Kim English Workshop, "The Figure In The Landscape" Review Part 1
I kind of don't know where to begin in reviewing Kim's workshop. It was an amazing experience in so many ways. Being at Red Rock Ranch was for me, like stepping into a cowboy movie. The scenery in that area of Colorado exceeded my expectations by a long shot. Marty Brens (Art In The Aspens) did a fabulous job of planning and welcoming us. The food, prepared by two chefs, three meals a day was fabulous, and we all had a blast getting to know one another while we kicked back in the evenings. Kim's instruction was just what I needed. It was a "boot camp" as described by others. He worked us hard with short poses to wipe off and do again and again. We had two days of painting the model in the landscape, and two days of landscape. In this post I'll just cover the first two days. If you're thinking about taking a workshop with Kim, see my next post for my personal advice on how to prepare and materials.
Kim's palette, many more colors than my limited palette, but he allowed us to use whatever colors we chose. I appreciated that. He pre-mixes the colors he sees in his subject; figure and landscape. This was a big revelation to me. So practical for plein air painting.
Above,Kim's first few demos. Get the GESTURE of the figure in 5 minutes with some of the landscape. The last shot may have been a 10 minute pose.
Above, my first few attempts. FIVE MINUTE poses. I was using it up just getting the gesture with light and shadow, trying to get proportions right, no time for landscape! Must...paint...faster!
Kim wanted us to wipe off our quick sketches. I kept them so I could see progress and have something to post. In the afternoon my fatigue showed. The 8,000 foot elevation wasn't helping!!! So I did start wiping off, but kept these two panels above. Each pose was either 10 or 20 min. I don't remember. End of first day! Whew!
2nd day. Kim's demos above. Get the gesture. Mass in shapes, no "drawing".
My attempts. 10 minute poses. I'm painting a bit larger, but struggling to have time to get any landscape in. I was excited, not frustrated. I knew this kind of thing was just what I needed.
Afternoon 2nd day, we moved to a large porch. I did other quick studies in addition to this one. Kim did a great job of getting to each student and giving them instruction for their level of experience. At this point he really pushed me to paint simply and fast, challenging me to get the entire scene, 9x12 in 20 minutes. I let loose and painted like a crazy woman.
End of 2nd day. And what's the point of all this fast painting? It forces simplicity, efficiency and economy of brush strokes. Quite practical in changing outdoor light, especially if your colors are pre-mixed!
Next post will be days 3 and 4, with summary and advice.
I apologize that the text and pictures are a bit jumbled. Not intentional! It's a problem I have with Blogger that I've not figured out yet.