Daddy's Christmas Angel

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

A Week of Painting at Springmaid Watermedia Workshops

Being able to paint to your heart's content for an entire week is an artist's dream. It certainly is mine.

I just returned from fulfilling that dream at the Springmaid Watermedia Workshops in Myrtle Beach SC. Out of eight available workshops, I chose the one taught by Carrie Brown. I was not disappointed. Although I've painted for years, taught everyone from kindergarten to adult ages, have my own workshops I instruct, I have learned that you can always learn something new. From Carrie, I learned a lot.

It has always bothered me when my expensive - mostly Golden brand - acrylics dry up on my palette and I have to throw away the beautiful but dried-up paint. Sometimes I have managed to peel off the bits and pieces of color to save. Once I even created a bouquet of colorful paint remnants that became a small piece of sculpture for my studio. I've used lots of items for my palette, from actual palettes made for that purpose to plastic covers and plates. I've also tried Reynolds freezer paper but didn't especially like it.

"Sea of Red" ©Mary Montague Sikes
With Carrie's instruction on taping the freezer paper to a backing--I chose lightweight foam core--I've found a palette I love. It is also a palette that is useful for saving and re-purposing my leftover acrylic paints. Once you've used this palette enough, you have an acrylic skin that can be peeled away and later adhered to a piece of canvas as part of a new painting. I love this process as a method to save paint and to also be creative at the same time. Another advantage to this process is that the palette is then reusable.

Here's an example of a skin painting. I probably will add more paint to the empty white canvas or perhaps I will leave it as it is now. I haven't decided. The paint skin is beautiful, and it gives an artist so many exciting possibilities.

What a fun week. We painted in a classroom with a wall of windows overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. What could be more perfect?

"Springmaid Dock" ©Mary Montague Sikes


Stephanie Faris said...

What an experience...and a beautiful watercolor! There are retreats for writers but they never seem to have that view.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Clever idea! You learned a lot. And did it in an awesome location.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Monti - I love the colour of the palette - a great combination of colours. Fascinating to read about and how good you could learn this technique ... The Atlantic looks just powerful stretching away into the distance ... sounds like you had fun and that's the main thing - cheers Hilary

Birgit said...

Somehow I missed this-Christmas time becomes busy for me. I love your colours used here. What a great way to use the paints.