Friday, May 3, 2013

Beginning watercolor Homework 5/2/13 Who's in Charge?

Being part of a community of painters is unmistakably valuable, as is having a retinue of references, resources and influences. But in the moment of deciding where the next stroke goes, we are all on our own. Sooner or later we have to take on the role of director of our painting practice.

Time spent honing awareness skills provides a foundation for becoming your own best teacher. If you narrow your focus down to one thing at a time, it is possible to clearly observe how the choices you make effect your work.

The first step is to discover which single feature of your work needs attention. Take a good look at the copy you began in class. Is there a part of the page or an aspect of the whole piece that feels uncertain to you? Are you confident about color, value, wetness?

Choose one variable that you want to strengthen, and make a plan for an exercise that will direct your attention toward a solution.

For example, if you see that the space in your picture feels ambiguous, check to see if the shapes separate from each other adequately. If they don't, make a study in which at least two of the main variables (color, wetness, value, composition) are at work to separate each shape from its neighbors.

If you suspect that your color choices may not suit the subject, design a study that puts deliberate limits on the number of colors you use.

This process is not as analytical as it may sound. Each of us has a store of visual experience that informs our decisions. What is your instinctive sense of where your painting needs work?

The homework is to zero in on something you want to work on. One thing. Trust your gut, and get to work. Be prepared to tell the group what you chose to do. That's it.
Have fun.
Godwit                                         Tom Hoffmann, 2012

No comments:

Post a Comment