My acrylic painting class studies Still Life paintings this week. My group of twelve art students will be painting a Still Life subject of pears in a bowl. In French this means, “nature morte”, meaning dead nature.
Usually placing a group of objects together that do not move can be considered a still life. Still life painting actually started thousands of years ago from the ancient Egyptians. They didn’t care about making things look realistic, they just wanted to show what it was. Usually something like a basket of fruit. Later the Greeks and Romans came along wanting things to look a bit more realistic than the Egyptians efforts.
Still life painting took off in the 1500′s in northern Europe. During the Middle Ages art was supposed to serve Christianity. Still life continued in the 16th and 17th century with the impressionists and post impressionists but photography had been invented so they weren’t as concerned with photo-realistic paintings. Instead they experimented more with color and shapes. Also with the way paint was applied to the canvas.
Paul Cezanne was the greatest of all when it came to still life. He was a genius with color. Van Gogh was another, whose well-known Sunflowers sold for $40 million dollars in 1987. Look for the intensity of color and non realistic use of color that these artists evoked in the beauty of the objects they chose by not making them photographic and by representation of exaggerating their brushstrokes. This will all be presented in my acrylic painting workshop featuring the still life, Pears in a Bowl.
I ended my year of Basic Acrylic painting classes with another show for my students!
This year I purchased 18, 10 x 10 gallery wrapped squares and gave one to each student to paint with the subject of their choice, to be for sale at our Space, Maurer Fine Art, Booth 35, Eight Flags Antique Market on Centre Street. Each student priced their own piece of art between $45- 150. These are all original and their own creative designs.
One of the purposes of this project was to allow them the privilege to show their art to the public, and to see the other side of the art world of selling. It’s a great feeling to sell a piece of your art… but what about when it doesn’t and it sits there for months and months, maybe years. Do you feel rejection? Artists generally have great sensitivity, and so learning to paint is one thing, learning to sell it is another. Where do you go after you paint it, and have so many stored paintings and so many that you can give away as gifts. Why not try and have the opportunity to SELL. So I made a vacant wall in our little shop/booth just for them to give them an opportunity to try…and guess what? The first one has already sold in less than a few weeks. This beautiful painting of coneflowers by Roxanne Bieber of Fernandina and Vermont called “Rainies Garden”.
Last year’s show was at the now closed J & S Frame Gallery called the First 9th Street Community Garden Show from St. Peter’s church gardener’s.
By: Kathleen Maurer
My acrylic class for the next session is going to Europe for the next six weeks!
NOT literally, but in a sense as we’re painting all European scenes and subjects from France and Italy. (I know my regular students are growing tired of marshes!) This is going to be a great series! We’ll have to flip a switch in our minds and challenge
our talents to travel to unknown territories!
To those of you that have been to the warm-yellow tones of Provence you can probably
already see the colors… and to those who haven’t been, you’ll now be able to reach out
and touch them.
We’ll begin with a simple photo I took in Nice, France of a window balcony with flowers.
You can add your own or change the colors. I used that fabulous “Breton” french blue!
Please by all means bring in your own picture to paint too. The bringing in your “choice”
class seemed to work very well last series. My painting is on a small canvas, but then again, this is your choice too. Remember you should sign them, and hang them in an appropriate place in your homes!
If you are coming the same day as before that’s great. If you are changing days let me know.
See you Thurs, Feb.24, and Fri., Feb 25th.
By: William Maurer
Every Thursday morning I teach a “Learn to Sketch/Draw” Class.
It is from 10:00 AM until 12:30 PM at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church on the corner of 8th Street and Atlantic Avenue, in classroom #204.
The class is only $40.00 per class and weather permitting, we often go outside to sketch and draw. Drop-in’s are welcome!
Learning to sketch improves your paintings. I teach perspective drawing in this workshop making it a worthy, fun learning experience!
Every Friday morning from 10-12:30 I conduct a Watercolor Painting
Workshop. This is a six week session for only $210.00, or drop-in for just $40.00 per class.
Each week I bring in a different subject to paint. Whether it be a boat, a landscape, or a building, you will always bring home a finished painting.
Introduction/ Class Outline
1. Review blocking in Nice, France. Street Window – remember to see the shapes, forms, darks and lights. Add all the Color at the very end!
2. Underpainting- exaggerating color. Lots of wet-into-wet blending Lavendar
3. Tone surface, begin line and mass approach, and with horizon line. Details last. Wine, table, Still Life
4. Same way to begin as all others. Just a different challenge: The People of Provence
5. Bring in your Choice – Look for subjects that will challenge you, as well as you’ll enjoy painting it. Something that will gain your confidence.
6. Sunflower Fields or Poppy Fields
Summer is filled with these warm colors.
No detail is involved… lots of blending and simplicity of the landscape. An “impression” only, knowing when to stop, hold the viewer, and take control of your color!!!
… “can’t you just smell the croissants now?”