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Friday, July 10, 2009

Kay Polk Workshop sponsored by ANA in Fayetteville, AR

Wow, and to think I just about passed on this one! Two of my good friends who are professional artists (Kippy Hammond and Urania Christy Tarbet) HIGHLY recommended Kay for her teaching and painting abilities. Her focus is portraiture, with a 35 year history to back up her credentials. In addition to winning a first place award from Portrait Society of America's 2009 show. Photo below:

"Sunny" 1st Place Portrait Society of America 2009
©2009 Kay Polk
Now, if THAT isn't enough to make your legs feel like rubber...add that from novice to advanced artists all worked with a brand new (to us) selection of pigments on our palettes that Kay showed us how to manage. 
THEN, we had a new technique she has honed over the years. It too is backward to what most of us 'know'.
I'm not finished. We were in a wonderful UofA facility, huge room with easels and taborets...but by the time 5 models are stationed around the perimeter of the room, lighted and posed, the lighting was non-existent for the ARTISTS! Some of us had dark palettes, others had dark canvases.
SO, when you peruse the photos in the slideshows, remember new color mixtures, new technique, BAD LIGHT, and max 1 hour with each model...MAYBE three 30 minute sessions. Break for lunch, and models moved so we had different models each time. 
Kay did a wonderful demo the first morning, and in the afternoon we set our palettes under her instruction. She is the most organized and prepared workshop instructor I think I've ever had! She came with a binder for each of us with all types of information: quotations from famous artists, information passed to her from her tutors, lists of her favorite books, anatomy drawings, materials list, photos of her works, etc.
Day 2, one model session, lunch, then another model session. Day 3 the same, and we made time from the last model session for a 'show' and critique.
Here is the slideshow of her demo:

Here is the slideshow of the group of paintings...remember, max 2 hours per painting, many were more like an hour:

Like the others, I was challenged...each of my paintings deserve a 'finish'. And that I will do, starting tomorrow.


Art By Erika said...

WHOAH I really miss out this time! Love her demo portrait I think I give me more than the winning portrait in the society. I'm also surprised that her winning piece is sort of a vignette...thought the society usually vote in the more finished polished look. Love her colors! You guys had colorfully beautiful models!

VickiRossArt said...

Missed you at this one! Who knows what the 'society' wants from year to year...the paintings I came home with are very rough, but that is to be expected. I held my own with some very good artists. Can't wait to see how Kay judged ANA! Again, as with Santa Fe, I'm just glad I was juried in.

As for models, there were FIVE at a time for 17 artists. While a good thing, it did make lighting for the artists difficult. Always one excuse or another, right?

Art By Erika said...

Which one of the other set of images where your work? I wasn't sure Red.

Someone from ANA told me I shouldn't have entered portrait because Kay is a portraitist. I just don't believed in that thought though lol I'm happy for you sweetie buns!

VickiRossArt said...

Well, that was dumb advice! When better to enter a category when the judge is an expert? Was this advice telling you that you wouldn't stack up? Ugh. She did say that many of the figurative works entered had major anatomy issues, and that no matter the finish if the structure was wrong she just wouldn't let it slide.

I knew someone would ask me which were mine. Leave it to you! Photos 15 and 16. (the garish one on the bottom left). Can't wait to work on them today. I promise I'll post process photos when they are not so scary!

BUT, if you will look at Kay's demo after stages 1 and 2, hers was scary too!

Art By Erika said...

I like the little girl and the looking down portraits you did Red :)

"wouldn't stack up" yeah I try not to get in insulted with the advice lol! I don't feel too bad because the portrait didn't feel right to me from the beginning but I didn't think it stunk :p But not getting juried in for 2 conservative years hurt WAH! You should bow out and tell them to give me the slot LOL!!!!!!!

Ok looking forward to update. I'd love to here the concept behind the yellow undertone. And her approach to hair. Seems like she mainly blocks in shapes and paints in the highlights. Who were the other artists students that stood out?

VickiRossArt said...

just hope you mean the advice of that other well-meaning, misguided soul! Everyone knows that if a judge did the same judging a week later it might well be a different show! it's a crap shoot!

Perhaps we need to take a look at your digital efforts...after all, many decisions are made from over enhanced or under enhanced digitals!

Janie said...

OMG! Kay Polk is wonderful? Was she a good teacher? Did she get around to everyone. I take a lot of workshops at Scottsdale Artists' School. Most of our instructors are fantastic, but a very few....
Anyway, I have never seen Polk's work. Love the way she uses color. What is her palette? Love your slideshow of her demo.
I'm struggling with a portrait of two children from a 30 year old photo.... It's for a friend. Hate it!
Anyway, so glad to have found your blog. Thanks so much for sharing.

VickiRossArt said...

Janie, Kay was fabulous! I don't know where you are located or where she is teaching next, but you can contact her via her website