"ART is a word which summarizes THE QUALITY OF COMMUNICATION. "
L. Ron Hubbard

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Splash and Stream with rapids—Winter were selected for inclusion in the "Corcoran/MPA Student Show" at the Ramp Gallery, McLean, running from June 17 to July 31.I actually think that the resource photo for the stream here pictured was taken during a trip to Martinique (in the Caribbean) but I can't confirm that. The technique includes a "sponged" multicolor underlayer and overpainting with oil using scumbling and glazing.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Painting in Oil or Acrylics
Teacher: Pam Coulter
6 weeks, Sundays 3pm – 6pm
Artspace Herndon
From June 27 to August 8th
(no class July 4; extra makeup class August 15th)
Cloudy Day, Riverbend, by Pam Coulter

Class Description: This class is suitable for all levels of competence. I work individually with each student to help him/her develop skill in the basics of art and to define his own aims as artist. What excites me about art is that there is no limitation on creating. Put pen, paint or crayon to paper and you have created something. From that as a starting point, we can work on professionalism. I will give each student two photos which can be used as resource material. However, if you have a project you would rather work on, you are free to do so. Cost: $125 (no lab fee. each student supplies own supplies. See my recommendations.)
Location: ArtSpace Herndon, 750 Center Street, Herndon VA 20170 703-956-6590
To Register: Contact Pam Coulter Blehert at 703-945-0011 (c) or pam@blehert.com
I can accept check or credit card (through PayPal). Please enroll early to secure your place.

About the teacher: Pam COULTER Blehert paints primarily in oil and acrylics. She has around 400 paintings in private collections and 4 in corporate or government collections. She is a three-time “Best of Show” winner at the Art League of Alexandria monthly juried show at the Torpedo Factory, Alexandria, VA, and multi-year invited member of the “Bin Gallery.” Her paintings have been featured in the Elan Magazine (April 2009) and American Artist magazine (Feb. ‘95) and included in the North Light Book of Acrylic Painting Techniques. She has participated in regional juried shows and had a number of one-person shows. She was represented by Venable-Neslage Galleries (now closed) in Washington, D.C. She has twice had a painting accepted for display in the National Art Club (Salmagundi Club) in New York City. She participates regularly in juried Art League shows at the Torpedo Factory, Alexandria and in Reston Virginia art shows. She teaches art locally at various venues. For more information, visit http://www.blehert.com/gallery/

Friday, June 11, 2010

Putting the life into portraits

A neighbor recently gave me some feedback on my portraiture. I like feedback, particularly when it's positive, but negative feedback is also OK if honest.

He said that he was visiting a mutual artist friend, and, as he walked into the living room, he saw a portrait of the man. He immediately thought, "that reminds me of Pam Coulter's style." Not wanting to be offensive, he asked the artist, "Is that a self-portrait?" "No," said my artist friend, "that was done by Pam Coulter."

My neighbor then said, "I just knew it. You put life into the portrait."

How does one put life into the portrait?

Well, I'll tell you, it's a great deal easier when you are painting from life. Particularly when you have a friendly relationship with the sitter. It's more of a challenge when you are using a photo. There you must "grant life" (so to speak) realizing that the photo is a vehicle for getting to the essential person. And this gets a bit into the spiritual universe. Assume that the photo is a dull image of reality. (In fact, the body is a dull image of reality.) The reality is the person himself (or herself) at their very best and brightest. It's the spirit. And that's what you are set on portraying.

In another instance, I recently did a corporate portrait of Mr. Sam Church Jr., past president of the United Mine Workers of America. His widow did not see the portrait until the unveiling, but emailed me and said:

"I wanted you to know that my son, Nathaniel, and I unveiled your portrait at the UMWA headquarters in Triangle this morning. I was overwhelmed. A close friend of Sam's, Nathan Landow, joined us and immediately commented that it was the "Sammy" we remembered from his tenure as UMWA President.

What a surprise. Not a dry eye in the room! Thank you for the remarkable work. I am so proud that the portrait will hang in the new offices for the UMWA and that Sam's legacy is honored."