Monday, June 4, 2012

Workshop with Mike Svob

This past weekend I had the good fortune to be able to attend a two day workshop with Mike Svob, an artist from Vancouver BC. His work is collected all over the world and much loved for his wonderful sense of colour. He is a terrific, giving instructor, has a great sense of humour and really worked hard at assisting everyone. As workshops go it was a five star and we all gained valuable knowledge to build on our painting skill base. If you ever get a chance to take a workshop from him, I would highly recommend it. He has a five day workshop coming up in White Rock in August and it's posted on his website if you're interested. He also has a book that you can buy online called Paint Red Hot Landscapes That Sell.



Mike believes in creating value study thumbnails where you can try a variety of scenarios, and if the thumbnails aren't, you don’t go ahead with the painting. The value studies are broken into light, midtone and darks. The values that fall in between are pushed to the value that they are closest to, or as Mike says “whichever value guy he seems to be hanging around with.” Mike believes that value is the most important aspect of a painting and if you get the values right, you can assign just about any colour in that value spot.


Here is Mikes reference photo. He cropped down to the two people on the left. And here is his new design using this reference.



I totally loved that he changed just about everything in terms of colour. It was so exciting to watch the transformation and he did it so effortlessly.

The first day we painted in acrylics and the second day in oils. Below is my reference photo and the acrylic painting that came out of it using his techniques.





Sorry it's a bad photo because I photographed the photograph to save time in searching for it on my computer.



I've been very focused on painting from life for both my still life work and my landscapes in plein air, so this has excited me SO much because I don't have to capture the perfect shot on the perfect day, or wander around looking for a terrific scene being lit by a heavenly beam of light. Not that I don't love plein air of course! But now I can trust myself to make some of it up and have a wonderful time doing it!  I'm sure many of you have been interpreting a great deal more than I was willing to do, so you might not find this so exciting. But this way outside my comfort zone and I'm totally pumped about it!




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13 comments:

  1. Une publication pleine d'intérêt... J'aime lire les explication et admirer les exemples...
    C'est très enrichissant.
    Gros bisous à vous.

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    1. Hi Martine, so glad you enjoyed the explanation and photos. It was a great weekend! Thanks for visiting!

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  2. Ooh! It sounds like you learned a lot! That would have been a fun workshop!

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    1. It really was a wonderful weekend, I learned so much. I hope I can practice soon! Thanks for visiting and commenting, I really appreciate it.

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  3. What a wonderful workshop, Claire!! I love what you've done! Beautiful colors as well.

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    1. Thanks Hilda, I really appreciate your feedback. It was a great workshop!

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  4. Very nice. Looks like a great workshop.

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    1. Thanks Karen, it really was a great workshop.

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  5. You made a spectacular painting, you turned the already beautiful reality into a stunning beauty , bravo !

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    1. Thanks you Jane! It was such a fun workshop and I feel like I have a whole new approach to creating.

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  6. Beautiful painting, Claire! Mike Svob catapulted you to seeing the landscape differently . . . but it fits right in with the clarity of color and light you already use in your still-lifes. I've been exploring the same thing—using a life reference to start and then turning away and making the rest up. It feels like a revelation! Thanks for posting Mike's site.

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    1. Thank you Lorraine, I so appreciate your comment. I just loved how he opened my eyes to possibilities I hadn't considered before. And it all made sense to me - it's very exciting.

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  7. what a fantastic workshop Claire. And your painting turned out great!

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