I just returned from a stay in that region beginning with Bordeaux and its beautiful surroundings. Residing out in the countryside, near the small bastide village of Eymet, our mornings were filled with sights of enormous fields of sunflowers, rolling hills and lots and lots of vineyards laden with grapes waiting for the coming ‘crush.’ Each little village in the area reeked of history and age and was turned out with all the French charm anyone could hope for.
Armed with camera, sketch book, pochade box, watercolors and every art supply known to man, I chased the perfect painting for three weeks. Trekking about with a number of other artists and good friends we gobbled up the sights and tasted the repasts of the region as though we had been starving and deprived most of our lives. To say that the food was wonderful would be understating the obvious. To say there was just too much to absorb in the way of visual stimulation and historical information would also be an understatement. But we did it anyway!
Just outside the door to my quarters were fields of rolled hay set against more fields rife with sunflowers. The light changed as quickly as my wristwatch changed time. We had clouds and skies that were more than worthy as a singular subject to back up all the gorgeous rural scenery. I gotta say that it was really, really tuff to handle! (read with sarcasm).
Here are a few hurried attempts at watercolor plein air painting that represent the sort of ‘ugliness’ we had to endure. To make matters worse, our feeble efforts at attempting to harness the beauty there on canvas or paper were rewarded nightly with wine and dinners most people would sacrifice a family member in order to partake. Yup! It was fabulous!!! (Except, now I have to redouble my exercises to de-expand my svelte self, if you get my drift.)
More about it later, But for now take the glimpse of the few painting attempts I brought back and try to imagine yourself enduring this form of hideous torture. Life is just toooo good, sometimes, folks. And I really do mean too good!!!!
UNUSUAL BARGAIN !! . . . READ THIS !
As you may already know, I am hosting a group of painters (and non painters) in France at the end of this month August 27 through September 7.
Until last week, we had a full complement of people signed up, paid for and ready to go. One couple, however, sustained sudden health issues and will not be able to take their place on this wonderful trip to Southern France. Their cost was $7000. Unfortunately, that cost cannot be refunded due to their late cancellation.
They are offering their place for half price, $3500, not including airfare. This price includes all breakfasts and dinners, comfortable, quaint French Country (impeccably decorated) quarters for 13 nights and all your ground transportation, all at half price.
If you would be interested in exploring this great bargain, please email me directly at email@example.com. Time is of the essence!!
More can be learned at the following link; Petit Rousset
Browse through the above website and discover the fabulous accommodations and some of our itinerary / adventure. The Perigord is wonderfully picturesque region with tons of history dating back to cave dwelling painters, the hundred years war, the impressionist and more. We will be in the heart of wine country and will be doing some wine exploring, also.
If your mate is not a painter . . . or, even if you are not, don’t hesitate. Non painters have a ball on this trip as there are day trips almost daily. The food, too, is absolutely wonderful . . . . not to mention the great companionship and fun.
First come first served. Don’t delay. This is a once in a decade bargain !
PAINTING WORKSHOP IN FRANCE AUGUST 2 7 THRU SEPTEMBER 7, 2008
Experience the genteel and relaxed life in the Perigord region of France (Near Bordeaux), with Mike Bailey and friends, late this summer when the tourists vacate the area.
Here is a link where you will see more details of where we will be and our itinerary. On this same site are photos of the charming and comfortable accomodations. Most meals, save for a few lunches, are provided as well as ground transportation. Leave your concerns at home! We handle all those little details that cloud otherwise perfect vacations.
If you would like to join us, or learn more about the trip, let me know immediately via email (click on small envelope below) as we are accepting deposits now.
“Silvi’s Little Patch”
oil on linen, 8″ x 12″
The time has finally come to begin playing around with some design alternatives. This time, I chose to set up a color scheme completely unlike that which was on my photo. (I don’t like working from photos, but this was a scene in the Perigord Region in France last Summer which has haunted me). So . . . .we were talking about color . . .My photo is all brilliant green. And green doesn’t sell . . .or so they say . . . . . . .
I chose to set up a yellow dominance and work with an analogous color scheme, rather than be enslaved to what was before me. Mind you, there is a good deal of creativity that comes into play to do this. For example, where do we put the less intense colors and where put the most intense? It is a choice, but when it is done, the entire design must reflect and support that choice. This time, there was a lot of niggling happening before the piece was completed. Translation: overworked. but Hey!, ya gotta step out of the rut now and then, right?
Actually, I have a vision for the sort of paintings I want to create . . . .with emphasis on ‘create’ . . . . .and most of my work up to now has been to build practice with technique and medium. As I get more comfy with it, I will play around with some different design alternatives.
Back to the color thing . . . . . .I should possibly have chosen red or orange or, even blue! Yellow has the least options when it comes to value and can become pretty yucky fast if you aren’t somewhat familiar with the color wheel. I have to admit I struggled with this one. I spent all day (almost) with it yesterday and about an hour tweaking it this morning. . . . which tells me I have much more work to do. So, I’ll dig in again and again. Color schemes are a great way to do something unusual and captivating versus ‘just another picture.’ Expect to see more from time to time.