Muses from the artistic world of Sonia Mocnik
August 30,2016
Ode to a Greek Urn

Today in class, we worked on values.  We started with a value chart using the Cotman watercolour Intense Blue.  We applied variations in tones for one color going from strongest to almost no color.  Then the guests traced a scene of mountains that I sketched of the view from Kotor and used the tones to show the variation of the landscape. 15 guests attended the morning class from 10 to 12.  I talked about view, composition and sketching with a little on perspective.  The we went on to copy a picture from an urn that I saw in Athens.

The picture began with a yellow ochre wash, then a second application with some spattering and use of sponge to create an aged effect.  We then created a deep grey by using Alizarin Crimson, Sap green and Intense blue in equal amounts to apply to the handles, neck and base of the urn.  We added some pattern, a little Alizarin Crimson on the neck and tired to applying shading for a 3D effect.

Some guests returned in the afternoon to continue with their creations from the morning and others joined the class for the first time. We quickly covered the color wheel and got the new guests right up to speed with tonal values, washes and how to use the brushes in the packages they received.  Finally the class copied a old town scene with church and roofs to help them do more washes, brush strokes and some further color mixing.

We did not complete the last project, but did manage to display pieces that were done earlier in the day.  I then mentioned tomorrow's class will be a market scene with the introduction of people....they seemed interested...we'll see how many come to class when the sunshine beckons outside!

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August 28,2016
Aboard the queen victora

Arrived yesterday and today was the first watercolour class on board.  The guests are lovely to work with and a pleasure to teach.  We enjoyed working on the warm and cool colours of the colour wheel to learn about using colour.

We worked through Hue; which are the names of the colours, ie: red, green, purple.  We looked at Value; the lightness or darkness of the color and played with intensity by mixing two colours together to move around the colour wheel.

After achieving the color wheel and getting used to the paint pallets, I talked about the brushes included in the package and how each could achieve a different style.  The flat 3/4 brush is very good for straight line washes and it is important to load paint into the holder to ensure you have sufficient paint mixed for the wash.  If the line is not continued and let dry, it can leave a mark when the wash is continued. The 8 round brush is great for washes and detail and the guest needs to play with the paint to see how the brush can be utilized.  You need to practise the feel of the brush and the round brush can also be used as a fine point or put on its side to achieve a nice wash. The round brush is capable of holding a lot of water and pigment.

I spoke of cleaning the brushes with some mild soap, such as dish soap and also how to dry them as not to let pigment rest in the ferrule. I asked the guests to complete a 2 minute drawing excercise to expand their creativity and start off their artistic process for the day.

We then spent 45 minutes working on a limited palette small painting of a Savannah scene with an elephant in it.  We used 3 colours of alizarin Crimson, yellow ochre and ultramarine.  We start with a wash of yellow ochre and leaving some of the paper white and unpainted.  Then we added in a small water feature at the front of the picture. We then blended Alizarin Crimson and Ultramarine to achieve various intensities of purple to create the elephant ear and legs.  We then continued with more yellow ochre to darken other areas of the scene.  By continuing to layer, we achieved a dusty scene of an elephant heading to a water patch.

After the class was finished and questions answered, I went back and worked on a watercolour of the Acropolis photo I had taken the day before.  I wanted to try to work with the same limited palette.  I achieved what I wanted, but I needed a little sap green for a better color for the trees.  You can see the result.

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August 26,2016
Waiting for the plane to Athens

Trying to get organized as I wait at Terminal 2 in Heathrow airport.  In a short while, I will be flying to Athens and boarding the Cunard Queen Victoria.  My brushes are ready and I can't wait to start taking reference photos to see what inspires me to paint!

Artist Jane Appleby is just finishing her tour of duty aboard the same ship.  she visited some of the same places that I will be.  She was able to post a few pictures of her trip and the class on her Facebook page, so I already have an idea of the room which will be used for the watercolour classes.

Now, I just need to catch up on my sleep as the flight from Vancouver was quite long and a red eye.

Athens tonite, the Port of Pireaus tomorrow.

My first day at sea will be the start of the teaching and I will be covering all the basics and getting everyone familiar with their material. There could be guests who have taken a few classes on board already....we'll just wait and see.


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August 12,2016
Paint Attack, Paint Out

Deer Lake Gallery from 1 to 3 will be a challenge of painting a picture in 2 hours with 18 other artists!  Each trying to create a masterpiece!

Come to Burnaby and enjoy the full day festivities!

I will also be demonstrating watercolors in the morning from 10 to 12 in front of the gallery.

Posted by Sonia Mocnik at 05:18 0 Comments
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