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Wednesday, February 01, 2017

Behind the Scenes: Preparing for a Workshop

'Forest Interlude'         8x10          pastel         ©Karen Margulis
available $150
There is a lot that goes on behind the scenes of an art workshop. I start preparing at least a month before I teach a workshop and the week before is usually filled with a flurry of preparations. I thought you might like a look at my preparations.

It begins with the topic of the workshop. I usually offer a few choices of topics or themes to the workshop organizer. Once we decide on the topic I begin planning the agenda. I always like to fit in as much information as possible so it helps to have each day planned in advance. That way I don't miss sharing something important!

Next I plan my handouts. I like to give each artist a folder of handouts relating to the workshop topic. I know I don't always take the best notes and love to have something written to refer back to after a workshop. After planning the handouts I gather all of my visual aids. Artists are visual people and sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words.....so I prepare some posters to illustrate the concepts I am going to share.

Demo pastels
Once I have my plans in place I like to prepare my demos. I choose the subject and the paper. I tape the paper to foamcore. I know I could do this at the workshop but it is one less thing to do and it allows me to enjoy the workshop without running around trying to get set up! If I am flying to a workshop I will ship the demo boards and visual aids to my host. (If I am doing a plein air workshop or traveling overseas I have a folder of smaller visuals that I bring)

The last thing I do is prepare my pastels. I used to bring my Heilman box to workshops. But now I choose the pastels I will use for each demo and put them in  separate boxes. This is the way I usually work so it makes perfect sense to me. All of the pastels and other supplies go into my suitcase. I usually carry my lesson plans, handouts and pastels in my carryon so if my suitcase is lost I still have pastels and plans!

That's it! I am now totally packed for my Florida workshop next week. I am looking forward to sharing with a great group. (There are openings if you are looking for something to do in the Venice Fl area February 11 & 12. Our topic is Color!)

A suitcase of supplies

Demo papers and visual aids
 Painting Note: Today's painting is a plein air study I did in Iceland last summer. My friend and I went plein air painting in a young forest. It was a cold and windy June day and we managed to paint before it started to rain. Painting in Uart paper.

1 comment:

KAS said...

Such a lovely painting. Definitely looking forward to spring after viewing it! And thank you for the inside look into preparing for a workshop. Your students will certainly be well informed!