Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Journaling's Different Approaches ~ Plein Air Experience

The next morning was the my day to share with participants at the "Expand Your Art Journaling" Workshop my approach. I'm up early to get organized and after breakfast, with all bodies accounted for we divide up into two vehicles once again and forge out ~ destination: Vista House on the Columbia Gorge.

The grey misty day begins to warm with streams of sunshine burning off the clouds and we are blessed with lovely vistas. My plan is to allow everyone to tour around, familiarizing themselves with the perspective viewpoints and then, gather all to do a brief demo for them. I'm aware that my brain isn't feeling very organized and I wrestle with too many wonderful sights and how to arrange eleven artists with materials on chairs into a cohesive group. Finally, I settle upon a cozy spot just to the southeast of the parking lot where we can gaze out upon the magnificent river and catch some of the nearby cliffs too. I'm hoping all are within the earshot of my commentary, as I aim to speak about my thinking, my process as well as the pigments and ratio of water to pigments. I'm fairly happy with the demo, even loving my crazy "bloom" occurring in the upper area where the mist still lingered. Watercolor just has it's own way about itself - - that NO human hand can control or replicate! And here is the another participants' version of the Vista House surroundings. Pretty amazing, eh?

I offer everyone the opportunity to select their own favorite scene to depict in their journals. Almost all, save two, linger at the original demo spot and I move to the back, popping up to wander around assisting or answering questions. When I'm stationed at the back of the working group, I play with a quick contour ink line drawing and fill in some adjacent color, emphasizing the large "shape" of the group.

We break for lunch, savoring the beauty and majesty of this gorge carved out before our eyes, and then hop back into the vehicles. I've selected a more intimate site just down the road that offers us more privacy and quiet . . .

And here ... you can see how my pages nestle up against one-another in my journal (with my text added later) and you can see the differing results from my journal page approach when placed side-by-side with Elinor's different approach.


Katherine Thomas said...

Elaine, your journal is so beautiful! I'm impressed with your control of the watercolors, even though you say it's not possible to completely control watercolor, your work shows such confidence and artistry, and yes, control over your medium in the sense that you understand it and know how to make it look beautiful!

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