September 9, 2012 § 6 Comments

Years ago in art school I had a color theory instructor who used to call, “Notes!” when he was ready to lecture. I’ve been taking an oil painting class on Thursdays from painter extraordinaire, Gretchen Hancock, through the Bainbridge Arts & Crafts Gallery. This last week Gretchen painted a demo outside, giving us marvelous pointers about painting landscapes as she applied paint to her 6 x 6 inch panel. The rest of us sat. I took notes.

When I was very young -and restless- my mother kept 3 x 5 index cards in her purse for me to draw on. She let me use her Lindy ballpoint pen, which was the bee’s knees of the ’50’s. Maybe that’s why I like to sketch so much with a pen.

Seabold Community Center © Pierr Morgan  – wooden pony pen, hand carved in Mexico


* Marc Dalessio – extraordinary Plein Air painter with a video on “sight-line painting”

* Limit your palette

* Outdoors: What’s interesting to you? What format will you use? (square, rectangle, etc) What’s going to be light? (I heard Gretchen say “white”, which is what I jotted down, but as a general rule in painting she told us to “remember all white is gray” until the very end when white is used for highlights.)  What’s going to be dark?

* The “E-Z-L” – easel umbrella for Plein Air painters

* Twisty Tie – sold at Ace Hardware (not its brand name, it’s a nifty bendable plastic cord about 18 inches long -comes in several colors- with a surprisingly strong hold, to keep a portable easel folded up…or a bazillion other uses in your life)

I’m a Lefty. Generally I begin to write in a column down the right side of the page so the palm of my hand won’t smudge the ink. In between notes I doodle or sketch on the left side at something that catches my eye. Thursday I brought my wooden pony pen with the rooster on its head. Pony’s been standing very straight in a basket on my drawing table now for two years. Thought it was time I let him stretch his legs a bit. WHoo-hoooo! Nice stride.


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§ 6 Responses to Notes!

  • Jan Martin says:

    Sounds like a great class. How many are in the class. I hope you don’t get rained on too much. We are at Birch Bay and today was so cool we had to turn on the heat this evening. Last night we had to leave the door open for awhile because it was too warm. Sat. we went to the Bellingham Farmers Market and then on part of the Whatcom County Farm tour. We learned lots about Filbert orchards. Do you know that they can live for centuries. If the trees rot, you can just cut down the tree and they will quickly regrow from the roots. Also the Eastern gray squirrels are taking about 50% of the crop. Tough way to make a living.Jan

    • pierrmorgan says:

      Hi Jan at Birch Bay! There are 8 of us in the class and there’s just one more Thursday session. The weather forecast calls for sunshine this week. A good one for squirrels…and outdoor painters.

  • Brandt Morgan says:

    Pierr, the part about the 3×5 cards brings a big smile and a warm rush of memory. And your drawing/notes? Delightful. I think you’re the bee’s knees! Love Brandt

  • I keep leaving my sketchbook at home, thinking I’ll remember to jot a quick sketch and notes and of course forgetting when I get home. This is a great reminder to keep it with me! Love the quick sketch and notes 🙂

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