Day 1: Weekend with the Masters

Had a great first day at the event, both seeing many great demo's and lectures, and also meeting many of the top painters alive today.

I started off the day helping out in a David Leffel demo. He doesn't use any solvent like mineral spirits or turpentine, and only cleans his brushes by wiping them off on a paper towel. He said that he can't waste the time of washing his brushes or palette . . . He does use a gel medium from a tube. (I'm trying to find out the exact name and brand, so I'll post it if I find out.)

I then jumped into Scott Christiensen's demo where he was painting from a previous study and explained his approach and techniques.

The highlight of the day was Richard Schmid's demo. He painted a still life of oranges, peaches and carnations, and had a ton of light conversation and jokes--keeping the crowd very well pleased. (Sorry for the poor photos, it was really dark in the large hall.)

The rest of the afternoon was spent peaking into Sherie McGraw's head study demo of Morgan Weistling, Scott Burdick's lecture on the beauty of art and the craziness of the modern art movement. I was also able to jump outside for a minute and peak in on a plein air workshop.

To top off the day, there was an absolutely extraordinary panel discussion with Richard Schmid, Quang Ho, Sherie McGraw, Jeremy Lipking, Scott Burdick, Rose Frantzen, Dan Gerhartz and Carolyn Anderson. The topics began around technology and it's place within representational painting, and then also drifted into modern art, social media, and photo manipulation. If you can find a video out there on the internet, it will be well worth the watch. I was literally on the edge of my seat, and each of the artists statements had some great nuggets of truth and inspirational little quotes.

Well, it was a great first day, and I'm looking forward to tomorrow which is very workshop intensive and filled with even more demos. I hope to do the same as today and as I'm around helping out with the event, try and jump into all of them for at least a few minutes.