it all up yet. The notes will have all the juicy stuff. I would love to go back when you go. John has a workshop in May, one in June and again November 09. It's all on his website. Thanks for looking, as always.

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