Monday, November 7, 2011

Monday morning veggies and a Sunday demo

"Fall Vegetables"
12" x 16" Pastel

I originally was scheduled to help coordinate a workshop, but someone nicely stepped in to substitute. Lots going on these days so I needed a break. I went to my drawing class this morning. We had a bit of fun with a misunderstanding of who was supplying the setup. Folks scrounged among their farmers market goodies and instructor Bob produced the faithful old white porcelain pitcher. Some of you may recall that pitcher from past pieces. Bob early on advised me to push the values, so I went for it. This is the first time I've attempted corn, and the whole piece was not quite done when I left class. I did my best to bring it to completion when I got home.

On Sunday, I assisted the workshop coordinator with the demo. That means I did some food shopping, set up some of the refreshment table, and drove instructor Frank Francese to the demo and back to his hotel. As Leader of the Santa Clara Valley Watercolor Society, I also made some announcements about coming events. I enjoyed getting to know Frank on our round trip drive. He is an exciting and much awarded watercolor painter. I am sorry I did not have the time to take the workshop, as I could have learned a lot. He is all about values, exciting design, and eye-popping color that he paints directly.

Frank does lots of drawing and sketching daily. From his sketch book he develops value studies on letter-sized sheets. He paints without putting any lines on his watercolor paper to keep the painting fresh, referring to his value sketch. Though he does not pre-wet the paper, he paints wet-into-wet and uses his sponge liberally to remove excess water from his brush. He also clips his paper to his support, so he frequently lifts the edges of his paper to wipe the support and the back of the edges so he does not get blooms from back runs. At points he dried the paper with a hairdryer before continuing. His final steps are to develop the light pattern with shadows to direct the eye to the center of interest and to make any small adjustments. We were awed by his speedy creation of a full-sheet painting filled with exciting color and light. Here are a few snapshots I took during the demo.

Frank Francese talks about his art career.

Frank begins the painting of the Colorado Rockies
using a Frank Web pallette with open wells.

Frank is half done about 20 minutes later.

The painting is complete, except for a few small adjustments,
30 minutes after Frank put brush to paper.

If you live in the Santa Clara Valley area, these demos are free and open to the public, a terrific service of our society. Information is available at .


Anonymous said...

You've done a masterful job on that whine china teapot, Mary! I love hearing of techniques of other artists too. 30 minutes to do a painting? Mine take more like 30 hours. Or 30 days. Sigh...

Mark Sheeky said...

Nice demo. Some of your snapshots make you look about 20 feet tall which made me smile. Great view though!

Mary Paquet said...

Sherry, thanks so much. This was an exciting piece of work in about 2 hours.

Mark, thanks! That's quite a birds eye view, isn't it! Compliments of an overhead demo mirror so from where I was sitting in the audience, that is what I saw.

hw (hallie) farber said...

I like that pitcher in your picture. Actually, it's a beautiful painting--the white pitcher complements the goodies.

I like the eye-popping colors in the demo, too.

Mary Paquet said...

Hallie, I like that pitcher and it's gotten easier to render the more I draw and paint it.

Frank's colors are awesome.

Anonymous said...

Hi Mary,
I liked this post so much I quoted you in my blog posting (16 Nov). Thank you for sharing so much about the demo. And, I do like your Monday morning veggies!