Sunday, January 20, 2013

Sunnyvale Heritage Orchard & Drawing Exercises, January 17, 2013

After several challenging paint-outs, weather-wise, we had an absolutely perfect day, weather-wise (for January at least), for a day in the Sunnyvale Heritage Orchard.    The day started out with Sylvia presenting a series of drawing exercises:   We limbered up our fingers, honed our eye-hand coordination, and were guided through a series of drawing exercises, each focused on a specific technique.     (The past few years Jenny & Sylvia have presented a number of informal painting demonstrations which have been well attended and unanimously appreciated -- always more informative and entertaining than advertised.   Watch for the next one!)     Then, hands twitching and heads bursting with new ideas, we headed out to tackle old farm equipment, gnarled apricot trees, and patches of mustard.

For additional information about the Sunnyvale Heritage Orchard, check-out:  
and for the affiliated Heritage Park Museum:

Dick Zunkel
Sylvia's mini-seminar covered the material in my six-week drawing 101 class in about a half hour, and did it better. With her inspiring instruction still in my mind I rendered the old wagon at Heritage Park with brush pen and watercolor wash. I chose to sit near the subject so as to force the perspective. The other side of the wagon would have made a more interesting subject due to the odd way it was resting on the berm, but the light was better on the south side.   Dick

Keiko O'Leary - Orchard Tree and Mustard

 Sylvia's exercises made a big difference for me. I have done many of them before, but to do all of them just before a painting session made the painting so much easier. I'm hoping I'll have the discipline to incorporate a few of these exercises into my pre-painting routine. I think doing gesture drawings of the trees beforehand allowed me to capture the essence of this tree when I painted it. Thank you, Sylvia!     Keiko

Mary Paquet 
I loved the drawing exercises and applied some of the gestural work on the tree and some negative painting. Harking back to our lesson on the use of ink by Dick Zunkel, I added the small branches using a dip pen and ink because I left my rigger brush at home. Loved the beautiful day we captured.   Mary

Brad Santos
I had fun with the drawing session --- now all I have to do is practice, practice, practice!   Class over, I wondered into the orchard and ended up painting (I think) the same tree I painted the last time we were here.  And I think I managed to get in a few more branches than last time.    For sure the background is better.     I reckon the next time I'll put it all together.   Brad

Sylvia Waddell - Blind Contour Drawing
Blind contour drawing is a great exercise in eye-hand coordination. Resisting the urge to look at your drawing is really tough!  Sylvia

Jenny Tero
Sylvia's drawing exercises were much appreciated and I learned a lot just by doing things I wouldn't normally think of doing. Having had a "bad-paint day"  here's my attempt at a left handed pencil portrait - I know it doesn't look like anyone on earth, but I was surprised that I was able to even get a face.  This might be a way to "loosen up" - with a bit more practice!    Jenny

The "Drawing Exercises" session before the Paint-out
 Limbering up to draw

Engaged in the "negative painting" exercise
The attentive class

The inspirational instructor

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