Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Spending the Week With Julie


Julie Ford Oliver
teaching at Tessera Fine Art Gallery
Wichita, Kansas

What an amazing week it was spent with my dear friend and artist Julie Ford Oliver.  She arrived safely in Wichita last Monday, and a whirlwind of fun, laughter and learning started the second she stepped off the plane.  We did so much during the week and I will try to just highlight our week for you.

Julie Ford Oliver teaching her fracturing technique
Tessera Fine Art Gallery in Wichita, KS
 The fracturing workshop was a big hit with all the artists that attended.  Many were there with the hopes to loosen up on their technique and Julie's fracturing helps do just that.  Most were working with oil paints, but there were two artists that worked in acrylic.  We were mesmerized watching Julie paint her demos and truly in awe of her natural knack for color.  She made it all look so easy, but it really isn't.  I was glad we had three days to work at it.  

Julie making the rounds with each artist
Tessera Fine Art Gallery in Wichita, KS
 We spent time at our easels and Julie made the rounds to help us along.  She limits the number of attendees in her workshops for this very reason.  It's important to her to give individual attention so that everyone can walk away feeling they have really learned something.  Her teaching spirit was such a gift to all of us.

Lunch break
 The class went from 9 am to 4 pm for three days...though we went later every single day.  We took much-needed lunch breaks each day.  It is exhausting to engage your mind in such a way for so long.

Our class minus two
There were eight students one day and seven the other days of the workshop...one student could not attend all three days.  We had a blast together and of course everyone adored Julie like I do.  



cup
oil on canvas
about 5 x 7
 We all painted an imaginary cup using the fracturing technique.  I lost my fracturing lines in this one, but I was happy with the colors.

backyard
oil on canvas panel
9 x 12 inch
 We each also brought an old painting that we wanted to fix.  My backyard painting was the first painting I ever did in oil.  I worked on it for a while, but it still is not finished.

rose
oil on panel
6 x 6 inch
   Julie advised all of us to "stop right there!"  at one point or another on our paintings...some listened...some didn't.  There was a point when this rose looked better and Julie advised me to stop.  But being the poor listener that I am, I just kept on painting and almost ruined it completely. 


vase of flowers
oil on panel
6 x 8 inch
 I listened on my vase of flowers.  :)

river scene
oil on panel
 The above painting was done on a panel primed with bright pink.  Julie gave us all pink panels to paint on and the exercise was to allow some of the pink to show through.    It's a pretty neat effect.  Who would have thought?

 living room
oil on panel
6 x 8 inch

My living room painting was my favorite of all the paintings I did during the workshop.  I love that you can see the fracturing in it and the light in the windows turned out well.  Values are something I am working on right now, and Julie is big on values.  It is very evident in her work.  


Flint Hills
Kansas
photo taken by Julie Ford Oliver
 The workshop filled the bulk of Julie's visit, but there was time to play also.  One afternoon we took the 1 1/2 hour drive on highway 177 to the Flint Hills.  Julie said it looked a lot like parts of England, which is where she is from.  We saw the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve which is the only national park in Kansas.  On the way we stopped near Matfield Green (population 47!) and looked at all the wildflowers blooming.  We saw beautiful farms, barns, bridges, buildings and even saw a cowboy rounding up cattle.  It was a real day in Kansas for sure...filled with green grass and big blue skies.  Then we finished the day with dinner at the Grand Central Hotel in Cottonwood Falls.

Wichita Wagonmaster tour boat on the Arkansas River
  Julie's visit was during Wichita's annual Riverfest so we saw the tour boat going back and forth one evening as we walked.  We watched a couple of movies too...About a Boy and Miss Potter.

sunset near the Arkansas River
Wichita
For those of you that already know Julie, it won't surprise you that a sunset like this one makes her pretty happy.

Me and Julie
on our last evening
 We really had such a beautiful week, and I don't feel like I've done it justice in my writings here.  Julie has an abundance of energy like me, so we click together very well.  I loved learning from her and listening to her stories about art and life during the week.   She has a wealth of information and knowledge tucked into her pretty head.    My only complaint about the week is that it went way too fast!

I am so grateful for Julie coming to visit us, and for teaching her workshop here in Wichita.  It was a gift to have her here and I know I speak on behalf of everyone else in the class.  They are already talking about her coming back.

I hope you all are well.  I will probably take a break from blogging.  There are paintings dancing in my head and I need to focus for a while.  I will still try to pay some visits as I am long overdue to see what you have been up to.

Happiness to all of you!

♥ Lisa

16 comments:

  1. Bless you for all the nice things you have said, sweet Lisa.
    Thank you for such a great recap. As you know my camera took a week off or something because all my images are blue! I am going to direct everyone to here so triple thanks again!
    Missing you and your wonderful group of artists..

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  2. Your friend Julie looks so nice and she is so talented!

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  3. Looks like you both (all) had a good time - well done Julie, and thank you Lisa for the update

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  4. Looks like you both (all) had a good time - well done Julie, and thank you Lisa for the update

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  5. The joy in your friendship with Julie is so abundant in this post. I love all of your (workshop) paintings and hearing the snippets of the fun you guys had. Enjoy your focus time -- I find it completely necessary to do on a regular basis -)

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  6. What a great week! I sure wish I had been close enough to be in that painting workshop.
    Your painting colors have changed-the combinations and light in them. Great!

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  7. That was a week I would have loved, too.

    I do that now and then and paint my canvas one color before I work. It changes the entire look. Great work.

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  8. Great post, Lisa! I love seeing you and Julie together...you look similar to each other, both very beautiful ladies.

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  9. You can tell from your pics and your words that you have a special relationship. I am sure there will be lots more wonderful times ahead.

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  10. Enjoy your time away from blogging Lisa! Next week I'm taking a little time away from the computer as well. I have a very painful hand that needs rest...not sure if it's arthritis or carpal tunnel syndrome....all I know is that it hurts! I've been typing with my left hand! Lol. Love all your work here and love the photo of you and Julie! What a treat!!

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  11. Thanks for sharing all your photos and your experience in the workshop. Love Julie's work. Looks like you all learned a lot and had great fun.

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  12. Nice to be able to appreciate these moments through two blogs of friends, almost like being present with you in real life.
    Great feeling of harmony and cooperation that comes to my heart.
    In a world often conflicting, I am happy to see and enjoy the beauty of the meetings. Painting and loving art practicet is a language that can overcome any distance., I today I felt happy and joyful with you! Thanks Lisa for these beautiful pictures!

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  13. Nice to be able to appreciate these moments through two blogs of friends, almost like being present with you in real life.
    Great feeling of harmony and cooperation that comes to my heart.
    In a world often conflicting, I am happy to see and enjoy the beauty of the meetings. Painting and loving art practicet is a language that can overcome any distance., I today I felt happy and joyful with you! Thanks Lisa for these beautiful pictures!

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  14. Sounds like a perfect time you will remember for a long time and use every day. Something to treasure. xox

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  15. Lisa, you did give us a great idea of how the workshop was and I enjoyed reading about it. Your paintings from the workshop look great and fresh, so glad to see you together in the lovely photo!

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  16. Dear Lisa-Thank you so much for sharing Julie' s wonderful workshop. It was a treat to see your photos and your lovely art. What fun. I know you made memories as well as learned so much from sweet Julie. Loved the last photo of the two of you. Happy blog break. I am sure you will be busy creating.

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Thank you so much for your visit and comment!