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Saturday, October 05, 2013

Don't Forget to Do this After a Workshop

'Fast and Furious'         5x7       pastel         ©Karen Margulis
It happens every time. The magic ends and every day life kicks in.  Before you know it you are overwhelmed by laundry, bills and errands.  Such is life after an art workshop. You leave the workshop inspired and fired up to get home and paint. But life often gets in the way.

I have said it before....we really need a week's vacation after a workshop to just paint. To give yourself an opportunity to practice and explore what we have learned. This is wishful thinking for most of us.

But there is one thing that you should not forget to do after a workshop.
It needs to be done soon...no later than a week after the workshop. Set aside at least 30 minutes of quiet time....take out your workshop notes and a pen and ask yourself the following question.

What were my goals for the workshop and did I meet them?  

Stan had us come prepared with two goals for the workshop which we shared the first evening. These were my goals:

1. To find the balance between a more abstracted landscape and a more detailed and softer landscape. How much detail do I want in my paintings? How bold do I want to be?
2. To balance my love of color with the idea of using a more neutral palette. How much color is too much?

Did I meet these goals? Did I figure out the answer to my questions? What insight did I gain regarding these questions?

If you follow my blog you know that after my Southwest trip I explored a bolder more energetic approach to my paintings. This was in contrast to my usual approach which someone recently called lyrical (I like that)  During the workshop I just let myself respond to the landscape. I didn't give much thought about my approach. I feel like my paintings combined a bit of both approaches. They are starting to come together and get married.  I just have to keep painting and see what develops.

Color....I have to be true to myself and paint with the colors that move me. I just want to be sure that I don't get stuck in a color rut...using the same color palette for all of my paintings.

Take the time to reflect on a workshop experience before the magic is overtaken by everyday life.  It is an important part of your journey.


Gloria said...

Karen these three, especially the first are so exciting. I really enjoy seeing your work everyday.

Julie Ford Oliver said...

these are so compelling - each different, but still compelling. My eyes enjoyed feasting on the small vibrations of warm/cool areas. I love the energy and color harmony. You always have been wonderful with color but i can see you 'pushing' yourself here.