Workshops can be adapted to different durations - an afternoon, a week or two, or a semester format. Workshops can also be adapted to different skill levels. The object of my workshops is for those who attend to enjoy learning. In addition to demonstrating and showing examples of techniques, I work one-on-one with participants to insure they grasp the technique and to guide them in developing their work.
If you do not see what you are looking for, please email me and I'll be glad to discuss a workshop that suits your particular needs.
Silverpoint is a type of metalpoint - the predecssor of the modern pencil. Metalpoint is a small, sharpened metal wire used for drawing. The metal can be lead, silver, copper or gold, but silverpoint is the most common. Paper is prepared by applying a ground to board. Drawing with the silverpoint stylus on the surface leaves a resdiue of silver behind. Drawings are delicate and develop warm tones as they tarnish over time.
Perhaps better described as "ink moist brush technique", this technique involves building up delicate tones of a very dilute solution of water and waterproof ink. The ink solution is applied with hatched strokes, but because the solution is very pale, this allows for the building up of delicate, smokey tones with subtle shading.
Watercolor Sharp Focus Technique
Very different from working working with traditional watercolor washes, this technique is more like drawing than painting. Color is applied with pale dilutions and tone is built up. This allows for subtle shading and crisp detail. Perfect for small works, but also to add focus to larger paintings.
Watercolor on Vellum
Vellum is calfskin that is prepared for writing or painting. It has a smooth, translucent surface. However it presents challenges, as the surface is not at all like paper. Participants will learn about vellum as a painting surface and how to prepare it. The application of watercolor to this surface creates a luminous painting with fine detail.
Depending on the time alloted and interests of the group, different aspects of manuscript illumination are covered. For example, historical styles of decorative letters, such as versals with filigree, Italian white vine foliate, and puzzle letters can be covered. Or, a more contemporary approach can be used to create a letter decorated with an animal leaping through the interior of the letter.
Contemporary Egg Tempera
This workshop takes the effort out of traditional egg tempera. Rather than working with powdered pigments, watercolors are used with an egg yolk binder. The character of the painting produced is somewhat different than traditional egg tempera, but the technique allows for the layering of color. Because layers are transluscent and show through, the end is result is a luminous painting that is an excellent vehicle to emphasize light and shadow.
This workshop is suited to a longer format given that a number of techniques are covered. Possible techniques are: pencil, watercolor, watercolor on vellum, acrylic, oils/alkyds on paper, ink wash, egg tempera, pastel dust and silverpoint.
Lectures are approximately 1 hour and are accompanied with a PowerPoint presentation. Question and Answer sessions follow.
History of Silverpoint A history of silverpoint technique, showing both historical and contemporary examples. History of Egg Tempera A history of egg tempera technique, showing both historical and contemporary examples. Optical Devices Vermeer to Hockney and beyond. A history of optical devices such as the camera obscura and camera lucida. Discussion of how devices may (or may not) have been used, and contemporary controversy and debate. Decorated Letters An overview of materials used in medieval manuscripts (pigments, skins, and gold), as well as historical and contemporary styles of decorated letters. The Artist Scholar A biased overview of artists who were scholars, such as Dürer an da Vinci, Ellenberger and Stubbs, and contemporary artists. These artists do their own research and academic explorations, working in the field, studio and laboratory. ©2015, Karen Ackoff.
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