Thursday, March 29, 2012

Noela's ants

Yes, I've made it into the studio!
Can't believe how daunted I was feeling before I put brush to paper - ridiculous!!!!!!!
Anyhow - here is my attempt at a Li Jun style drawing/painting - inspired by Elfi's ants on her blog yesterday.
Thanks Elfi for giving me motivation - all the way from Switzerland!!
The background paper is one of many I have created over the past few months - I will explain in a later blog.
Elfi's ant...
...experiments and 'getting it right'....
I had the stamp made in China - it says 'Noela Mills' in the old seal style of writing, and I had them add my NM flowing initials [top R corner]. The rest of the Chinese writing says 'Year of the dragon' and 'ants' thanks to Babel Fish - could be grossly inaccurate but should create a laugh anyway.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Li Jun - BIRDS

Traditional Chinese painting is done to a formula - the Masters practice this formula, specialising in their favourite subject matters until they can paint this subject blindfolded [my words!!]. We challenged Li Jun by giving him a photo of an Australia bird - a scarlet wren- to 'copy'. It was an unfamiliar bird to him, so he 'drew' the bird on the paper with his finger, for maybe 30 seconds, before picking up his brush.
I 'nagged' him to stop after the red was added but the students voted to add some feet.

Here is the result - pretty darned gorgeous!!
...and here are some details of birds from his paintings on display...
...and now for the 'step by step' lesson for the students...

...and the final demo painting right way up....

Now to apply these techniques to our own subject matter - can't wait to get out my brushes!!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Li Jun Classes - FROGS

Wow - what an amazing few days it has been.

Sorry about the month of no blogging - I have been very busy sorting and organising and booking people for this incredible experience.

Li Jun had taught us how to use our brushes! Such an obvious and basic skill, but one which we in the West seem to be lacking. The subtle pressures and weights, twists, loading of ink/water/paint, wiping of material to create a fine point, scratchy backwards pushing to create texture, etc, etc.

These skills and many more were taught over the 3 days of workshops [30+ students], and half day demonstration, through exercises painting frogs, fish, prawns, bamboo, birds and even mushrooms.

Many more 'how to's' to follow over the next week or so of blogging. the 'how to's' for the students...

...and some more the next day...
...and to top it all off, Li Jun is a very lovely and generous man.

He has made many new friends, and we are grateful to have connected with him on such a creative level. No matter that we couldn't speak each other's languages..... we speak the same language of ART.