Saturday, November 17, 2007


Today was the 3rd session of my watercolor portrait workshop. Everyone was finishing up their first portrait. I always suggest painting it again if there is time because they always get better. Working with shapes helps everyone get a better likeness. We do a lot with color, shape and composition ideas. I thought I would share a slide show with everyone to show off these great paintings. For many, it is their first portrait, ever.

Rita Hellyer (the inventor of the bleeding Elegant Writer drawing technique) happen to bring in two incredible examples of the 24 hour ink drawing idea. I think she spent more than 24 hours total on each of these but it gives you one idea of an approach to take. Rita broke her image into two values - black and white - and then used the shapes that would be black and filled them with detailed root drawings that she did over a period of weeks. She used a fine pen nib. I start to see animals and other images in the roots. They are really amazing. Be sure and open them in a separate window for an enlarged detail view.

I am not ready to post my demo painting for today. It needs some work yet.

Hope you enjoy today's art show.


Anonymous said...

The Rita Hellyer? Helyer?drawings are fasinating, I did enlarge the first one and spent some time looking at the images she has incorporated in them,the second one would not enlarge for me. Wow,It looks really complicated. I don't know if I even want to try that one.


Cecelia said...

That is an interesting approach. Now, the weird thing: I was dreaming last night,about driving to another town and making note of a gnarled, old tree. I made a statement that I would like to go there, park by the tree, and paint it at different times of the day. Very strange to wake up, open this, and find that Rita had used the idea of tree roots (which would be like the twisted tree in my dream)in her work.
Actually, for the last challenge, I did another portrait of the subject, broken into smaller sections, but it isn't a large size. I just have it in pencil.
When you gave the new challenge, I was trying to think of something I would want to do that large, and spend that much time on, but I had not thought of it as a portrait. So the examples gives this a little different twist.
I have a commission that I really need to finish this week, before I get to a challenge, unless that tree starts calling to me again!

Mike said...

Wow! This stuff really shows your abilities as an instructor, Myrna! Amazing work from all members!

On another note, I think Rita has found her niche. This is different, compelling work that will stand the test of time over hundreds of years. Amazing and wonderful stuff on her part!

Nava said...

Rita's unique drawings made me think of a beautiful Israeli song, "For man is a tree". (actually, it comes from the bible).

A 24 hour drawing??? Hmm, not sure I was born with that amount of patience... ;-)

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