PDA

View Full Version : Desmond O'Hagan's Workshop


David Patterson
06-25-2007, 01:27 AM
I had a fantastic time at Desmond O'Hagan's 3 day workshop this weekend. This will be short and sweet, mainly because I took limited photos (no WIP's), and also the fact that Desmond’s technique is a very simple one - work with SHAPES, light and dark areas, with only implied detail.

Desmond is a very good instructor, and very "hands on" with all the students. How these workshop artists maintain there passion, is beyond me!

Boy! If you ever want to "loosen up", take Desmond's workshop. If you can get out of your comfort zone, and really tackle his concept, your paintings will be very impressionistic looking.

He works quite a bit from photos. He said that you do not heve to include everything that's in the photo...market, and street scenes can get very busy, so be selective with your composition.

He first defines his paintings with a vine charcoal drawing, making sure all his proportions are correct. After that, he drops in the dark areas, then the middle values, and last the highlights. Always leave the light areas until last...this takes some discipline. He does a lot of warm over cool layers...and all this on CANSON!! He uses varied pressure, and many times broke his pastels while attempting to get a heavy application of pastel. I think he said he uses Rembrandt's, Ludwig's, and Sennelier's. There may have been others... senior moment here!:p

This next statement is the most important - 99% of his strokes are with the sides of the pastel sticks. He hardly ever uses the point of the pastel.

Most are half sticks. If you see a line in his work, it's done with varied pressure, and with the side of the pastel.

He works with very little detail. All images are implied, this makes the viewer seem to always discover something different when they come back to the painting.

He always tries to build the light to have balance in the painting.

Avoid predictable direction in your strokes, even with water. Leave out the ripples...just suggest them.

You will have a lot of lost and found edges with this technique.

Sorry, that's all I have. The following are his 3 demos, and the last 2 are my paintings. Remember me telling you I would be doing Richard McKinley’s technique for awhile? I changed my mind, I love this impressionistic look.:D

You know what was amazing? His demos took less then an hour each! Sorry, I don't have ref. photos for Desmond's paintings...they were about 3"x4"...very small! You know, looking at my photos of Desmond's work...the paintings looked a lot better then depicted here. They were done with my cheapo camera, where my paintings where take with my better 8 megapixel Canon.

O'Hagan demo #1:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/25-Jun-2007/65479-Ohagan1.jpg

O'Hagan #2

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/25-Jun-2007/65479-OHagan2.jpg

O'Hagan #3

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/25-Jun-2007/65479-OHagan3.jpg

My first Painting:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/25-Jun-2007/65479-VenCanal.jpg

Reference Photo:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/25-Jun-2007/65479-venphoto.jpg
My 2nd Painting:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/25-Jun-2007/65479-Market.jpg

Reference Photo:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/25-Jun-2007/65479-MarketPh.jpg


I used reference photos in the WC library...and of course I can't remember who the photographer was.:o So a big "thank you" to the mystery person!

Oh...his workshop also included great info on marketing your work, and the importance of a website. And probably many other things that "Senioritis" prevents me from remembering! :p

By the way...as with most workshops, Desmond did paint on my paintings, so it's not all me! I did pick it up surprisingly well though.

Hope you took away something from this...I sure did from the workshop!

David

sundiver
06-25-2007, 06:43 AM
Wow! What a treat I found to go with my morning coffee! These are all beautiful, and thanks for the description, too. I'm so envious! (Of the paintings, and your workshop opportunity)

bluefish
06-25-2007, 07:45 AM
Thanks David - it was a great critique - you certainly have the 'touch' - this would be right up your style - just apply lots more color!:wave:

'bluefish:thumbsup: '

Kathryn Wilson
06-25-2007, 08:37 AM
Hi David - I took his demo class at IAPS and can attest to how interesting his technique and style is. Your workshop paintings turned out really well as we all know that workshop results rarely turn out as well as we would like.

Keep working on that technique, I think it suits you well!

Karen Margulis
06-25-2007, 08:52 AM
I agree!!! I love your paintings!! Keep doing more. Thank you for sharing your experience with us too!
Karen

hopalong
06-25-2007, 10:36 AM
Thanks so much for posting. I love his work!

maggie latham
06-25-2007, 12:05 PM
:cat:
Hello,
Wow! So painterly and loose. I aspire to this! Do you have any pics of WIP? How many layers of color did you use? Are you scumbling (glazing) over blocks of blended color?
I am excited at seeing these. I too use much of the side of my pastels. Thanks for sharing.
Maggie

MarshaSavage
06-25-2007, 12:53 PM
HI David,
I knew you would love his workshop. I took one from him about 5 years ago and even bought one of his demo paintings. It is in my studio to try to remind me to lose the detail!

I do also use Canson many times, and also rarely use the pointed end of the pastel stick. But, for the life of me, I can't keep from putting in those details that he so effectively leaves out. On well!

Great work -- be sure to show us some things you do with his technique in your own studio.

Dougwas
06-25-2007, 12:58 PM
Thanks for sharing David. His style is very interesting and it makes you look at the whole painting. You did a very good job with your paintings. Did you use Canson paper as well ? I am looking forward to seeing more of your paintings.

Doug

Kathryn Day
06-25-2007, 01:36 PM
David, thanks for the info on the workshop. I saw some of his paintings at IAPS and loved the color and light in them. Your paintings turned out wonderfully.

Paula Ford
06-25-2007, 02:01 PM
3"x4"....WOW, that's small.

David, Your paintings are absolutely gorgeous!!! It sounds like you learned a great deal and had a wonderful time. This style definately suits you!!

Paula

bnoonan
06-25-2007, 03:16 PM
David these are outstanding!!! Now why didn't I take this workshop??? hmmm... Should have listened to you and others.

I love the style - do you? Will you continue with this? Hurrah for new things to learn and thanks for sharing what you've done.

Barb

lacey sprocket
06-25-2007, 07:02 PM
Lovely! I love the boldness, and lack of blending. It's loose, but really emotionally informative. You catch on to new things quickly!

nana b
06-25-2007, 07:58 PM
David, I love both of your paintings! Thanks for sharing O'Hagan's workshop with us. Is this the direction you are going in now? McKinley's and O'Hagan's style is really different but I do like both of them. Do you have any more workshops coming up?

nana b

David Patterson
06-25-2007, 08:35 PM
Thank you everyone! I'll try to answer everyone's question with a PM.

David

David Patterson
06-25-2007, 08:55 PM
By the way, I used white Wallis. Desmond used various mid to dark colors of Canson. All the paintings, including mine, where about 9"x12". I really do think I'll continue using his technique. It really does help me loosen up, and understand the lights and darks of a painting, which is one of the reasons I took this workshop from Desmond. And like I said earlier, he is an excellent instuctor, with a great sence of humor. He said he might even pay WetCanvas a visit for the first time. It would be a great place for him to network. (That was a hint for Desmond, if he does indeed read this) :wink2:

Thanks again everyone for your kind comments!

David

Shari
06-25-2007, 10:40 PM
David,

Thank you for the fabulous post; your work is wonderful. You have inspired me to take one of his workshops. What you have done is just remarkable.

Piper Ballou
06-26-2007, 01:20 AM
David, these are wonderful....I have a friend that took his demo class at the IAPS too and we are getting together tomorrow morning to paint, I set her a link to this thread and think we may be playing with this techinque....
I'll let you know how it turns out
piper

David Patterson
06-26-2007, 01:08 PM
Thank you Shari and Piper!

David

David Patterson
06-26-2007, 08:43 PM
Hi everyone!

Well...Desmond visited this thread last night, and was thankful for the post. He wanted to know if I could put color corrected photos of his demos in place of the ones I posted. I'm not sure if Kat can do that or not, so I'm posting them here. His shots are so much better then what I did in Photoshop, so I don't blame him!:)

Here is his wonderful work:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Jun-2007/65479-des5.jpg

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Jun-2007/65479-des1.jpg

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Jun-2007/65479-des4.jpg

Paula Ford
06-26-2007, 09:03 PM
David,

Tell him these are gorgeous!!

I'd give anything to take a workshop from him. Tell him to come to Tennessee!!

Paula

PeggyB
06-27-2007, 01:03 AM
I really do think I'll continue using his technique. It really does help me loosen up, and understand the lights and darks of a painting, which is one of the reasons I took this workshop from Desmond. And like I said earlier, he is an excellent instuctor, with a great sence of humor.
David

I just knew you'd enjoy Desmond's technique and personality! :evil: I'm resisting an "I told you so" - well maybe not resisting so much after all... :lol:

David you did marvelously well in the workshop. Very nice paintings.

Peggy

Dot Hoffman
06-27-2007, 11:13 AM
David, we just returned from a week-long drawing Elderhostel in Wisconsin, so I've been away a while....Your paintings are great!!! I was so impressed with O'Hagan's approach at IAPS. He was fascinating, and you nailed it!!!

David Patterson
06-27-2007, 08:03 PM
Thanks Peggy & Dot. Yes Peggy, you were right :p I loved everything about his workshop!

David

encaustichermit
07-03-2007, 04:35 AM
Hi David,
Thanks for posting the color corrected photos. I lifted them for the newslettter. Binky Bergsman

Pabs
07-03-2007, 08:09 AM
WOW! David you have made so many people so interested, happy and inspired from a really great post: I think this is one of the best posts I've read - thanks!!!!
This is a style that hooked me into pastels, and one I would like to get into so much more. I have done a couple of "iffy" works along this line, but the master's are always the best (and his pupil is not that far behind either!). If only you could conquer those senior moments and remember a few more tips ......... but then we would not have any need for going to workshops would we?
The pics of the works are totally inspiring, no doubt lifting many others as well as myself. Thanks again.
Regards,
Pabs

MarieMeyer
07-04-2007, 11:12 AM
Great thread! Question about DO'H's technique - you say he starts with a vine charcoal drawing. Is it simply lines that block out the composition? Or is he also putting in value masses with the charcoal?

PeggyB
07-04-2007, 12:36 PM
Great thread! Question about DO'H's technique - you say he starts with a vine charcoal drawing. Is it simply lines that block out the composition? Or is he also putting in value masses with the charcoal?

Marie you can see a poor example by me of what Desmond does on the "O'Hagan IAPS Workshop" thread. Actually, the examples are value studies and done with pastel, not charcoal. In the workshop I took from Desmond, he didn't use vine charcoal for anything but lightly drawing in his shapes/composition, and then he switched to black, dark brown, dark blue and/or dark green to establish the darkest valued shapes. Although Desmond works directly on his paper from the beginning, he suggests to most people that they do some small value studies as I have in my example. They are helpful, and may eliminate confusion once you begin the work regarding "where to put the darkest darks, lightest lights and medium values".

Peggy

David Patterson
07-04-2007, 05:16 PM
Marie you can see a poor example by me of what Desmond does on the "O'Hagan IAPS Workshop" thread. Actually, the examples are value studies and done with pastel, not charcoal. In the workshop I took from Desmond, he didn't use vine charcoal for anything but lightly drawing in his shapes/composition, and then he switched to black, dark brown, dark blue and/or dark green to establish the darkest valued shapes. Although Desmond works directly on his paper from the beginning, he suggests to most people that they do some small value studies as I have in my example. They are helpful, and may eliminate confusion once you begin the work regarding "where to put the darkest darks, lightest lights and medium values".

Peggy

In our workshop, He started all his demos (3) with line vine charcaol drawings, which were completed before the workshop to save time. Then he did as Peggy says...placed all his dark shapes, using various colors depending on the scene. Do check out Peggys post.

David