Workshops and Retreats

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2017 Workshops & Retreats

Random Arts

(Saluda, North Carolina)

 

October 2-6, 2017

Gillian Lee Smith - "In Another Place"

This class is for those with some portrait painting experience.

(We are hoping to have a live model to work from in the studio!)

Materials List

(a more detailed list including specific colours will be available 1 month before class)

Drawing paper, charcoal, compressed charcoal, erasers

Table top easel, Canvas Board, Paint brushes, Oil paints, Odourless Mineral Spirit, Paint medium, Limited Palette of colours, Tear off Paint palette, rags, jar for mineral spirits

During this 5-day course, we will be working on creating highly expressive portraits in oil paints. Beginning with charcoal portraits to explore shadows and light, mark making and expression we will then move onto the glorious medium of oil painting on canvas.

My own work focusses not on creating perfection but in representing the spirit of humanity with layers, expressive mark making and use of colour and contrast.

We will be exploring great contrasts of dark and light, atmosphere, expression, composition and surface. We will also be thinking about portraying emotion and the human spirit in our work to create atmospheric and expressive representations of ourselves and others. You will create several drawings and portrait paintings and finish the week with a host of tips to further develop your own portrait paintings.

Gillian Lee Smith "You can tell me a hundred times"
Gillian Lee Smith, "Blue-Grey Reflection'" Oil on Board, 2016

Registration

To register, please contact Random Arts directly.

Email: randomarts22@gmail.com

Phone: (828) 749-1165

Registration Policy

It is necessary to pre-register.
For more information, visit Random Arts website.

Random Arts

(Saluda, North Carolina)

October 9-13, 2017

Gillian Lee Smith "You can tell me a hundred times"

This class is for those with some portrait painting experience.

(We are hoping to have a live model to work from in the studio!)

Materials List

(a more detailed list including specific colours will be available 1 month before class)

Drawing paper, charcoal, compressed charcoal, erasers

Table top easel, Canvas Board, Paint brushes, Liquitex inks, Limited Palette of acrylic paint colours, Tear off Paint palette, rags,

During this 5-day course, we will be working on creating highly expressive portraits in mixed media and acrylic paints.. Beginning with charcoal portraits to explore shadows and light, mark making and expression we will then move into working with inks, mixed media and acrylic paints.

My own work focusses not on creating perfection but in representing the spirit of humanity with layers, expressive mark making and use of colour and contrast.

We will be exploring great contrasts of dark and light, atmosphere, expression, composition and surface. We will also be thinking about portraying emotion and the human spirit in our work to create atmospheric and expressive representations of ourselves and others. You will create several drawings and portrait paintings and finish the week with a host of tips to further develop your own portrait paintings.

Gillian Lee Smith
Gillian Lee Smith, portrait

Registration

To register, please contact Random Arts directly.

Email: randomarts22@gmail.com

Phone: (828) 749-1165

Registration Policy

It is necessary to pre-register.
For more information, visit Random Arts website.

2018 Workshops & Retreats

Intuitive Explorations

 

(London/Northumberland, Great Britain)

 

with Gillian Lee Smith and Judy Wise

 

May 22 – 31, 2018

Gillian Lee Smith, Harbour walls - mixed media on paper
Gillian Lee Smith, Harbour walls – mixed media on paper

This grand adventure with Gillian Lee Smith and Judy Wise starts off with a bang in London as we begin our adventure overlooking the city from the London Eye. We’ll visit the National Gallery, Tate Modern Museum, and enjoy a play before climbing aboard a train for our journey through the English countryside on our way to Gillian’s inspirational Northumberland.

There will be visits to castles, gardens, and the coast – so much to see and absorb on what promises to be a visually stimulating Art Escape.

Holy Island Lindisfarne

We cannot wait to share this scenery and atmosphere with you as we explore the local area with sketchbooks and camera in hand and take our findings back to the studio space to create our own interpretations in mixed media on paper and canvas.

Whether you are new to landscapes or a seasoned painter, drawn to abstraction or inspired to create more representational works you are sure to find something to spark a personal and expressive response to this rugged and inspirational landscape.

Alnwick Area
Since moving to the truly stunning, historic area of Northumberland, expressive and abstracted landscapes have become Gillian’s way of exploring her love of this coastal area in her artwork. She is very much inspired by the spaces between land and sea – these coastal communities, the heritage of the area and the way humans have made their marks on the landscape. Beautifully worn cottages, harbour walls crossed with ropes, ladders and the line of the tide and the incredible vast space of sea and sky. There are also quite a few castles!
Gillian Lee Smith sketchbooks

Please contact Kathie Vezzani at kathie@bellissimaartescapes.com if you would like more information about this retreat.

You can find out more at www.bellissimaartescapes.com.

Recent Workshops & Retreats

Emotional Portraits (Amsterdam)

(May 20-28, 2017) Thank you to all who joined us!

Please contact Kathie Vezzani at kathie@bellissimaartescapes.com if you would like more information about this retreat.

You can find out more at www.bellissimaartescapes.com.

The work of Rembrandt van Rijn brings me to tears. To stand before one of his paintings is an experience I wish to repeat as often as I can in my lifetime. His use of dark and light and the surface of the paint that is built up in many layers – tone, color and texture, but so much more than that. I loves his unflinching self-portraits in particular – a man full of passion and curiosity – all the joys and struggles of life etched on his face. He was not interested in perfection or vanity but in representing the spirit of humanity.

During this week, we will be inspired by Rembrandt by working on self-portraits as well as from reference imagery and from a live model. Creating portraits in drawing and painting mediums that explore great contrasts of dark and light, atmosphere, expression and surface. We will also be thinking about portraying emotion and the human spirit in our work to create atmospheric and expressive representations of ourselves and others. Acrylic paints will be mixed with mediums to give the feel and surface of oil paints.

A Moment in Time (Seattle, WA)

(April 7-12, 2017) Thank you to all who joined us!

Whilst this class is currently Sold Out, there is a waiting list. Please contact Kathie Vezzani at kathie@bellissimaartescapes.com if you would like to be added.

You can find out more details on this retreat at www.bellissimaartescapes.com.

We will be based in a studio (The Bemis Building) in the Sodo neighbourhood of Seattle, USA. Over the five full days of the course I will be teaching elements of my narrative way of working – incorporating portraiture with getting out and about in the local area to discover and sketch features that we will be able to incorporate into finished work.

As Sodo is such an industrial area we can walk down to the waterfront and find lots to inspire us in our work. We will then continue to work in the studio drawing on reference imagery and our own sketches to create art that captures a moment in time – our time exploring the local area and our own response to it whilst also focussing on portraits.

Using simple drawing materials to explore a diverse way of making marks, these drawings will also help us to explore more expressive ways of using acrylic paints and inks.

A Moment in Time (Portland, OR)

(April 17-23, 2017) Thank you to all who joined us!

Whilst this class is currently Sold Out – there is a waiting list. Please contact Kathie Vezzani at kathie@bellissimaartescapes.com if you would like to be added.

You can find out more about this retreat at www.bellissimaartescapes.com.

We will be staying and have our studio based in the wonderful McMenamins Hotel. Over the five full days of the course I will be teaching elements of my narrative way of working – incorporating portraiture and place.

As Alberta is such an eclectic, creative area we can get out sketching in order to find lots to inspire us in our work. We will then continue to work in the studio drawing on reference imagery and our own sketches to create art that captures a moment in time – our time exploring the local area and our own response to it whilst also focusing on portraits.

Using simple drawing materials early in the class to explore a diverse way of making marks, these drawings will also help us to explore more expressive ways of using acrylic paints and inks in the following days.

What Students are Saying

I just want to thank you for all the time and hard work you put into this course. You are a very gifted teacher and I am grateful that you are so willing and open to sharing your techniques and insights with your students. Because of you, I am not only becoming a better artist, I am becoming a HAPPIER, more expressive artist and that is more important than anything. Thank you!”

Louise Duhamel

I can’t say enough about this course. I think it was the most fulfilling course I’ve ever taken.

Alyse Sanders

I feel this course is helping me to achieve full circle in my quest to find my true style. I am still working my way through all the insightful lessons and find myself re-visiting the videos, because every time I do I find something I did not grasp before. It has most definitely met my expectations and so much more…It does not spoon feed but rather encourages one to experiment and explore.

Tania Bain

“As a beginner, I’ve wondered how do you mix paints?…use pastels?…what papers? surfaces? pencils or charcoal? And how DOES one use the colour wheel? So many materials, methods, and all so confusing. Can’t someone please explain it all? Well, Gillian has. It’s all here, beautifully demonstrated in excellent video. Gillian is the most talented, generous, inspiring teacher. I’ve gone back over the lessons again and again, each time deriving more benefit and seeing improvement in my work. I’m so grateful for this extraordinary course.”

Arlene Lombardo

“Thank you so much for such an amazing course! When I try to describe it to friends I say that it is like an entire bachelor of fine arts curriculum in 6 weeks! That is what it seems like because it is so packed with information and exercises. I will be working on these lessons for many months to come. Thank you for your insights, generosity and gorgeous work.”

Anne O’Connor

“I want to share my extremely wonderful experience of taking Gillian’s class Unearth Gather Create. As a returning painter with years of no active drawing or painting, this thorough, intense complete class of wonderful tutorials, content, tips and writing exercises revived my passion for art. I have done many drawings, paintings and sketches. I have redone a porch to use as a studio and I am working in my journals to ready myself for two new series of paintings. Please take this class and trust you will have a wonderful journey.”

Joan Tucker

“I have LOVED the class and will enjoy continuing my study as I slowly work my way through. You are not only a gifted artist, but a generous and kind person. I thank you for your giving spirit which shone through each and every video. I hope to someday take a class from you in person!”

Beth Cole

“I have been taking classes for the last year or so pretty regularly. Gillian’s class is totally different. I feel like I am in art school! The first week was more info then a lot of month long classes. Gillian comments on every piece shown on the page and is there daily encouraging and prompting us. I would recommend it to everyone.”

Sandy Belt

“I have adored Gillian Cox’s work for several years now. When I found out she was teaching an online workshop, there was no hesitation. I signed up. Now I have taken many classes and not always, but sometimes my expectations are much higher than what the class actually is. Not so with Gillian. I just wanted to watch her work because her work is so deep and thought provoking and unbelievably beautiful. She is an excellent teacher. She is talking as she is creating and able to really explain what she is doing in such exquisite detail.”

Kate Thompson

“She teaches the foundation of drawing the portrait which is so important to all levels, for beginners to learn and for more experienced artist to revisit. She then demonstrates expressively her creations which gives the students the ability to take from foundational work into a more expressive and personal direction. Absolutely the best class I have ever taken.”

Kate Thompson

“Gillian is an amazing artist and an equally amazing teacher. What a comprehensive, professional, creative, responsive, beautiful presentation with superb videos and art instruction, gorgeous images and written materials to enhance learning, and creative inspiration to enable students to unearth their own inner vision for their art. Every day I come to the online classroom with so much renewed passion for art. And proof that the best teachers are also always learning themselves, Gillian frequently asks if we have any feedback for her as an instructor. The environment she has created is supportive and welcoming of everyone at every stage in their own creative exploration. This is so much more than an online art course. It is art school with a group of friends that includes the brilliant, generous instructor.”

Joanne Rose

“Unearth Gather Create has been a revelation, delivering so much more than I’d hoped for (and my hopes were high to begin with)! Rich in content, it will provide food for thought and creativity for months (and probably years) to come. Gillian is a natural tutor – patient, generous, and always encouraging, her passion for art is infectious. I quickly forgot this was an e-course, as it feels like she’s explaining everything to me in the same room! Can’t recommend it highly enough.”

Magdalena Moon

 “So delighted I signed up for your course, Unearth Gather Create. I really did not know what to expect and have been so impressed with your approach as a tutor, the course content and your ability to connect with your ‘students’. Watching you model a technique, listening to the clarity of your explanations and receiving your constructive feedback is allowing me to develop important understanding and knowledge while inviting me to find my own voice. I am excited by the way in which you are allowing me to think, to see and to connect with Art. I would recommend your course without reservation and wish you every success in the future.”

Dalene Robertson

 “I would recommend your course without reservation and wish you every success in the future.”

Dalene Robertson

 “I was in art school as of last year and everything I learn from you is just as valuable if not more than art school. What you are teaching and how you teach is one of the greatest gifts to give someone who has never been to art school and/or can’t afford it. It’s my dream to create an online school teaching art to kids and adults because of those reasons I mentioned. So I admire you and you have been an inspiration.

Jennifer Perry

 “Wonderful content, superb teacher, fine art instruction without any the worry of my skill level, but thorough & comprehensive…Artfully & Thoughtfully Done!

Lynne O’Neal

Watching you paint and draw is immensely useful. I learn so much. And I love the way you write about artistic expression.

Sharyle Doherty

I love everything about her style – her teaching – just everything!!!!!

Suzanne O’Mullan

“I was highly impressed by the amount of content in the course, it was like a college semester worth of information!”

Amber Walker

“Drawn to Expression is great and strong in all strands! Structure, presentation, practical videos, inspirational quotes, incredible content and words from an Artist/Tutor who is passionate to share her knowledge and expertise with her students. For me, each strand enriches my own journey.”

Debbie Gould

“Your videos demonstrate a technique and how you use it, how to express with the mediums/technique. Then the assignments dovetail in such a way that everyone experiments and produces something different…different expressions. This is not a paint by numbers course.”

Mardi Driftmier

“Gillian, the class I took from you, Drawn to Expression, was absolutely incredible. My art has grown, deepened, and loosened in such positive ways, by what I have learned from you. A totally exceptional class!”

Suzy Norris

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