Saturday, September 09, 2006

Workshop Review



I just returned from my weeklong workshop with Tony Couch. All I can say is WOW! If you have the opportunity to take one of his workshops, I would encourage it. I traveled to Middletown Ohio to attend the workshop. And being the frugal traveler (read as cheap) I took my camper trailer to stay in. I found a trailer park 3 miles from the workshop to drop my camper. All the ammenities, water, electric and sewer. It cost me a whopping $50.00 to stay the entire week. One of the other workshop attendees who stayed in a hotel was nice enough to give me his complimentary USA Today every morning.

Tony has a great way of teaching watercolor. He is also a former student of Ed Whitney, who in his own right was one of the best watercolor instructors. Tony would start out every morning with a demo painting. He would verbalize everything he was thinking while painting. The afternoon was our time to paint. Around 3:30, we would have a critique. Tony would critique his painting that he completed in the morning, then critique ours. I would critique my painting and jot down what I would have changed. I would then compare these with what Tony would say. This is a great way to improve your skills.

The above two paintings are from the workshop. The barn is a vignette which was completed in 1 hour. I tried to use a minimal amount of brush stokes to complete the painting. I was also employeing the vignette techniques we learned that morning. The second painting was completed in 1 1/2 hours. I employed the use of a dark forground a light mid ground and a mid value background. We were learning about the various value patterns, so I thought I would take a shot at one. The paintings are not the best, but they remind me of the valuable lessons that I learned.

In the upcoming weeks I will be posting more paintings. I an energized to paint and draw after attending the workshop. In order to maximize what I have learned, I need to practice! This is one of the best learning tools.

14 comments:

Karen Winters said...

Jeff, your results are great and how wonderful to be able to study with such a master teacher. I'm a big fan of Whitney (as well as Webb, Nechis, Couch and some of his other students) and I can only imagine how energizing it must have been.

Did you find that after awhile the 'rules' started to come second nature - obliques, symbols, interlocking edges, warm/cool variation, etc ...? I have a hard time keeping it all in my head when I'm painting, I'm sure that the total immersion helps ...

Keep up the great work ...

Karen
http://www.karensblog.com

Teri C said...

Absolutely gorgeous Jeff!! Wow, they just knocked my socks off!! What a thrill to paint with a master like Couch.

Your paintings are really truly gorgeous!!

Desiree said...

Jeff, I just love your paintings. I am so excited you were able to take a week and just do watercolors. I find its best if I can leave everything behind, that way I am free to be creative. Its nice that you were able to take that opportunity.

Penny said...

Lucky you, what you have put up looks fabulous and wonderful to have a week of painting with such a teacher.

clare said...

jeff, these are both sensational paintings, imagine what you come up with after practicing!!!

Linda said...

Wow -- this just knocks one's socks off! What an amazing week that must have been. Can you share some instructional information with us -- including pallette, please!? (What fantastic colors ...)

Jana Bouc said...

These are so beautiful and I envy you the opportunity to study with such a master. I'm also inspired by your commitment to learning and practicing.

Doug said...

glad to hear old Tony has still got it! sounds like you had a great time.

Ujwala said...

these are truly gorgeous.

Tami said...

These are so intriguing! I love the idea of few brush strokes. The subjects, especially this one, are perfect for this style. LOVELY

jill said...

love your work -- just makes me feel like i'm standing out there looking at the real thing but yet in a more "idealistic" view. what a way to focus and improve your skills, to just spend time/energy working w/ a great talent who is interested in helping YOU increase your skills instead of just pushing his own career. you were very lucky to have such a great opportunity and great experience!

Bill said...

Good work, Jeff. Appreciate the step-by-steps.
I attended a Tony Couch workshop at Cambria, California, March 2004.
It was great to meet Tony and see him paint. I like the way he does a demo on a full sheet of unstretched but sopping wet (at the beginning) 140 lb. Arches. Gutsy, that size in front of a class, I think he did three for my group, I think it was. All of them framable. I think his first book (I like his second too) is one of the best every written on watercolor, overall.
Bill

Bill said...

Great work, Jeff. Appreciate the step-by-steps.
I attended a Tony Couch workshop at Cambria, California, March 2004.
It was great to meet Tony and see him paint. I like the way he does a demo on a full sheet of unstretched but sopping wet (at the beginning) 140 lb. Arches. Gutsy, that size in front of a class, I think he did three for my group. All of them wonderful. I think his first book is one of the best every written on watercolor, overall (I like his second too).
Bill

OaktreeLady said...

Beautiful paintings, Jeff! The first one especially looks Couch-ish. I can't believe how fast you did it. I'm taking a workshop in Cambria, March 2014 and now that Tony is 84 I pray everyday for his health. We are lucky to have him still teaching and I'm really looking forward to the workshop.