Chettle Summer School 2021 ‘360 degrees’

· You’ll need a portable sketch book and a couple of pencils.

· Stand (or sit) outside and make a viewfinder of your hands much

like this………

· You don’t have to go far or take long to decide where you set yourself.

It’s all about discovering what unexpectednesses you find out there.

· Very slowly turn a full 360 degrees – full circle, and watch the movie as

it passes before your eyes.

· Stop every now and again to study what has arrived in your viewfinder.

· At each stop-point, change the proportions of your viewfinder to see

how it changes your composition.

· When you feel ready, make some rapid sketches in your sketch book of some of the views that have caught your eye. These can be scratchy and rapid. Because your views are accidental rather than chosen, you may find some interesting and unexpected features and elements in your compositions.

· Things to think about: where is the horizon sitting within your viewfinder? Where are the weightier tones? How do the shapes in the distance differ from the shapes in the foreground (and the middle distance too)? Don’t worry if you feel a fence or a tractor (or whatever) has landed in an awkward place – keep it/them where they are and see how that works in your drawing, it might be serendipitous perfection.

· Work loosely with line to find your main areas and shapes. Work with loosely hatched tone to find your darker places.

· Move on quickly to the next drawing without worrying about the previous drawing.

You are going to choose two or three views from which you’ll make something more studied, experimental and permanent. Back in the hall (or outside if you prefer)…………

· Take one of your drawings and upscale onto a larger piece of paper. Mark out a box of the same proportions (but bigger) as the first drawing you’ve chosen. Here’s where artistic licence comes into play….

· First, place the main horizon across your box in the place it sits in your sketch. Really think about where it is and be true to your sketch. Now look for a hint of any other horizontal and any vertical. Put them in right across your box even if they don’t exist as such across your sketches.

· You’ll have a box divided into shapes which have relevance to you and your sketch. Are there any shapes/areas of tone that you might now add to this new drawing to being to put some depth into it.

· Hatch them in, scribble them in, use the side of your pencil to put softer shapes in, think about how they can relate to the verticals and horizontals you’ve put in.

· Think about why you understood something to be far away and see if you can portray it in this drawing.

· Now add colour, colour pencil, inks, watercolours to your drawing. Look for the interactions between your initial shapes and those tones and areas which you’ve imposed upon them. They create new shapes. Put colour into and into those new shapes.

· Scratch and scribble, make textures and dark splashes. This is becoming a working drawing for a painting either in one medium or a mixed media work. You can include collage which is a great way of ‘correcting’ a large area or negotiating something which needs change. This is the place where you work out your plans for the finished piece.

Moving on to the more finished piece…

· Choose your medium/media and the surface you’ll be working on (canvas, paper etc.).

· Loosely mark out and negotiate your main shapes – you can use charcoal, pastels and/or paint (but not pencil – pencil is too fine)

· Now put your thinking caps on and really decide how you’ll use both colour and tone to encourage the feel of distance. What you also need to know is that almost everything you put down on this first layer will be covered up by subsequent layers.

· Paint your first layer naturally and in the way that comes to hand. It might be right, it might not be, but it’s the starting point for your negotiations…..

About this site...
I am an art teacher living and working in Dorset.  I have taught for the Adult Education Service, the University of Bath and some supply teaching in my local schools but now I run all my classess and courses privately. This site is intended as an addition to my teaching, primarily for any student who in the week misses a class and wants to catch up.
The lessons are also available for any one anywhere who would like some ideas on what to teach, what to learn or is just interested in seeing what we do.
I'm afraid I won't be able to answer any emails or comment on anyone's work as I just wouldn't have the time. 
I teach four weekly art classess in Bandford in Dorset and every six weeks or so I run a Sunday workshop in a village hall on the outskirts of Blandford. I also run a vibrant five-day summer school and a two-day workshop in the days leading up to Christmas. Other than that I spend every available moment in my studio or drawing and painting elsewhere.
I studied for four years at The Slade School of Fine Art where I was awarded The Slade Prize on graduation. I went on to travel and study further finally doing a P.G.C.E at Exeter University with Ted Wragg as my mentor. It was a wonderful year of education which set me in good stead for my years of teaching since then.