Lead by Will Vaughan and Clive Dand, ten of us met for a two day course focusing on Trees. Outside the sun shone fitfully, the light changed constantly and the weather shifted unpredictably from hot sunshine to gentle rain on a surrounding landscape of apple orchard, poplars and hills. This gave us lots to work with. Some of us had come prepared with our favourite arboreal photos and Clive brought a wonderful collection of books illustrating for us how a wide range of artists have handled this subject. Will brought his copper etching plates and while most of us started off in the orchard with easle and paints, he worked directly on those while Biddy got to work on her Ipad.
Hadspen Village Hall is a good size, well lit and warm and we were able to spread ourselves and leave cluttered tables overnight. Packed lunches were brought by all as we feared a break to a hostelry might impair our afternoon concentration. This also meant we were able to wander around and see what each of us was doing as we munched our sandwiches.. The result was much discussion and a very friendly atmosphere. In the afternoon some chose to work in the hall while others braved the weather outside. At 3.30 pm we all came inside and lined up our potential masterieces for all to see with everyone chipping in to express what they thought in what turned out to be an encouraging and collaborative exchange.
The next day we followed the same pattern, but this time it was our more completed works going on show at 3.30 pm – some showing improvements made as a result of the previous day’s discussion. As we were now more trusting and used to each other not only was there greater frankness in what were still very encouraging remarks, but everyone felt happy to explain what they had been trying to achieve. The result was lots to think about for our aims can be very different. The outcome? I thought it was a really great two days which produced some impressive work and one piece we all agreed was exceptional.. Being around other artists really got us all going.
You will have to guess for yourself who did what for much of the work is unfinished and we agreed that the real point of showing you what we have done is to encourage you to come to our next event and take part yourself. It was a great couple of days thanks to the gentle,friendly and knowledgeable leadership of Will and Clive.
Those taking part were: Margaret Kelly, Liz Wright, Richard Gayle, Lucy Barnett, Fletcher Robinson, Sue Lloyd, Biddy Moreton, Clive Dand, Will Vaughan and John Baxter who did the article and pictures. 12-13th September 2013.