Went to a demo last night at Boton Art circle given by Paul Tabot-Greaves
Very interesting and a really good set up. He has a camera on his work and then projects onto a large screen which the whole audience can then see very comfortably from anywhere in the room. Much better than crowding round him with a limited view of what he is doing and it also gives the artist a much bigger better view of the painting.. He explained that he doesn't normally paint upright on an easel and so could never demonstrate as he paints in his studio. When painting vertically he can't use as much water as he does normally and so this system allows him to paint as he prefers. He actually paints standing up, with a slight tilt on his paper and tends to hold his brush very near the end in a deliberate attempt to lose some control to give his work a looser feel.
He painted what seemed to be a very ambitious landscape scene of the Yorkshire side of the river Ribble and what was so refreshing was that he voiced his fears and trepidations which we all will know and understand but which we never contemplate the professionals will feel so for me that was music to my ears!!!
As to the painting, he seemed to use watercolour almost like acrylic and used the paint in a single cream/ thin yoghurt consistency apart from his first wash where he covered the whole paper with a very subtle soft layer of paint, mixing the colours on the paper as he moved down the painting. For the rest of the painting he applied the paint very wet but in a rich consistency so got a very good depth of colour first time then went back to build up areas of detail which it seems is what separates the professional from we amateurs, certainly me anyway..... as that is what they seem to instinctively know how to do!!!! I know it hasn't always been instinct, it is down to knowledge, experience and skill that has been built up over years and years of hard dedication that only an artist who truly loves his trade is prepared to do.
Paul is a loose painter and for me it was very interesting to see how someone else works in a loose way.... he was constantly assessing and appraising and I have to say his final piece which was completed in less than 2 hours was a really attractive piece with lots of light, tremendous darks and while he said it wasn't finished and he would go back to the studio and work on selected areas a bit more it was an excellent learning experience for me and there are lots of helpful tips and hints, such as his use of greens (uses ready mixed!!), the way he applies the paint to the paper, and an insight into the way he approaches his work.... thank you Paul!!!