Monday, August 1, 2011

Painting- the spirit of drawing workshop at Sitka

SITKA ART AND ECOLOGY CENTER north of Lincoln City on the Oregon coast sits in a beautiful setting between the Salmon River estuary and Cascade Head. I was fortunate to have a four day painting workshop with Bill Parks there last week.

BILL PARKS shared his painting techniques and demonstrated how drawing becomes painting. He works in many layers of paint, repaints and paints again adjusting color values and contrasts. I really appreciate how his work with monotypes influences his paintings- the depth of line and value in black and white, ways to soften or distress edges and the effect of wiping away paint. He firmly believes that it's the process that makes painting interesting not the final product.

We worked in Boyden studio. The first day we drew with charcoal and added white acrylic to explore values in black and white.

Then, we added color. The above piece transformed from a fern painting in black and white into a cornstalk. I love the variation and gradation of the background colors.


One afternoon after class, we climbed Cascade Head. The view of the Salmon River estuary on the left and the coastline is spectacular. This is one of my favorite coastal hikes.

Here's an abstract painting that needs more work.


These trees developed after painting over an abstract painting created the previous day- wiping paint away, adding contrasting colors.

I chose to work with drawings of fox glove. It was in full bloom. Both of these paintings have layers and layers of acrylic paint on them. I'm still working on them to get more gradation in color values and variety of textures.

Of the two paintings, I like this one the best. It still needs some work but it's getting there. One thing I learned is not to stop, keep painting and working with a subject. That's when it's spirit is captured.
I highly recommend the Sitka Art Center workshops. The staff is friendly and helpful and a variety of workshops from experienced artists are offered. Check out the Sitka workshop Dayna Collins attended with Lori Latham last week HERE .

4 comments:

suzie said...

I love the way you combine intense color and texture in the botanicals. I'm drawn into your paintings Paula. Sounds like a wonderful workshop.

Dayna Collins said...

I've head so many good things about Bill Parks, so it was fun to get a glimpse of his class through your colorful eyes!

cynthia said...

I love the paintings that you did in Bill Park's workshop! Looks like you really got a lot out of that experience.

purple bird art said...

There is no more beautiful place to create art than Sitka for me. Your painting is beautiful, Paula! I will certainly look forward to taking a class from Park in the future! Love that Cascade Head Trail and the breathtaking view when you emerge from the forest to the grassy hilltop and stunning view! Thanks for sharing Paula!