Sunday, August 19, 2007

Smashing Color is Fun!

Perhaps fellow student and jeweler extraordinaire Jane Kuehn would say "Smashing good color" (being from England and all), but I'm from the U.S. and so is Maggie Maggio, so I'll stick with "Smashing color is fun!" Sorry, Jane, I couldn't resist. And sorry to all those waiting with baited breath *cough* for the next post. When I got back to these fine United States I hit the ground running. I'll save you the gory details, but the dust is settling and normalcy is returning (as much as it can in this eccentric life style of mine).

So, back to the wonderful workshops in Stresa, Italy.....

Maggie's lessons left me gasping and exhausted, but full of wonderful "Ah ha!" moments. I have always approached color in an ad hoc manner, and perhaps with a little laze fare thrown in just to make it interesting (or confusing, depending on your outlook). By the end of Maggie's workshop I found I could actually make a specific color I might have in mind - a miracle in itself - and I looked at color in a smashingly different way. But you're not here to read, are you? You're here to look at neat photos... so here ya go!

The hardest part for the restless artist in me is to sit and listen to theory, and boy was there a lot of theory. Maggie would lay out the "current" theory of the day and then smash it all down (thus the title "Smashing Color") and lay out her revised approach to color.

Maggie also introduced us to the magic of prisms... what a trip! See this amazingly simple bunch of lines? Look at what happens when you look at them through a triangular prism. (Thanks to Nadja for this and all the great photos she took!) See all the pretty colors? These were attained without the use of any drugs what so ever! Pretty cool, huh?

Then, at last, we got down to some serious play. First we took our zillions of color chips and laid them out for a look-see. Notice all the yellows and oranges on the closest end of the table? Those are Nadja's and Betsy's color chips. See all the purples laid out on the middle right side? That's mine. What a surprise.Once we had all our colors tidy and organized, Maggie took all the greens, mixed them in with a big bag of greens she had brought and poured them out onto another table. Our task was to sort them by what type of greens they were... Blue Greens on one side, Yellow Greens on the other. Not only that, but we needed to lay them out from "rainbow" to "earth tone" and dark to light (forgive me Maggie, but I can't find my notebook and I can't remember the words you used for dark and light - perhaps... dark, and light?). Look at Betsy's determination.

I think we did pretty well. Then we got to the mixing thing. Maggie described a sense of "Zen" that ideally would be reached at the point of enlightenment. I wasn't sure I believed her until it actually happened. Zounds! And look at all the mixing we did!

Ok, I've been trying to catch up in this post, but I find that this is turning into a small book. My cats and son are beginning to look extremely hungry *glances quickly towards their pleading faces* so I better close here with a promise of wrapping up Maggie's workshop next time.


Susan T said...

Yay!!! I'm so glad you're back at it! I can't wait for more!

Polka Dot Creations said...

Oh, can't they feed themselves?? I need to hear the rest of the story! ;-)

And, oh, those beautiful, luscious greens! From aqua to olive to chartreuse, green is my absolute favorite color, and they all seem to be there on that table. Yummmmmm.

Raven's Clay said...

Hi Susan! I'm so glad you're still coming back for more! lol! I'll try to keep the blog on a regular schedule... but don't give up on me if I have to skip a few days here and there. ;)

Raven's Clay said...

Hi Lisa! LOL, yeah, the cats cant and the son wont. ;)

Green is one of my favorite colors too - depending on what day it is, of course. I have to say, I thought I had a pretty good eye for color, but that exercise was hard. It really impressed on me just how arbitrary "color" can be. A green can look yellowish next to one with lots of blue in it, but put it next to a green with more yellow in it and it can look more blue! Yikes!

The hardest part of those exercises, I think, was putting color chips in different piles - with out forming a gradient, as it were - for just this reason. Yikes, did my brain hurt! Lol

Stonehouse Studio said...

Those color chips intimidated the heck out of me! But I just let the zen flow in and pretty soon we had those greens were in marching order. I think Type A personalities and color are a match made in heaven......


Raven's Clay said...

Hi Betsy!! Type A? I was thinking more Obsessive Compulsive! Lol! ;)