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Old 09-25-2005, 12:12 PM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

I am preparing for a teaching class at a local university next month. I find myself going from excitment to *what was I thinking!!* I have never done anything like this and really want to get the basics of colored pencil across to the students.
I like your suggestion Helen of already having an image on the paper for them to start with. I was struggling on how to handle this point. Some ppl are better at drawing than others. Also I have been struggling with the subject matter. There are somethings that I would loose interest very quickly if asked to draw. But on the other hand what if someone wanted to draw say a landscape? Something I have no experiance with at all. I don't want to just *wing it* but some have suggested that I will need to be very flexable and meet my class before deciding on specifics.
One thing I am sure I want for them is to come away knowing the basics of cp and a few finished pieces. I have been told by the art director that there are some very accomplished artists taking my class. I am not sure if that makes me feel better or worse!!
Any advice for those who have already taught would be a great help. Wanda
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Old 09-25-2005, 12:55 PM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

Hi Wet!!!! First! "rural Missouri"???? In the 1970's we lived in Lathrop and then Cameron, went to church in Excelsior Springs - are you near any of those? We LOVED it!!! Now for teaching adults. Your first reaction of "what was I thinking" is absolutely normal!!! With CP classes I start with an image of a strawberry on black illustration board (!) Then show them how to do an underpainting in dilute white liquid acrylic. Next a LIGHT application (Very lightly applied - this is the hardest thing for beginning CP artists to get the hang of), the we progress to yellow, orange, green, violet-blue and a tough of burnt umber and VOILA we are done. I keep the size to the miniature pictures I sell here in town, which is 2.50 inches by 3.50 inches. This is very comfortable for them as there is very little area to cover; with the black background and the white underpainting they are instantly working with the entire range of the value scale and the colors really LIGHT up on the black background. Crescent mat board makes a wonderful "paper" to work on also, and I use a chocolate brown in that and another color is a nice tan or fawn which many of the CP colors can be used without a paint underpainting but rather a white CP or cream CP "underpainting" to start. For years, I have used Mod Podge either gloss or matte to "seal" my work. It makes the colors glow like jewels, whereas fixative tends to darken the colors too much. I apply a horizontal coat of Mod Podge, let it dry, then apply a vertical coat and it's done! Hope this helps let me know if I confuse you and if you have an e-mail I can send some attachments of the work quickly (meaning I won't have to tweak it all to send here on WetCanvas! Someday I WILL take the time so everybody can see! Forgive me gang REAL busy with one college class and two private classes starting up for Fall. Helen
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Old 09-25-2005, 03:47 PM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

mmm ... well I never EVER draw things out for people as the whole point is for them to learn to draw for themselves. They will have their own unique style from the beginning and I aim to develop that and not impose 'my' way. My way is mine, not theirs. What I will do is a quick sketch on another sheet of paper to show where they are going wrong with their perspective or demonstrate how a wet in wet wash should have worked etc they can then correct their own work and remains strictly their own creation.

To be honest, I really disapprove of producing drawings for them - sorry to those that use it and believe in it - but I do! as a student I would have run a mile from a teacher who did that too.

I teach the visual language of painting - the marks, the way paints and pencils and charcoal etc behave, the things that it's possible to do with them and how to LOOK for themselves and translate what they see - not what they know is there.

My students have all developed their own unique ways of working whilst working alongside each other - they learn from each other as well then.

I prefer them to work from life rather than photos as well as they learn to cope with 3D to 2D and the colours and shapes and perspective issues that arise.


Vivien
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Old 09-25-2005, 09:14 PM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

Vivien - Glad you brought up the "othery" to teach as there are many ways to teach and learn. I was just watching the actress/director Jodie Foster on "Actors Studio" and she said every actor has their own method of arriving at the character they are to play. At the time, I thought, "..and so do painters, sculptors, composers, etc. etc." The method I use to introduce students to colored pencil is where I have done the layout for them. By the second or third session I "turn them loose" to do their own drawings, composition, palatte selection, etc. Happily, at the college, we have some very talented drawing instructors. Of course, one can't help but make suggestions and guide their students to better and better ways with perspective, etc. I think one of the many delightful and enjoyable things about the arts is there is never just one way to do things! Improvisation is one of the delightful things about arts and it expands creativity. Giving adult students "pre-drawn" pictures to use to "get the feel" of their new medium leads to wonderful improvisation later on. Helen
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Old 09-26-2005, 08:43 AM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

I will have to agree with Helen on this one. I was asked to teach the drawing course too but begged off. My goal is to teach them how to put down cp. Blending, lifting, layering, transfering a drawing to good paper, and color mixing. The plan was to give the whole class the same thing and then as Helen said let "em go. I called yesterday and most in the class are wc artists wanting to know more about cp. So I am not teaching ppl to *draw what they see* or comp lessons. I assume they already know those lessons.
Helen I grew up in Cameron!!!!!!!!! Graduated from hs there. Did you go to school there? Wanda
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Old 09-26-2005, 11:53 AM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

Hi Wet!!! We lived in Cameron Lathrop/Cameron 1972 to 1976 son and daughter went to school in Cameron husband and I worked at the hospital in Cameron in the x-ray department. Rented a house from the Lightsingers on their farm west of Cameron on Rt.1 just across from Ensign dairy farm at the "T" junction of 4th St. It is TRUELY a SMALL world!!!! I have just been finishing a classroom example of "dry on dry", "wet on wet", "wet then dry" and "wet dry then wet" for the watercolor test. I do four small studies to "try out" colors, how the paper acts and if I like the composition (have always done this with watercolor. With CP do "test strips" of colors on the illustration/(mat)board I am going to use. I think I already said that I think the most difficult thing CP students have to learn is the "light touch" with the pencils for layering colors. For WC I think the hardest is to "not be in the middle value range" all the time. To be brave and mix up the richest most lucious deep colors for the backgrounds of flowers or for the foregrounds in landscapes. More later Helen
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Old 09-27-2005, 09:08 AM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

If you worked in the xray department then you worked with my exfather inlaw! It was quite a soap opera in that department for a few years. VERY small world. Thanks for the pics I got them in your email. Very, very helpfull! I have found when helping some in my art club that the two graphite artists seemed to have the most trouble getting down the values. They struggled transfering the values with color and always stayed too washed out. The pressure thing was a problem too. Thanks again!!!!! wanda
PS: It just dawned on me writing this that I have already taught some in my club!! Surely I can do this.
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Old 09-30-2005, 07:43 AM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

I teach drawing and painting privately to adults both in the studio and on location en plein air.

The biggest problem I have is that very few are willing to learn the fundametals of good art including universal design elements, etc. They want to have instant gratification and to only paint the subjects they like. I do my best to incorporate good painting elements and composition, working around these limitations. It is frustrating. I have better luck with teaching fundamentals at my one day art camps. Those have a pre- agreed agenda which we stick to.
Love,
Linda

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Old 09-30-2005, 07:08 PM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

Linda - You are SO right!! Since so much of society is "instant" i.e. just add water and drink, or just pop it in the microwave - that is what most adult students want their artwork to be - instant. To even HINT at perspective seems to be an insult to them! Now, I am sure that if we were to be teaching in art schools where the student came to be totally immersed in art work all day long things are different. But, for many of my adult students they are retired and now they have the time and so far the disposable income to "take lessons". HOWEVER, they want their pictures to look like the pictures that are produced by those of us who "paid our dues" in art school and hours of practice (still). I wonder if they would think they could play a piano like Vladimir Horiwitz by just listening to a record! Soooo- as I said before - I just leap the hurdle and try not to force them to "do it right" they don't WANT to do it right. So, since they are paying me I just consider the "customer is always right"!!!!! They learn how to apply watercolor to paper, they learn how to handle colored pencils on different colored illustration board and they are happy. A breed unto themselves! Have a great weekend! Helen
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Old 10-02-2005, 11:59 AM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

Yes, Helen. I agree.
Love,
Linda
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Old 10-05-2005, 09:43 PM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

Hi,
After reading this thread I can see the pattern. Good artists are trying to teach "how to" in their medium and can see right from the beginning lack of drawing skills. I call myself a "drawer" and I am good at this. I can work in diff.mediums - pencil, charcoal, colored pencil, pastel, ink and I am blessed to be able to draw any subject I want. Over a year ago I decided to teach just that - drawing. I do it at my house. When I started I had one class, one day a week, but it didn't work out. People are too busy to stick to the schedule, so I had to adjust to the clients need. Now I teach private lessons one on one and I love it this way. I have few students who when they started they didn't know how to draw straight line (you know!) My goal is to teach them mainly how to see and once they learn this they can draw anything they want. They are coming back for long long time and make progress quite fast. I have all ages and all kind of interests. One retired lady wants to learn how to draw her grandchildrens portraits ONLY!!! I took the challenge and she is doing great working in pencil and lately in pastels. One girl is only 17 and quite talented. She keeps me on my toes. We do just about anything in all kinds of mediums. She wants to go to art college and my job is to prepare her for this. Another lady is middle age, super sensitive - took some art education years ago and said she didn't learn anything - gave up on art, found me and now after just few months she is selling her work, showing in coop.gallery and most importantly feels great about herself. What I am trying to do is work with everybody as individual - giving them my full attention, teaching everything I know and guide them to develop their own style. We do use some ref.photos but they always make their own vision of it. Since I am realist and they learn realistic approach they need to see how something looks like - and take from there.
In general - I see a lot of interest in art but general public doesn't know, the basic for good painting is a good drawing. So they jump into painting right away and struggle all the way. I agree completely - everything here is instant gratification - do it fast.I do it old fashion way and I believe it is the right way and enjoy it truly. Another example - I don't know anything about illustration - I have one student who is writing children book and she is illustrating her own book with her own drawings with my help.
Not everybody is successful, some loose interest but if I see talent - it's my job to dig it up and make it work. I don't want them to draw like me - I want them to develop their own style. This approach is much harder but it works and gives me real satisfaction. Money? We all need it - but this is the last thing on my list as far as teaching.
Jolanta
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Old 10-06-2005, 07:14 AM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jolanta
if I see talent - it's my job to dig it up and make it work. I don't want them to draw like me - I want them to develop their own style. This approach is much harder but it works and gives me real satisfaction. .
Jolanta

I totally agree and that's just how I work
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Old 10-09-2005, 11:36 AM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

I teach adults and I enjoy it. There are a lot of questions and frustration comes quite easily. Adults want to "get it" right away.
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Old 10-27-2005, 11:05 AM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

I teach in a continuing education section of a local community college. I also teach curriculum classes occasionally. I prefer the adult students as they have a purpose in being there. The curr. students tend to be just biding their time. I teach drawing, painting (any medium), color theory, the principles and elements of design, life drawing, photoshop for painters and photographers, persective for artists. I usually only teach a couple of days a week and spend the rest painting. Painting is my main occupation.

The adult students take my classes over and over. Some are there for companionship and encouragment from their peers. Others are really struggling. We generally have success. My format is to limit the classes to 18 students. We have 10 to 15 minutes of lecture and then they rec. individual instruction as I go around the room and help them with their projects. I discourage copying and ask that the references they use be original or from the photo files that we have been building in the classroom. I ask all students to get double pics when they develop their film and bring in the extras for the files.

Each term (usually 12 weeks) we do a group project. This is a photo that has been chopped into pieces and each student recieves a bit of the photo. They are given a finished size )enlarged from the original photo) to paint their piece. Their bit may be 2" x 3" and they will enlarge to , say, 10 x 15". They must pay particular attention to color, value and measurements as their piece must match the adjoining pieces when put up on the wall. They may paint in their preferred medium. They may not consult with their fellow students regarding color, measurement etc. This project is a very popular one and the finished piece may be as big as 10 x 12 FEET. It is very impressive and the admin. office has asked to have a couple in there. It is a great way to get the students going and many people from the public come into the classroom to see the finished results. They are usually awestruck (sp?).

Try it with your classes. Even the local newpaper was interested which provided free articles and sparked more public interest in these continuing ed. classes.

Londondeon
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Old 10-27-2005, 02:47 PM
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Re: how many people teach adults?

you run your classes very much along the lines I do - except for the photo library, I try to encourage them to work from life if they will and failing that their own sketch or photo.

I've done that cutting up an image too, and it's great fun.
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