Wonderful Workshops

30 April 2015

As an artist I am continuously inspired by other artists and the mediums used and styles in which they work. When I enjoy the artwork, I study their style and artworks even more closely. Sometimes I wish I had an ipad or tablet rather than my Samsung phone because I want to zoom in and see as much detail as I possible! This helps me not only to appreciated the artist even more but it also helps me to understand how the end result was accomplished, therefore I am even more inspired!

On 28th February, I had the opportunity to attend a Derivan workshop demonstration by Linda MacAulay, a very successful Australian artist whose work I hugely admire. It was a wonderful day and even worth the hour drive to get there! Linda demonstrated a variety of ways to achieve effects with acrylic paint, and I wish I had taken a notepad as I have difficulty remembering all the details. Lucky for me, there are clear step by step instructions on Linda’s website. I particularly loved the effect created named ‘cracking’ which creates a faux distressed timber look frame on canvas.

What was also fantastic was that I was able to meet Linda in person along with two other talented artists, Carol Gorenko and Susan Robjant.

Linda MacAulay – Linda Macaulay

Carol Gorenko – Carol Gorenko

L - R Carol Gorenko, Michelle Ripari, Susan Robjant and Linda MacAulay.
L – R Carol Gorenko, Michelle Ripari, Susan Robjant and Linda MacAulay

On 25th April, I was able to attend another workshop by the very talented Uma Barry, who is an inspirational local Wyndham artist. I first met Uma at the Werribee Rotary Art Show in late 2014 where I won ‘Best Young Artist’. I absolutely love Uma’s beautiful paintings which are predominantly landscapes and particularly her close up paintings of trees in which the detail, character and individual colours of a tree is shown.

I was able to catch up with artist Ivana Pinaffo who I’d met at a previous exhibition and meet another artist Kathy Creamer. Uma worked with us to create a minature landscape (7 x 5.5″), painted in oils and using her own reference photograph, taken on one of the beautiful walks alongside the Werribee river. I’ve never used oils so I was both excited and a little bit nervous as what to expect, but Uma put me to ease with her warm smile, clear and encouraging instructions. The day was filled with laughter and went very fast. As I have not finished my landscape, I plan to return to Uma’s gallery to complete my first oil painting. I definitely want to do more in the future!

Uma Barry – Uma Barry

Ivana Pinaffo – Art by Ivana

Kathy Creamer – Kathy Creamer

So in closing, my thoughts and advice to everyone and myself, is to attend wonderful workshops! Go along and learn how to paint in oils, acrylics and watercolour. How to draw with graphite, colour pencil and ink. The list goes on and on. Of course there are many fantastic tutorials available for free on YouTube but there is something more intimate with a workshop. You not only have the opportunity to meet the instructing artist, but to maybe meet others and expand your connections with other like minded artists of all abilities within your own surrounding area or wider community.

Now go and create!