August 10, 2008

Workshop at the Norman Rockwell Museum (Part Five)

Last day of class. Everyone was still in a mood of wanting to learn as much as possible. Me, too. These folks were teaching me a lot about what it means to paint and why it's important to teach from a point of view that encourages, rather than diminishes.

We finished last night's painting over the first hour, then I did a quick demo. I used burnt umber and white, painting a full figure value study to show how little can be fussed over and yet, carry much visual information. Since our model only had an hour to sit, I asked if anyone would mind posing until lunch.

To all our surprise, another Norman Rockwell model stepped forward! Dale Zola, one of my students, was the model for a 1970's painting of her family, posing as a lovely bride on her wedding day. We couldn't believe it. She'd been holding out on us. But she brought in a book of Rockwell's work that displayed the painting she modeled for. What a treat!

Unfortunately, no one knows the whereabouts of the original. They're still searching. But Dale was just great once again, and I did the painting in a little over an hour. We finished the day with a 2.5 hour figure study of another model.

Everyone said their goodbyes and traded hugs and promised to stay in touch...maybe even returning next year. We'll see how it goes. Now they're going off to the real hard work: painting on their own. After class, a number of us hit the Red Lion Inn Pub for drinks and a recap of the week.

Thanks to my students! And thanks to everyone on the staff and the docents who modeled from the Rockwell Museum! An entirely delightful time.


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