Thursday, May 20, 2010

Art by the Glass

Last night, my friend Paula and I did a session of "Art by the Glass," basically a BYOB step-by-step painting class. It was a really cool concept (drink wine with friends and create an your own piece of art), in a cool space (in Nashville's hip Edgehill Studios) and we had a really fun time! We signed up for half-price with Groupon, the site that e-mails you a really good deal for your hometown every day. This is the only one I've actually used!

In this class, we would be painting the "Textured Tree." An artist leads the class in painting a particular piece, but you can do variations on it as you like.

We began by painting the whole canvas brown. (And, as you see, pouring a glass of wine. Some people even brought their own platters of cheese, crackers, and olives! I'll have to remember that for next time!)
Then we used a palette knife to put a layer of white over that in a criss-cross pattern, letting some of the brown show through, giving it a gritty, weathered look. It was like smearing cream cheese on a bagel. I really liked that step.
Then, we added some mossy yellow-green (and aqua--not shown) using the same technique as the white.
Lastly, we painted in our "happy little tree" (as Bob Ross says), using a brush and working in layers from dark to light to create depth and texture. I was uneasy for a while, not sure how it would turn out, but in the end, I loved my piece!
Here's Paula and I with our completed works. As you see, she went a more warm, autumnal route, whereas I followed the sample (visible in the top right corner of the pic) pretty closely.
They take a class picture at the end, to show all the variations. (That will be posted on Art by the Glass's Facebook page, but it's not up yet.) Some people's trees looked more deciduous, others evergreen. Some added apples or stepping stones on the ground. Some people decided not to do the "textured" technique with the palette knife at all, and had much smoother, flowy lines.

I took my painting to my office today, and enjoyed peering over the top of my monitor to see it on the windowsill. It makes me smile. We had such fun being artists for an evening, and will definitely do it again sometime!


Katie Bug said...

Jer loves to quote that Bob Ross line!
That class sounds like so much fun. I'm sure I would be asked to leave, though. My painting skills are pretty much nonexistant.

SpeasHill said...

That looks like fun! Thanks for documenting the steps!


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