Monday, April 9, 2012

Creative breakout class with Bill Buchman

Last week in class with Bill Buchman, we learned more about color theory. He started with a lecture about color, showed us what he meant by color temperature and opposite/complimentary as well as nuetral colors and we also talked about our "bad painting" exercise the week before.

Then, we had a short amount of time to do an exercise based on his talk. For structure, Bill asked us to draw some letters using oil pastel which would resist the watercolor media we would paint over the letters. The letters should overlap to make it interesting. Bill did the one below while we worked on our own.

Color chart above is in Bill's book, Expressive Figure drawing
Close up of Bill's try - I just love the colors!! You can tell he is quite practiced at color theory.
Below, you will see some student work and different approaches to Bill's color exercise. I did not note whose work was whose while photographing but would be happy to add your name to your piece if you email me.

caught Bill Buchman by surprise here . . .
I have been having a great time learning from him and painting in his class. 
I will certainly miss it when class ends April 23.

(above) This is mine and I do not like it one bit!
I find solace in the remark that Bill made in an earlier class. He said,
"An artist is someone who can make something he does not like but goes on
to make more pieces, does not give up."
I know this one above is Barbara's, it is beautiful!

Another view of Bill Buchman's piece. 
Bill has made some great instructional DVDs should you want to learn from him yourself. Watching them is like being in a class with him. I have watched Zen Breakthrough: Making Contemporary Experimental Art with Sumi-e Brushes, reed pens and Mixed media and will go back again and again to learn more. My friend Frieda Oxenham in Scotland, purchased Bill's video Creative Breakout, The Art of Freedom and loved it! There are more DVDs available too - I just got his new one: Keeping the Melody: Making Contemporary Abstracts with Inspiring Materials and Techniques. I know this will keep me busy practicing his ideas and techniques till the next time I can take class in person with him again. There are a few more weeks to go of classes at the Longboat Key Center for the arts, so I am sure to be back with more.

I do like this part of my exercise a bit . . . click to view

: ) lenna 


  1. To try something so different can bring a new eye to your art. I think you did a great job and though you may not like it as a whole it's knowing that you are freely exploring, and can always go over some things (change them)that makes it all good.Happy painting!

  2. Thank you, Linda. Your words are so kind & true. We did more painting today that I will share soon!

  3. I bet you learned a lot doing the exercise, Lenna, even if you don't like the result, and that's what really matters in workshops. I'm sure the next try will be much more to your taste!

  4. and of course after leaving the above comment I just had to go and check out if stocked the Keeping the Melody DVD, they did and I clicked!!
    I enjoyed the previous one so much that I can't wait to view this one and I know if you like it I will too!

  5. Really interesting lessons learned here. And of course, it doesn't matter one jot that you didn't particularly like what you'd produced for that exercise - that's what learning is all about. I read an article today about not striving to be perfect in every artwork we create, and how it can be creatively stunting to try to be so.

    Looking forward to seeing what else you produced in your painting exercises.




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