At the beginning of March I attended one of the most stimulating workshops I have so far been to. I had seen Cherry Nichol do a demo at a Constantia Art Society meeting and absolutely loved her work. It was also very fiddley and I must say, I love to fiddle! She firstly paints beautiful washes onto her drawing in the colours she has chosen. Then, painting into the negative spaces she goes into the background and uses a gel called ATP paste (similar in smell to wood glue) which she blends into the wet paint. Then, she uses a tooth pick or pallette knife to move the paint around forming ghost like flowers and foliage. She uses gouache to cover any underpainting e.g. stems and then goes in with Leaf Green and Shadow Green to really bring out the colour. A tiny brush is used to paint Sepia into the darkest areas to highlight the lights. She grates water colour pencil into the wet paint. The splashes of white in the poppies are gouache flicked onto the page from a paintbrush. These are my attemps at the poppies and landscape - a far cry from her expertise, but I am rather chuffed with the outcome. One of the biggest lessons I learned was that there should always be three values. Go in with washes for your first value then go in darker with the second and for the third value go in even darker! Amazingly enough I had not gone in dark enough with the landscape until I looked at the demo she had done and realized my mistake I went in darker on the trunks of the trees and the whole thing began to sing! Needless to say, despite being somewhat brain dead after the workshop, I learned so much! Thank you Cherry, you are an inspiration!
2012 is my year of creativity and learning. I have been out of the blogging world for 5 months now all because I have been working very hard! Still life is not my favourite subject matter, but I started classes with Natalie Hirschman at the beginning of this year and this was our first class subject. I am learning so much and changing so fast it is mind blowing. I love it.