The week moves on and continues to not disappoint. We arrived early in the morning to begin setup for all the different artists, each with their own individual preferences, needs, and tastes. This was no small feat, believe me. But the hard work paid off and we had a fantastic day full of workshops and demonstrations.
I had the privilege of meeting Morgan Weistling this morning as I made my rounds, helping the presenting artists set up their space. He was extremely kind and gracious and, of course, extremely gifted. His work was even more amazing in person than i ever imagined. In just a couple hours or less, he wielded his brush to create an awe inspiring portrait from life, all while under the pressure of a group demo, poor lighting conditions, and narrow time constraints. It was incredible to see.
Being here has allowed me the wonderful and rare opportunity to meet so many artists at the forefront of today's resurgence of the representational art movement. I was able to meet and sit in on workshops from Jeremy Lipking, Dan Gerhartz, Nancy Guzik, CW Mundy, Morgan Weistling... just today! It is all i can do to just soak as much up as i possibly can. I'm honored.
Though i enjoyed all of the sessions today, i particularly loved watching Nancy Guzik work. She is one of the most warm and friendly people i've ever met and it shows in the way she works. She paints with a grace and delicacy that clearly separates her work from other artists...and she has FUN doing it! What an idea! I like that she makes her art in such a way that makes it very approachable.
What readily stood out to me as i watched Dan Gerhartz work was his ability to NAIL color in a matter of seconds. He displays such a strong confidence in color that i hope to rise up to some day. I has been a joy to meet and talk with him over these couple days.
I had a chance to see some of CW Mundy's demo. That was pure insanity. And i mean that in the best possible way. His working methods are what some would consider to be extremely unconventional for a representational painter - even to the point that as he paints, i wonder how in the world he's going to pull it off - then almost momentarily he turns it around bringing it to a great finish with very interesting and engaging visual appeal. I blows me away to see him work.
Watching Jeremy Lipking was inspiring. His drawing method was an interesting challenge to my usual method. He had most of the upper half of the head to a semi state of finish before he ever had a jaw line defined or a mouth drawn out. He painted carefully and methodically, analyzing and planning; then quickly it was as if the portrait just fell into place with each touch of the brush.
The evening was topped off with an entertaining and enlightening "portrait duel" with Dan Gerhartz and Scott Burdick as they painted a portrait of fellow artist Michelle Dunaway. They were able to share so much wisdom as they painted, both ending up with great portraits of Michelle.
With two days of constantly soaking it all in, it was nice to have a short break today to go out and paint! I was able to set up a still life and get in a quick painting sketch. I'll post pictures of it soon.
Well, that's it for tonight. I am once again extremely tired, and 5:45 am rolls around all too quickly.