The East Village here in Calgary, is serving me up opportunities that I never imagined possible. This past week, I’ve had another two sessions with creatives at the Golden Age Club, people who come from all directions, to this location in order to paint. My inspiration this week was taken from a request on one of the pre-painting forms that I handed out last month…painting a simple landscape.
When we encounter art, beginning with representational art, there is a mystery. The mystery is usually related to the illusion of depth that the artist creates, the casting of light and shadow, the techniques involved with creating textures and detail. It causes within us, a sense of wonder. There is a very long tradition of landscape painting worldwide, but of course, with the work of our Group of Seven and the vastness of our Canadian landscape, what’s not to wonder about?
Thanks to Wendy Lees of create! who set out fresh baking, hot coffee and tea and brought in an assortment of books that supported our ongoing exploration of colour mixing. The space is gradually evolving into a wonderful studio space.
Several new painters arrived yesterday at one o’clock…Mr. Green and Professor Plum (lol) and four lovely and effervescent artists, bearing colourful scarves. Not only was this an encounter of magical people and more-magical conversation, but I saw huge leaps of understanding as we moved from last month’s spheres in space, to foreground, middle ground and background trees.
After our introductory landscape lesson, Tuesday, yesterday’s focus was on contrast…light against dark. It is easy to see the progression in the works based on this new concept.
Leslie’s work transformed with pops of white and detail. I brought, to her attention, works by German Abstract Expressionist, Oskar Kokoschka.
Fran is very tactile…incorporates collage, texture and colour experimentation. She is the first one in the group to move beyond the boundaries or expectations of the classes and explore the concepts in her own way! Bravo! She has been thinking about sunflowers…drawn to them. In the end, she flips her canvas board over and creates all of the sensibility of sunflowers in a non-objective piece. Beautiful!
Mr. Green adds the figure…not an easy thing for any of us. I decided not to comment, but to let things happen. We have a discussion about the central tree and I try to hit on issues around composition and center of interest.
A wondrous blast of conversation and painting shared by all! Karen and I talk with one another about marketing work…her fascination with large paintings…her willingness to let go in the process and her avoidance of precious attachment in the creative process.
Wonder. Gratitude. Fun!