Archive | October 2018

Southampton Art School Workshop — September 2018

Back again at Southampton Art School & Gallery in September to teach a two-day workshop titled Floral Portraits with Pen & Ink and Watercolour.

Southampton Art School and Gallery can be found in the heart of downtown Southampton and a short walk to pristine, sandy beaches. The facility provides a wonderful teaching environment and also a gallery showcasing regional and local talent. The building has been around since 1957 and is an integral part of the art community of Bruce County. The original community was known as Saugeen by the early settlers but was later named Southampton after the English seaport, when the town was incorporated as a village in 1858. It was later incorporated as a town in 1904. Southampton was also  one of the last communities in Ontario to use the Gaelic language in everyday speech; the language could still be heard by local fishermen as late as the 1930s. Just off the Southampton shore, the Chantry Island Lighthouse is a popular visiting spot for tourists. Boat tours to the island run throughout the summer months. As well as Chantry island, the town is close to Sauble Beach, Port Elgin and Saugeen First Nation.

Below: Southampton Art School

Below: Southampton Art Centre Gallery

The Workshop

Floral Portraits with Pen & Ink and Watercolour Washes

Project 1 Bearded Iris: The first step was to sketch the iris using my list of observational techniques to help in the drawing process. Then the sketch was cleaned up and the line drawing transferred onto cold press Peterboro #79 illustration board and toned in graphite (as shown below). It is important to have an accurate representation of the form of the plant in graphite before applying ink.

Once the graphite layer is completed, the work begins applying the first and second layers of ink. Detailed instructional pages are provided to ensure success in the process. The graphite tonal base provides a framework on where to apply the ink. See below:

Above: The graphite undertone base has been established and two pen & ink layers are added. Once the pen & ink rendering is completed, the graphite undertone is erased.

Pens used in the project were Micron 005, 01 and 03.

Below: The next step in the process is to create watercolour swatches to match the colours of the original iris. The watercolour washes are going to be applied in very subtle transparent layers, so as not to detract from the intricate pen & ink work. I provided colour swatch handouts based on my initial analysis of the true iris colours.

Work in progress.

Every project different but perfectly rendered.

Below: Lighter violet tones.

Below: More of a rose colour.

Below: A striking blue iris.

Having completed the iris project it was time to start another pen & ink drawing of a cluster of Poppies.

Same process as for the Iris: Complete a line drawing, then transfer onto cold pressed #79 Peterboro illustration board (One board: 15 x 20 inches accommodated two projects). A tonal rendering in graphite is established before applying the ink.

Delicate hatch lines are used more in this project than stippling with dots.

Detailed and delicate work.

Below: Two projects side by side on one illustration board.

What a wonderful medium!

Unfortunately not enough time to complete the watercolour on this project! Next time…

My next workshop titled Brilliant Botanicals of Fall is on October 20 (one day) at Aurora Cultural Centre in Aurora, Ontario.

Contact Michael Spillane at 905-891-8422 for more information.

Email: michael@spillane-arts.com

Hope to see you all soon!

Michael Spillane

http://www.spillane-arts.com

 

 

 

 

 

Southampton Art School Workshop — August 2018

Once more I was back at Southampton Art School & Gallery in August to teach a three-day workshop titled Magnificent Florals in Watercolour.

Southampton Art School and Gallery can be found in the heart of downtown Southampton and a short walk to pristine, sandy beaches. The facility provides a wonderful teaching environment and also a gallery showcasing regional and local talent. The building has been around since 1957 and is an integral part of the art community of Bruce County. The original community was known as Saugeen by the early settlers but was later named Southampton after the English seaport, when the town was incorporated as a village in 1858. It was later incorporated as a town in 1904. Southampton was also  one of the last communities in Ontario to use the Gaelic language in everyday speech; the language could still be heard by local fishermen as late as the 1930s. Just off the Southampton shore, the Chantry Island Lighthouse is a popular visiting spot for tourists. Boat tours to the island run throughout the summer months. As well as Chantry island, the town is close to Sauble Beach, Port Elgin and Saugeen First Nation.

Beautiful Canna Lilies were in full bloom in the school courtyard garden, thriving in the August sunshine.

The Workshop

Magnificent Florals in Watercolour

This three-day workshop has been designed for the botanical artist looking to be able to paint realistic and vibrant floral portraits in watercolour. A step-by-step handout system teaches students the process of botanical painting in watercolour, from setting up a suitable subject to establishing a good composition and then following through to produce the finished painting. Demonstrations, one-on-one interaction with students and detailed instructional handouts help to provide a successful model for teaching. The workshop covers the drawing process, composition, how to transfer the drawing and prepare it for painting. colour theory and various watercolour painting techniques. Studies and exercises lead up to the completion of a finished watercolour floral painting.

Above: My watercolour painting, Zinnia elegans, the botanical subject for the workshop.

The drawing was first established as a sketchbook study using a series of observational drawing techniques. The finished line drawing was then transferred onto watercolour paper and a neutral grey underpainting (or shading) served to create a monochromatic three-dimensional painting. Liquid masking fluid was applied to the brightest areas of the flowers and leaves before painting the undertone.

The neutral tone I used for the underpainting was a mix of cadmium red, cadmium yellow, burnt sienna, ultramarine blue and Payne’s grey. The three primary colours, red, yellow and blue, form a good mix for a neutral underpainting and can be modified (depending on the subject) by adding a warmer tone such as burnt sienna (or vermillion), a cooler tone such as cobalt blue or a neutral grey to the mix.

Above and below: From a line drawing to a three-dimensional tonal image.

Below: Applying the first layers of colour.

Below: The leaves are masked and painted with a neutral undertone; the masking is then removed and colour is built up in thin layers as shown on the leaf below.

Flowers are formed through layers of yellow, yellow/orange orange and orange/red.

Step-by-step instructional handouts provide an efficient system to reproduce the Zinnia floral project.

Below: Almost completed.

Below: Work in progress.

After almost two days spent in deep concentration to complete the magnificent, yet complex Zinnia floral project, I decided to change direction a little and provide the students with a serene landscape for the next project. Not a botanical subject, I admit, but a welcome change from the technical requirements of botanical painting.

Here is the finished watercolour pastoral landscape, complete with rolling hills in the distance and a foreground bursting with clusters of striking umbelliferous Queen Anne’s Lace wildflowers (see, I didn’t completely abandon the botanical theme of the workshop).

Above: Two completed landscape paintings.

Above: Establishing the horizon line and sky.

Below: Adding the green base.

Below: The hills are alive…

Trees added to the scene and the foreground masked. The wildflowers are added using white gouache and the edge of a small, bristle fan brush.

Eureka!

Below: Pastoral landscape.

I will be returning to Southampton Arts Centre for my next workshop, Floral Portraits with Pen & Ink and Watercolour on September 19 & 20, 2018.

Southampton Art School & Gallery

201 High Street, Southampton, Ontario
Telephone: (519) 797-5068
Toll Free: 1-800-806-8838

Hope to see you there!

Michael Spillane

http://www.spillane-arts.com