I think I’ve mentioned this on my blog before, but my hobby is painting. As the pictures show, all the work I do is “decorative art”. The coffee pot is an example of German strokework folk art (Bauernmalerei) the jars are designs by other artists from books and magazines, and the wooden pumpkin planter boxes are my own design. I’ve painted with acrylics on almost every “decorative” surface imaginable, and I’ve done all the “decorative art” things that I’ve wanted to do. It’s not a challenge anymore and quite frankly, unless I’m doing a custom job for someone, it’s getting to be rather boring.
In 2001, when I was still in the “self-teaching” stage, I took an oil painting class. But because I wasn’t quite bored yet with decorative art (and I was still hoping to make some money at it) I let oil painting drop and I lost my skills. This spring I decided to take another oil painting class the same way I took the first one, via our local community college’s Adult Education program. However, the teacher for this class was different than the teacher I had before, and her teaching style and my learning style just did not mesh. I have a minor “method processing” learning disability, and I need to be shown step by step how to do something. If you skip steps, I get confused. Well, this teacher not only skips steps, she expects you to extract what you need to know from watching a video tape once and then doing the project. I got so frustrated in my last session that I just packed it up early and left. I was almost in tears.
But today, I found the phone number of my old teacher, Elaine Peyton, and called her. I asked her if she was still teaching, and to make a long story short, she is and she has five sessions left before she breaks for the summer. So for the next five Wednesdays I’ll be in Elaine’s class, and hopefully this time I’ll learn something. I’m really looking forward to seeing Elaine again. Someday I hope to be able to paint a landscape from a photograph. I have so many photos of places I love (like Maysville, Iowa and Chamberlain, South Dakota) and I want to fill my house with paintings of those places. I also have ideas of mixing elements of different photos together, and right now I haven’t the first clue on how to do that. I know I won’t learn that in only five weeks, but I hope Elaine can get me started on the right track.
Wish me luck!