I have been using an exercise in my workshops for over a year now and it is by far one of the best ways to get students to loosen up and stretch.( I should give credit to one of the books that gave me the idea but I don't remember which one, sorry) I used the format and have improvised on it. It is 30 drawings in 30 minutes on small paper with mixed media. I usually start out in black and white and then introduce various materials as I go along. It is a call and response kind of thing...fast, guided but no thinking involved. It brings out the inner vocabulary along with strengths and possible weaknesses, It also allows for further development....idea making and possibilities. It is amazing when you put them all up what information they hold. You can see my assistant's post about it here.
At Cullowhee, I did the exercise for my students and then again with Rebecca's class but one of her students missed it. So I decided to do it one more time with Leslie, one of my people, calling the time and prompts so that I could participate. It was the first time I did the exercise and it wasn't as easy as I have led people to believe. Time, judgment, criticism, and crap gets in the way real quick. I managed to push that aside and get moving.
Leslie had us do the first 15 drawings in black and white and the next 15 in color...the same directions. Below are an example of a few of mine. The prompts are suppose to be a structure. When I call them I get a kick out of the people who don't follow the rules, and of course I was one of those!
|Scribbling, line making, shape making, emotions, were just some of the directions|
|I don't remember what prompt this was but I like the space and the tiny spot of red|
|yes..I do like Cy Twombly's work....|
|This is when my heart got pounding...putting things together, imagining them big, shaped, installed and shifting in space. ( without the pushpins of course)|
Looking at them here on a larger scale I would say that these are telling me to focus more on subtlety, and space in my work. I plan to revisit oil paint on a larger scale. Any other insights are welcome!!!
Studio time in between and after.
Visual Arts Center in Summit, NJ
Truro Center for the Arts in Truro, Ma (2 spots left)
Shake Rag Alley , Mineral Point WI
Snow Farm, Williamsburg, MA
and Private time for instruction and mentoring.
Email for more details
Next blog post : Studio visit with Barbara Fisher in Asheville.