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                                                       July 27, 2006

from: Susan Weinberg - (310-392-5042)

to: my Emeritus students  - Plein-Aire Watercolor painting class

Re: next year's classes - 2006-2007

I am now planning the itinerary for next year.  I am taking the best of what we experienced this year and putting it together in a structured way.

I am planning my priorities using certain guidelines.

          1.  We will try our best to set up parking where there are bathrooms .(there might possibly be sites where these facilities are difficult.  If you  have a problem with this, PLEASE LET ME KNOW NOW.)

          2.  We will meet where we park - before and after class - on time

          3. I will set up to paint close to my car, and will do demonstrations from that set-up  I will be set up by 8:30 am so that I will be ready when you arrive.

          4. The demonstrations will consist of different techniques used in plein-aire painting, using these techniques to interpret some element of the site.

           5. We will have critiques at 11:15, at the end of the class. I would encourage you to stay for the critique  as often as possible, and bring the work that you accomplished that day.  This is VERY IMPORTANT, because it really is the best time to look at other people's work and grow in our own sophistication.  Even if you had a bust-of-a-day, it is oftentimes helpful for people to see mistakes.  Then we have the opportunity to discuss technique etc. with  everybody.  I have been doing this one-on-one, and it is very helpful to the student.

           6. We will spend at least 2 days in each location  (consecutive weeks) - on the first day to photograph, do sketches and acquaint ourselves with the site. Deciding WHAT TO PAINT IS HALF THE BATTLE.

          7.  On the second day of each site, I encourage you to bring a set-up with as large a piece of paper as you can handle - and one of appropriate weight to handle the amount of abuse you intend to give the paper.  When I was painting at Venice Beach, I put the paper in the ocean and washed off some of the paint, and then let sand run over the paper. Then, because I had lost the dry texture of the paper, and most of the whites, I used white pigment to soften the colors and build some texture.   I was using 140 lb. paper, and wished that it had been 300 lb. But, it worked OK anyway.

When I went home I decided it was too soft, and so worked in some detail on  the dry paper.  Well - wouldn't you know that I over-worked the piece. Of course!  So I did another one, right away, on a clean piece of paper, and pulled out the elements I enjoyed at the site, and painted in a more simple way.  ANOTHER TECHNIQUE.  NICE!

            8.  Another possibility is that you treat each day as a complete unit - as if you were on vacation. So - in that case, you would approach the painting in a totally different away .   You might use a good sketchbook with good paper, and make each sketch count as a complete unit - a diary of your travels.

AS YOU SEE, THIS SEMESTER I AM WORKING ON INTENTION. I WOULD LIKE TO SEE THE WORK OF THIS CLASS HAVE SOME CONTINUITY, SO THAT WE CAN PUT TOGETHER A SHOW THAT MAKES SOME SENSE.

PLEASE - PLEASE - COOPERATE  WITH ME AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE.  I would like this group to be a  model class - after all - we are supposed to be the Masters in some sense or other.  There are some newcomers, and they seem to be fitting in very well.  We are all very lucky to have each other in this day-and-age.  It gives me hope for the future.

 

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