Monday was an unusual day for me - I travelled across the moors to the Old School Room in Hinderwell where I attended a workshop being held by Gail Hurst. Gail is an accomplished artist and we exhibit together at the Inspired By Gallery at the National Parks Centre in Danby. But on this day I was stepping into the unknown (for me) - a world of paint and pastels. Gail gave a short demonstration to the group, working freely and swiftly, dextrously weaving delicate watercolour marks of exquisite colour, and huge wide confident sweeps of paint texture accross the paper in turn. Her work is joyful and lively and very soon we were all encouraged to take our own painterly steps.
I confess to making a very tentative start and had to keep turning my paper over. Gail administered guidance and I began to learn how to use a swordliner (paintbrush) and guide the paint, though not quite as magically as my tutor!
I had to concentrate very hard, and what was made to look easy in the demonstration proved awkward and difficult to replicate. I was encouraged to mix paint and pastel, work with my fingers, blend and smooth tones of colour and experiment with the brushes and sticks of pastel. I was exhausted by the close of day and had two very small, unfinished drawings to show for it. Thanks Gail - I need a lot of practice!