Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Art of Color Class

I've been so busy actually doing art that I have not had much time to blog about it.   No complaints, that's the way it should be.  I waste way too much time staring at a screen and not creating.  But I like to keep the blog up, if for no other reason, to have an ongoing record of what I was doing and thinking at various times.  And it's stored in a place where I can't lose it, unlike paper or even digital files on my computer.  
So today I am sharing last night’s projects in my Color in Art class.  I didn't know we would be using oil paints or I would probably have been too intimidated to take the class.  Not sure why painting and even drawing scare me off, but they do.  It's like this little hidden secret, I'm afraid someone will find out that I really can't draw to save my life.  I know I could learn, and I think I eventually must go there.  The whole idea of learning how to use oils seemed intimidating and I feared failure.   But the experience so far has been the total reverse of that!  Being told exactly what to buy and how to use it solved much.   Last night when I started seeing all the amazing colors that would emerge out of mixing the six simple primaries (two of each) I never wanted to quit.  Merging two things that I was sure would produce a brown muddy mess instead created a mind bogglingly beautiful teal blue.  Wow. I'm hooked.  So - yesterday:
The first project was to try out all the combinations of our primary paints to see which ones produced what sort of secondary colors.  I knew nothing about oil painting, so it was fascinating to me to mix the colors and see what came out.  We did this in the classroom, but mine was a smeared up mess so I redid it.  Sorry the photo is crappy.

The second assignment was to create some sort of grid on a piece of paper 6″ x 9″ and then make an exact copy of it. One version was supposed to illustrate “color harmony,” and the other “color dis-harmony.”    No explanation or definition was given of those two terms.   In class each person put up one of their pieces on the wall and others had to guess which one was which.  Not as simple as it seems!  Very fun, though.  Everyone had quite different interpretations.
The other thing that is fun is that our teacher is very into Nancy Crow and quilts in general, and unlike most people already recognizes that there is such a thing as an art quilt, so it's nice not to fight that battle.  In fact, our assignment this week is to go to the local museum exhibit, American Quilts, the Democratic Art, and write an analysis of the color use in one of the quilts.   Fun! And an excuse to go back and soak in the exhibit one more time before it closes next week. 

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