Don Waters Workshop at the Logan Art Gallery Friday 18th July 2014
What strikes me first during this workshop is Don’s optimism. He prefers to see only the positives in this world and decided never to paint any negative images.
Again, Don started his instructions by signing the blank canvas with his message for the day in charcoal . This message is personal and just for him to know. Don states that he starts with nothing in his mind and just lets the painting evolve as he goes.
Don uses charcoal as his main drawing tool as he enjoys its versatility and the different shading he can create with it. He also uses an eraser as a different drawing tool. Almost miraculously his drawing grow into this mystically world of Arcadia. Don searches for a world he will discover by turning the canvas several times before finding a meaning and to continue with his drawings. This process is repeated several times and every time a new world appears in his painting.
At this stage Don fixes the drawing with workable fixative or varnish before he introduces colour by applying different glazes in a very loose manner. He mentioned that some of his painting have more than 60 layers of glazes to achieve the vibrancy in his work.
Don lightens some of the darker charcoal areas with pure white acrylic and lets it blend into each other.
During this workshop Don encourages us to discover a new way in our work by his inspiring examples. Surprisingly, everyone in this group went on a different journey.
At first I was struggling to let my mind go blank. The logical rational left side of my left brain refused to let go and always wanted to create s o m e t h i n g. Even though I couldn’t let go completely, I was surprised that I could accept an abstract version of s o m e t h i n g I clearly saw evolving.
And so my first abstract painting emerged.
Below is Don Waters example from his workshop. By turning the painting 90 degree the mystically world changes and can be interpreted differently by the viewer. And it is up to the viewer to decide which world they prefer.