Monday, April 22, 2013

Transparencies and Reflections with Pauline Fraisse

I've been a little reluctant to do too much blogging out of respect for the tragedy and turmoil that occurred in Boston. But, things seemed to have settled down a bit, so I'll get back at it.

I finished the course with Pauline last Sunday. This was a very enjoyable 3 day course. Pauline is a  talented artist and instructor. She is well organized and has her own methodology to help students develop their observation and drawing skills. You can read more about her on her website.

The class started on Thursday evening at her studio not far from the Place de la Republique. You reach her studio at the end of a long hallway after passing through two small courtyards. After we all introduced ourselves (retired French doctor, pleasant French woman, French woman who runs a guest house in Cambodia, a half-Syrian, half-Iraqi woman living in Saudi Arabia, a young American student vacationing with her aunt who lives in Holland, and myself... an eclectic group) we started with some creative exercises that we would be putting to more practical use in the next morning's on site work.

That first evening we worked on forms and shapes in glass. We created a collage of a jar  by cutting colors from magazines and gluing them together to form the jar. We concentrated on seeing the forms and shapes that shadows and reflections made in the glass as well as the opaque and transparent surfaces. Some of the results were  better than others but we all understood the exercise and when we actually drew the jar with pencil or ink, we were able to see everything more clearly. The next morning we put this training to work at the Bacarat Museum where we were allowed to sketch some of the amazing cut glass on display (as long as we were quiet, respectable and didn't break anything).

So, each evening we would work on the creative side of the training followed by the practical side the next morning. For example, for water, we tore colors from magazines to make a collage showing how the reflections or waves in water got closer together as they receded. 
I added the bridge!
 The next day we went to the Bassin de la Villette to work on water studies keeping in mind what we  had talked about the night before.

We worked on light and reflections in glass and mirrors, transparency in glass or cloth, shadows and light while also improving the technique and accuracy of our drawing. Although I was a little skeptical at first, I think this method works very well and we all had a lot of fun. Here are Sarah, Pauline and Jean Pierre working on their sketches in a cafe near the Marais.

As the days passed we all got to know each other a little better and learned something about each other's lives. We had plenty of time to talk while sketching or walking from site to site. One afternoon, between sessions, 4 of us had lunch together and resolved all the world's problems over a good meal  in a local cafe.

Here is our "team" photo.

1 comment:

  1. Le coup de la bague en or :


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