Teaching Style

teaching

Teaching Style Notes

I get lots of emails about teaching from emerging artists. Many of them think that teaching will bring them collectors. For myself, not really. Yes, I do have lovely students who support me with purchases from time to time but certainly not enough to make a living.

Linda’s Etsy Shop

There are full time art teaching plans, part time, and occasional teaching plans. I think you have to have a true understanding of your own needs and desires before you choose a plan.

If you want to teach full time, then put aside your own needs as a painter. A teacher has a huge responsibility to his/her students. A teacher can destroy a painter’s love of painting or open the world and possibilities to art students. As a painting teacher, I have great power over those who study with me. I can fake it and get by, which is what far too many painters do, or I can actually care enough to research and help my students to grow their desire and knowledge of painting.

Research, painting lesson development and practice takes a great deal of time. A full time teacher needs to do their own work AFTER they provide for their students.

A part time teacher has some time for both. This may be ideal for most painters and it was good for me for many years. I taught a few workshops sprinkled between some regular classes, giving me some limited time in the studio for my own work. This sustained me for some years. I charged a healthy price for workshops and classes.

In my opinion, the occasional teaching plan is the best of both worlds.  I have the occasional plan. I teach once a month. I only charge my students 20.00 a class, so as you can see, I’m not making a living from teaching art. Fortunately, I make a living as a painter. It took long years of hard work to get here. Every now and then I’ll take a year off from teaching entirely. I find, at the end of the year that I have missed my friends. Teaching once a month adds a little excitement and anticipation to my career. I have things to share with my students. It makes me work harder and research more than I would without students. I need to learn more in order to help them. I get to see my friends once a month, and share their stories and lives. I tend to be a loner and this forces me to be a part of the world.

Classes

Whatever choice you make, dive into it with integrity. There are far too many painters who use their students to make extra income or sell them paintings at workshops with little given to the student. If you teach, do it with good preparation, honesty and effort. Make it worthwhile for the student who is depending on you.

If you would like to be a business snack sponsor for a month of classes for my students, it is a 20.00 gift for a month. My students and I appreciate the gift very much, and I am happy to promote your business on social media and my web site. 

More musings for artists and collectors to come….

Today’s Recipe

Crockpot Italian Pot Roast

 

8 ounces of fresh sliced mushrooms

1 large sweet onion sliced

4 pounds boneless chuck roast, trimmed

1 teaspoon pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 1 ounce envelope dry onion soup mix

1 14 ounce can beef broth

1 8 ounce can tomato sauce

3 tablespoons tomato paste

1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning

2 tablespoons cornstarch

 

Place mushrooms and onion in a lightly greased 5 to 6 quart crockpot.  Sprinkle roast with pepper.  Cook roast in hot oil in a large skillet over medium heat 2 to 3 minutes on each side or until browned. Place roast on top of mushrooms and onions in crockpot.  Sprinkle onion soup mix over roast; pour beef broth and tomato sauce over roast.  Cover and cook on low 8 to 10 hours or until meat shreds easily with a fork.

Transfer roast to a cutting board; cut into large chunks, remove any large pieces of fat.  Keep roast warm.

Skim fat form juices in crockpot; stir in tomato paste and Italian seasoning.  Stir together cornstarch and 2 tablespoons of water in a small bowl until smooth; add to juices in crockpot, stirring until blended.

Increase slow cooker heat to high.  Cover and cook 40 minutes or until mixture is thickened.  Stir in roast.

Serves 6

Brushes Review

brushes

Brushes Review Notes

I probably have a couple hundred brushes at any given time in my studio. Good brushwork is very important to good painting in my view. Good brushwork comes from good handling, lots of practice and excellent brushes.

Keeping brushes clean and shaped properly is vital. I used Murphy’s oil Soap to clean my oil brushes. After each session, I put them in a jar of pure undiluted Murphy’s overnight. I rinse them thoroughly the next day and reshape them. If your brushes are really dirty or with dried paint, you will need to soak them for a few days. I use blue Dawn soap to clean my casein and acrylic brushes. Casein and acrylic are very hard on brushes and they must be replaced from time to time. Oil brushes, properly cared for will last for many years.

I use my old brushes for block ins and to repair nicks in frames.

I have three brands that are favorites, though many brands are good. My cheapest favorite brushes are made by Creative Mark Polar Flo. The  quarter inch flat, half inch flat, and rigger are excellent. They are actually considered to be watercolor brushes, but I use them for all of my mediums. The flat is extra long and flexible. They are in the 4.00 range and last very well.

Polar Flo Brushes

I also like Jack Richeson brand. They are high quality and I have some that are about 15 years old, as good as new.

Richeson Art

My newest favorite is Rosemary and Co from England.These really live up to the hype about them. They are beautifully made and excellent. I bought the short handled  so I can use them in studio or in my paint box for outdoor painting. They are made by hand, so it takes some time to get them from England. Order them well before you need them.

Rosemary and CO

Excellent brushes will help you with brushwork, but a good painter can do a good painting with lousy tools. They key is a combination of good  quality and care and lots of practice. Keeping your palette well organized, clean and mixing harmoniously will take you a long way toward good paintings.

More musings for artists and collectors to come…

Collectors Club

Today’s Recipe

Creamy Ham Rolls

1 medium onion, chopped

1/2 cup butter or margarine

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon dill weed

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

1/2 pepper

14 1/2 ounces of chicken broth

1 1 /2 cups light cream

2 tablespoon Dijon mustard

3 cups cooked wild rice

8 ounces of canned mushrooms, drained

12 thin slices fully cooked ham (about 3/4 pound)

1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Minced fresh parsley

 

In a large saucepan, sauté onion in butter until

tender.  Stir in flour, dill garlic salt and pepper until smooth and bubbly.  Gradually add broth, cream and mustard; cook until thickened.  Pour 1 cup into a ungreased 13 X 9 XD 2 inch baking pan; reserve another cup for topping.  To the remaining sauce, add rice and mushrooms; spoon 1/3 cup into each ham slice.  Roll up and place with seam side down over sauce in pay.  Top with reserved sauce.  Bake, uncovered at 350 for 25 to 30 minutes or until heated through.  Sprinkle with cheese and parsley; serve immediately.  Serves 12

 

Mother Colors

mother

Mother Colors Notes

I like to use pallets with a mother color in mind.  It is fun to take the palette you are going to use and combine all of the colors into a mother pile of paint. There are a couple of ways I use this pile. Sometimes I will add a bit of this pile to all of my mixtures as I paint, which gives the painting lovely and consistent harmony throughout. Depending on which temperature bias the mother color trends to, the temperature of the overall painting will reflect. A fun experiment is to use a cool mother color palette for a painting of a subject. Then use a warm temperature palette for your mother color and do the same subject again. They will be very different in palette if done properly, by using the mother color in every paint mixture. It is quite fun.

Linda’s Etsy Shop

Another way I use mother color is to pull ever increasing mixtures of pure color off of the initial mother color pile. So, my first mixture would mostly be the mother color with a small bit of ultramarine blue. The next mix with more blue, the next mix with more blue, etc until I am back to pure ultramarine blue. All of those in between mixtures will be useful in the painting as a harmonizer with the other mixtures from the mother color.

mother

 

There is so much science to color mixing that it makes my head spin. There are a million complex charting systems you can use but my simplistic brain cannot or will not take the time to learn all that. I prefer the simple old fashioned methods that I have discovered for myself. I made a wonderful color chart that I share with my students from time to time. I have used it for years and it is foolproof in terms of a way to get a picture of how a color palette will mix out fully. I keep a chart book with my charts mixed on index paper in a notebook. This particular chart instantly shows me how I mixed a particular color. I can look at it five years later and know exactly how I got that hue. Very useful.

Collectors Club

I am the sort of painter who is very methodical about my color palettes. I almost always pre-select the palette I will use for a painting. I always do the mixtures on the palette, never on the painting. That is how I roll!

More musings for artists and collectors to come….

Today’s Recipe

Chicken Corn Cakes

In large bowl, mix:

2 1/4 cups of shredded chicken (cooked baked or rotisserie)

1 Tablespoon fresh chives chopped finely

1/4 cup bread crumbs

8 ounce can of whole kernel corn (Mexican style if desired)

1 14 cup of sharp cheddar cheese shredded

1 Tablespoon sour cream

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 large egg

 

Form 4 to 8 patties

Place 1 cup of bread crumbs in a shallow pan.  Dredge patties and gently press patties so the bread crumbs stick to the patties.

 

Over medium heat used 1/4 to 1/2 cup of olive oil in a large skillet.  Fry patties 2 to 3 minutes on each side until golden brown.  Drain patties on paper towel.

 

Top patties with sour cream, chopped chives or salsa or with your choice of toppings.  Serve warm as entre or appetizer.

 

Good Summer

good

Good Summer Notes

I’m having a good summer this year. That is a bit unusual. I usually feel like summer is an endurance race. Last year was horrid, with terrible allergy problems, hives, and all manor of indignities like face swellings. I was broke as usual each summer. It lingered on endlessly.

Linda’s Summer Ebay Paintings

This year has been good. Spring lasted well into May and summer arrived as it should have in mid June. I have stayed indoors most of the time, so no allergy problems as yet.

Thanks to my friend Ron, the general manager at the local Michaels store, I have been lent the classroom there to teach now. I move my monthly classes there on Tuesday. This will be easier for my students and will free my Country Studio for my own use.

Abstract Scapes

I’ve been setting it up with all my easels out and ready to use. I have a station for acrylic/casein, and two easels for oils. I will only have to rearrange for my four parties each year. I moved all of my framing tools out into the studio and I have a drying station for small oil paintings with a fan on them 24/7.  At last, I am totally set up with efficiency in my studio. Now, if I could only clone myself I would get everything done.

This summer has even been good financially. People have actually bought art. That is almost unheard of for summer in my world. Shocking! I will actually make it through the summer without fear if this continues.

My precious new French bulldog puppy, Tucker (AKA Studio Dog) is a joy for me. He is beginning to grow up now, not quite as intense. He has a wonderful, sweet personality and is well on his way to becoming a fine adult in a few months. It was very hard to lose my dear Henry, and not a day goes by without missing him, but Tucker is the new joy in my life.

I have learned in my dotage to be entirely grateful for the life I now lead. After a stressful difficult life as a single mother, juggling a variety of jobs and doing art late into the night, I now have almost complete freedom to run my own career. I have a dream studio, a quiet life in the country with my nature trail, and lovely canvases to paint as I like. I am just about the luckiest artist I know. I could not do it without the lovely friends and collectors who continue to support my career. A deep and grateful salute to you all.

More musings for artists and collectors to come….

Today’s Recipe

Tomato Salad

2 tablespoons fresh basil, coarsely chopped
2 pints grape tomatoes
1/2 cup whole Kalamata olives
1/4 cup shaved Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

  1. Chop basil (leaves only); halve tomatoes (if desired). Place in salad bowl: basil, tomatoes, olives, and cheese.
  2. Pour in oil, salt, and pepper; toss to coat. Marinate at least 10 minutes before serving.

Experiments Summer

Experiments

 Experiments Summer Notes

EBay Paintings

I choose summer experiments study just about every year. Some years it is building technique, other years a new subject. This year’s experiments are abstract landscapes done with painting knives. These experiments start out pretty rough, but often improve throughout the summer. If I really like them they stay in my rotation. 

Abstract Scapes

This year’s abstract landscapes are getting a lot of attention from other artists,but not so much from collectors. I have sold one to my collector in Louisiana, but none locally so far. 90% of the likes on Facebook and Instagram have been from other painters. This is no surprise to me. I learned long ago that artists tend to like more expressive, experiments work. Collectors tend to be in two camps, abstract lovers or traditional art lovers. The gray area I live in between the two requires creative marketing. 

 

It might take me three weeks to do a good brushwork landscape with thoughtful process, which appeals to collectors, but artists are not moved by the difficulty of the process. A half hour painting knife painting gets raves by artists. I’m not sure why that is? It it the current trend toward abstract art as the superior art? Most of the galleries I know of, and some I used to show work in, now only accept abstract art. Is the key for landscape painters a more abstract style to have a future in art? I don’t know. Part of the trend toward abstract landscapes comes from the current popularity of plein air painting. Many of these paintings are very rough with little finesse. I don’t know how long the plein air trend will last. 

I started painting outdoors about 30 years ago, long before paint outs were in every town as they are now. I have moved away from the publicity and trend, now painting on my own again outdoors, which is a  happy time for me. I don’t miss the hype of the plein air movement. To me, plein air paintings are about the study of light and atmosphere, gathering information. I don’t consider them to be particularly good work. Instead, they are building blocks for good studio work. 

My experiments make me a better painter so I will continue them each summer.

More musings for artists and collectors to come….

Today’s Recipe

Dessert Sauce

1 jar caramel ice cream topping

2 T coffee liqueur

1/2 cup half and half

Mix together thoroughly and use over coffee ice cream or pound cake.

Pages:1234567...417»