Friday, April 1, 2011

Jennifer McChristian Workshop - Continued

Although the first day of the Scottsdale workshop was inside due to rain and cold, the rest of the week was outside at beautiful locations around the area. The weather was just fabulous and so nice to enjoy the sunshine while painting. This demo above of Jennifer's was at the Papago Park location, where we painted for two days. So many great things to paint there! In addition to painting, I took TONS of reference photos that will no doubt make it into my paintings in the future.

Below I included my painting of the second day of the workshop. It is another study which I included the reference photo, value study, and the color study. Again, these are VERY SMALL, about 4" x 5.5", so the aim was to capture the big shapes and simplify them. It takes lots of practice to weed out the many details of a scene and only concentrate on big shapes and the major value areas. One of the ladies in the workshop who was accustomed to painting on very large canvases kept saying she felt like she was painting on postcards! However, it was a good way to keep the shapes simple and really concentrate on values. When I finally did a painting on an 8x10 canvas later in the week, I felt like I was painting on a giant canvas! These exercises were a great learning experience for me and something I will do again and again to develop the skills of painting that I would like to in my own painting experiences.

(Click on image to see enlarged)


  1. Denise, Another wonderful post on your workshop experience with Jennifer. I really like the "postcard" idea and the painting of the gray values is just plain smart! You did a wonderful job on the studies you posted and I like the brushwork and colors. Thank you for sharing with all of us.

  2. Thanks for sharing your experience with this workshop. Looks like you had a wonderful experience. Jennifer is a wonderful artist and looks to be a great teacher too! Hope to take one of her workshops in the future!

  3. Denise, your taking the time to document what you did in Jennifer's workshop is so helpful. These photos are great at showing the process of a good landscape painting. Two things stand out . . . the importance of value sketches, and working small until you get it right. I echo the others . . . thanks for sharing!

  4. Denise,
    I so envy your chance to work under such wonderful instructors as Jennifer and Nancy Franke, among others.

    Nice little painting you did for this post. It will be interesting to see how your work is influenced.

  5. love that painting! You are a good student---good post!