I am doing a two day workshop – the “Words of David Jones Workshop” with non-calligraphers on Thursday and Friday. the group did one last week in preparation for letter proportions and letter spacing. But now its the Real Thing!
I believe that the best way to teach a short workshop is to define your goals and then not to let peripheral things get in the way.
This group of quilters would like access to the lettering world in order to use lettering in their quilts. So while the preparation of the surface to paint on is interesting, it will take too long on a two day workshop. So I did this part for them.
Daviod Jones’ backgrounds were off-white with subtle nuances of colour. He would paint the entire sheet of paper with a white preparation (limewash?) and I am using modern materials to simulate this effect. So lovely as these bright panels are, they are just an undercoat. I believe in using top quality materials for workshops, so this is 100% cotton paper painted with Lascaux acrylic. In the end, participants will have a choice between col white or warm white. But first, here are the backgrounds.
Giving workshops means that as a teacher you have to revisit stuff you know and this is very inspiring. I would love to paint some white David Jones letters on one of these – and have optimistically kept one at this stage, to do this! But now, on to the final surface, which has had gesso rollered over the colour.
And here you can see the two sorts of white. Quite sad in a way, but wait till you see the gorgeous colours that the quilters mix to paint with. Now, colour mixing is not quite on the agenda, but an awareness of colour nuance is an integral part of David Jones, so they will learn to mix beautiful shades using complimentary colours and a little white.
While on the topic of time-saving shortcuts, it is not possible to cover how to do computer aided layout. Again, I am doing extra work behind the scenes to enable everyone to go home with a complete or nearly complete piece. I do think that there is a feel-good factor to seeing semi-finished work on lovely materials instead of reams of letters drawn onto layout paper. (Another feel-good factor, is Hazel & Terry’s belief that, as workshop co-ordinators it is great to supply all the materials and a nice meal when there are guest tutors!)
Each person sent me their quotation in advance; this had to be 6 – 20 words. I put these into caps, centered them and figured out what size they need to do them to fit them onto the paper. Of course it is useful to learn how to do this by doing it, but then we’d have to sacrifice something else! Doing this has enabled me to size each one up and I can then say to the quilters that the letters need to be 2cm in size or 3cm or whatever! Everyone has the same size of paper 38cm X 14cm. But they will be given their quote on a little slip of paper in a small print size, about 16pt.
Friday’s blog will have to become Saturday’s blog, to show the work that everyone did. Believe me,. there is still a LOT for the patricipants to do design-wise and colour-wise.