To join me on a virtual sketching trip, download a travel sketch-journal here.
I add tutorials to them so you can learn the techniques and details you see in the sketchbooks.

My former workshop students asked me to upload my workshop workbooks to make them available to everyone. So you can also download a workbook and give yourself a workshop! Enjoy!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

My Family Takes My Workshop

I think I could start nearly every blog with "puleeze excuse the long delay between posts!" or "sorry this is so long in coming." So, to avoid such inane beginnings, I'll just, from now on, ignore the eonic lapses between the times I get to the writing.

It's not that nothing is happening to blog about -- too MUCH is going on. F'rinstance, my family just had a big reunion a state away (in Idaho, 500 rangey Oregon sagebrush miles from here, some of it along The Oregon Trail). The trip takes all day to travel, but the fall colors were gorgeous. I always stop in Vale, a tiny Oregon town with wonderful murals painted on most of the buildings, to rest and admire the once-upon-a-time scenes.

The reunion consumed a full week since I stayed with my brother the printer and not only got my family visiting done but also oversaw the printing of some Campsite Critter Guides (a sideline to my book business) and a batch of one-page lead responses which I'll send to the multitude of people who requested more information about the Costa Rica journaling workshop from my ad in The Artists' Magazine. Go take a look!

At any rate, here are my sibs: David, Elsie, Diane, Laura, and myself.

Now, normally, a family reunion is just lots of related people talking and reminiscing and getting reacquainted after a long period of intermittent, fleeting, or nonexistent contact. But this one (in addition to all that good stuff) was pretty scary.

Actually, it's not that I have scary relatives -- it's that my sister Laura talked me into giving my watercolor pencil workshop for all the siblings while we were all together. Now, doing a workshop for strangers has gotten to be a pretty comfortable prospect. But doing the same workshop for the people one holds most dear and who once gave one advice from on high and/or participated heartily in sibling rivalry with one, and for whom one wants to shine (and, I admit it, to impress just the teensiest bit) -- well, that's pretty daunting. But I figured it would be great practice and a quick way to add a bit more polish to my delivery (I don't feel I have a class properly groomed until I've given it ten or twenty times) so I agreed to give the workshop.

In the end, it turned out to be great fun for all of us. We all stayed at my brother David's house, and I gave it twice, because not everyone could make the first class, right there on the kitchen table and using my workbooks which I always bind with watercolorable paper in the back. The table was a little crowded, and we only had three hours for the class each time, but I am pleased to say that either I have a phenomenally talented family (including sis-in-law and a nephew) or I'm hitting the right note with the workshop. Or maybe both.

Here are the results, and since I didn't get around to asking each one if I could put it up on the blog, I won't identify who did what. Aren't they FINE? By the way, the models are an apple from the tree in the back yard, tomatoes and red peppers from Marcia's garden (these are heritage tomatoes, orange and purply-green), one of Marcia's nasturtiums, and a gourd from the grocery store. Actually, that isn't the same apple because the original got put in a salad. But this one was close.

I think they're pretty terrific for three hours work, including the introduction to right-brain drawing, drawing the subjects, then coloring them. Click on them for closer views.

By the way, for the Nature Journaling Workshop, which I talked about in the last post, I still need to make a third workbook. I was going to just use the watercolor pencil workbook from the Nature Sketching Workshop, but I decided there are things I need to condense and add to make it work better for the Nature Journaling Workshop. I now have a journaling workshop scheduled for January in Ashland (Oregon) (the actual date eludes me) which will give me time to tidy up any loose ends before I give it again in Costa Rica.

So. until next post....keep tuned! And if you want to be notified when these infrequent posts happen, click on the little box in the right-hand panel that will notify you when a new post comes up so you can come and read it. It's a handy little gizmo.

Cheers, fellow artists, and adieu!

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