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by Tania Norris, posted by Deb Shaw
Jenny’s classes are always fun and rewarding and this time the three day class is drawing in preparation for the watercolor class the following week. So if possible, please take both segments as they are really one class. For those unable to take the drawing section, it will mean that you won’t be able (probably) to finish the painting in one week.
Jenny suggested roses as the subject but as most gardens have been pruned am not sure of availability so we may have a different subject and if so, one that can be included in the Florilegium. Or we may have a choice of subject.
For those that took Anne-Marie’s classes and painted wisteria and/or coral tree, we are hoping that while Jenny is here that they will be judged and the best two added to the Florilegium.
Please bring your finished paintings to VRG by April 8th. Please have them in a protective cover, unsigned if possible but clearly marked on the back of the painting with your name and phone number. Please remember that if your painting wins, you keep the copyright but you are giving the painting to Virginia Robinson Gardens and they will have the right to reproduce the painting for cards, prints, folio or anything else that flower paintings can used and that any monies from the sales of the reproductions belongs to VRG. The paintings will be aded to the permanent collection at the Gardens.
The following is the information for Jenny’s class:
April 10, 11 and 12, 2013
Drawing beautiful botanically correct roses in graphite
April 15 – 19, 2013
Focusing on a florileguim quality painting in watercolor of a rose
Jenny Phillips is one of the most renowned botanical artists in the world and one of the most popular and experienced teachers. She has her own Botanical Art School in Melbourne, Australia, and has her paintings in many notable collections, including that of H.R.H. Prince Charles. Jenny’s teaching always includes effective ways to achieve maximum effect with ease and her wit is always evident.
Classes will be held at Virginia Robinson Gardens from 9 – 3:30 on each of the days listed above.
A supplies list will be sent to all participants. Coffee, tea and water will be provided, but please bring your own lunch. Painting subject may change due to availability of garden roses in April.
Fees for the three day session are $375 for VRG and BAGSC members; $450 for non-members. The five day session is $595 for VRG and BAGSC members; $650 for non-members. A deposit of $100 per class to hold the space can be accepted, but is non-refundable.
To make reservations, visit the Virginia Robinson Gardens online; call 310.550.2068; or mail a check to: Friends of Robinson Gardens, 1008 Elden Way, Beverly Hills, CA 90210. Questions? Contact Tania Norris.
by Deb Shaw
The holidays aren’t the only thing to celebrate this weekend, however.
ArtPlantae is celebrating the launch of a new plant-based education display featuring resources for children, parents and teachers. Dedicated specifically to botany and botanical art education, this section features curriculum by the National Gardening Association, children’s books about plants (in English and Spanish), instructional books about drawing and botanical art, plant identification guides, and the Colorful Edibles coloring book published by the American Society of Botanical Artists.
When visiting ArtPlantae at Aurea Vista, don’t miss the display area upstairs featuring books about contemporary botanical art and botanical art history.
Discover more this Saturday during the holiday party. The festivities begin at 4:00 pm and continue until 9:00 pm. Meet local artists and designers and finish your holiday shopping too. Visit ArtPlantae’s new area about plant-based education and receive a free gift. It is located downstairs across from the children’s boutique.
Stop by on your way to the Festival of Lights and the Artists Collective located just down the street on the Main Street Pedestrian Mall.
Free gifts available while supplies last.
A Little About Aurea Vista
Aurea Vista is located in a building in downtown Riverside, California whose life began in 1927 as a hotel built by architect G. Stanley Wilson. Today the building serves as an exciting new marketplace for local artisans, designers, importers, food sellers and craftspeople.
Visit Aurea Vista and discover many treasures such as delicious olive oils by Beyond the Olive, terrarium designs by Brenda Cook of Botanical Perspective, and yards of inspiration (and classes too!) at Raincross Fiber Arts.
Aurea Vista is located at 3498 University Avenue in Riverside on the corner of Lemon and University. Hours are Monday-Saturday (11-8), Sunday (11-5). Store hours are extended for Riverside’s monthly ArtsWalk and other special events.
Parking: Free customer parking is available across the street in the parking lot with the ballet mural. Aurea Vista customers can park in spaces #1-8 that face University Avenue. Street parking is free after 5 PM Monday-Friday. Street parking also is free on Saturday and Sunday.
by Margaret Best
It is with great pleasure that we share the wonderful news that BAGSC member Deborah Shaw has had one of her recent graphite and watercolour works on vellum accepted into the Hunt Institute’s International Exhibition in 2013.
About 11 years ago, shortly after I met Deborah at a class in Arizona, she showed me a graphite study of a white phalaenopsis orchid. Having enjoyed teaching and using graphite myself for a number of years, I recognized that Deborah had exceptional skills in this medium. I was struck by her mastery of perhaps the best continuous tone I had ever seen! The ultimate control required in the smoothest of value changes was evident throughout the piece. The work also displayed a keen awareness of the finest of edges and tiniest of details. Needless to say, I gushed about it and I clearly never forgot it.
Business and family commitments, as well as generosity of heart to fellow artists, have been obstacles to Deborah being able to focus fully on her own art. More recently she has managed to carve out time for her botanical art. She has begun exploration of a surface uniquely suited to her touch and intense awareness of texture – vellum. Vellum has brought it all together for Deborah. What has been so exciting to witness is how she has achieved a marriage of skills in a truly magical way on a surface that challenges even the most experienced artists.
Everybody is very proud of your well-deserved selection in the next Hunt Institute exhibition!
by Deb Shaw and others
There are always new tempting art supplies available, but this year there seems to have been a cascade of new art products that make traveling with art supplies a breeze. Below are just a few of our current favorites. Disclaimer: I’ve included some links and prices where it’s easy and I know the resource. I haven’t done extensive research on who carries what, or who has the best prices. If you click on any of the links below, you’ll go to the exact product page for that website, rather than the home page.
Do you have some favorite new products? Write a review and let me know and we’ll put together another column in the future.
Not yet available in the US, this is the best portable art studio I’ve found! I can fit everything I need for pencil and watercolor artwork, all into one 10″ x 8″ x 4″ canvas satchel. Everything I need now lives permanently in my Carry-all, whether I’m working in the studio, or I’m on the road or in classes.
The Carry-all comes with three “leaves”, held in place by six small notebook-style snap rings. The leaves snap in and out, depending on your travel requirements, and have elastic straps to hold pencils, pens, brushes, etc.
There’s a zippered mesh pocket on the inside front, and a strap on the inside back to hold an A5 sketchbook and other necessary items.
An external pocket, carry handles and a detachable shoulder strap complete the kit. The Derwent Carry-all is available at Ken Bromley Art Supplies (among other UK art suppliers), on sale now for about $26.00 (£15.99). Deb is putting together a BAGSC group order. Watch your email for an offer to participate!
Invisi Lightweight Display Easel
This one is a Ken Bromley exclusive that I’ve tested extensively and will be ordering a lot more (BAGSC members watch for the email to participate).
Originally designed as portable display easel for art exhibitions, the Invisi Easel is made from white corrugated plastic (the same material out of which the Post Office constructs its boxes). Reusable, they lay flat for storage and transport, and snap together in one easy motion to set up.
In addition to using the Invisi Easel to set up an artwork display, I’ve also been using one as an easel in art classes. My neck and back no longer allow me to work hunched over a table, and I work sitting upright at an easel in my studio. The need for lightweight packing for airline travel, however, doesn’t allow me to drag my easel along for art classes.
I’ve been setting up my Invisi Easel, adhering it to the table with a bit of kneaded eraser or tape (so it won’t scoot away as I work). I have my paper (or vellum) on a piece of foam core as I usually do, and I’m ready to draw or paint. No, you can’t put a lot of pressure on the painting as you work, but I haven’t had a problem with painting or drawing. And my back and neck are grateful as well.
The Invisi Easel is about $9.11 each (£5.65), or approximately $40.24 for a 5 pack (£24.95), or approximately $72.50 (£44.95) for a 10 pack. If enough BAGSC members are interested, a pack of 50 is available for about $272.00 (£168.50).
Porcelain Tinting Saucer
This item comes from BAGSC members Elaine Searle and Pat Mark (who discovered it in Elaine’s class). Again, it’s another one of those things we don’t seem to be able to get here in the US yet. A small (only 3.3″ diameter) white porcelain saucer, it has four divisions for mixing paint and is easy to pack. It’s about $3.60 each from Ken Bromley (£2.25). This too will be on our order list for BAGSC member who want to participate, so watch your email.
Koh-I-Noor Watercolor Wheel Set
Thank you to Tania Marien for discovering this gem at the SCAD bookstore at the GNSI conference in Savannah, Georgia. These are available all over, including Dick Blick and my local art store (where I bought mine). Each wheel measures 3-1/4″ in diameter, and set comes with four wheels (trays) that stack and screw together. Each tray holds six colors (seven if you use the middle space, for a total of 24 – 32 colors. The transparent cover can be used for mixing, if you don’t mind mixing in plastic.
Be forewarned; it’s not easy to pry, soak and scrape the original colors out of the pans. Once you do, however, your own palette neatly and easily fills the spaces. I created labels with the paint names and information for the underside of each well. Two sets gave me enough space for my entire palette, plus extra spaces for that squirt of color that I didn’t know I needed from a friend in class.
Faber-Castell Clic & Go Water Pot
Everyone seemed to discover this one at the same time! Easy to find everywhere (at Dick Blick for $3.86 — 26 percent off list), this ingenious water pot collapses for travel (or for a small amount of water) and then expands to hold at least double the amount. Easy to clean, and nicely designed scallops on the rim are the perfect holders for brushes.
I use two.
Caran d’Ache Pencils
Thank you to Margaret Best for steering me to the Caran d’Ache Luminance Lightfast colored pencils and graphite.
The Colored Pencil Society of America (CPSA) worked with the American Society for Testing and Material to develop the ASTM D-6901 standards for lightfastness in colored pencils. After two years in development, the Swiss company Caran d’Ache released their Luminance 6901 Lightfast Pencil Sets: the only brand to offer 76 colors, 61 of which are in the most lightfast (Lightfastness I) category.
The chromatic range of the soft leads is very similar to the watercolor palettes used by botanical artists, and contains the highest level of pigments of any colored pencil. Additionally, the Luminance 6901 colored pencils have been awarded use of the FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) label, guaranteeing that the logging of the California cedar for the pencils is environmentally-friendly and socially and economically sustainable.
The colored pencils come in sets of 16, 38, and 76 from many sources in the US, including Dick Blick, Cheap Joe’s, Jerry’s Artarama, Rex Art, and more. Jerry’s Artarama is the only site I’ve seen in the US that also sells individual colored pencils, but there may be others.
Caran d’Ache also offers a spectacular line of graphite: their Grafwood pencils range from HB through 9B, as well as F, H, 2H, 3H, and 4H. They also carry water-soluble graphite (Caran d’Ache Technolo Water Soluble Graphite Pencils), Grafstone Woodless Graphite Pencils, Charcoal Pencils, and Grafcube Graphite Sticks. The pencils are “color-coded” the entire length of the pencil; the harder the pencil the lighter the silvery-gray color of the barrel.
The only adjectives I can come up with to describe these pencils are the same ones I would use to describe food: luscious, buttery, smooth, creamy, all come to mind. Warning: they’re not cheap. Take a deep breath before looking at the sticker price. As far as I’m concerned, however, they’re absolutely worth it.
By Leslie Walker, posted by Deb Shaw
If you’re thinking about taking Margaret Best’s 3-day workshop at the Huntington Gardens on July 26, 27, 28, now is the time to reserve your space, and send in your deposit and/or your full class fee.
Participants will bring their own specimens (your choice!) and Margaret will focus on meaningful compositional choices for your personal art, or for creating potential entries into the BAGSC Drought Tolerant Plant Exhibition at Chapman University Library next year (intent to submit to the Exhibition is not a requirement of this class). All mediums are welcome in this workshop. This open medium instruction will be a first for BAGSC. Margaret suggests you bring your usual supplies, that includes your own preferred paper and paints/colored pencils, but she is happy to provide her own color palette choices for both mediums upon request. She can be reached via her website with any questions in regards to supplies.
There are still a few spaces available, and you can read more about this class on the prior post for the BAGSC blog.
So, if you had been contemplating attending, now’s the time to both register and find your subject. The cost for this class will be $300. Hold your space with a $50. non-refundable deposit, check made out to BAGSC and sent to Leslie Walker. Final $250. payment due July 1, 2012. Fabriano 5 paper (only available in Europe) will be available for purchase from the BAGSC inventory at class, three half-sheets for $7.00.
Participants should be selecting plants (for drought-tolerant help call Deborah Shaw or Leslie Walker), and starting sketches, color matching, and composition ideas. The more preparation you do ahead of the class the more you will get out of the class.
By Leslie Walker, posted by Deb Shaw
Preparing for an exhibition submission can be an exciting project yet sometimes, also a little daunting. What subject should I pick? Where do I find it? How do I create that particular texture? What type of composition will show the specimen off to its best advantage both in terms of its unique characteristics as well as offer an aesthetically appealing result? You will be able to get help with all of these elements by signing up for Margaret Best’s 3-day workshop at the Huntington Gardens on July 26, 27, 28.
Margaret will be steering participants towards meaningful compositional choices to kick-start a direction for creating potential entries into the BAGSC Drought Tolerant Plant Exhibition at Chapman University Library next year. Not only has Margaret developed a new format for her workshops, already proven in Bermuda, Canada and recently in Italy, she is also experienced in teaching graphite, watercolor and colored pencil and will be therefore welcoming all mediums in this workshop. This open medium instruction will be a first for BAGSC. Margaret suggests you bring your usual supplies, that include your own preferred paper and paints/colored pencils, but she is happy to provide her own color palette choices for both mediums upon request. She can be reached via her website with any questions in regards to supplies.
What you are required to bring with you is your own specimen. For those of you who love to depict colorful flowers, there are many options in this category too, but you should also be aware that the purpose of the exhibition is to bring a focus on the unique structures of drought tolerant and drought resistant plants as well. And the choice is not restricted to purely Californian natives. Once you have made your selection, it is suggested that you familiarize yourself with the plant by completing preliminary sketches and doing some research into the ways that the plant structures you will be depicting, assist in its toughness to survive in regions that are often subjected to periods of time without water. This pre-workshop preparation time is not a pre-requisite to attend (nor is there a pressure to exhibit if you do not wish to do so) but it will help you progress more efficiently with a compositional direction and give you more time for color application and technical assistance.
So the time to both register and start looking for a subject is right away. Don’t miss this opportunity to be a part of this wonderful exhibition but also to be able to prepare for it with Margaret Best.
The cost for this class will be $300. Hold your space with a $50. non-refundable deposit, check made out to BAGSC and sent to Leslie Walker. Final $250. payment due July 1, 2012. Fabriano 5 paper (only available in Europe) will be available for purchase from the BAGSC inventory at class, three half-sheets for $7.00.
Participants should be selecting plants (for help call Deborah Shaw or Leslie Walker) now, and starting sketches, color matching, & composition ideas. The more preparation you do ahead of the class the more you will get out of the class.
See you there!