At Scottsdale Artist School With Marc Hanson

Prologue: As mentioned in my previous blog, I originally intended to write one blog entry a day during last weeks workshop with Marc Hanson at Scottsdale Artists’ School, but for some reason could not upload pictures to my weblog from my laptop. For those who follow me on Facebook, I was able to upload some photos there, so pardon the repetition. Below is a day by day account written after arriving home…

Today was the first day of class with Marc Hanson at Scottsdale Artists’ School. There are only 6 in the class, from all over including Alaska and Canada.

In the morning, Marc went through a slide show of his paintings, both plein air and studio works to give us an idea of what it takes to do small plein air pieces then a large studio work from the plein air. Marc then did a black and white value sketch derived from a plain air piece he had just done in Sedona, AZ a few days before. I have never done a value sketch like this, but can see the advantages if you need to work out certain ideas and values without color getting in the way.

In the afternoon, he did a large color painting of the same scene, Courthouse Rock in Sedona, Arizona.

The next day we went to a nearby city park, Papago Park, to gather some small field studies. One late student arrival showed, which made the total class size seven. The object of this one week workshop is to gather field studies the first couple days, then take those into the studio and produce large paintings from the field studies.

Papago Park has some nice desert scenes with large jutting rocks, cacti, palm trees, ponds, and other formations. It was a nice place to work, and also during this time of year it is warm, but not terribly hot! I decided to first sketch a group of rocks in a black and white study (using only Ivory Black and White paint) as Marc suggested.

Below is the scene. The rocks are in the distance, although they were actually closer than what appears in this photo…

The park was nice with picnic tables set up with a roof. Just right for getting out of the Phoenix sun…

Below is a quick snapshot of the value study on my easel…

I then did the exact same scene in color. Good practice! I actually like the black and white just as good or better!!

We met again at Papago Park, this time by some ponds just a short distance from where we were the day before. I decided to do a piece concentrating on the water. Below is a picture near where I painted, but I forgot to get a shot of the exact scene…

Some pictures of the group painting around the pond…

DAY 4 & 5
We met back at Scottsdale Art School for two days of studio painting from what we gathered in the field. I had painted 7 small pieces, 6×8 & 8×10, including both black and white value studies, and color studies.

Below are a few shots of the classroom the two days…

I finished two ‘large’ pieces the two studio days, both 16×20 shown below. These are snapshots from my iPhone, so maybe not the best quality. I had to leave the large wet paintings with my nephew in Phoenix as I had no way to carry them home on the airplane.

After spending the weekend with my nephew Jeff, I flew home late Sunday night.

All in all, it was a great week. It was my first time at the school, as I have always wanted to attend a workshop there. Marc is also such a good and helpful instructor. Hopefully our paths will cross again soon!

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