Two weeks ago I taught an new class, called “Under the Influence”. It was inspired by four (of the many) artists whose work has influenced mine. There has been so much discussion in social media about copying, learning from, and being influenced by recently. It is a confusing topic for artists just starting out, and apparently for some who have been around a long time.
There is a very long tradition of artist’s schools, where a “master” will take in apprentices to learn what he/she knows. The apprentices work can eventually be confused for their masters if they learn well. The object was then for them to launch out and develop their own voice, or to stay forever enslaved by the master and never sign a piece with their own name.
I decided to try this setting up of small salons to learn about four artists that have influenced my work. In the class we analyzed each of the painters, what they did and how, and what I thought made their approach unique. We then set about using one of each of their paintings to inspire a painting of our own. These four artists are Wayne Thiebaud, Wosene Worke Kosrof, Freidensreich Hundertwasser, and Joan Miró.
It was amazing to me to see what the students painted, each of them with limited experience painting. I was wowed, for certain. I hope you are too. Enjoy.