Before I begin the art exhibition from the second half of our week at Art Toscana, I want to share a bit about the “making friends” aspect of this experience – seeing my colleagues in the photo above has reminded me.
There is something very special about the bonds that you make when you are in courses like this. Maybe it’s because we are living in the same residence and sharing our meals together. Maybe it’s because we are pursuing something we all love. Maybe it’s because we help and encourage each other when stuck. Maybe it’s because we are all like-minded, curious travellers who love learning. And I don’t believe it is just “luck” because I have taken art courses and language courses abroad, and every one of those experiences has resulted in creating new friendships with amazing people!
If you have never included a residential course of any type within your travels, you really ought to consider it – it adds so much richness to your travel experience and you get the privilege of meeting fantastic people from around the world!
Now, before my tears of joy spill all over the keyboard, here’s the last batch of art. For this project, we affixed our large acrylic paper to boards and then prepared them with collages of newsprint and magazine images. Once dry, the boards were gesso’ed, and off we went to our drawing destination, the small town of Cascio. After selecting a subject from rough sketches (with the helpful input of our colleagues), we sat down at our easels to draw, and then lightly acrylic paint. A glaze of either red, yellow, or blue was then applied to the entire painting, and highlights removed with a damp sponge. More acrylic painting to add more definition followed, and if time allowed, the cycle was repeated using a different primary colour glaze than the first one used. After so much “working” of the canvas, the original newsprint collage starts to peek through, and provides very interesting textures and effects.
Working on-site can be a challenge, and at one point of our painting, those of us in the Cascio main piazza were inundated with onlookers, eager for a conversation before they entered the town cathedral for a funeral. We got several inquiries about where we were from, if we liked Italy, as well as some commentary about our work (thankfully, mostly “bello, bello”). I had a lovely conversation in my broken Italian with one gentleman about his trip to Niagara Falls!
Okay, shutting up now… here’s the art (tip – click on the picture to see the texture and then click the back arrow to return to the blog post):
Two of these fine artists have their own websites, so I encourage you to visit them: