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10-18-2013, 02:13 PM
Unlock the Door to Your Creativity: Fearless Creating in Watercolor, Acrylic and Mixed Media (http://www.artistsnetworkuniversity.com/courses/unlock-the-door-to-your-creativity-fearless-creating-in-watercolor-acrylic-and-mixed-media)

From her book The Artist’s Muse, Betsy Dillard Stroud offers this course to help you jump start your creativity with four creative challenges. Betsy says, “To be creative you simply open the door of the subconscious mind, allowing thoughts and images to emerge unedited.” Challenges always lead you to the next step, the next brushstroke, the next great painting.

In this course, there are four innovative creative challenges for you to explore, and each challenge offers many approaches to experiment in a variety of ways. Douse your artistic embers with kerosene and find the glorious discoveries that hide behind your creative door. All media are welcome, but the instructor will use only watercolor and watermedia in her images. As Jackson Pollock said, “Painting has a life of its own. I try to let it come through.”

Start Date: October 22, 2013 (http://anu.register.fwmedia.com/Course?CourseId=3057-2)

Tuition: $149.99

Instructor: Betsy Dillard Stroud (bio (http://www.artistsnetworkuniversity.com/meet-the-instructors/betsy-dillard-stroud))

Course Materials:

The Artist’s Muse: Open the Door to Your Creativity by Betsy Dillard StroudCourse Length: 4 weeks

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What You’ll Learn:

Techniques to make you think and paint creatively
Innovative approaches guaranteed to get you out of your creative rut
Painting ordinary subjects in an extraordinary way
Approaching subject matter more spontaneously and intuitivelyWho should take this course:
Intermediate to advanced painters (those that have had more than two year’s experience painting in watercolor, acrylic or mixed media.)
Those painters who yearn for new approaches to their subject matter
Those painters who like a modern, intuitive, approach to subject matter, that is based on classical wisdom.Course Syllabus:

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Session One: Pouring on Your Creativity (pages 25 – 29)
In this exercise, you are offered two different approaches to pour a painting. In the first example, (which is my preferred way of pouring) you can pour by using various ways to mask out your painting, either resist or with wax paper or paper you wish to use later as collage. In the second approach (which is Betty Braig’s) you will first create a layer of various papers and objects like gauze, Kleenex, stencils, etc. and spray paint from bottles over these objects.
The paint will seep under and you will be left with a plethora of interesting textures which you can then refine and burnish till you have a finished painting.
Images for Reference:
Whatever Happened to Randolph Scott on page 25 of The Artist’s Muse
Self Portrait by Betsy Dillard Stroud
Meditative Flow by Betsy Dillard Stroud
The Edges of My Mind by Betsy Dillard Stroud
Session One: Materials List
Watercolor or acrylic (I prefer watercolor for this exercise.)For my pouring technique: And see further instructions in the book with pictures to illustrate.
Use any five to seven pigments that you wish. Make sure you have at least two pigments that make a good gray. Mix them to any intensity you wish in plastic cups. I suggest you go light at first.
Use a watercolor board or a full sheet of watercolor to get the benefit of this lesson.
Wax paper, blue artist’s tape and/or drafting tape for the first exercise.
Choose one object and repeat this object on this exercise. Please don’t use cards, as they are my invention for this exercise. Use your imagination. Example: use leaves, shells, flowers, just shapes, boxes, keys, etc.For Betty Braig’s pouring materials: (Her step by step are also included in the book)
Use gauze, lace, Kleenex, paper towels, stencils, doilies, and any other materials that will make an imprint as you spray paint over them.
Place them on a full sheet or half sheet of hot or cold press watercolor paper
Small Spray bottles from a beauty supply place or an art storeSession Two: Inside the Creative Rectangle (pages 46-50)
Using either Paul Klee or Mondrian as your inspirational start, you will create a painting of your own. Also, you can depart from these painters and use your own choice. The point is to depart from the original idea by keep some of that idea in your painting.
For Iris I Saw in A Dream: Look up Paul Klee on the internet or in your favorite book store. Notice how he composes some of his paintings with rectangular shapes. That type of composition was the inspiration for this painting, and my subconscious added the Iris. This is quite a compelling story about the power of the subconscious. A year before I did this painting, I dreamed I walked in an iris. It was gorgeous, with tall, velvet purple walls, mottled with orange and other colors. As I walked down the bottom petal by the beard of the iris, I noticed I was surrounded by all types of architectural motives. Pediments; pilasters; columns; and the like. I tried to paint that image and it didn’t work. Then, a year later, as I began to talk about Klee to a class, I all of a sudden said that I think I’ll add an iris into this architectural setting. I actually painted my dream by doing this painting, although it took me a month or so to realize what I had done.
Work in watercolor or transparent acrylic for this exercise
Draw your composition using architectural motifs or geometric objects of all kinds.
If you’d like, think of a symbol that you’d like to add that you are attracted to.Images for Reference:
Iris I Saw in a Dream
A Summer Place
For paint, use watercolor or acrylic transparently.
Look these artists up on the internet if you don’t have any books with their paintings in them. For Klee, use watercolor and anything else you think you need.
You should work on a full sheet of cold press watercolor for this exercise.Session Three: Painting flowers from Chapter: The Spring of Creativity (pages 11-16)
You may paint on canvas or paper and paint inspired by any of these artists:
Barbara Nechis–Painting Flowers through Improvisation
Anne Bagby: Creating a decorative Backdrop for Flowers
Janet Walsh: Magical Diffusions (Painting Flowers directly onto the paper with watercolor)
Donald Clegg: Making the Ordinary Extraordinary (use an unusual palette of muted colors, grays, browns, etc.)
Betsy Dillard Stroud (Painting wet into wet, letting the painting dry, and then painting in your flower–the focus Is on using interesting greens, using green with other colors.)Use my flower and the flower of Barbara Nechis as examples here. If you’d like to put these in a still life – do it!
You’ll need:
A big brush or a sponge applicator to wet your paper if you want to do a wet into wet rendition.
The watercolors of your choice. I prefer the quinacridones and the transparents for wet into wet. If you use the earth colors, they are granular, so add them last, or you will get “MUD.”
A pencil (2 B) if you want to draw your composition first. With the Barbara Nechis’ style, do not draw first.If you’d like to do Barbara Nechis’s style, you’ll do a wet into wet surface and drop in color that symbolizes the flower and leaves. =Do not try to be too realistic, and when the paint begins to dry (you’ll notice that your brushstrokes are not diffusing,) stop and allow the painting to dry.
Read the copy in the book about Donald Clegg’s approach and Janet Walsh’s approach (direct painting and dropping in color as you go along.)
Read the challenge card at the bottom of page 15 for more information. If you wish to do my “Tribute to Rosimori,”work with greens and read that text on page 16.
If you wish to do something like Anne Bagby’s, which is a bit more complicated, carefully read “Creating A Decorative Backdrop For Flowers” on page 13-14. I suggest that in order to do this exercise, you concentrate on creating patterns in the background for your flowers, and add textures with a stamp or other imprinting techniques.
For this exercise of Anne Bagby’s, you’ll need:
Acrylic paint or watercolor
Imprinting objects, like stamps
A still life of flowers (which you can also use for your other paintings.
Look up great patterns in magazines like Vogue or Harper’s Bazaar.Images for Reference:
Roses for JR
Tribute to Rosimori by Betsy Dillard Stroud
Do a drawing with watercolor and a brush. Don’t worry about accuracy. I did this one from memory.
Add a decorative border. It does not have to go all around the painting. Let your painting be a combination of wet into wet and direct painting.
Also use glazing.
Use the watercolors or acrylics of your choicSession Four: Redoing an Old or an Unfinished Painting
Take a painting you haven’t finished or don’t like, and paint a transparent glaze over it with a color. Use watercolor or acrylic. (I used acrylic.) Let it dry.
You’ll need:
An old painting or an unfinished painting
Watercolors, gouache, or acrylic or a mixture of them (of your choice)
A subject to draw over the paintingImages For Reference:
TattooDraw your composition on your glazed-over painting. You may draw any kind of subject you’d like. I chose a figure.
Paint that subject leaving some of the background showing. I left plenty showing in my piece.
You may also use collage on this exercise in conjunction with your painting, if you’d like.
Have fun. That’s the main purpose. Step out of your comfort zone and take chances.
All assignments should be scanned, or photographed at full size, at 72 dpi or better, jpeg.