Put your heart in everything that you do and you never know how far it might go.
Last November I was beyond excited to hear that Jeremy Sutton (one of my favorite artists) was going to be teaching a class on creativeLIVE. I marked the days off on my calendar so that I could tune in for the class. I was soaking up everything he was showing and taking lots of notes for use in the future but that really wasn’t enough. I learn best by actually doing. So, I starting painting along with Jeremy and trying out the techniques he was teaching. At first, I was just messing around on a scratch canvas, but I ended up being so inspired that I decided to put the techniques into use on an actual painting. Now, I don’t like to experiment with something new on a commissioned piece. I figure that the customer liked the techniques used in pieces that they have seen---so I should do their piece in a similar look. I prefer trying out new techniques on pieces that are destined for a gallery show, a gift, or for my own collection. ---and I knew just the photograph I would use for inspiration…
In August, Brenton and I made our first trip out to Boston for a wedding at the Griffin Museum of Photography. There was one picture from after the ceremony that I knew would make a great painting. It was a close up picture of the groom kissing the bride’s forehead as she was looking down. It was a quiet moment of connection in the midst of a busy day. The photograph itself wasn’t very colorful, it didn’t have an amazing background, it wasn’t properly exposed, but the tenderness of the moment spoke to me. I’m thinking back to my other photographs that have inspired me to paint to see if there was a common thread and I’m not sure that they do have anything specific in common. Some photographs are close up, some are far away, some very colorful, others quite monochromatic, some have a connection with the eyes, others you can’t even see a face…but each had something that was beautiful and needed to be painted.
So while I watched Jeremy Sutton’s class, I began to paint. I added a lot of vibrant colors, I incorporated some of new techniques I was learning, and just had a lot of fun with it. The brush stokes were expressive, but the tenderness was still there…then in the wee hours of the morning the painting was complete. On a whim, I snapped a picture of the painting and emailed it to Jeremy just to thank him for coming on creative live and to share with him what his teachings had inspired. To my complete surprise I not only received a prompt email back---but also a request to share my piece during the last day of his class! WOW! I was floored just to get an email back, let alone get airtime! Needless to say I was thrilled, humbled, and nervous all at the same time. The next day I tuned in anxiously waiting to see my painting. Then there it was---with Jeremy waving hello and thanking me for sharing! Yes, I waved back at my screen with the biggest smile on my face. How cool was that?!?
The only tough part was keeping everything that had happened under wraps. I wanted the couple in the painting to see it first, and in person---not a picture on facebook… So I would have to wait for December when I could see them and reveal the painting in person. The wait was worth it to see the expression on their faces as I presented them with the painting J
Many thanks to Jeremy Sutton for the inspiration and for his sharing talents and knowledge with anyone willing to listen and learn!
Thanks to creativeLIVE for bringing world class education to the masses!
Happy Painting everyone!