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Archive for April, 2016

Gouache: What is it?

There was a student in a college watercolor class who was in a discussion with his professor about various techniques and styles. The professor pointed to an example and commented on the use of gouache to achieve opaque layers. Upon seeing this, the student remarked “Oh, so that’s not actually watercolor.”

There still seems to be a notable lack of knowledge about gouache, even among art communities, and we thought we’d shed some light on this venerable painting medium.

The most commonly used definition of gouache is “opaque watercolor.” So… first we need examine what watercolor is, and to define it. In its most basic formulation, watercolor is pigment, bound with gum arabic. This formula ensures that the paint is water-soluble, and that even after drying, will continue to uphold this characteristic. (Interestingly, some of the earliest pre-made watercolor resembles ink sticks from China and Japan, at least in functionality.)

Gouache originally was not a separate type of paint, but rather a modification on transparent watercolor. As early as Persian manuscript illumination, artists would mix a strong, opaque white into their watercolors to ensure opacity. The word “gouache” comes from “guazzo,” an Italian term for the opaquing technique. In this style of execution, gouache is used as a term for a technique used in conjunction with watercolors. In this day and age you can still work in this method, but for ease and convenience, many painters buy pre-made gouache. Pre-formulated gouache can differ in composition by manufacturer and quality grade. Basic and student grades are generally made of pigment and gum arabic with the addition of whiteners (like chalk). Higher-end brands of gouache are often touted as formulated with high pigment loads and coarser pigment than watercolor, so as to yield the purest color possible without the need for additives. Some pigments inherently lend themselves towards a more transparent characteristic, and in those cases, additional opacifiers may be used. Nowadays, the term gouache is used to refer to a specific painting medium that has its roots in a painting technique.

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There’s a rather funny story that tells of an argument between British painters in the 1800’s. Two sides feuded over what was acceptable “true” watercolor painting.  One side maintained that watercolor in transparent application was the superior way to paint, and the opposing side contended that the use of “body color” (opaque watercolor or gouache) was preferable. The polarization between the two groups went on to skew the biases of painters for generations to come. Though this story is just something we’ve heard and its absolute credibility cannot be confirmed, it is a fun way to think of how some peculiar attitudes manifest themselves today.  Many watercolor painters identify as “purists,” and will espouse that only transparent watercolor constitutes true watercolor painting.  However, it is interesting to note that many of the great watercolor artists, Turner, Homer, and Sargent, to name a few, often incorporated opaquing techniques into their works.

Gouache is just another form of water-based media that handles like transparent watercolor. It’s a wonderful way to paint opaquely. It dries quickly but is always re-workable. It harmonizes well with other media. It is totally intermixable with watercolor, and when dry is suitable to be drawn over. It also photographs and scans beautifully, which has made it a favored paint of illustrators. It has a solid history as a versatile and efficient painting medium, and still enjoys contemporary popularity.

But… how the heck do you pronounce it?!   Just say GWASH!

For an even more extensive look at gouache: http://www.handprint.com/HP/WCL/pigmt7.html

Another intriguing article on watercolors: http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/bwtr/hd_bwtr.htm

 

Work Shop Reminder

Just a reminder of a great upcoming acrylic painting workshop!

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Lorri Trogdon: Let’s throw some paint around.  Let it go!
Date: Saturday, May 7th, 12-3:30pm

Fee: $ 55

My workshop is designed to express freedom with paint, color and expression. All levels welcome.  “Summer in the Vineyards” is a fun painting. We will paint together, using fluid acrylics, as I demonstrate step-by-step .  You will go home with a finished piece of art! Class supplies available at ART CENTRAL.   Please contact me lorripaints@gmail.com or 805-709-1105 for sign-up and questions!

Don’t miss out on this fun and educational workshop!

Up Coming Fun!

Momnme

Just a reminder that Art Central’s
Mommy & Me collage play date
is coming up soon!

Mother’s Day Collage Play-Date
Date: Sun. May 8th, 11am-2pm
Fee: $15 – $25
Mothers and your “children” (ages 8 – 98!) are invited to a Collage Play-Date on Sunday, May 8th, from 11am-2pm. Single participants pay $15 while mom and child pairs pay $25. All the materials you will need are included in the cost! Come in with your mom, & celebrate Mother’s day at Art Central! To register Call: (805) 747-4200 or email: artcentralslo@yahoo.com

Don’t miss out on this fun way to celebrate Mother’s Day!

Workshops For Spring

Art Central
has been working hard
to put together
an outstanding schedule
of workshops & demonstrations
for this Spring. 

Check out what these AMAZING instructors are offering!

 

Larry Le Brane: DRAWING FOUNDATION SERIES-THE MAGIC OF LINE
Thursday, April 28, 2016, 5 – 8pm
Fee: $45   3 hr.
Students will apply LINE to achieve illusion of 3-Dimensional space in drawing. Lecture, demo & practice include contour line overlap & compositional alternatives. REGISTER & QUESTIONS: Larron4@charter.net or 805-528-8791

Lorri Trogdon: Let’s throw some paint around.  Let it go!
Date: Saturday, May 7th, 12 – 3:30pm

Fee: $ 55     3 1/2 hr.
My workshop is designed to express freedom with paint, color and expression. All levels welcome.  “Summer in the Vineyards” is a fun painting. We will paint together, using fluid acrylics, as I demonstrate step-by-step .  You will go home with a finished piece of art! Class supplies available at ART CENTRAL.   Please contact me lorripaints@gmail.com or 805-709-1105 for sign-up and questions!

Mother’s Day Collage Play-Date  (NON-instructional)
Dates: Sun. May 8th, 11am – 2pm
Fee: $15 – $25    3 hr.
Mothers and their “children” (ages 8 – 98!) are invited to a Collage Play-Date on Sunday, May 8th, from 11am-2pm. Single participants pay $15 while mom and child pairs pay $25. All the materials you will need are included in the cost!  Come in with your mom, & celebrate Mother’s day at Art Central! To register call Art Central: (805) 747-4200 or email us at artcentralslo@yahoo.com

Lynn Bacigalupo: Calm & Centering Mandalas
Dates: Sun. May 15th, Sun. 1 – 3pm
Fee: $25    2 hr.
Learn how to draw mandalas, an ancient art of symmetrical patterning used to calm and center the mind. We will incorporate your own personal intention and a guided meditation to add depth to our practice. All levels are welcome, no prior experience needed. Some materials provided. Class materials list on hand at Art Central. Contact Lynn Bacigalupo for questions or registration by phone: 805-242-6802 or email: lbacigalupo@gmail.com

David Limrite: Oil Stick Demonstration
Dates: Sun. May 22nd, 1 – 3pm
Fee: Free Demo!    2 hr.
Oil Paint Sticks are versatile, direct, immediate, expressive and, at times, unpredictable. Working with them allows the artist to both draw and paint at the same time. This demonstration will explore basic drawing and painting techniques, as well as, a wide range of advanced techniques such as blending, washes, wiping, scraping, scratching back into, and Alla Prima. Please contact Art Central to reserve your place: (805) 747-4200, artcentralslo@yahoo.com

Larry Le Brane: DRAWING FOUNDATION SERIES-THE ELEMENT OF SHAPE
Thursday, May 26, 2016, 5 – 8pm

Fee: $45    3 hr.
Students will apply SHAPE to achieve the illusion of 3-Dimensional space in drawing. Lecture, demo & practice include 1, 2 & 3-point perspective & structure of forms. REGISTER & QUESTIONS: Larron4@charter.net or 805-528-8791

Lynn Bacigalupo:  Calm & Centering Mandalas
Dates: Sun. June 5th, 1 – 3pm
Fee: $25     2 hr.
Learn how to draw mandalas, an ancient art of symmetrical patterning used to calm and center the mind. We will incorporate your own personal intention and a guided meditation to add depth to our practice. All levels are welcome, no prior experience needed. Some materials provided. Class materials list on hand at Art Central. Contact Lynn Bacigalupo for questions or registration by phone: 805-242-6802 or email: lbacigalupo@gmail.com

Lynn Bacigalupo:  Calm & Centering Mandalas
Dates: Sat. June 11, 1 – 3pm
Fee: $25    2 hr.
Learn how to draw mandalas, an ancient art of symmetrical patterning used to calm and center the mind. We will incorporate your own personal intention and a guided meditation to add depth to our practice. All levels are welcome, no prior experience needed. Some materials provided. Class materials list on hand at Art Central. Contact Lynn Bacigalupo for questions or registration by phone: 805-242-6802 or email: lbacigalupo@gmail.com

Shirley Horacek:  “Gelli Plate Printing Workshop”
Dates: June 18, Saturday, 11am – 2pm
Fee: $25     3 hr.
Experience instant gratification with this introduction to “Gelli Plate Printing”. Create multilayered, colorful, textured prints for printmaking artists.  Quickly create rich, colorful backgrounds for acrylic painters. Effortlessly create layered and textured backgrounds or collage papers for collage artists. The variety of techniques is endless and the techniques are simple to master. The results are stunning! Spend a few hours becoming acquainted with this diverse product and you will wonder how you ever created art without it. Some materials will be provided.  Class materials list is available at Art Central.
Contact Shirley Horacek for questions or registration after May 15, 929-1614, or email bnshoracek@gmail.com.   Registration also available at Art Central.

Larry Le Brane:  DRAWING FOUNDATION SERIES-VALUE: THE ART OF SHADING
Thursday, June 23, 2016, 5 – 8pm
Fee: $45   3 hr.
Students will apply SHADING to achieve realistic & mood lighting in drawing. Lecture, demo & practice include exercises to construct a Value Scale & shading a sphere. REGISTER & QUESTIONS: Larron4@charter.net or 805-528-8791

Flo Bartell:  Dimensional Encaustic
Dates: Sat. June 25th 11am – 4pm AND Sun. June 26th 12 – 4pm
Fee: $175 for 2 sessions 
Join Flo Bartell for Off the Wall With Encaustic, a workshop exploring 3D techniques to use with encaustic (wax). Flo will review basic encaustic painting, help you learn to add 3D elements to your paintings, and introduce the basics for building armatures for 3D encaustic pieces. Previous encaustic experience is not needed. $175 plus one or two painting panels of your choice. All other materials will be supplied. Two days: Saturday, June 25, 11am – 4pm, and Sunday, June 26, 12 – 4pm. To register, contact Flo at flo.bartell@gmail.com with “workshop” in the subject line.

Larry Le Brane:  DRAWING FOUNDATION SERIES-COMPOSITION & CRITIQUE
Thursday, July 28, 2016, 5 – 8pm
Fee: $45  3 hr.
Students will apply COMPOSITION skills to achieve objectives, such as controlled eye movement & use of a focal point in drawing. Lecture, demo & practice include exercises & group CRITIQUE feedback about use of skills. REGISTER & QUESTIONS: Larron4@charter.net or 805-528-8791

Larry Le Brane:  NEW-DRAWING FOUNDATION SERIES-DRAWING CRITIQUE LAB 
Thursday, August 18, 2016, 5 – 8:30 pm
Fee: $50    3 ½ hr.
Beyond ‘Beginning Drawing,’ students in this NEW Drawing Lab will apply Composition, Perspective & Shading for in-class exercises. Guests will participate in group CRITIQUE of in-class drawings, plus sample drawings they bring to class. Includes coaching & individualized student attention, based on class size. REGISTER & QUESTIONS: Larron4@charter.net or 805-528-8791  

Please remember:  We ask our workshop and play-date participants to park along Pepper Street, 1/2 block north of us, if it is not a physical hardship for you to do so.

Upcoming Workshop!

1Larry Le Brane_BW Drawing_ pencil
Just a reminder…

– Larry Le Brane’s fun and informative drawing workshop is coming up

Larry Le Brane: DRAWING FOUNDATION SERIES-THE MAGIC OF LINE
Thursday, April 28, 2016, 5-8pm.
Fee: $45/3 hr.
Students will apply LINE to achieve illusion of 3-Dimensional space in drawing. Lecture, demo & practice include contour line overlap & compositional alternatives. REGISTER & QUESTIONS: Larron4@charter.net or 805-528-8791

Don’t miss out on this great workshop!

You’re Invited!

“Sea Scapes”

A COLLECTION OF OCEAN-RELATED ARTWORK IN A VARIETY OF MEDIUMS

The Real Rock Stars of Morro Bay

Mary Kopecky – “The Real Rock Stars of Morro Bay”

PeggysCove_Lighthouse

Cheryl Strahl – “Peggy’s Cove Lighthouse”

BedOfKelp_small

Sally Lamas – “Otter Bed of Kelp”

JBP-1213 Light Catcher

Jay Bonestell – “Light Catcher”

Larry Le Brane_Blue Fish 1_Fused glass, metal

Larry LeBrane – “Blue Fish”

Spooners1

Rosey Rosenthal – “Stormy Spooner’s Cove”

Rocks of Riomagiore, Italy

Laurie Moore – “Rocks of Riomagiore, Italy”

Join us for the opening of this show!
Art After Dark, Friday, May 6th from 6-8pm. Show runs thru May 30th.

Please visit artsobispo.org/maps/art-after-dark/all to see all the great art receptions this Friday night!

Reminder – Open Studio Tour Earlybird sign-up ends Sunday!

Remember: the deadline to apply for the 2016 Open Studios Art Tour at the early bird rate is this Sunday, April 24th. Hurry–it will save you $50!  

Visit https://artsobispo.wufoo.com/forms/r9ic5a20bazw38/ to apply online.

 

Please note…  We’re just helping Arts Obispo to spread the word – please contact them with any questions you might have about Open Studios.

Thanks!

 

Keep Us Informed!

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Are you teaching a workshop or a class in San Luis Obispo,  North County or South County?

Send us a flyer by email (PDF format preferred) and we will put it up in our window!

Art Central is dedicated to supporting the artistic community of the Central Coast and we are happy to help you advertise your exhibits, calls for artists, classes and workshops!

Use our Space!

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Need a change of setting
while you work on your art?
Come use Art Central’s gallery space!

A change of scenery can do wonders for creativity.
When there are no workshops or demonstrations scheduled, Art Central is happy to offer our gallery to artists who need space to create during our regular store hours. 

Please call us to see if the space is available before you come! 

We have tables, but feel free to bring in your easel and other materials to get working.

And bring a friend or two!

FINALLY…. RAW SIENNA HAS ARRIVED!

Thank you, all you watercolorists, who were waiting for our shipment of Winsor Newton’s Raw Sienna – it has FINALLY arrived, and we’ve got plenty!  Come & get it!