My Painting I college class ended this week. I am sharing my paraphrased highlights, not listing every single thing off the syllabus, so I may forget to mention something.
In my opinion the most was gotten from this class after having already learned some basic art principals. The college let in some students who had not yet taken Drawing I (or II) and either never took design or other foundation classes or had forgotten content from them. Those students struggled with basic things such as making a pleasing composition, seeing and painting value, and perspective.
We painted in acrylic using retarder to slow the drying time, also using a gel medium in order to achieve different tints and opacities, and also to do glazing with. The college did not have the required by the government air ventilation systems to allow us to work with oil paint.
Lessons and Activities and Assignments
Safety in the studio, health issues and best practices to follow
How to work with acrylic paint
How to blend color, painted a color wheel
Different brush types lesson, which brush for what? Used brushes to make many different marks (brushes can do many things)
How to mix color from the tube to create custom color. Made a giant color chart blending two colors. Later these were critiqued.
What is tint, how does opacity affect the color? Made a chart showing the effect of adding white or black in various amounts to one color, also using gel medium with the one color to show differing levels of opacity. Later these were critiqued.
Review of value, shadows, cast shadow etc. Review of basic shapes, cylinder, sphere, cone, square. Painted these.
Lesson demo on 8 different types of painting, ex. Dry Brush, wet on wet, impasto. Painted a sphere in each including shadows and value due to light source, based on a still life setup in class. Later these were critiqued.
Went outside in sun and painted 6-8 rectangle boxes from different angles with different light source hitting and different shadow castings. Later painted in the surface and different values for each surface of the box as well as the shadows. Later was critiqued.
Review of perspective, drawing perspective.
Painted a chair still life, 18x24 using a monochromatic color scheme. With critique.
Critique, how to do one.
How to build your own canvas starting with wood from the hardware store, use of chop saw, power drill, then stretched our own canvas using staple gun. Gessoed and sanded the 30x40" canvas to prep it.
En plain air landscape demo and painting for 4 classes, total 12 hours. Clouds, Tree, Water, Grass. Did studies, close up, 10 feet, 25 feet, 100 feet.
In class and homework: painted landscape 30x40'. Could use any style but must use grass, water, tree, clouds. Had critique.
Attended two info sessions from admissions staff at undergrad art colleges who accept transfer students. (This class was at a community college.)
Attended an hour long lecture plus two art show openings with artist talks. Opening reception, meet the artist and networking.
Required to enter the student juried art show. Learned to follow procedures in rules for art show submissions. Encouraged to attend the opening (held in the evening apart from class time).
Required to do an artist studio visit and interview an artist and write a paper.
Required to do a museum visit with an observation activity and write a paper.
Learned how to Photograph our art, do digital documentation, use Photoshop to edit the photo, convert to PDF.
I am glad I took this class. The homework load varied but at peak points I was doing 20 hours of homework a week in addition to 3 hour long classes twice a week. I took this along without other studio art class that took 10-14 in classroom/lab hours. It was a heavy load for me to carry since I did all the work and on time. I have a busy life as a mother, wife, volunteer, household manager, and small business owner. I neglected my business basically! I was also exercising at least once daily at the gym and attempting to keep cooking from scratch.
This semester also included for me, a problem with the pool that needed a total pool and patio renovation, a new drainage yard problem that needed an entire redo, a broken kitchen faucet that needed replacing, and a broken dishwasher that needed replacing (twice due to a defect in the first one). So I was a project manager or contractor of household renovations too.
A side note is I took two workshops on weekends, encaustic painting and resin painting. These were 3 hour workshops for $100, all materials included. The difference between the two is night and day. The $250 plus materials college class focused on foundations since it was Painting I. The projects were challenging and you got out of it what you put in. The college class was also encouraging attending art school attendance or getting a MFA. The workshops were light and fun, others that artist does include optional wine drinking. The workshops lacked the basics, so you could throw paint and media down without thought to composition, color theory, etc.